Soliwood® im Detail.

soliwood "patterns" consist mainly of 15-20 layers impregnated with synthetic resin rotary-cut veneers with a one- or two-sided patterned surface made of resined special papers.

Since it is especially important that veneers take up as much of the resin solutions as possible, they must be large-pored. Therefore, red beech is typically used for the soliwood procedure – a renewable raw material from sustained managed forests in the best growing areas in Europe. This wood type is characterized not only by its ability to absorb large amounts of impregnation solutions, it also has excellent strength characteristics and a fine structure.

In order to make it possible to impregnate the woody structure properly and quickly and to then mould the veneer package in three dimensions, the veneers that are used are very thin, typically 0.4-0.6 mm. In order to attain specific technical properties in terms of elasticity and bending strength, stronger veneers are also used in the central layers.

The veneer is impregnated using solutions from basically condensed synthetic resins. These are nature-like. For the surface layers, melamine-based resins are used; these are transparent and the patterned surfaces do not change colour. For the inner layers, either melamine-based resins or phenol-based synthetic resins are used. The latter have somewhat better technical properties, such as a higher breaking load and greater resistance against liquids and moisture. Naturally, both resin systems are physiologically harmless. In the soliwood models shown, a combination of both synthetic resin types is used.

After being impregnated, the rotary-cut veneers are dried, smoothed, inspected, sorted and then further processed to veneer packages according to an individual design. These packages are then moulded and pressed in special steel pressing moulds with precision pinching edges at a temperature of about 150° C and with an extremely high pressure of approx. 500 tonnes per part. During the pressing process, not only are the veneer layers welded insolubly into an homogenous material by the strong compression and the hardening of the resin, but the surfaces are also permanently created and heat-treated, which makes them extremely resistant against nearly any type of mechanical or chemical aggression. Due to the use of the pinching edge technology during moulding, machine processing of the outer contours is not required; in addition, the visual appearance of the edges is softer and more harmonic.

Densities of up to 1300 kg/m3 are attained in our soliwood products (therefore much heavier than water), which plays an important role in the excellent product properties. And yet the basic chemical and microscopic structure of the wood is retained. Surface refinement already occurs during the pressing procedure, without the use of subsequent varnishing. The well-known disadvantages of varnished moulded parts (vulnerability and sensitivity to mechanical and chemical influences in daily use) can be permanently eliminated by using soliwood products.

Due to the use of materials that are environmentally friendly, soliwood moulded parts can be returned to the material cycle at the end of the product’s lifetime, either as a raw material for other pressing/chipboard products or as CO2-neutral sources of energy.