Using light instead of heat, the UV curing process has been in existence over 50-years. History has proven it a better alternative to solvent-based coatings, offering many benefits including no environmental pollutants, no solvents to evaporate, no long drying tunnels, no wasted floor space and no loss of coating volume.
UV finishing is environmentally responsible, increases solvent resistance, durability, save space and saves you money. What’s not to like.
Many cabinet shops and furniture manufacturers are now using ultraviolet (UV) curing. Cabinet doors are ideal candidates and greatly benefit by being able to be immediately handled post finishing. Moldings and intricate shapes can be sprayed and instantly cured in specially designed curing chambers.
There are many established players in the wood finishing UV equipment industry. These include Aagaard-Finnrose, American Ultraviolet, Barberan, Cattinair, Cefla, Delle Vedove (DV-Systems), Deimco, Dubois, Giardina, Hymmen, IST, Makor and Efsen Engineering. As is the case with many industrial processes, established American and European names have given way to those from the Far East. Not to worry, our ability to clone Chinese lamps is unrivaled. There is little comparison between lamps from China and those manufactured in USA by TCS Technologies.
The UV spectrum is divided into four regions: UVA (310 to 390 nm), UVB (280 to 310 nm), UVC (250 to 280 nm) and UVV (390 to 445 nm). For clear UV-curable coatings, (top-coat) UVA and UVB output is critical. Here the standard mercury lamp excels.
The most popular lamp for UV wood finishing is the standard mercury (Hg) lamp. It is long-lived and performs well over a wide range of coatings
Many wood profile products use highly pigmented stains and coatings, especially white. For white coatings thicker than 1.5 mils, a gallium-doped bulb (high UVV output) followed by a regular mercury bulb provides optimum depth of cure together with good surface cure. Always remember, since the gallium iodide bulb provides depth of cure, it should be used before the mercury bulb.
A typical UV wood finishing line combines one (1) gallium iodide lamp followed by two (2) or three (3) mercury lamps. Gallium provides depth of cure for pigmented stains while mercury lamp provides surface cure.
Gallium iodide lamps cost more and have a shorter useful life. In general, operation of gallium lamps requires special ballast. Mercury lamps operate fine with metal halide (gallium) ballast but often you cannot run a gallium lamp with mercury ballast. Certain equipment uses electronic power supplies capable of operating mercury or gallium lamps.
Choose from our extensive range of mercury and gallium iodide lamps for most wood finishing equipment including: