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Softell Application in a Single-component Process

Soft-touch Surface for Clothes Hangers

Located in the Hessian town of Wald-Michelbach, Germany, the Cortec company has been manufacturing an innovative product line of shop equipment for the fashion industry since 1961. In the area of clothes hangers, alongside wood and metal hangars, plastic hangers have undergone an upgrade in recent years as a result of continually changing material combinations.

»The art of the achieving the perfect fashion presentation is often a matter of feeling,«

says Andreas Zopf, Sales Director at Cortec.

If an article of clothing is not properly presented ‒ if, for instance, it slips off the hanger in the store ‒ the shopping experience is tarnished. To ensure that slick garments adhere better, the company has developed the Soft Touch line. This line is available in three versions:

• Painted
• Coated
• Unpainted, made of Softell, an innovative soft-touch PP compound from LyondellBasell


Clothes hangers from the Cortec Soft Touch line, manufactured in a single-component process from Softell TKG 300 N, soft touch PP compound.

A leather-grain effect, including seam, can also be created with Softell and the appropriate injection mould.

Advantages of Softell

Jürgen Gessner, an application developer at plastics distributor K.D. Feddersen, was able to convince Cortec that the single-stage manufacturing process with no further processing or post-processing was not only more cost-effective and eco-friendly, but that the material itself had a high aesthetic quality that would fully satisfy the company's requirements. When used for clothes hangers, the anti-slip effect of the material ensures that the garment stays in the right place. Furthermore, the recycling process is simplified since the entire hanger is made of just one material.

And combined with an appropriate injection mould, a multitude of surface designs are possible, such as leather grain with a seam in single-component production (see Figure 2). The material also has excellent colorability and good working properties, making it suitable for use in a variety of applications.

The attenuated sound quality of Softell ensures that when a clothes hanger falls, it makes a pleasant, low-pitch sound rather than a clanging noise, as is the case with polystyrene, for instance.


Softell Compounds – Availability and Applications

Softell compounds are available in various stiffnesses (80 MPa to 4,500 MPa tensile modulus (ISO 178)) and are already in use in a number of industries, such as household goods, the furniture industry, agricultural-machinery technology, commercial vehicles and the automotive industry (Opel, Audi and VW, amongst others).

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