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What’s happening in moldings

November 7/14, 2016: Volume 31, Number 11

By Lindsay Baillie

Moldings do much more than complement a flooring installation; they also provide valuable add-on opportunities for retailers. To that end, molding manufacturers are adapting to the changing trends within the flooring industry by creating products that coordinate with the bevy of new products, colors, styles and formats available today. Specifically, moldings manufacturers are employing advanced technology for color production and programs for inventory.

Following are highlights from some of the leading manufacturers.

Moldings Online
screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-11-27-08-amMoldings Online is currently in the final stages of developing Water Proof Core (WPC) flooring accessories. This new product is “perfect for WPC, LVT and LVP flooring lines, but can also be used with traditional hardwood,” said Angie Feldhege, marketing coordinator. “It provides high-performance durability with four layers of production, eliminates the chance of moisture absorption, is stainable and can be blended to virtually any flooring line—just like our traditional hardwood accessories.”

The WPC is created with quality materials that are combined using a thermoplastic, injection molding process. “Using our nanotechnology and ultraviolet curing process, the highly water-resistant finish and exclusive top coat is created,” Feldhege explained. “Its resilience against liquids creates a reliable barrier, shielding the entire product.”

Moldings Online’s new WPC line will make its debut at TISE 2017 in Las Vegas, Feldhege said.

screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-11-27-14-amPennwood’s focus on quality and color match can be seen in its RetroTread, which is designed to fit over original stairs and mimic original stair geometry. “For our RetroTreads we partnered with Young Manufacturing based in Kentucky,” said Kraig Coxon, executive vice president. “We buy their solid hardwood and then stain and finish it to match the floors.”

Quality is also seen in the company’s production cycle. “We control every aspect [of production] and we’re very particular,” Coxon said. “We take control of everything from the lumber all the way through to the box [the product is in]. It’s unique because we quality control everything.”

To date, Pennwood runs about 40 species of wood and about four thousand colors and stains. “We’re doing whatever we have to do to match the floors,” Coxon said. “Whatever the process is for the wood floors we will figure out how to do it for our moldings. We have the ability to produce exact patterns.”

screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-11-27-23-amVersatrim utilizes its Match All Floors program to coordinate its various moldings with major brand floors. “The Match All Floors program is where we approach [flooring] manufacturers and try to match [the colors of] their floors with our products,” said Tina Emery, office and sales manager. Manufacturers such as Beauflor, Happy Feet, Home Legend, IVC, Karndean, Mohawk and Shaw—to name a few—are already involved in this growing program. “Versatrim hopes to connect with more manufacturers at Surfaces,” Emery said.

Versatrim offers a variety of moldings to accompany applications for vinyl, laminate, engineered wood and solid wood. Its list of profiles includes two new PVC moldings for LVT floors and its standard laminate T-molding, reducer, end cap, stair nose, wall base and quarter round.

Seneca’s SignatureFlex, a flexible molding designed to help the flooring contractor tackle radius issues, is being billed as the only product of its kind. “Seneca supplies a very unique product to the industry,” said Mark Pacacha, national sales manager. “SignatureFlex is a polyurethane product that is proprietary. The polyurethane is poured into molds to manufacture the product. You can use gel stain or paint on the product and it can be used indoors and outdoors.”

SignatureFlex is available in a smooth and textured option, and is made in the U.S. It is water resistant and will not rot or swell, according to Seneca, and can be applied using adhesive, mastic or resin epoxy glue. SignatureFlex is designed for curved architecture and is available in 12-foot lengths and in straight or pre-curved styles. Custom profiles are also available when profiles for the mold are provided.

screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-11-27-38-amOver the past couple of months Pedross has changed its production plant from Arkansas to the North Carolina/Virginia border. This move will allow the company to continue servicing the U.S. and Canada with daily shipments and inventory provisions for its partners. “The new production plant has much higher output capabilities,” said Daniel Oberrauch, general manager. “We grew very rapidly in the last three years and we had to look for a plant with a higher production output. We want to be proactive in order to better serve all of our current and future customers.”

