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News

RIM of heat-resistant polyurethane-based streamlines spa cabinet assembly

Bayer MaterialScience AG : 01 February, 2013  (Application Story)
When Dynasty Spas needed an attractive, cost-effective and durable material that also streamlined assembly of its spa cabinets, it turned to long-fibre-injection (LFI) polyurethane RIM.
RIM of heat-resistant polyurethane-based streamlines spa cabinet  assembly

Founded in 1982, Romeo RIM is one of the leading processors of reaction injection molding (RIM) technology in North America. The company’s initial product technology is known as the HELP (High Energy Level Polymer) energy absorbing bumper system built for buses in the Unites States and Canadian transit markets. Since then, Romeo RIM has expanded its RIM technology capabilities by its early adoption of in-mould coatings, dicyclopentadiene (DCPD) and LFI technology. The main markets serviced include the mass transit, agricultural, construction, heavy truck, automotive, and leisure industries.

“Our Long Fibre Injection (LFI) process uses Bayer’s polyurethane system to manufacture a one-piece-per-wall spa cabinet with the impact resistance and finish that Dynasty Spas desired,” said Matt Getty, business unit manager, Consumer Products, Romeo RIM, Inc.

Sections of the outer spa cabinet are formed via the LFI process using Baydur STR 675 polyurethane, which contributes to an attractive appearance along with significant production and processing advantages over traditional synthetic materials. LFI with polyurethane offers exceptional strength-to-weight ratio and dimensional stability, as well as impact, heat and chemical resistance. The larger cabinet sections possible through the LFI process also simplify assembly over that of traditional extruded polystyrene boards.

Previously, several of the narrow extruded polystyrene boards needed to be assembled in a tongue and groove method to make one large side panel for a spa cabinet. In contrast, LFI panels are molded as one side panel – eliminating the need for any extra wood ties, fasteners, glue, staples or other materials used in the polystyrene production process. This results in a more efficient, cost-effective method for producing the panels.

“This spa cabinet illustrates several benefits of the LFI process, including the ability to mould large, complex parts that are damage resistant, can withstand the elements and also increase ease of assembly - boosting manufacturing efficiency,” said Harry George, manager, New Applications, Polyurethanes, Bayer MaterialScience LLC.

“The spa cabinet produced by Romeo RIM utilising Bayer’s polyurethane system has helped us make the maintenance of a spa simpler and more affordable,” said Steve Busscher, vice president, engineering, Dynasty Spas of Athens, Tenn.

 

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