We at V.A.V. Group supply silicone frames, rings and attachments for all types of customers. Customers in construction need ready-made frames for doors and windows, and heavy machinery used for example in the pulp and paper industry requires chemical and tear-resistance. About a fifth of our profiles are further processed to fulfil the needs of our clients. These profiles are processed to be the best fit for the purpose, withstand their intended use, and allow for quick and easy installation.
Different methods for making frames and rings
We have several ways to make silicone and TPE profiles into frames, rings, hoops and other similar products. The production method is chosen according to the customer’s needs and the material of the profile. The dimensions of the ring or frame to be manufactured are obtained from the customer, and the elasticity of the material, for example, is taken into account before the product is manufactured.
Silicone profiles can be joined together either by vulcanisation or by adhesive bonding. In vulcanisation, either silicone paste or liquid silicone, more commonly called thermal adhesive, is placed between the profiles to be joined. Thermal adhesive is used when the product is so small or delicate, that the parts cannot be physically pressed together too tightly during the joining process. A lower temperature is also sufficient for thermal adhesive. Finally, the profiles are vulcanised together using heat. The vulcanisation process results in a very durable and high-quality joint. The method of joining therefore depends primarily on the size of the product.
TPE profiles can be joined either by mirror welding or by adhesive bonding. In mirror welding, the ends of the TPE profiles are melted and then pressed together to form the joint. The joint becomes very neat and resists stress very well. With adhesive bonding, both silicone and TPE profiles are bonded using a special glue that holds the joint together very well. Bonding is used in smaller batches where speed and economy are critical or when the product itself is small.
Vulcanisation and mirror welding require profile-specific tooling and are suitable for the most demanding solutions. These methods require more time and effort on the production line, which is why they are recommended for larger production batches.
Durable profiles for all environments
Our profiles go through several different treatments to make sure they are durable and ready to be installed. Because they are used in so many different industries for so many different purposes, they need to be prepared to last as long as possible, even in harsh conditions.
In downstream operations the manufacturing process is simple enough; the profiles that arrive from the production line are measured and cut to the right length and holes are made for vents and valves according to the order. The profiles are shaped and prepared with tools like a heat gun and a curing press, depending on what kind of properties the profile needs. For example, large profiles meant for construction are usually cut to the right shape and then treated with a heat gun.
The profiles used for machines in the paper industry have to endure strong air compression and withstand high temperatures. Some profiles come into contact with different dissolvents or oils and so they need to be durable enough that they don’t get damaged. For some use cases, like on fire doors, trains, and ships, the profiles must also have fire safety certificates. Profiles, like our Fire X, that are treated for fire safety have a thermal resistance of over 270°C and can slow down the spread of fire, even in extreme conditions. Properties like these are added to the profile during our manufacturing process.
From the production line to the client
Our strengths lie in the flexible and fast supply of small to medium-sized volumes. The goal is to have your product ready within two weeks of the order, and if there are ever sudden changes in supply sizes, our downstream operations can be directly in contact with the client. We aim to offer a reliable service every time. That’s why we actively listen to feedback and are constantly developing in terms of new processing methods and equipment, as well as improving the sustainability of materials and methods used on our production lines.
If you want more information on the ordering process and the time it takes to get your first tool sample, click here!