Patent Number: 6,254,712

Title: Extrusion coating process for making high transparency protective and decorative films

Abstract: A process for making a protective and decorative surfacing film comprises extrusion coating a solventless polymeric material from an extruder die to form an optically clear first layer on a polyester carrier sheet traveling past the extruder die opening. The extrusion coated first layer is immediately cooled on the carrier sheet to harden it, followed by applying a pigmented second layer to the first layer. The composite paint coat is transferred to a reinforcing backing sheet, after which the carrier sheet is separated from the paint coat to expose the outer surface of the first layer as a high gloss surface with a high distinctness-of-image, providing a transparent protective outer coat for the pigmented second layer. The pigmented second layer can be solvent cast and dried or extruded and hardened as a separate coating on the first layer. The composite paint coat can be bonded to a coextruded size coat and semi-rigid plastic substrate panel to form a thermoformable laminate. Techniques are disclosed for producing extruded clear films of exceedingly high optical clarity using a closed air flow transport and HEPA filtration system that removes airborne particles from the resin handling and extrusion process, thereby preventing micron-sized contaminants naturally present from many sources from entering the process and degrading ultimate film quality.

Inventors: Enlow; Howard H. (Munster, IN), Markey; John J. (Crown Point, IN), Roys; John E. (Lowell, IN), Truog; Keith L. (Crown Point, IN), Young; Frederick (Schererville, IN)

Assignee: Avery Dennison Corporation

International Classification: B44C 1/17 (20060101); B32B 27/08 (20060101); B05D 1/26 (20060101); B29C 47/00 (20060101); B29C 031/00 (); B29C 047/00 ()

Expiration Date: 07/03/2018