In addition to the new plant, Oberrauch said the products the company offers help differentiate Pedross from other moldings companies. “We use solid core, which can be oak or other hardwood material,” he explained. “Then we put this wood through a scanner to determine its blemishes. After that we remove the blemishes, cut [the wood] into little pieces and finger joint them together with formaldehyde-free glue.” After the core is formed it is wrapped with real wood veneer.

screen-shot-2016-11-11-at-11-28-07-amZamma’s newest product takes into account new trends in WPC. “We have just created a new line of PVC extrusions for the large WPC thick water-proof core flooring,” said Peter Spielman, president. “It seems the trend in WPC is going from 5 mm to 10 mm and possibly beyond. We’ve developed this product line to encompass those changes in WPC.”

Zamma also has a unique process to color match its products with top flooring brands. “On an exclusive basis we match top flooring manufacturers,” Spielman said. “[Manufacturers] supply us with the same decorative material that’s being used on their floors. We take the exact same layers of PVC on the floors—the top two layers, decorative and clear wear layer—and we thermally fuse in our facilities those two layers together.”

In addition to extruding its own products, Zamma also makes all of it own laminates for laminate flooring. “Every week we produce in the neighborhood of 2 million feet of product: wood, laminate and PVC.”

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Moldings Online focuses on ‘change for the better’

April 13/20, 2015; Volume 29/Number 1

By Nadia Ramlakhan

Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 6.03.15 PMThe culture at Moldings Online, a top manufacturer of moldings and flooring accessories, can be described in one word—one Japanese word, specifically. “Kaizen” means “change for the better” and is one of the main philosophies on which the company is run. As an organization Moldings Online strives for continuous improvement and uses Kaizen practices to analyze internal processes and remove waste, essentially creating faster and more efficient work methods.

Between regularly scheduled meetings and consistently coming up with innovative ideas, the entire team works together to implement changes. “We take the time to see what’s working and not working,” said Cassie Alverson, marketing manager. “It also brings experiences from different departments into the same room.”

Kaizen initiatives can focus on multiple topics ranging from machinery and equipment to marketing and sales. In order to streamline the process, employees dissect a particular issue, understand its current state and develop strategies to improve it going forward. While these events often result in a smoother production flow, they also create an easier experience for customers.

Another major component of the company’s continuous improvement is its ability to adapt to customers’ changing needs. “We have to continually evolve with our customers,” Alverson noted. “Otherwise we won’t have a business. Understanding our customers, who they are, how they’re wired, helps us do what we do.”

Veronica Ventimiglia, marketing manager, Johnson Hardwood, agrees. “You don’t see any other molding companies that show up to every major trade show and make sure they’re listening to what customers need.”

In fact, Moldings Online’s most recent introduction, a mini adjustable stair nose for LVT and LVP, was developed based on consumer demand. Due to its size, installers can use it with most floor heights without having to use underlayment. Also new to the company are two wood species: European Oak and Brazilian Pecan.

With more than 150 profiles and 90 species to choose from, Moldings Online is known for having an abundance of unique looks and finishes. “Working with Moldings Online has allowed me to take care of more people,” said Dustin Roller, owner of Interior Technique in San Marcos, Calif. “They’ve given me access to a lot more exotic species.”

The company also recently revamped its website, giving it a fresh look and featuring a short video on the homepage explaining the new features and added benefits. Alverson explained that having an online base gives customers the ability to easily access tracking information, place orders and browse through previous purchases on their own time.

Dealers can access an array of photos in the online catalog and filter search results by color, thickness, style and more. “It’s really a fool-proof way to make sure you don’t run in to any problems,” Roller said. “It’s available 24 hours, so you can order whenever you want.”

Other perks include a learning center complete with product information, installation tips and brochures. “The new site is much faster,” said Jennifer Schmidt, purchasing manager for Nonn’s Flooring, with three locations in Wisconsin. “Everything is really spelled out.”

Moldings Online now offers all kinds of accessories including vents, treads and risers. “In the past dealers have had to go through other channels for other products,” said Denny Leach, president. “Now we’re that one-stop shop.”

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