Power Adhesives has developed a solvent-free, faster alternative to the aerosol adhesives commonly used in the vacuum infusion process. Called VAC-TAC, the adhesive system is used for securing and positioning reinforcement materials in vacuum-infused composites. It has been designed to hold in place typical vacuum-processing products such as reinforced fabrics, foam, balsa, bleeders, breathers, peel plies and release films used in even the largest composite material structures, benefiting composites manufacturers.

Boat Builders Delighted with the System

A number of boat builders have already switched to the system with dramatic affect. One such company is South African ocean-going catamaran builder African Cats. This tech-savvy company had used a traditional aerosol contact adhesive to hold foam and other intermediate materials used during the vacuum forming of their one-piece hulls and lower decks in place for years. However, when they tested the VAC-TAC system they found a number of benefits.

“Using the VAC-TAC system, we found we could build the composite structures much faster, saving time and reducing production cost,” said Managing Director Gideon Goudsmit. “We also eliminated health and safety issues because the old system depended on us using a solvent-based contact adhesive. Our staff is much happier and we have no environmental issues - a win-win situation.”

Sprayable Hot Melt Gives Immediate Bond

The VAC-TAC system incorporates the TEC 6300 spray hot-melt glue gun, six meters of hose, VAC-TAC adhesive and toolbox/carry case. The special adhesive is supplied in hot-melt cartridge form and the glue gun is connected to an air and electrical supply. The adhesive is melted inside the glue gun chamber and sprayed directly onto one of the substrates. The materials can be bonded instantly, although the adhesive remains tacky for up to five minutes, allowing for positioning of the substrates. VAC-TAC is fully adjustable, providing a variety of spray patterns and coating widths.

Once the reinforcement materials are laid up, resin and vacuum feed pipes can be positioned using the same adhesive system, speeding up this part of the infusion lay-up process.

VAC-TAC is said to overcome the traditional problems encountered in this process while offering even lower processing costs. The adhesive has higher instant tack than aerosols; is solvent free; has no shelf life; requires no transport or storage issues; has no waste; and carries no packaging disposal costs.

For more information, phone 012-68-885800 or visit www.poweradhesives.com.