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LMA provides first-class service to the decorative overlays industry.


Products represented

The Laminating Materials Association Inc. (LMA) was formed in November 1985. It is a non-profit corporation chartered in the state of New Jersey.

The products represented by the Association are man-made decorative surfacing materials, generally referred to as overlays. These overlays are laminated to wood substrates such as particleboard, medium density fiberboard, hardboard, etc. The laminated panels are then used in the manufacture of furniture, kitchen cabinets, fixtures, displays, and other products made of wood. The LMA represents all decorative overlays, with the exception of high pressure laminate (HPL).

The six overlays for which the LMA is responsible are:

* Vinyl films - printed or solid color

* Low basis weight paper

* Foils

* Saturated papers

* Continuous laminates

* Heat transfer foils

In addition, the Association is the representative organization for all edgebanding materials, both real wood and man-made.

The annual statistics collected by the Association subdivide the various products according to:

* Wood grain, decorative, and solid color

* Wall paneling versus all other manufacturing

* Basis weight (papers)

* Type of vinyl film

* Resin system (saturated papers)

* Unimpregnated, preimpregnated, and postimpregnated (foils)


There are two classes of membership in the Laminating Materials Association.

A REGULAR MEMBER is a company or individual manufacturing and/or importing one or more of the products covered by the Association. A Regular Member is expected to report production and/or import statistics. A company or individual fulfilling these qualifications is entitled to vote for the Directors of the Association and on all matters pertaining to the operation of the Association.

An ASSOCIATE MEMBER is a company or individual having a product or service related to the materials produced by Regular members. This includes substrates (particleborard, hardboard, MDF, etc.); adhesives (hot melts, water/solvent based, and epoxies); laminating equipment, etc. Laminators, equipment manufacturers and others may also be Associate Members.

The Association has a single dues structure for all members. Dues for the current fiscal year (November 1 to October 31) are $400.

Members are entitled to a copy of the Annual Statistical Report, one or more listings in the Association's Source of Supply Directory and the Annual Magazine Insert, and participation in any activity undertaken by the Association.

LMA - the beginning

The work of the Laminating Materials Association had its unofficial beginnings in 1974, when its founder, George Carter, was trying to locate information on the total consumption of printed vinyl and saturated papers. When it became apparent that no such information existed, he approached several of the manufacturers to see if they would help in securing the participation of other companies. John Fortkamp (Association Director) and Bill Larsen (deceased) came forward to encourage vinyl manufacturers to cooperate; John Anthony (retired) and Ed Ribolin (retired) put together estimates on saturated papers; and the first survey was completed.

The survey was conducted each year after that, partly at the request of members of the industry and partly at the request of the product management department of Champion International.

The survey was expanded in the early 1980s, when it became obvious that other overlay materials, such as low basis weight papers, and European finished foils were becoming more aggressive competitors of vinyl films and low pressure laminates. Data collection on low basis weight papers started in 1980. Foils were added in 1982, and heat transfer foils rounded out the group in 1983.

George Carter left Champion International in 1985 when the Building Products Group was spun-off in a leveraged buyout and became the U.S. Plywood Company once again. Most of the companies that had been participating in the "Champion Survey" were interested in continuing the flow of annual statistical data.

In order to provide a legally recognized organization to which member could submit confidential production/import statistics, Mr. Carter and a group of manufacturers formed the Laminating Materials Association (LMA), Inc. in November 1985. The first Board of Directors consisted of five people, one for each product initially covered by the LMA. A sixth Director was added in 1987 when the Association became the official representative for all edgebanding materials. The seventh was added in 1989 to provide the growing body of Associate Members a voice on the Board. The LMA began representing continuous laminates in 1989, but this product falls under the direction of the Director for saturated papers.

The LMA covers all of North America, collecting data on Canadian as well as United States production and imports.

LMA - goals

* To provide accurate statistical information on the total North American supply of decorative overlays, with the exception of HPL.

* Publish a Source of Supply Directory listing the products and services of its members.

* Produce a Glossary of Terms for the laminating industry.

* Engage in activities felt to be of benefit to its members and the entire laminating industry in North America.

* Generate voluntary product standards covering the overlays and edgebanding materials represented by the Association.

Source of Supply Directory

The Association maintains a current Source of Supply Directory, which allows member firms to list the products they offer. Although some members do not avail themselves of this free listing, the majority do.

The Directory is available to anyone FREE OF CHARGE. (Circle #359 on Reader Service Card)

Glossary of Terms

The Laminating Materials Association, in an effort to arrive at some standardization of terms used within the laminating industry, produced a Glossary of Terms in 1987. This Glossary received wide circulation and was published in its entirety by a number of trade magazines, and in last year's "Laminating User's Guide." The portion of the Glossary dealing with overlays is presented on page 76.

Product standards

The LMA has already generated voluntary products standards for three edgebanding products, which were published in last year's Laminating User's Guide. Association Directors are at work on standards for four overlays, several of which have been completed. The standard for vinyl firms and low basis weight papers are reprinted in this User's Guide. (Vinyl, page 80; low-basis weight papers, page 85.).

By the fall of 1991, the Association will have completed work on all voluntary product standards. These will be published, along with appropriate reference material on all test methods, in a single book. This will be available for purchase from Association headquarters after it is published. Look for announcements about the availability of the LMA Standards Book in all wood product related magazines.

For more information about the Association and the benefits of membership, circle Reader Service Card #360 or write George M. Carter, President, Laminating Materials Association, 767 Park Avenue, Oradell, NJ 07649. Phone: (201) 265-7766; Fax (201) 262-7303.

PHOTO : Foils are one of six overlay categories represented by the LMA.

PHOTO : Voluntary product standards completed by the LMA include vinyl films.

PHOTO : The Association became the official representative for all edgebanding materials in 1987.
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Title Annotation:Laminating Materials Association Inc
Author:Carter, George
Publication:Wood & Wood Products
Date:Jun 1, 1991
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