A quick guide to powder coating – all you should know
Powder coating has grown into the biggest industrial coatings sector in the coating industry. It is a part of our everyday lives, covering anything from household items and bicycles to heavy duty machinery. Its popularity comes down to two things: protection and looks. As a coating method it is durable, flexible, extremely protective, and its strengths are not at the cost of its appearance. Powder coating comes in a wide range of colors and finishes to ensure your project looks and performs exactly as you need and want.
This article will outline the advantages, uses, and process of powder coating, as well as where you will find powder coatings applicators and other powder coating companies in Qatar.
The 3 steps of the powder coating process
Powder coating is a process where paint is applied to a substrate in powder form. Usually a paint is a binder and a pigment suspended in a liquid solvent, but a powder coat is solvent free, it is the binder and pigment blended into a fine powder. The application process can be broken into 3 steps: substrate preparation/pre-treatment, powder application, and curing.
Step 1: Pre-treatment and substrate preparation
The correct preparation of the substrate is crucial in any coating application. Firstly, remove all contaminants such as oil, grease, dirt and grime, and ensure that the part is completely clean. Then the part is stripped – this removes previous coatings. Finally the part is sandblasted to make sure no traces of coatings or contaminants remain on the surface. This stage cleans the part down to bare metal and creates a texture on the substrate which allows the powder coating to adhere to it. After a final clean the part is ready. This step differs slightly depending on the substrate.
Step 2: Powder application
Powder coating is applied through one of two methods: electrostatic spraying, and fluidized bed. The electrostatic spray process applies the powder through a specialty spray gun which gives the powder an electrostatic charge. This causes the powder to stick to the grounded object. The thermosetting powders are used for example in the electrical appliances industry. In the fluidized bed process, the part is pre-heated and dipped into a hopper filled with fluidized (floating) powder. The heat melts the powder onto the part immediately, though a post cure may still be needed. Thermoplastics are suitable for coating automotive parts and other small to middle size metal objects.
Step 3: Curing the coating
The final step is to bake the powder coat, causing it to melt, flow, and form a continuous liquid film. This guarantees an even coverage over the object. Depending on the type of powder, there is either a further step for curing (for thermosetting powders), or the process stops here (for thermoplastic powders). Thermosetting powders undergo chemical crosslinking when heated and will not melt again, where thermoplastics do not crosslink and will melt again if heated. A properly cured thermosetting powder is tough and impact resistant, and used also used for corrosion protection in duplex systems.
The essential powder coating equipment
There are many pieces of equipment required for a complete powder painting facility. These range from sandblasting boxes or rooms and curing ovens at the large scale end to hanging racks and guns at the smaller. If you wish to buy powders and equipment there are many international suppliers who provide also to Qatar. The cost of equipment varies by scale and quality. The cost of powder coating powder is calculated by weight, with greater quantities charged at lower rates. The less common or more specialized a color, the more expensive it is.
Whether a hobbyist or a professional business, the powder coating industry is growing. Given that powder coat is long-lasting, easy-to-apply, durable, protective, and attractive, it is no surprise. To find out how you can use powder coating for your project, contact us!
5 reasons to consider powder coating for your project
Nowadays, powder coating is suitable for a wide range of substrate materials and purposes including metals, glass, MDF, and even wood and plastics. Powder coating has many properties and benefits that make it the coating of choice. Just a few of these are:
- Environmentally friendly: Solvent-free, very low/zero VOC, and excess powder can be recovered and reused, so minimal waste and under 1% material loss. Many Qatari powder paint companies are a member of Qatar Green Building Council.
- Cost efficiency: It is cheaper than liquid paint, and is a one coat application with low operation costs.
- Flexibility: Suitable for a wide range of materials and purposes including metals, glass, MDF, and even wood and plastics which makes it a suitable coating for instance for protecting and beautifying furniture.
- Durability: It is more resistant to chipping, scratching, fading, and wearing than other finishes.
- Appearance: Unlimited color and finish choice with thicker applications than liquid coatings and no running or sagging.
Professional powder coating companies in Qatar
Powder coating price is generally defined by the surface area of the object to be coated. Different finishes and colors are priced differently, and the type of job will also be reflected in the prices – wheels or rims for example may be done per wheel or per set of four, where a railing is charged by length.
Below is a map outlining a selection of powder coating companies in Qatar. If you would like more information about powder coating, or need a powder coating company for a project, contact us! Our experts are here to help. Just use the “Request a quote” button at the bottom of this article and make use of our 100% free quoting service.
In case you notice a powder coating company is missing from this map, please let us know!