Vinyl Veneered kitchen doors.
Vinyl veneered kitchen doors are formed from a single piece of material. They can be part of an entirely new kitchen or part of a refurbishment. They can be economically made to any size, often in modern factories such as that of Ba Components. As they can be made to any size they are ideal for kitchen refurbishment work where odd sized doors are required. Vinyl veneered kitchen doors are great value for money either as part of a new kitchen or a refurbished kitchen. This type of kitchen door can come finished to either gloss, matt or even a wood grain texture. Thermo foil vinyl can be of a single colour or a wood grain pattern.
Some of the cheaper cheap vinyl veneered kitchen doors are made with a particle board foundation. Better quality vinyl veneered doors are made with Mdf (Medium Density Fiberboard) as their foundation. The process of making a vinyl veneered door is very much mechanised with computer controlled machinery. The board is loaded into the computer controlled saw. This beam saw below is manually loaded with single sheets of foundation material; some of the larger machines are loaded with pallet forks taking over thirty sheets at a time.
A computer controlled beam saw such as this is managed through cutting optimisation software ensuring the waste (cabbage) is minimised. Optimisation is, of course, a very complex algorithm, not one I would want to have to write may I assure you. Often the panels are cut oversized and then trimmed to the exact size required. This two-stage technique allows the tensions in the board to be released with the first cut and the exact dimension attained with the second cut.
Having been cut to the dimensions required the panels are loaded onto a CNC (Computer Numerical Controlled) router where any required surface shaping is formed in the panel. Here a CNC router is forming an array of doors on its bed. You will note that the side dimensions remain the same throughout the pieces on the bed, while the centre of the door varies in size depending on size. In essence, the router follows the side of the panel and cuts the shape gauged in from the edge. Not only is the door centre detail formed at this point, but also the edge profile.
The panel pieces are now beginning to look like kitchen doors!
Once cut to size and routed to shape the doors are taken off to be sprayed with glue. This part of the process is critical. The Pva glue has to be expertly applied to ensure that the Thermo foil vinyl veneer, Aka vinyl veneered kitchen doors; remains stuck to the door throughout its forthcoming life. As I am sure you are aware, when Mdf is cut and routed the worked surface can be fluffy, or at least not as compact as the main surface of the door. These edges and formations need particular attention ensuring that enough glue is applied. In this day and age, this spraying work is carried out by CNC robots. Incorrect glueing is one of the causes of delamination a flaw that can occur in this type of kitchen door.
The prepared doors are laid up on the vinyl press. You will note the doors are raised above the bed of the press on what are called chairs, space is left between the doors; this work is usually done manually. These chairs allow the Thermo foil vinyl to be formed down over the sides of the door where it can meet the prepared back face of the Mdf.
Thermo foil vinyl is pulled off huge rolls over the arranged doors. These rolls are pretty expensive and as a result, one has a large choice of colours, though not an infinite number as with paint colours. Nevertheless, a vinyl can take a pattern such as a wood grain pattern, offering, in the end, a wood lookalike finish. The vinyl can be of various textures; commonly: Matt, High Gloss or Wood Grain. Of these matt is, of course, the most popular, in either a wood grain or single colour.
Here you can see a Thermo foil vinyl press. Easily seen is the laying up bed to the front of the picture. To the rear is the output bed where the pressed work arrives after having been through the body of the machine. These machines are sometimes called membrane presses. Inside the body of the machine is an impermeable membrane about the size of a rectangular trampoline. When the prepared doors are in the machine body, the membrane comes down over the Thermo foil, the space above the membrane is flooded with hot oil, and this presses the Thermo foil vinyl down over the chaired doors. I believe that this pressing is assisted by a vacuum being applied to the underside ensuring the Thermo foil vinyl is pressed fully down over the back edge of the door.
Having been successfully pressed the vacuum under is released, the membrane rises and the oil over is drained back to be reheated for the next run. The work relaxes as it cools and arrives at the back of the press body on the output table. We see here the doors on the output table. Looking carefully one can see the vinyl sheet has been tucked fully down over the door, almost under the door to the chair.
Nearly there, where is the Stanley knife? The waste vinyl between the doors is roughly cut away. It is fully stuck to the door, but as there is no glue on the table or the chairs the vinyl falls away. The doors are inverted and the remainder of the waste vinyl is removed with a scraper. Abracadabra we have a vinyl veneered kitchen door!!