1. What is Powder Coating?
2. What are the advantages of Powder Coating?
3. How Can You Paint Parts With Dry Powder?
4. Do powder coated parts drip, run, or sag?
5. What does sandblasting do, and what is glass beading?
6. What if my parts are chrome plated when I bring them to you?
7. How should the surface be prepped?
8. What kinds of materials can be powder coated?
9. What are some of the specific items that can be powder coated?
10. Can non-metallic items be powder coated?
11. Can wood be powder coated?
12. Can scratches and dents be (re) filled?
13. Is Powder Coating better than liquid paint?
14 Why not use the hobby powder guns kits advertised elsewhere and just do it myself?
15. Do you use any reclaimed powder?
16. What kinds of finishes are available with powder coating?
17. Are custom colors available?
18. Can parts be coated with clear Powder Coating?
19. How does the oven temperature affect my metal parts?
20. How much does powder coating cost?
21. What if I scratch or ding my parts once i bring them home? How can I repair them?
22. How do I get my parts to you?
23. Fast facts about Powder Coating
Powder coating is an advanced method of applying a decorative and protective finish to a wide range of materials and products
that are used by both industries and consumers. The powder used for the process is a mixture of finely ground particles of
pigment and resin, which is sprayed onto a surface to be coated. The charged powder particles adhere to the electrically grounded
surfaces until heated and fused into a smooth coating in a curing oven. The result is a uniform, durable, high-quality, and attractive
finish. Powder coating is the fastest-growing finishing technology in North America, representing over 20% (and quickly growing!)
of all industrial finishing applications.
Powder coating gives consumers, businesses, and industry one of the most economical, longest-lasting, and most color-durable
quality finishes available. Powder coated surfaces are more resistant to chipping, scratching, fading, and wearing than other
finishes. Color selection is virtually unlimited with high and low gloss, metallic, and clear finishes available. And colors stay
bright and vibrant longer. Texture selections range from smooth surfaces to a wrinkled or matte finish, and rough textures
designed for hiding surface imperfections.
What about the enviornment?
The powder coating process itself offers another advantage—it’s environmentally friendly—virtually pollution free!
Powder coating is highly protective of our environment. While liquid finishes contain solvents which have pollutants known
as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), powder coating contains no solvents and releases negligible amounts, if any, of VOCs
into the atmosphere. Thus, there is no longer a need for finishers to buy costly pollution control equipment.
Elimination of VOCs and reduction of wastes saves money and helps companies comply more easily and economically with the
regulations of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In fact, one of the major elements in expanding the market for
powder coating has been the implementation over the past 30 years of stringent air pollution control legislation.
Looks like paint but acts like armor.
It's tough. It looks great. And it lasts a long, long time. Powder coating is a superior finish that's found on hundreds of products you
come in contact with each day. It makes products durable, attractive, and scratch-resistant, too.
The powder coatings are applied using a specialized powder coating spray gun. This unique spray gun has an adjustable electrostatic corona charge of between 10,000-90,000 volts with a negative ion orientation. This is similar to the way dust sticks to your television screen, except that we supercharge the dust (in this case, the powder), causing the coating to stick to the parts!
As the powder passes through the spray gun, the powder is given a negative electrical charge. The part to be powder coated
is grounded or positive. Powder exits the spray gun in a fog like fashion and is attracted to the positive (grounded) part.
This is one of the major differences between wet and dry paint. Wet paint is blown onto a part with a lot of pressure; powder
is sprayed with low pressure causing the fog (Cloud) to be gently “pulled” to the part. The advantage is the fog reaches all
recessed areas (like between the fins of a head, providing a more complete and uniform layer), which results in a smooth finish
typically without the runs, sags, light spots, etc., that can occur with wet paint.
Sandblasting ‘etches’ the surface of the metal, creating a solid mechanical bond adhesion during the curing process.
It also cleanses the metal. We use very fine angular aluminum oxide media because it gives the best results for
powder coating adhesion. Picture in your mind that they type of etch this media leaves behind would be similar to
‘sharp peaks (hills) and valleys’.
Glass beading uses a round glass media that ‘pocks’ the surface other than impinging the surface. This kind of media is
used more for aesthetic purposes than functional uses. Glass bead media does not provide the best ‘anchor tooth’ for
best powder coating adhesion. Glass beading a surface (especially aluminum) reflects the light to your eyes better, and
makes metal appear whiter or brighter.
