Manufacturers continually deal with the same everyday issues in the plant. While working to produce a certain number of products per hour on each assembly line, technical directors and operations managers hold responsibilities like maintaining high quality, minimizing failure rates, minimizing defects, and finding ways to keep their processes completed effectively and quickly.
Many manufacturers expect the same results their industrial coatings have historically given, without ever questioning if the coating is right for the job. The story manufacturers usually have is always the same: they started using a standardized coating from the market years ago and they believe that there may not be alternatives, but reality says they can.
Most manufactured products receive a protective or decorative industrial coating in the factory. Coatings application is often one of the last steps in production, and the result of this process can be the first thing noticed by the end user. Your industrial coatings supplier’s batch-to-batch consistency is central to a successful production operation. When you engage with your coatings supplier, you need assurance they understand the importance of consistency. And consistency is critical to keeping your line running smoothly. A smooth line keeps orders moving out the door.
In part 1 of Customized Coatings vs. Off the Shelf Coatings we showcased the main differences of your two main coating options, including a comparison chart. In part two of this series, we discuss the different criteria that affect whether you should consider a customized coating or stick with an off the shelf solution.
Learn Why Customized Formulations Provide Benefits to Manufacturers
Off the shelf coatings are often supplied to manufacturers by larger coatings companies. These products simplify the coatings producer’s distribution and service requirements. The trouble is, your needs may call for something more tailored to your operation or your end customer’s performance expectations. If you have been using the same, standard, off the shelf coating for years, it might be time to investigate the advantages of custom coatings.
Industrial Coatings Finishing Basics
Many different terms are used for the gloss level of an industrial coating. In the past, the terms flat, low sheen, semi-gloss, gloss and full gloss were used by manufacturers to describe the gloss level. Today, we have a number of additional descriptions which are used to describe the gloss levels that fall in between a traditional flat, low sheen, semi-gloss, gloss and full gloss. Terms such as eggshell, satin, and silk are common and usually reserved for decorative paints (house paint or interior paints), yet their use transfers to industrial coatings from time to time.
Finding Solutions to Coating Application Problems
A Coating Application Experience
When a coating fails to work correctly for the chosen substrate, the application process is usually at fault. Finding ways to solve these types of issues without increasing cost and manufacturing product-line production time proves difficult, yet can be done! Let’s look at a unique situation involving one of Aexcel’s industrial OEM customers. Here, an industrial parts manufacturer in the HVAC industry used an Aexcel waterborne dip coating to finish metal parts.
The outsourcing of support functions for any business oftentimes makes sense, depending on the answer to this question: do the benefits outweigh the costs? Even if coatings is the core service that a company offers, many times, benefits come from outsourcing.
Your coating supplier should take your business seriously. Do you need specialized service attention? Ideally, your coatings supplier should be going above and beyond to meet your specific needs. Your supplier is an important partner to help meet your revenue and growth goals. The best coatings suppliers assist manufacturers by providing superior coatings and tech service for each product line and process.
Priming Can Be as Important as Any Other Step in the Coating Process
Applying industrial coatings in manufacturing is one of the many steps to getting a product ready to ship. And though the coating process is just one of those many steps, the technology within the coating process may have a number of steps itself. For many products, one of the most important is priming the surface. Primers are meant to secure the durability of the topcoat when it is applied to a potentially incompatible, or less than optimal subsurface. They also bring valuable performance benefits to the final finish system.