Powder coating, when carried out correctly, can be a tremendous investment that will improve the aesthetics and functional durability of your products. However, just like other finishing techniques, good preparation is the key to achieving flawless finish. Powder coating in the presence of contaminants and surface defects will result in a low-quality finish that may not last as expected. Here are some valuable tips that you can utilize to keep your parts clean during powder coating and achieve a quality and durable finish.
Pre-bake the parts
Fabricated materials tend to hide dirt and contaminants within their pores, folds, and joints. If these impurities aren't removed beforehand, they can degrade the quality of the finish. Pre-baking parts before powder coating pushes the dirt and impurities to the surface where they can be cleaned. For a DIY powder-coating project, you will be required to invest in a quality oven where you will bake the parts. After baking the parts, degrease them to get rid of the impurities.
Sandblast metal parts
A smooth metal surface is critical to achieve an even and smooth powder coat. However, metals may contain surface defects and impurities which can lead to uneven coating and caking of the powder during application. Sandblasting the metal parts delivers a smooth and defect-free surface that will provide a good base for the coating. The abrasion will also help in stripping away old paint and rust, leaving the surface ready for finishing.
Clean and dry the parts
In addition to removing grease and impurities, it is essential to clean and dry the parts before powder coating. Invest in a quality cleaning agent for this process. There are several products that are used for pre-cleaning parts before painting or powder coating. However, if you don't have any at hand, your dishwashing liquid can also get the work done right. Avoid using harsh chemicals and solvents, as they can deteriorate the surface and affect the adherence of the coat.
Make use of gloves
Powder coating without a pair of protective gloves can get grease, oil and dirt all over your parts and cause fisheye and powder adhesion problems. Gloves are recommended whether you have cleaned your hands or not. Make sure that they are clean and free of dirt and grease. You should have extra pairs in case you get dirt or grease on them. Remember, it is much easier to change gloves than to recoat a powder-coated part. You may even be forced to endure the eyesore that will be a poorly finished part.
Observe these simple tips to keep your parts clean during powder coating so that you can achieve a smooth, appealing and durable finish.