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Who has the best edgebander? Best means best finished product coming out of the machine, speed, least finicky, lowest price and cost of service based on product produced and machine life.
We are a 20 man commercial shop, almost all pvc with some wood.
IMA. lots of otheres as well but you will be spending 60K minimum for what you want.
I would have to agree with the previous post about the IMA. I have ran Holz Her, Brandt (Homag) and IMA banders and the IMA by far is the best. Can't say it was the cheapest though. We have 2 IMA Advantage 500L machines and have demonstrated them for "would be" buyers. Every one of them ended up buying an IMA.
At this point I'd go for a machine that will apply "laser" banding. I'd want the conventional glue pot on it also since not all materials can use the laser system. Laser banding system was patented by Homag but other companies have developed intense hot air systems to melt the back plastic. There are now banding suppliers that will apply the backing plastic to most PVC & ABS. Not having to deal with hot melt glue for most banding is a huge plus and the end result looks better. HolzHer, offers a dual system. I suspect others do also. No idea of cost but much more than $60K. Even our aging IDM W/O laser cost $125K. I would think a 20 man shop would want to have a heavier machine.
Hot air for fused edges are in the 200-280 neighborhood, laser machines jump another 150k+
The hot air piece on ours was about 50k
If you want eliminate hand cleaning parts you need a modern machine with scrapping stations. Most of the machines in that group have an add-on for hot air.
Looking at hot air machines that apply the zero edge banding is worth investigating as others have noted. It is expensive but for a solid 8 hr machine you can get them in the 160k range, multiple shifts in the 280 range. If I were you I would be careful of recommendations on this site. Lots of salesman trolling as I learned from personal experience.
If I were you and had a shop your size I would look at the big three (Biesse,Homag,SCM) and stay away from the many other entry level or off brands. Invite salesman in, let them give their pitch and play their game. You will be surprised by the differences between them all. Price, construction, service, warranty will vary a lot. Good luck!
+1 on IMA. Schelling owns them now.
I traveled to Europe with the intentions of bringing in the highest quality edgebander possible. NuTek Machinery now represents the OTT edgebander line. I have over 30 years experience repairing edgebanders and other machinery and have never seen a better edge on a panel. PUR is the way to go.