Room to Run

An exciting decade lies ahead for manufacturers of composite panel-based residential and office furniture, kitchen cabinets, store fixtures and organizational units. This issue of Surface & Panel offers plenty of support for that view. In the Ahlstrom-Munksjö feature that begins on page 56, Executive Vice President of Décor Norbert Mix points out that while Europe and North America have similar populations...

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Grayling’s the spot

The leaders at ARAUCO North America knew they had a critical need for a panel manufacturing plant in the Midwest. As it turned out, the Midwest needed ARAUCO, as well. The result? ARAUCO is constructing a $400 million, 750,000-square-foot mill in the north-central Michigan city of Grayling. Construction began in April 2017, and the plant will begin producing particleboard and thermally fused laminate in late 2018. It will be one of the largest board plants in the world.

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Fully Committed

Showplace Wood Products didn’t rush into building full-access cabinets. When the company decided to make the move, however, it did so in Showplace’s customary bold way.

“The topic came up four or five years ago,” said Bill Allen, Showplace’s vice president and chief operating officer. “We were being told by our dealer base, our sales team and our suppliers that full-access or frameless construction, specifically European-style, was coming to the U.S.”

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High-Quality Customization

Customers of EuroCraft Cabinets have a strong preference for plywood kitchens (see “Investing in Flexibility,” page xx). And there is nothing wrong with that--until they ask for high-gloss acrylic on plywood. Acrylic is typically laid up on an MDF substrate because surface imperfections telegraph and mar the high-gloss finish. Achieving such an unconventional lamination without compromising quality requires a specialist.

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Investing in Flexibility

Like so many great panel processing stories, this one begins with a panel saw, an edgebander and a CNC router. Set against the sultry backdrop of South Florida, this is a tale of survival and success -- of using flexible technology to bring the sexiest materials in the industry to the masses.

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