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Again with the IR lamps!!

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  • Again with the IR lamps!!

    OK, I know there has been a lot of questions about the lamps already but this time I actualy have one that I'm tring to learn how to use.
    I bought the medium wave 1500-watt cure-teck lamp and was wondering if anyone here had any tips or hints that they have picked up along the way. I have not seen any instructions or how to's on curing with lamps . all I saw in the provided inpaperwork was 8 minuets at 6" . Am I suposed to keep it at the same temp as if I was using an oven ? Does that 8 min start when you plug in the light or when it's fully warmed up? The highest temp I have seen been able to get any pieces to was about 300 F . I have been able to get the powder cured but it usualy comes out kind of dull or with " acne scares". it does't look like it's from out gasing but I could be wrong. The powder never seams to get to a " flow point" it melts but it never looks "wet" untill after I move the light" I think" I have only been powder coating for a few weeks now and can't yet say I have been succsesfull with anything other than wrinkle.
    I guess I should tell you that I'm not using caswell powder and I'm not sure right now what kind of powder it is I have. I'll find out and post back.

    If anyone can give me a few hints or piont me in the right direction I would apreciate it , Thanks and sorry about all the speling mistakes, I live for spell check. Joe

  • #2
    well, for starters. The cure cycle, ie time and temperature, is when the piece is at the desired temperature you are targeting, let's say 320 degrees. Once the surface of the part reaches that temperature, then you start your time. It may take 20 mins to get to the temperature then only the time you need at that temperature to cure. 6 inches seems a little far away for some pieces, such as heavier castings, they will wick the heat away from the surface you are heating, and take forever if you even reach the temperature you aiming for at that disctance, you may want to try closer on stuff like that. Just practice on junk, to get an idea of what you need to do, plus do a dry run on the piece you want to do. In experience with IR lights, they are far to time consuming for me. If i was doing stuff for mysel, then maybe I would use one, but not for a business. If you need anymore help, let me know, I will try and give ya a hand. I do have a light, which is for sale if anybody wants one, and the instructions, so I can look through the book for more info if need be. Good luck


    • #3
      Thank you . What temp do you aim for when using a light? The powder I have asks for 425 deg but I can't seem to get the parts past 325. I called the people I boght the powder from and they said it might be possiable and that I should ask the curetek people what they recommend.

      What size light do you have and how much are you asking for it? I wonder if there is a way to upgrade the light I have to one that putts out more heat.



      • #4
        IR Light

        I just bought a 6000-watt light setup. It has three IR lights and so far I have reached 400 to 420 degrees with the lamp about 3 to 6 inches way. The problem I see with the lamp setup is that the part does not heat up evenly. Take a water pump; it is not a smooth surface. Lots of dips in it, so if you use a lamp, one point is closer than another. The temp when ranges on the part. One point 400 degrees another point maybe 325. From what I hear single light setups have a hard time reaching higher temps. I spoke to a company that makes IR lamps setup and they told me a min of 6000 watts is required for power coating temps. Like Fireblade said just practice on scrape parts. I?m looking into a large oven at this time. Good Luck?.


        • #5
          It depends on the part, too. Something like a water pump has some mass to heat up. I used a 1500w quartz heater on my oil pan (relatively thin metal, wide flat surfaces) and it worked fine. I noticed the problem getting inside corners to cure, so I used a heat gun on the inside of the pan (along with the quartz heater on the outside) to cure the irregular inside corners.



          • #6
            Well, I will let my lamp go for $200, it is about a year old, but I can honestly say that it has maybe 10 hours of use on it. The bulbs are supposedly rated for, I think, 5000 hours. Whoever buys it, pays shipping. As for the company telling you that the temp has to be 425 degrees, I'd ask for a second opinion. Most powders I have ever seen have a range of temps to cure at, the lower a temp, the longer the cure time needs to be to get a complete cure. 425 degrees seems on the high scale of burning the powder. Powders have a 'sweet spot' where I would stay within those limits, especially with a light, since it will be harder to maintain a perfect temp. If you aim for a lower temp on a irregular shaped part, and let's say you get 325 degrees on one part, and 375 on another part, all within the same heating area of the light at the same time. This will allow you to cure the part for the time at the 325 degree time specified. Say at 325 degrees it takes 15 mins to cure, and at 375 it takes 8 mins to cure. Powders usually have a 100% overbake ability, so the 375 would be cured for 16 mins total and the 325 at 16 mins total as well. That would be the temps I would aim for, keep in the middle and you will have fewer problems. As I said before though, practice on junk, particularly on irregular shaped junk to get an idea of what your actions do to the piece. Then test your piece with an MEK test, to check for complete cure. If the coating does not come off easily by wiping a qtip back and forth for at least 20 swipes, then you have a good cure. If it comes off easily, then it needs a longer cure time.


            • #7
              What size and or modle light is the one you are selling? I might be interested. I would like to use an oven but it will not be posiable untill I get moved into my new place up in Al. that will be at least 6 months from now. I was able to get a nice finish on a sportster one piece push rod tube( thin metal) That gave a little more confidence in the "Do it your self" equipment I have. Now I just need to work out the curing prosses on thicker metals. Thanks for the help.