Manufacturing News

How to prevent ‘Cowboys’ from tarnishing the entire powder coating industry

The Australasian Institute of Surface Finishing (AISF) says that the
powder coating industry is facing critical challenges of quality caused by poor
processes and lack of knowledge among some of the applicators.

Poor process control and lack of industry knowledge are leading to increased
product performance failures, which are tarnishing the reputation of the entire
powder coating industry. By taking shortcuts in the pre-treatment processes,
these ‘Cowboys’ are creating doubts about the capabilities of powder coating as
a viable protective coating. Most failures often result in expensive litigious
outcomes and a reliance on warranties that may not necessarily cover the full
cost of rectification.

Many high quality applicators in Australia have been inadvertently
impacted by the powder coating industry’s existing self-regulatory approach.
Good operators complain that their reputation is also tarnished by the poor
performers whose work in the field displays a deterioration of workmanship,
quality and performance that can be directly attributed to a lack of consistent
and monitored compliance measures.

AISF’s Federal President Peter Mallios explains that there are over
1,000 powder coaters in Australia with only a few having pre-treatment systems
suitable for aluminium. Most of the powder coaters simply coat over all types
of metal without any real knowledge of the correct processes, ruining the
reputation of the industry.

While powder coating is commonly perceived as an easy task, any
professional coater would know that it takes a lot more than just pulling a
trigger on a spray gun to produce good quality finished parts consistently and
efficiently, which also meet performance criteria and exposure class
specifications.

The AISF recommends using an APC Accredited Powder Coater with the AISF
Accredited Status indicating to customers and industry professionals alike that
the applicator follows quality processes and has a commitment to excellence.

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