Window Film Manufacturers News

 

Window Film Manufacturers

Midrand Gauteng South Africa March 2011
Window Film Manufacturers News

Over the past 40 years we have dealt with most window film manufacturers and experienced different qualities and service from the various manufacturers.

Being a distributor and installer of window film I have a non biased opinion on various products, as we have our own research and testing farm where all products are put through stringent testing and finally placed on roof racks to face the fierce South African sunlight most of the day. This accelerated weathering test soon shows us the difference in performance of various construction of products, as well as manufacturers finished products.

Some of the results are frightening to say the least and the fact that we are in this position, no manufacturer can tell us that their product is the best, as we know for ourselves the value of the different manufacturer’s products on the market.

It is important for us to be able to sell products with confidence, knowing what is suitable, in which environment and the life expectancy of these products. We can liaise and inform our customers with confidence of the facts as we have seen with our own eyes the final results of window film products.

Klingshield as a company utilises numerous manufacturers products as we choose only the best of the best out of the complete range of manufacturer’s products. This makes us different from everybody else in the market place as competitive companies normally use one product brand only. The problem with this concept is that certain brands have excellent and poor quality window films. If one is a distributor of a certain brand, one does not have the option to choose the good and bad and normally distribute their brand name range without the knowledge of knowing the good from the bad.

Our first experience with window film was with an English company called Ozalid who supplied us clear safety film in 50, 100 and 175 micron for the South African market in the early 70’s. The adhesive on this safety film product was excellent. However the drying out was slow and difficult to market. I remember many nights popping bubbles on various installations to try and accelerate the drying process. This was a nightmare. However we persisted and finally managed to overcome these drying problems with heavy squeeging techniques and a syringe to suck up the excess water.

In our company this was known as “bubble trouble” and still exists in the thick clear safety window film market today

The next company we dealt with was Madico who supplied us with our solar control window film needs. I must say they did offer good products for the time. Madico offered a pressure sensitive adhesive range as well as a non-glue range of films. The non-glue range of films were adhered to the window by a glue solution supplied by Madico to hold the film to the glass. These were very primitive days I must say.

Madico’s service was not very good as one ordered a 15% density film and was supplied with a 30% density film. If you did not request pressure sensitive, you received film with no adhesive without any prior warning. The prices were hectic and they did not have a good business sense when it came to looking at various markets. They were very staunch on supplying distributors only and not installers. However, we convinced them that we would be the first company to distribute as well as install window film under the brand name “Klingshield”.

After being in business for a year, we were contacted by Metalised Products Incorporated, who offered us products at excellent prices. The representative from Metalised Products flew out to South Africa to tie up a deal and showed a lot of professionalism when it came to marketing window film products. We were very impressed with Joe O’Brien’s attitude and started distributing the Sun Guard range of films.

We continued distributing the Sun Guard range, but experienced numerous problems with their dry adhesive as this created difficult installation problems, as dust specks showed up badly as there was not much adhesive to hide the dust that came out of the frames on window installations.

Later Sun Guard improved their adhesive and brought in the AB adhesive system (always beautiful), which had a little more adhesive and improved the finish slightly. Some years later Sun Guard started to produce film with a DPS (Detackified Pressure Sensitive Adhesion). Sun Guard also started to make pressure sensitive safety film which proved to be a good seller for them in later years.

As we grew we required a wider range of PS films and a factory who could offer us products from the shelf when placing orders. Sun Guard could not do this for us and we always found ourselves waiting for production time which was not convenient.

The next company we jumped into bed with was Martins Films who promoted window film under the Llumar label. We continued to promote our product under our own name Klingshield, which was a wise move as we could utilise all superior brands available.

We continued to be the main distributor for CP films for about 15 years. CP Films made some excellent films under the Llumar brand. However, we did not appreciate their CDF adhesive system as this did not suit our market.

Over the years we also experienced films from Johnsons, Beckert Solar Guard, Hanita and numerous other company brands.

Today we favour Sun Tek as our main supplier, as well as numerous other suppliers worldwide.

It is interesting to note how products coming out of Japan and Korea have improved over the years. The worldwide manufacturing market is very fierce and everybody is looking to grab market share.

Should you require to know more about the “Big 10” window film manufacturers, feel free to contact me at any time and I will give you an unbiased opinion about the different films manufactured in the world market today.

Leon Levy
Klingshield S.A.

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