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New Interest in PC

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  • New Interest in PC

    I am thinking about learning to powdercoat. Advice, tips, warnings welcome. If I do begin, I would start with small parts that go on go karts. A couple of questions to start:

    1. Could small parts be heated in an old electric oven?

    2. If I have read some of the previous posts correctly, the coated part must be heated to 400 degrees, is this correct?

    3. Would the oven be preheated, or would the part be placed in before the heating began?

    4. If I do begin, and am able to do it with some degree of proficiencey, I would like to be able to do kart frames. With this in mind, the oven would have to be approximately 6'w x 10'l x 6'h, with a door 4' wide. I was thinking about using an old refrigerated truck box, since it would already be insulated. I was planning to use a number of heating elements for electric ovens. Does this sound reasonable or far fetched. Any other ideas?

    To you experienced guys, these are probably dumb questions. But as stated earlier, I have never done this before, and am trying to decide if it would be worthwhile for me to start.

    Thank you for any and all advice.
    Barry Anderson

  • #2
    Prep your parts by degreasing, then agressively sandblasting them. The rough sandblasted texture will give the powder a good surface to adhere to.

    Old electric ovens are ideal (and cheap) for powder coating small parts. Use an oven thermometer to monitor the temp. Don't trust the dial. Most Caswell powders cure at 400-425 degrees for 14-15 minutes. If the part has more mass, increase the length of cure time. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, then carefully place or hang the coated part so you don't knock any of the powder off. It is generally better to slightly over cure than to under cure, so resist the urge to take parts out too soon.

    A couple of threads down the list we decided that it was not a good idea to use refrigerator/freezer insulated panels for use in a 450 degree oven. The foam core insulation in the panels will most likely burn and produce toxic fumes, if not outright fire. Ovens use different insulation than freezers do

    There are no dumb questions. It is better to get answers to basic questions and prevent costly or even dangerous mistakes. I can relate pretty well, because I asked every question you did (and more) when I was getting started. You're in the right place!



    • #3
      Thank you for your reply. I looked for the thread you mentioned and was unable to find it. What is the recommended material to build the oven, what to use to insulate it?



      • #4
        I haven't personally built an oven, but from what I've read, most use 16-20 gauge non galvanized steel with fiberglass wall insulation. Be sure to use the insulation that does not have the paper backing. You can use home oven elements and controls from old ovens to save $$. Oven thermometers are about $8 at your local hardware store. Some use a convection fan to evenly distribute the heat, but I would keep it simple. Too much air movement will disturb the powder before it cures properly. Hope this helps!