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Challenging the Industry Standard

5/9/17

Sean Kong is a sales manager for H.B. Fuller in Guangzhou, China. Working closely with customers in the China woodworking market, he and his team set out to provide an alternative adhesive solution that would enable production efficiencies while offering weather-resistant adhesion. 

In traditional paper honeycomb panel production, adhesive setting times can range from four to six hours, and customers in China are hungry for a faster, high-performance, high-quality process. Knowing this, the team saw a great opportunity to improve the water-based adhesion process in paper honeycomb panels in two ways. First, the adhesive needed to have a shorter setting time and better adhesion brought about by the inclusion of weather resistance properties. Second, the production efficiency process itself could be improved upon by creating an automatic production line.

Not only was this initiative geared towards creating a valuable solution for the industry, but a byproduct was that it would furthermore position H.B. Fuller as innovative and a competitor in the China woodworking market.

Product Quality Up, Costs Down

At the onset of the project, Sean worked with his manager, Tony Wu, who oversees the Durable Assembly teams in China. Together, they brainstormed a solution that uses a hot melt moisture cure (HMMC) product for the application. According to Sean, “In early trials, our HMMC product was not suitable for the process, so we made a few modifications that fit the requirements of the market. We also worked with a team of equipment manufacturers to create a new automatic production line for the application.”

Our modified polyurethane (PUR) hot melt is strong, durable, and ideal for a variety of applications, and both the HMMC product and the automatic production line trials have been very successful. The team is currently working to promote the solution to the market in China, and already customer feedback has been positive. Not only does it help to support customers’ product quality needs, but it also lowers total cost in use by providing a more efficient production process.

Customer-focused Innovation

According to Sean, “Both the solution and the business model are new. Because implementing this new adhesive product and process requires a significant investment, we work diligently to show our customers the product in action. Once we’ve convinced a customer to change his or her process and purchase the automatic machine, they are able to fully realize the benefits.”

Follow the hashtag #IAMConnectingWhatMatters on Twitter to see more H.B. Fuller success stories. Contact H.B. Fuller today to discover more about our employee projects as well as job opportunities today.

Clint Zhang
Marketing Manager, Durable Assembly China & Korea

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