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Rembrant 10-18-2002 06:22 PM

Paint or powder coat?
Hi Folks
I really do hate to ask stupid questions but can somebody tell me what the difference is between regular paint and something that is powder coated? The reason I ask is, I have a set of billet aluminum body lift blocks for my truck, and I want to paint them black, and it was suggested to me to get them powder coated. I was just going to rattle can them black [img]images/graemlins/smirk.gif[/img]. Whatta ya think?

AJMBLAZER 10-18-2002 06:46 PM

Re: Paint or powder coat?
I'm not a bodywork guru or anything, but it's my understanding that powder coating is this process where you put a paint powder on an object, and then bake it so it dries to the object with a very good bond and very good scratch and dent resilence. Also supposed to be a good rust preventer. It's not POR15 or bedliner, but it's much better than regular spray paint.

Steve83 10-19-2002 06:49 PM

Re: Paint or powder coat?
Actually, the powder in powdercoating is a plastic (possibly polyester). Baking paint is just "baked-on enamel".

The guy who runs the biggest powdercoating facility in my area lives less than a mile from me & he's given me the grand tour of his plant. They have an overhead chain loop that passes near the loading dock, where they receive ALL KINDS of $#!T. They hang the stuff & it makes its way thru a giant dishwasher-type machine, then thru a low-temp drying oven. Then it goes into the powder booth, where they have 12 automatic guns & ports for 2 operators with manual guns (depending on color & batch size) where the powder is electrostatically applied to the items. Then it goes into a 400F oven where it stays for 22 min, baking the powder into a continuous coating of plastic. Then it cools as it makes its way back to the loading dock, where they package it & ship it back to the supplier.

This plant can handle any object up to 3'x5'x8' ! [img]images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] He's done all my recovery equipment (shackles, snatch blocks, hooks, etc), my door handles, some spotlights, & the hardware for my sliding side windows for me, and he did some walk-grates for a car washing rack for my company.

Rembrant 10-19-2002 07:23 PM

Re: Paint or powder coat?
Steve83 ~Kevin Spacey [img]images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
Thanks for the info, I was curious what was involved with the process. I guess now that I know, it'll just be some black from a rattle can to cover 'em up. I keep my truck undercoated, so the mounts will be covered anyway. That electrostatic painting is a neat process, I saw a show on TV about it a while back, thats how they paint appliances to get the nice tough finish. Thanks again.

Steve83 10-19-2002 08:05 PM

Re: iterating
Just to be clear: electrostatic painting isn't the same as powdercoating. They both electrostatically charge the particles passing thru the gun to attract them to the object being coated, but from there on, they differ significantly.

Powdercoating is already dry, so it won't cure if abandoned after being sprayed. It MUST be heated to over 375F to melt into a solid coat, or it'll fall off when touched. Washers & dryers are usually ceramic-coated, which is like powdercoating in that it's a powder that's heated & melted into a solid layer. Ceramic uses glass (sand) instead of polyester powder, but it needs an adhesive to hold it on the metal until it's heated.

Any kind of paint can be applied electrostatically to reduce overspray & cost in high production lines. Appliances (like refrigerators & microwaves) are usually painted with true epoxy paint, which reacts with itself (which is why it's separated in 2 parts until just before application) to cure into a solid layer. All other paints react with the oxygen in air to cure. The electrostatic application doesn't increase or decrease the durability of the paint - it just makes the paint go to the object.

JIMZUKI 11-30-2002 08:30 PM

Re: Paint or powder coat?
i have seen where people have tried to rattle can alum. diamond plate before. then if it gets scratched the paint comes off. alum. has a oil in it that does not let paint stick to it to well. i would powder coat it. but to each his own.

**DONOTDELETE** 12-04-2002 11:58 PM

Re: Paint or powder coat?
If you chose billet aluminum blocks I'd either polish them to a luster or Powdercoat them. the reason why is durability. paint will scratch off, even with a good primer, and powdercoating is much more resistant to the elements [i.e.-debris, sand, salt(snowed on roads), and mud]. again if no one is gonna see the blocks don't bother doing either!

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