Structured plastic surfaces have always been used in the automotive industry. While etching was formerly the only way to produce such surfaces, laser texturing is today continuously gaining ground in this application. Standex has long established itself in this field. 70 to 80 percent of its products are destined for automotive manufacturing. “Nevertheless, this application is steadily gaining in importance in sectors such as furniture manufacture, the electronics industry and consumer products, as well”, explains Thorsten Miebach, Head of the laser competence centre in the worldwide Centre for Coordination and Grain / Texture Development in Krefeld.
When Standex first started with laser texturing, the LASERTEC Shape machines with the only ones on the market with which the necessary quality and speed could be achieved. “The aim at that time was the texturing of dashboards”, recalls Thorsten Miebach. As a result of the positive experience made with the first LASERTEC 210 Shape capacities have expanded continuously.
With its meanwhile ten LASERTEC Shape machines from DMG MORI Standex has taken a great step forward in surface structuring, as Thorsten Miebach confirms: “Shape technology is often more economical than etching and opens up creative possibilities for us in design and texture.” This means the technology fits perfectly into the extensive portfolio of Standex performance. This ranges from the development of innovative design ideas combined with technical functionalities and on through to the generating of first prototypes. The product portfolio is as extensive as it is diverse: “We use the machines to produce every imaginable kind of texture for the most varied of products, from perfume bottles to mobile phone covers and on to include complete vehicle interiors.”