Adhesion failure in manufacturing is an opportunity in disguise for exceptional business growth…if you do the work to understand the why behind your failures.
Question: When’s the last time you checked how efficient your solvent wipes are for the material that you’re working with?
That’s the case with most manufacturers that use solvent wipes in their operation. It’s an approach taken all-too-often during the most critical steps of their process: material surface preparation.
Surely, it can’t be that important…..
One manufacturer, found otherwise first “hand.”
- The material: Composite
- The process: Hand-Wiping with a Solvent Wipe
- The wipe: Vendor-approved, “non-contaminating” isopropanol wipe
This should sound very familiar to those of you that touch the operations and processes of the manufacturing floor. Raise your virtual hand if it does!
*raises virtual hand*
So what’s the problem then?
“We’re wiping the surface before we bond, and our vendor told us our wipes are non-contaminating, so we shouldn’t be having failures.”
Possessing an adequate knowledge of how the condition of a material surface affects adhesion leads way to a few key questions:
- There is an assumption present that “simply wiping” the surface is adequate, when there are a number of factors that greatly impact wiping success.
- There are many documented instances where a vendor was completely incorrect in the backing of their product, as proven by materials science research data
- Contamination can come from a number of places: non-contaminating wipes that actually leave film behind, dirty solvent, airborne contaminants, dirty hands, etc. all ultimately negatively affecting adhesion
Given all of those factors (and then some) that go into affecting surface quality prior to adhesion, it would seem as though achieving optimal adhesion strength just doesn’t seem possible…
But, that’s simply not true. Complex adhesion quality problems in manufacturing are exactly that…complex. Solving these long-standing problems, requires:
A data-driven, highly specific, and highly objective approach to quantifying each process step in your operation.
To sum it all up, base decisions about how to approach pre-adhesion processing in manufacturing using data obtained straight from your material surface, with anything less being simply not effective.
We hope you find this information practical, as it can be implemented immediately into discussions about your operation. If that’s the case, we ask that you please SHARE it on LinkedIn so that others may begin to benefit from this information.