If your parts are chrome plated, we will sandblast the top layer of chrome away, leaving the copper and nickel layers.
We will then check the part and the integrity of the remaining layers by pre-baking. Doing this will make sure the remaining
layers of copper and nickel are well adhered to the substrate. Providing that the sandblasting and oven temperatures don’t cause
‘blistering’, or lifting of the copper and nickel, we will then powder coat right over it. If the remaining chrome plating
(copper and nickel) do blister, we are forced to have the parts reverse plated to remove all platings and back to bare metal.
Blistering occurs less than 10% of the time, so we do not suggest spending the money for the reverse plating process
until we have checked the parts to see if that process is necessary.
Leave this up to us! We do not like to coat over anything on the parts already (especially primer!) so don’t waste your
time or money trying to "get it ready". Powder coating is no different from any other "compliant" coating. What that means
is that when the Clean Air Act went into effect, many of the older paints that had a lot of solvent (high VOC) in them were no
longer able to be used. These older, high solvent paints, had the ability to "cut through" thin layers of oil or soil and bond to
the metal. As newer coatings were introduced such as water based, high solids/low solvent, powder and E-coat it quickly became
apparent that these coatings required very clean substrates for good adhesion and performance. Powders are not unique,
but they do require a clean surface as does any modern coating.
Any objects made from metal (aluminum, steel, brass, copper, bronze, titanium, magnesium, etc.) can be powder coated.
All of these metals, weather sand, die, investment casting, extruded, forged, and of course billet metals can be powder coated.
Low density cast parts may require additional handling and possibly surface restoration by the experienced technicians at
Andrews Powder Coating.
Some of the items that we powder coat include: patio and indoor furniture, decorative architectural pieces, car, boat, plane,
bicycle and motorcycle parts (including chassis, frames and exhaust systems), wrought iron gates and fencing, birdcages,
wheels, plumbing and lighting fixtures, railings, hand rails, metal cabinetry (i.e. medicine cabinets, etc), appliances
(front and side panels of ranges and refrigerators, washer tops and lids, dryer drums, air conditioner cabinets, water heaters,
dishwasher racks, cavities of microwave ovens), and more!
New curing processes for powder that are under development now will, in the near future, allow powder coatings to be applied
to wood and even common plastics. Currently, there are unique specifically designed powder coatings manufactured for medium
density overlay (MDO) and medium density fiberboard (MDF) products such as speaker cabinets and large production cabinetry
applications. Generally, powder coating typical wood products at this time is not practical or recommended.
Surface restoration services are possible using a combination of welding/brazing and proprietary filing composites.
Our technicians have many years experience in working with these “liquid metal” filing agents. They are difficult to use and
must be used at correct temperatures. Non-metallic body fillers, such as “Bondo” cannot be used prior to powder coating any part.
Powder coating is applied thicker than liquid paint (usually 3-4 mills compared to 1-2 mils) and powder coated surfaces are
more resistant to chipping, scratching, fading, and wearing than liquid paint and other finishes. Powder coating is more
versatile than liquid paint, and can be used on springs without cracking the coating. You can’t do that with paint!
Powder coating is like painting your car, you may be able to do it your self but you will not get the quality or durability of an
experienced shop. An experienced shop will have all the right tools to get the best possible quality job. The hobby guns you
see only charge the particles to 10kv, even if that much. It takes a lot more electrostatic charge to correctly get a proper finish
with quality that will last and look the best. The industrial type guns charge particles from 30kv-100kv, and also charge in
different ways for different applications. I have seen it mentioned to use a kitchen oven; there is no way to keep correct process
controlled temperatures with a kitchen oven. You will not get uniform heating and curing, which the quality and durability will
not be there. The powder coating will not hold up as long, so in the long run you will spend more money and time with having
to re-powder the part because of fading, chipping, etc that is caused from improper curing and improper application.
NEVER. All of our powder is 100% virgin powder. Reclaimed powder can introduce all kinds of defects and contamination.
The powders we use are some of the best on the market and are stored in a cool 65 degree environment at all times.
With powder coating, color selection is virtually unlimited with high and low gloss, metallic, and clear finishes available.
