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ADVANCING ADHESIVES: Advanced High-Strength Solution for Trailer Flooring

November 1, 2010
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UPM and Dow Automotive Systems have developed a pioneering solution for fully bonded plywood trailer floors.

The application of BETAMATE structural adhesives prior to installation of WISA plywood flooring during assembly at a DON-BUR Group facility in the UK.


WISA plywood flooring bonded to the trailer floor using BETAMATE structural adhesives.

UPM and Dow Automotive Systems have partnered to develop a new solution for mounting floors to trailer bodies. The floor is bonded to the trailer body using the WISA® Bonded Floor Solution, a combination of WISA plywood flooring and BETAMATE™ adhesives that were developed exclusively for this solution. The system eliminates the need for mechanical fixtures while offering increased structural rigidity, improved durability, enhanced acoustics and superior corrosion protection.

Traditionally, plywood floors have to be mechanically fastened to the trailer body. The plywood flooring is joined to the body with screws or bolts, requiring the drilling of up to 200-300 screws, which can then lead to corrosion and noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) issues. In an effort to resolve these challenges, additional sealing of the mechanical fastening is needed, adding an additional step to the mounting process. Overall, mechanical fasteners limit durability while requiring attention to increased maintenance.

The “one-stop” solution developed by Dow Automotive Systems and UPM not only eliminates mechanical fixtures, but directly bonds the plywood floor to the trailer body using polyurethane adhesives. Due to the continuous bond line, the plywood flooring is as robust and secure as flooring mounted with traditional fasteners. In fact, the continuous bond line spreads loads more evenly than the point supports provided by mechanical fasteners, thereby facilitating improved joint performance.

In addition to increasing the structural rigidity of the trailer, the new solution also provides several other end-user benefits, including improved resistance to corrosion and water absorption, improved durability, and a quieter ride. The new flooring system may also help reduce the maintenance required for the trailer. Trailer builders can order their tailor-cut plywood floor kit from UPM, and it is delivered-along with the appropriate Dow adhesive-directly to the builder, simplifying the production process.

About UPM

UPM Plywood offers high-quality WISA plywood and veneer products mainly for construction, transport, and furniture industries. With approximately 2,600 employees, UPM operates six plywood mills and two veneer mills in Finland, a plywood mill in Russia, and a plywood mill in Estonia. For more information, visit www.wisaplywood.com.

About Dow Automotive Systems

Dow Automotive Systems is a leading provider of polyurethanes, elastomers, films, fluids, adhesives, emissions solutions and acoustic-management materials to the global transportation industry. By working collaboratively with passenger vehicle, commercial transportation and aftermarket customers, Dow Automotive Systems is developing industry-leading solutions to address a wide range of critical market needs. For additional information about Dow Automotive Systems, visit www.dowautomotive.com.

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