High requirements for adhesive systems in body shell construction

Gluing has gained an increasingly important role in the body shop. Alongside sealing and insulating, it is used especially for the assembly of body parts. Innovative lightweight designs with a mix of alternative materials without adhesive joints no longer exist. These materials include aluminum, magnesium alloys, high-strength steels, and various composites. Cost-benefit analysis demonstrates the economic benefits of bonding, especially when compared to conventional joining techniques such as clinching, riveting, gluing, screwing, flanging or welding. Additionally, increasing demand for safety, stiffness and comfort in cars is best achieved through the use of adhesive technology.

Know-how

In 2010, Dürr acquired the adhesive technology company Rickert, which has since changed its name to Dürr Systems Wolfsburg GmbH. This allowed Dürr to strongly expand its offering and its expertise in the field of body shell bonding. With its industry-specific experience, the experts from Wolfsburg within the global Dürr organization, provides Dürr with a complete adhesive offering worldwide. The Eco + Efficiency system from Dürr covers all dimensions of efficiency in production automation. Relative to the theme of bonding, this means that advanced solutions for automated processes in body shell construction can be utilized. With these material and energy-efficient solutions, Dürr supports its customers in the production process, thereby sustainably reducing unit costs while delivering to the highest quality. Dürr's product portfolio includes systems for adhesive applicators, dispensing, material supply pumps and associated application controls. Applicators allow for the use of viscous adhesives with various coating methods, such as Vortex spraying or wide slot coating are defined for different sections of adhesive bead. Cross-sections are synchronized with the movement and remain constant throughout. The precise positioning of the body part to glue applicator most often occurs with the help of a robot. Ecopaint-Gluing metering systems from Dürr meet all of the requirements for the optimal dosing of high-viscosity adhesives. 1K or 2K flow rate pistons are employed in special applications along with the dosing chamber.

 

Innovative short bead technology saves time and material

An example of efficient use of resources from Dürr is their innovative short bead technology. This works with an electric servo drive which allows a much faster and more precise opening and closing of the applicator head than conventional needle valves and pistols operated pneumatically. The adhesive bead can be interrupted at precisely defined intervals in a combination of spot welding and adhesive bonding. This saves on material. Adhesive-free sections can be attached with spot-welds and without “burning” the glue. Another advantage: Short bead technology makes the application of adhesive much faster thereby reducing the cycle time in the body shop.

 

Standardization meets innovation

Dürr presented their innovative adhesive application products at the customer Open House exhibition in the spring of 2012. The products are a result of many years of experience in bonding. From this experience flows knowledge of modern methods, such as physical modeling. The bonding control software provides the ability to review all of the bonding process operations in advance through simulation. In addition necessary tests are, of course, held under practical conditions. In the Ecopaint Gluing Test Center at Dürr in Bietigheim-Bissingen, the processes of adhesive application can be optimized under real conditions. In Sao Paulo and Shanghai customers can now use standardized Dürr adhesive test centers to optimize their adhesion processes before production starts. Further testing centers near to the customer will follow.

 

Demand for adhesive applications in body shell construction rises

Increasing demand for adhesive technology in automotive body shops is also reflected in the current order situation at Dürr. For years Audi plants have been equipped with proven Dürr adhesive systems. Other auto manufacturers in China, Hungary and Slovakia use Dürr Systems. Dürr has recently received its largest order ever from VW Group. By the end of 2014 some 520 successive automatic adhesive systems will be installed at Audi in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm as well as in the VW plant in Bratislava. Adhesive systems ordered by Audi are under construction ready to be used. With a global presence in the growing market for adhesive technology Dürr can offer systems wherever such solutions are needed in the automotive world.