Colors stay bright and vibrant longer. Texture selections range from smooth surfaces to a wrinkled or matte finish, and
rough textures designed for hiding surface imperfections are also available. Common formulations applied at
Andrews Powder Coating include epoxies, hybrids, urethanes, polyesters and acrylics. Standard coatings commonly used
include fluorescent, metallic, textured, hammertone, wrinkle, candy color/transparents, and of course all old world standard
color finishes. All of these are available in flat, matte, semi and high gloss.
If you’re looking for something different, we are now applying Reflectra, a chrome look-alike powder coating!
Reflectra is not as reflective as real chrome, however, it is still very bright. The look is similar to satin polished aluminum.
We also apply coatings that are electro statically dissipative (ESD), electrically conductive, voltage insulating
and phosphorescent (glow in the dark!!).
Yes! We offer clear powder coatings that can be applied over polished brass, aluminum and stainless – such as wheels,
plumbing fixtures and lighting fixtures! We also offer an industrial strength clear powder coating that can withstand very
harsh cleaning solvents (such as Methyl Ethyl Ketone ‘MEK’ and acetone). These types of clear coatings can be applied over silk
screened/pad printed parts or panels to protect the graphics.
Many of the motorcycle enthusiasts polish the lip of their rims and powder the centers one color, and clear the entire rim for
that eternal polished look!
The oven temperature is low enough to avoid any metal fatigue or retemperment. We have powder coated automotive and
leaf coil springs for hundreds of customers over the last 35 years without incident.
Powder coating costs about the same as other professionally applied paints or coatings on small projects, and can often be
substantially less expensive on larger quantities of parts. Some bulk plating processes similar to anodizing may be slightly
less expensive. More decorative finishes, such as chrome plating, are substantially more expensive than powder coating.
Pricing is determined by our labor, material and power costs, with the main expense being the cost to operate the ovens
to cure the powder. Next on the expense list is labor with it taking more time to change colors than to spray them.
The equipment and the spray room have to be spotless as a few specks of powder from one color can ruin the next color.
So the more parts sprayed per color and the more parts cured at one time, the lower our costs are which lowers your cost.
The most cost effective way to have powder coating done is by having a number of pieces done at one time.
Once you have your parts powder coated, you will not be able to have repairs (chips, scratches, etc.) redone in powder,
without taking it apart, stripping and recoating. You can have a small touch up kit made by your local automotive paint supplier
"made to match" as close as possible. Remember, special effect powders will not be able to be duplicated! To make life easier,
we suggest having a 3"x5" or 4"x6" "Q" panel as they are called in the trade, or flat piece of metal coated at the same time as
your parts. We will write the powder manufacturers company name, part number and color name on the panel for future reference.
Save this panel! Take it to an automotive paint tinter for a touch up kit.
Many of them use color computers today and this is the easiest way to get the match.
Andrews Powder Coating has been in the custom powder coating industry since 1980. Although many large companies send their
work to us to be powder coated, we still consider ourselves a custom facility, and not a high run production shop.
We carefully examine each and every piece by hand several times during the powder coating process. We provide services
that other powder coating services either do not know how to provide, or will not provide. We pride ourselves on the difficult
and often tedious masking and preparation situations we are presented with! If you would like a special transparent or candy
color for your piece, it is not a problem! We also do not have a minimum piece order.
We credit all of our customers (large and small) for the choices they make when choosing a powder coater.
They know that by taking their parts to Andrews Powder Coating, they will get their parts done correctly the first time,
saving valuable time and aggravation.
If you are located nearby and wish to drop parts off to us, we are open for shipping and receiving Monday through Friday
from 8 AM PST until 5 PM PST. Andrews Powder Coating, Inc. also offers pick up and delivery services. If you are put of the area,
out of state, or even out of the country, we recommend using UPS, FedEx, or US Priority Mail to get your parts to us.
Our experts in shipping will carefully package up your parts when they are finished and return them
to you safe and sound, undamaged!
Powder coating is a completely dry finishing process used on a wide range of materials and products.
Finely ground particles of pigment and resin are electro statically charged and sprayed onto products to be coated.
The parts to be coated are electrically grounded so the charged particles adhere to them until melted and fused into a
solid coating in a curing oven.
Attributes of powder coating:
Unlike liquid paint, no solvents are used, so only negligible amounts of VOCs, if any, are released into the air.
Unused or over sprayed powder can be recovered, so any waste is minimal and can be disposed of easily and safely.
The powder coating process is environmentally friendly and virtually pollution-free.
Thousands of different kinds of parts and products are now powder coated.