General Information

There are many adhesive manufacturers marketing water based products today. Simalfa formulations are either patented or considered trade secrets and therefore are not similar to products produced by other manufacturers. Subsequently, products of similar types produced by various manufacturers are not identical. In order to decide on the best technology for an application or process, it is important to first understand the basic differences between the product types and chemical make-up.

One-Component vs. Two-Component

A one-component adhesive is simply designed to be applied "as is", requiring no additives to create the desired effect. A two component product is a combination of adhesive and activator, which are blended together at the tip of a special spray gun. Two component systems generally require more technical knowledge and expertise to operate consistently.

Natural Latex vs. Synthetic Latex

The differences between natural latex and synthetic latex products are quite obvious: natural latex is rubber from the rubber tree and synthetic is man made through chemical technology. Synthetic latex adhesives offer better performance characteristics and consistency. Below is a brief description listing both the benefits and limitations of each product type.

One-Component | Natural Latex

Benefits

  • Low cost

Limitations

  • Poor performance characteristics (requires open time prior to bonding)
  • Maintenance intensive
  • 2 sided application (requires adhesive to be applied to both surfaces)
  • Bond line remains tacky after cured (bond line will dimple after cured)
  • Strong ammonia odor
  • Allergic reactions are possible (many people are allergic to natural latex)

One-Component | Synthetic Latex

Benefits

  • Excellent performance characteristics (bonds instantly)
  • Excellent yield
  • Allows for 1 or 2 sided application (case by case, process)
  • Bond line does not remain tacky (bond line will NOT dimple after cured)
  • No need for activators
  • No ammonia odor
  • Does not cause allergic reactions

Limitations

  • Higher cost per gallon than natural latex product (actually less costly in terms of use)

Two-Component | Natural Latex

Benefits

  • Low cost per gallon or KG
  • Increased performance characteristics with activator

Limitations

  • Higher cost per gallon than natural latex product (actually less costly in terms of use)
  • Requires water based activator
  • Activator can irritate operator's skin
  • Activator is acidic and can cause corrosion of nearby equipment.
  • Additional water (activator) being added to bonded part
    (this can cause mold and / or mildew issues)
  • Additional water is prone to bleed through on fabric / ticking
  • Requires additional investment in equipment
  • Requires extensive maintenance
  • Requires constant adjustment to work properly
  • System prone to high levels of over spray
  • Spray gun can only be operated "All ON" or "All OFF" (this results in poor yield - high costs)
  • 2 sided application (requires adhesive to be applied to both surfaces)
  • Bond line remains tacky after cured (bond line will dimple after cured)
  • Strong ammonia odor
  • Allergic reactions are possible (many people are allergic to natural latex)

Two-Component | Synthetic Latex

Benefits

  • Excellent performance characteristics (bonds instantly)
  • Bond line does not remain tacky (bond line will NOT dimple after cured)
  • No ammonia odor
  • Does not cause allergic reactions

Limitations

  • Requires water based activator
  • Activator can irritate operator's skin
  • Activator is acidic and can cause corrosion of nearby equipment.
  • Additional water (activator) being added to bonded part (this can cause mold and / or mildew issues)
  • Additional water is prone to bleed through on fabric / ticking
  • Requires additional investment in equipment
  • Requires extensive maintenance
  • Requires constant adjustment to work properly
  • System prone to high levels of over spray
  • Spray gun can only be operated "All ON" or "All OFF" (this results in poor yield - high costs)
  • 2 sided application (requires adhesive to be applied to both surfaces)