An Iowa manufacturer is compression molding Norplex-Micarta-brand SkatePlate 3000 composite panels for use as a tough, nonsplintering surface in skate parks.
Industrial Laminates/Norplex Inc. of Postville installed the thermoset panels in curved skate sections at Father Marinaro's State Park in Butler, Pa., in 2003 and is filling an order to cover remaining sections of the park surface.
A SkatePlate 3000 panel's wood-based substrate is impregnated with a two-stage phenol formaldehyde resin system. A standard-sized panel measures 4 feet by 8 feet by one-quarter inch and lists for $45 per sheet in a minimum order of 40 sheets.
The panels can resist extreme temperature changes from 110° F to minus 30° F in outdoor or indoor environments and provide an abrasion- and moisture-resistant surface for those using skateboards, roller skates or stunt bikes.
For skaters, the surface provides a solid grip, but allows execution of controlled slips as needed.
SkatePlate 3000 panels can be bonded to frames and subsurfaces with adhesives, nails or screws.
Parks in various locales use plywood, concrete, ABS and other phenolic fiber laminates with varying results.