Last week our post detailed the various “soft-touch” coating application methods available in the industry. Those types of processing methods are absolutely required if a consistent, smooth, and relatively blemish free surface finish is required. Also, with certain part geometries, they are the only option available to ensure a quality coated component.
However, just as much as there are components that require such processing, there are just as many that do not. In the same regard, there are part geometries that simply cannot be coated utilizing the aforementioned methods either.
In those cases, a dip-spin, tilt-tumble, or tumble-spray bulk application method are efficient ways of applying coating to such components.
In terms of functional coatings, there are numerous applications methods that are utilized in the industry.
Rack-spray, rack-spin, chain-on-edge, tumble-spray, dip-spin, and tilt-tumble are all methods for applying coating and each is unique in the way they achieve it.
Each one has their pros and cons depending on the coating required and, more importantly, the geometry of the component.
When requesting a quote from an applicator for your coating needs, make sure you are contacting a company that specializes in the coating application method that is most suited for your particular component.
Below are the functional coating application methods in the industry that are more “soft-touch” and which type of components are best suited for that particular method. Next week we will cover the bulk application side of things.
At DECC, we say on a frequent basis that we are “coating agnostic.” What this means is that, as an applicator, we are not tied to specific coating manufacturer. If we are presented with a problem from a potential customer, we will recommend whatever coating system we feel has the best chance of solving their challenge, regardless of the manufacturer.
When it comes to lengthy corrosion protection, one of the options we will always recommend is Magni Coating’s Magni 565 recipe.
A common thing said around DECC is that “anyone can throw coating at a part.”
We say this because it is true. We are definitely not the only coating applicator out there that sprays functional coatings. However, we feel three things set us apart from our competition: quality, consistency, and culture.
The most important of these is a culture at DECC that promotes teamwork, openness, honesty, integrity, flexibility, and empowerment. During this holiday season, it is what a lot of us can say we are thankful for the most when it comes to the place we spend 40+ hours a week.
In lieu of the Thanksgiving holiday, check out our video about DECC’s culture. We will get back to the technical coating and application posts next week.
Galling is a form of adhesive wear caused by two metal surfaces that are in relative motion and under load. Without proper lubrication, this can cause a high-stress condition where surface protrusions of the mating components can build over time, significantly impacting part performance. In severe instances, complete seizure of interfacing metal parts can occur.
Galling was the exact problem a local automotive parts manufacturer was facing in regards to a safety-related assembly they produced.
We have posted numerous times about the advantages of a rack-spray finish compared to a dip-spin finish. In the vast majority of cases, DECC would prefer to apply coating via our electrostatic or hand spray lines.
However, as is the case with dip-spin, there are certain types of part geometries and substrates that are well suited for our tumble spray lines.
What is Tumble Spray?
Tumble spray, just like dip-spin, is a bulk coating application method and is a very economical choice in terms of pricing. Tumble spray components are priced at a fraction of the cost of rack-spray. However, that is where their similarities end.
The production of office furniture, from chairs to tables, requires copious amounts adhesives during the manufacturing process.
Consequently, the buildup of adhesive on the fixtures, blades, and machine parts used to produce said furniture causes major headaches for the parties responsible for maintaining and cleaning said equipment.
The equipment must be cleaned regularly to ensure a quality product is being produced. However, because of the very nature of adhesive, this is not a quick and easy process. As a result, excessive amounts of spare tooling must be available for swapping in and out…weekends are dedicated to staff cleaning machines during non-production hours…if weekends or staff is not available, downtime ensues. And if the adhesive is not cleaned, defects occur.
Galvanic corrosion challenges many industries, but none more than automobile manufacturers. Lightweighting of automobiles is an unavoidable necessity in the quest to improve fuel efficiency. As a result, galvanic corrosion is becoming a more prevalent issue.
In an effort to make automobiles lighter, different materials are being utilized throughout the vehicle, such as aluminum, composites and magnesium alloys, which all weigh much less than their steel or iron counterparts.
Hand spraying is a skilled trade that is becoming obsolete due to advances in technology. Most notably, robotics have taken over a large portion of spray applications from their human counterparts in the liquid coatings industry.
As the technology becomes more and more popular, the need for a skilled human becomes less and less. However, regardless of advances in technology, there will still be a need for hand sprayers in liquid coating applications for a few different reasons.
The DECC Company is an almost exclusively rack-spray facility. During the coating process, components never touch…they are all sprayed and cured on their own hook. The only time they touch is during the packing process, and that is only if the customer requires a bulk pack.
Dip-Spin vs Rack-Spray
What this means is that compared to a dip-spin, bulk application process, parts coated in a rack-spray process will have a much more uniform and quality finish. The necessity of 100% sorting is eliminated. However, the most important distinguishing factor is that fallout from the coating process is almost nothing where dip-spin can yield upwards of 20% defective parts each run.
Although pricing for a bulk, dip-spin process may be enticing on paper, the total processing cost for certain part geometries that don’t lend themselves to a bulk application tends to be higher than a rack-spray price.
Below is a video highlighting the technology we employ at DECC. If you are having quality issues with a dip-spin application, be sure to contact us to see if we can help.