Powder coating is a process commonly used to coat parts of all kinds and protect them from corrosion and rust.The process involves applying a coating over a metal surface by blowing a dry powder onto the surface and then baking it until it forms a protective layer over the surface.
It is often used in the automotive (especially with motorcycles) industry, but one question many people ask is whether it’s possible to powder coat chrome. After all, the spray-on powder does need a surface it can grip onto, and chrome is a very slippery surface. But it is possible to powder coat chrome parts, as long as you’ve got someone who knows what they’re doing.
Here are some things to keep in mind if you are considering having a powder coat put on chrome parts:
- First and foremost, it’s important to realize that you can’t powder coat over chrome. The powder coating won’t stick to the chrome. In order to do the job properly, you must strip the chrome surface off of the parts and then apply the powder coating.
- It is possible to use a powder coating that looks like chrome after it has been applied. This type of coating generally dries with a shiny surface that looks similar to chrome, although technically, it isn’t chrome at all.
- Before the powder coating can be applied, the parts must be sand blasted so that any residue that’s on them will come off.
- Pretreatment is an essential part of powder coating because it ensures that the parts are completely clean before the powder coating is applied. It is easy to tell parts that have not been pretreated and / or sand blasted before the coating was applied because that coating starts to flake off not long after it is applied.
- Be sure to ask several questions of the shop you are planning on using to apply the powder coating because not everyone applies coating to the highest quality standards. Pretreatment is necessary if you don’t want the coating to flake right off.
- Also keep in mind that while most chrome parts can be powder coated, there are some that it is advisable not to coat. Chrome itself is usually applied in plating, and if the part itself cannot stand up to temperatures of about 350 degrees Fahrenheit, they should not be powder coated. High temperatures are necessary in order to get the coating to adhere to the surface successfully. In some cases you may be able to protect sensitive areas on each part with special green tape designed for the purpose, but as always, check with a professional before deciding anything.
When considering whether you actually should have your chrome parts powder coated, it is important that you consider the advantages and disadvantages of the process. For example, powder coating is a good choice if you are looking for a coating that does not emit many (if any at all) VOCs, or volatile organic compounds. This is a major cause for concern, especially in the home décor industry because some items like appliances, carpet, and countertops can outgas and emit chemicals into the air.
Another good thing about powder coating is the fact that it provides a much thicker coating than liquid coatings. It is also a much greener process than other ways of protecting metal parts and usually creates an even coating. In addition, you can create special effects by varying the type of coating you use, depending on what you need the part to do.