Grafenberg, Germany – PU board manufacturer Rampf has revealed a novel use for its Raku Tool WB-1000 polyurethane board – full-extension drawer runners.
Master carpenter Jonas Gessner came across the material at a Rampf Tooling Solutions seminar. ‘That’s when I decided to make my full-extension drawer runners out of Raku Tool WB-1000 instead of using solid wood as carpenters normally do,’ he said. ‘A full-extension drawer runner needs to be made with the utmost precision to ensure it works properly, has all the necessary technical properties, and meets the desired quality standards. The polyurethane board material is the best way to achieve this precision.’
Rampf claims drawer runners made from its PU board will be superior to those made of wood because furniture is subjected to varying levels of air conditioning and relative humidity. Solid wood tends to warp when exposed to changes in temperature or humidity. When this happens, full-extension drawer runners can be badly affected, causing misalignment, sticky movement and jams.
‘The big advantage of polyurethane is that it isn’t an “active” material like wood, so it doesn’t swell, shrink, distort, or rupture,’ said Matthias Traxel, technical service expert at Rampf Tooling Solutions. ‘The plastic material is therefore very well suited for making products designed to perform a technical function, such as drawer runners, because long-term functionality is ensured.’
The company says its material can easily be machined with standard carpentry tools, and can be lacquered to match the wood. And, in contrast to wood, no additional lubricants are required. It cannot be stained, however, because it is non-absorbent – which is how it resists swelling or distortion.