AKRON, OHIO (May 5, 4:40 p.m. EDT) — GLS Corp. (Booth S1145) has a clear vision of what it wants to show at NPE 2006.
First on the agenda for the McHenry, Ill.-based compounder are clear grades of its Versaflex-brand thermoplastic elastomer products. The grades — first commercialized earlier this year — offer water-quality clarity and excellent overmold bond strength for polar substrates of polycarbonate, ABS and other blends, according to GLS officials. The Versaflex line can be made with a variety of TPEs including thermoplastic vulcanizates and thermoplastic polyurethanes.
“It's very difficult to make these grades, but we've found a way to do it and still allow clarity on graphics for hand-held electronic items and computer accessories,” GLS marketing manager Walt Ripple said in a recent interview at the Plastics News office in Akron.
Also new for GLS at NPE — to be held June 19-23 in Chicago — will be Versaflex grades aimed specifically at nylon overmolding. Ripple said the new grades, also commercialized earlier this year, are “more robust” than previous offerings and can adhere to a variety of nylon substrates, including specialty grades like nylon 6/6/6.
“The new nylon grades aren't affected by moisture, which should make them a good fit for hardware, industrial uses, and lawn and garden products,” he said.
GLS is focusing on its ability to create highly specialized TPE products as a means of differentiating itself in the growing TPE market.
“We can look to define an application based on which TPE we can use,” Ripple said. “If we need to add impact resistance, for example, we can choose which TPE is the best to do that with.”
GLS is making both new Versaflex lines at the firm's 120,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in McHenry. Company officials have estimated annual TPE-related sales for GLS at close to $100 million. The firm has been a licensed compounder of Kraton-brand styrenic block copolymers for more than 25 years.