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LENETA Application Cards | Labomat | Labomat

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LENETA Application Cards | Labomat

LENETA contrast cards - Q-PANEL test panels

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Application media: LENETA cards and Q-Panel test panels


All over the world, LENETA cards have long been recognized as the benchmark in terms of quality and lot-to-lot reproducibility.

LENETA Application Cards do not use optical brighteners and are the best choice for demanding customers in the paint and ink industry.

They are mainly composed of several black and white areas, varnished or unvarnished on which paint or ink is applied.

LENETA cards thus make it possible to determine the covering power of paints, the quality of inks, their penetration power, their rate of dispersion and their opacity.

Main types of LENETA cards

  • Opacity maps
  • Penopac opacity and penetration maps
  • Penetration Cards
  • Spread / surface yield maps
  • Opacity / spreading / surface yield maps
  • Checkered maps / area yield
  • Brush cards
  • Plain white cards
  • Varnished white cards
  • Plain black cards
  • Duplex Applicator Cards
  • Spread and sag test cards
  • Non-stick cards for measuring the covering power
  • Gray scale maps
  • Matte Finish Wall Painting Cards
  • Spray test strips
  • Spray monitor labels
  • Cards for printing inks
  • Metopac painted steel panels for the hiding power of powder coatings and industrial enamelling
  • Plastic cards for wet abrasion and washability
  • Varnished or unvarnished cards


Q-Panel test panels

For tests on coatings to be reliable and reproducible, the film must be applied to a substrate that can be repeated from test to test.

Unfortunately, sheets of carbon steel show a great variation in their surface properties, which affects the adhesion of the coating and changes its properties.

Sources of variability

Surface problems can come from several causes:

  • The surface texture varies depending on the condition of the rollers used in the steelworks to cold roll the steel to its final thickness.
  • Surface cleanliness varies with the steel mill cleaning procedure, particularly the methods used to control carbon soot. All too often carbon soot is actually baked on the steel during the high temperature annealing process that follows rolling. This carbon soot is impossible to remove except by mechanical abrasion.
  • The level of corrosion varies with the care taken in handling (a) in the steel plant, (b) during transport and storage, and (c) during fabrication.
  • Steel stored for a long time with corrosion inhibitor oil will react to form an incomplete oxide called oil stain.

As a result, this imperfect steel is unusable for many coating tests. Although some commercial steels give an excellent surface for coatings, you are just as likely to come across a steel which gives poor adhesion and corrosion resistance, even with good coatings. In fact, the same steel plant can often produce very good as well as very bad surface quality, depending on the number of uncontrolled factors. Cleaning and phosphating help, but cannot remedy the surface defects formed in the steelworks.

Q-Lab's steel and aluminum Q-PANEL test panels minimize metal variability as a source of error in critical paint, coating and adhesion tests. They are clean, regular, practical and economical.


During the manufacturing process, the test panels are cleaned and the surface oil is completely removed. Special handling ensures that all panels are completely clean when packaged. The steel panels are packed in plastic bags, in batches of 20 to 50 panels (depending on the type and thickness), with a corrosion inhibitor in the form of vapor, inside a sturdy cardboard package, for a shelf life of several years. Aluminum panels are wrapped in a similar fashion, but without a corrosion inhibitor.


Three factors ensure that Q-PANEL test panels are consistent, of good quality and at a low price:

  • purchase of metal in quantity from selected steelworks
  • automated production on a high speed line
  • rigorous inspection at several stages of the process

A well thought out test panel

Panels are shipped pre-cleaned, punched with a 6mm (¼ ”) Q-shaped hole (this is our trademark and your quality assurance). For safety and ease of handling, the panels have rounded corners and deburred edges. We have over a million test panels in stock, which means we can deliver 95 % orders instantly. In most cases, these panels can be used straight out of the box.


Due to their high volume production, Q-PANEL test panels cost less than you would expect for a standardized surface. Purchasing clean, safe, and standardized panels reduces the time laboratory personnel have to spend handling and cleaning panels.

Types of steel and aluminum Q-Panel test panels

The steel or aluminum test panels are available in several finishes.

Steel panels

  • Smooth finish (Type QD)
  • Matte finish (Type R)
  • Polished ground finish (Type S)
  • Thin, flexible, smooth finish (Type QD)
  • Thin, flexible smooth finish with tinplate (Type DT)
  • Traction panels, ground finish (Type RS)
  • TABER® Abrasion Panels (Types R-44-T and S-44-T)
  • Stainless steel (Type SS)

Q-PHOS panels in phosphated steel

  • Deep matt finish (Type R)
  • Polished ground finish (Type S)

Aluminum panels

  • Bare aluminum (Type A)
  • Chromatic Finish (Type AL)
  • Adhesion panels (Type AD)
  • Panels for automotive mounting (Types SPA and SPC)
  • Large Display Panels (Type L-1424)
  • Qualicoat panels (type QA and QAL)

Special test panels

In addition to our standard panels, we also cannot manufacture types and sizes not shown in our specification sheets. Special panels can be ordered in a variety of shapes, sizes, alloys and finishes. Contact Labomat Essor for more information.


LENETA contrast cards - Q-PANEL test panels

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Internationally recognized, Q-Panel test panels offer a reproducible and uniform test surface to assess the visual (color, gloss, orange peel) and physical (abrasion, adhesion, impact, bending, thickness, hardness, etc.) properties, but also to carry out tests for corrosion, aging, chemical resistance, curing, drying, etc.


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