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  • New to Powder Coating

    I am getting ready to order a Caswell powder coat system, I want to make sure I purchase everything I need. I have a media blast cabinet with a med. grit media. I would like to be able to coat cast iron, cast aluminum, and steel automotive parts. Can I simply order the basic kit, a pound of powder and be all set? From what i read i need to:
    -degrease the part
    -media blast the part
    -dust off with shop air
    -clean with prep-sol
    -coat the part
    -and bake
    Am i missing anything? Somethings i read make it sound like the prep is much more involved but others suggest the above.
    Thank you,
    Joe

  • #2
    Re: New to Powder Coating

    That's it in general. I would recommend also an IR thermometer. The cure time starts when the part reaches the cure temp. and that can vary in time with material and mass. It's not a bad idea to make some sort of spray booth. I have pics of mine in the album, that has worked good for auto parts. It's based on others seen here. I'd also get 1lb of several colors. Once you get started, you'll want to PC everything. SS

    http://www.caswellplating.com/powder/ir_therm.html

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    • #3
      Re: New to Powder Coating

      as usual sswee is right on the money. an ir thermo is a must. also i would add a few cautions i have learned the hard way. pre powder prep solvent varies with user, but what works for me is brakeclean aerosol or laquer thinner. i also have used mek but it is nasty stuff so if you go that way be sure to use ALL the safety precautions listed. also you will need a dust mask at the bare mininum, preferably a respirator. though not super harmful to the health powder is not good to breath, and wear the respirator when blasting. stay away from sand in the sand blast cabinet. also if you plan to do any of the high temp powder ALWAYS remember to keep it away from any other non high temp powder and clean the pc gun spotless when changing back to regular powder. the high temp is silicone based and if mixed with regular powder, even the smallest amount you might as well throw the regular powder in the trash as it is ruined. also if the parts are used, the fastest way to strip paint is aircraft stripper,not the low odor kind, available at most auto parts stores. be careful with this stuff also as it can burn the skin. one last thing when doing cast parts, especially aluminum, they need to be outgassed. if you dont know of this do a search on this forum as there are quite a few threads that talk about it.
      best of luck and welcome to the world of powder, get ready to be an addict, as sswee said you will want to powder any and everthing
      when in doubt polish it out/ why replace it when you can refinish it
      G2 Polishing and Powdercoating

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      • #4
        Re: New to Powder Coating

        Thanks for the tips guys. Luckily I already own an IR thermometer, it looks like they went down in price, I paid almost $200 several years ago. So basically I would use the IR thermometer to see if the part has reached curing temperature? This is a more accurate method then simply seeing if the powder has begun to flow?
        thanks again
        Joe

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        • #5
          Re: New to Powder Coating

          I've been doing some reading on making a spray booth. I'm thinking of making one to place on top of my oven. About 30"x30"x24", 5 sided. I'm going to make it out of MDF, and paint the inside. I am going to use a bathroom vent fan on the back wall. I plan on venting the booth to the outside. I was thinking of placing a piece of wire mesh (chicken wire) over the vent grill. I will also make a hanging rack. Should the rack, wire mesh, and part to be coated all grounded through the grounding plug on the pc unit? Or do you use a house ground? Is there a difference?
          thanks
          -Joe

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          • #6
            Re: New to Powder Coating

            I put a J bolt in the top with a swivel clip on it and use a piece of dog chain to vary the hieght of the part. A roll of hot wire fence and a handful of S-hooks from the hardware store come in handy for hanging parts. I clip the ground alligator clip on the J-bolt. An 18" flourescent enclosed light in the top also helps. SS

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            • #7
              Re: New to Powder Coating

              Is the powder coat explosive? Will the dust running through the bathroom vent cause any harm? Should i filter the air first?
              thanks
              -Joe

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              • #8
                Re: New to Powder Coating

                Any powder or dust in a high enough concentration is explosive. That being said, I doubt you'd kick up enough dust to get a bang.

                Filter the exhaust air before it hits the fan, filters are fairly cheap and your fan will last longer.

                Size your fan so you have 100Cfm for every square foot of opening on your booth. That should keep the dust contained...
                A speed control on the fan would be nice too.
                IMHO

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                • #9
                  Re: New to Powder Coating

                  After reading a bunch of posts it sounds like furnace filters are my best bet. Any other types also a good bet? Mayeb something with less resistance?

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                  • #10
                    Re: New to Powder Coating

                    Use a pleated filter, less resistance... they cost a little more but they last a lot longer.

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