SYNTHETIC SURFACES INC. COMPANY HISTORY
Norris Legue, the Founder and President of Synthetic Surfaces Inc., was the chemist who, in the 1960s, developed the first one-part urethane adhesive that successfully glued down a synthetic turf football field. At that time, the synthetic turf business was in its infancy. Adhesives for installing fields in variable outdoor conditions were almost non-existent, since most were used and tested indoors under controlled conditions. Many good indoor adhesive companies did not realize that outdoor installations were “a different world”. Consequently, important weather factors regarding installations were not realized, such as: sub-freezing to hot desert temperatures; gusty or steady wind; surface heating and cooling from passing clouds; moving shadows; humidity; temperature fluctuations; unexpected storms; rain; etc.
To design adhesives for outdoor installations that can be used year-round in all seasons and variable weather conditions required Norris’s presence at numerous installations throughout the country. He concluded from his many visits and research that, by far, the best adhesives for outdoor artificial turf installations were one-part, solvent-based, moisture-cured urethanes with high grab (“green strength”) during installation. Oppositely, water-based, solvent-free, hot melt, and adhesives that must “hydrolyze” (water activates them) to cure, have severe limitations. Many installers continue to purchase these types of adhesives based on irrelevant indoor test results and/or their lower prices (translation: poorer quality). The bottom line is, Norris had about a quarter-century head start on the many adhesive companies that did indoor research and did not visit installations in progress.
The Synthetic Surfaces Inc. (SSI) name was originally selected because at that time SSI specialized only in adhesives for installing synthetic turf, flooring, sport and other recreational surfaces. When its business philosophy, plus the demanding adhesive performance and handling requirements necessary for successful outdoor sports surface installations were recognized, SSI and its NORDOT® Adhesives technology was discovered by the military, automotive, aquatics and other industries where superior green strength, long-term durability, plus outstanding fresh- and salt-water resistance was necessary. Companies with adhesive “toothaches” often contacted SSI for help. Over time, the NORDOT® Adhesives brand name has earned a reputation as the “Gold Standard” for synthetic turf, recreational and aquatic surface adhesives.
Norris was active in new adhesive development and technology throughout his 49 years as President of SSI until his passing in 2022. His registered trademark, “The Guru of Glue®”, is known worldwide. He had 50+ years of extensive experience as a Chemist, knowledge, research, and product development, and was consulted by companies around the globe for his thoughts about the accomplishments, problems and future growth of the synthetic turf, recreational and aquatics surfaces industries, and others.
Kirk Legue is SSI’s President. He grew up alongside the company, visiting countless installations in progress since his youth. Kirk knows the business well. He proudly carries on the Legue legacy with the same philosophy as his father: to produce top-quality NORDOT® Adhesives, provide first-rate service and achieve high customer satisfaction.