Contact adhesives provide the advantage of high initial strength. They are based on polymers that exhibit the ability to bond to themselves as dry adhesive films (auto-adhesion). Both surfaces to be adhered must be coated and the adhesive needs to dry. Coated surfaces bond immediately on contact so care needs to be taken in positioning since re-positioning is nearly impossible. Once the bond has been made, it is typically pressed or rolled to insure complete contact. The high initial strength of contact adhesives makes them ideal for a variety of applications. Because the adhesive is dried before bonding, contact adhesives can be used to bond large areas of non-porous substrates.
Contact adhesives at Leffler are available in both solvent based and water based systems. Solvents dry faster and bonds quickly. Because they are flammable, proper care must be taken for safe handling. Solvent adhesives are also heavily regulated due to environmental issues. The drying time for aqueous based contact adhesives can be shortened by heating or increased air movement. Both solvent and water based contact adhesives are well suited for automated assembly of wide area laminates