Powder coating Australia

applying yellow powder coating for steel in australia

A quick guide to powder coating essentials in Australia

Powder coating has grown into a multi-billion dollar business, not only in Australia, but worldwide. It is a part of our lives every day, coating everything from household items and vehicles to heavy duty machinery. Its popularity comes down to two things: protection and style. As a coating method it is flexible, durable, highly protective, and its strengths are not at the cost of its looks. The range of powder coating colours and finishes is wide, which ensures your project looks and performs exactly as you need.

This article will outline the advantages, uses, and process of powder coating, as well as where you will find powder coating applicators and suppliers across Australia.

The powder coating process in 3 steps

Powder coating is a coating process where paint is applied to a substrate in dry powder form. Usually a paint is a binder and a pigment suspended in a liquid solvent, but a powder coat is solvent free, it is the binder and pigment blended into a fine powder which does not require a solvent to be fluidised. The application process can be broken into 3 steps: substrate preparation/pre-treatment, powder application, and curing.

1. Substrate preparation and pre-treatment

The appropriate preparation of the substrate is of high importance in any coating application. Firstly, remove all oil, grease, dirt, grime and ensure that the part is completely clean. Then the part is stripped to remove previous coatings. Finally, the part is sandblasted. This stage cleans the part down to bare metal and creates a texture on the substrate which allows the powder coat to adhere to it. After a final clean the part is ready. This step is slightly different depending on the substrate.

Man powder coating objects in Australia

Electrostatic spraying powder coating application.

2. Powder application in two ways

Powder coating is applied through one of two methods: electrostatic spraying, and fluidised bed. The electrostatic spray process applies the powder through a specialty spray gun which gives the powder an electrostatic charge. This causes the powder to stick to the grounded part. In the fluidised bed process, the part is heated and dipped into a hopper filled with fluidised powder. The heat melts the powder onto the part immediately, though a post cure may still be needed.

3. Curing depending on the powder type

The final step is to bake the powder coat, causing it to melt, flow, and form a continuous liquid film. This ensures an even coverage over the part. Depending on the type of powder, there is either a further step for curing (for thermosetting powders), or the process stops here (for thermoplastic powders). Thermosetting powders undergo chemical crosslinking  when heated and will not melt again, where thermoplastics do not crosslink and will melt again if heated. A properly cured thermosetting powder is tough and impact resistant.

5 reasons to choose powder coating for your project

Nowadays, powder coating is suitable for a wide range of materials and purposes including metals, glass, MDF, and even wood and plastics. Powder coating has many features and advantages which make it the coating of choice. Just a few of these are:

  1. Cost efficiency: It is cheaper than liquid paint, and is a one coat application with low operation costs.
  2. Flexibility: Suitable for a wide range of materials and purposes including metals, glass, MDF, and even wood and plastics.
  3. Durability: It is more resistant to chipping, scratching, fading, and wearing than other finishes.
  4. Appearance: Unlimited colour and finish choice (including smooth, textured, gloss, matt, iridescent, glitter, and candy) with thicker applications than liquid coatings and no running or sagging.
  5. Environmentally friendly: Solvent-free, very low/zero VOC, and excess powder can be recovered and reused, so minimal waste and under 1% material loss.

The wide range of powder coating colours

The choice of powder coating colours and finishes is almost limitless, if you have the time and money to have the powder produced by the powder manufacturer. The possibilities are in fact the same as for liquid paints. However, powder coatings are more colour fast and retain their gloss longer than other types of coatings. The powder coatings usually receive their colours through colour pigments in the mixture. These are added during the production of the coating powder. Sometimes the colours are made more intense by adding metallic or ceramic powder to create a metallic or pearlescent finish. The powder coat colours used by the most manufacturers correspond to the internationally recognised RAL colour chart.

Powder coating equipment for sale in Australia

There are numerous pieces of equipment required for a complete powder coating line. These range from sandblasting boxes or booths and curing ovens at the large scale end to hanging racks and guns at the smaller. If you wish to buy powders and equipment, there are many suppliers operating across Australia. The cost of equipment varies by scale and quality. A complete powder coating gun kit including hooks, air line, tapes and powder cups can cost $650. A gun system with a powder fluidising drum can cost $5,000.

The cost of powder is calculated by the pound, with greater quantities charged at lower rates. The less common or more specialised a colour, the more expensive it is. An average powder might cost $25-40 per kilogram, but can be anywhere up to $100 a kilogram.

Whether a hobbyist or a professional business, the powder coating industry is growing. Given that powder coat is long-lasting, easy-to-apply, durable, protective, and attractive, it is no wonder. To find out how your project can benefit from powder coatings, contact us!

Powder coating prices and companies in Australia

Powder coating is generally priced by surface area of the part to be coated. Different finishes and colours are priced differently, and the type of job will also be reflected in the total costs – wheels or rims for example may be done per wheel (or set of four), where a railing is charged per metre. The average 13″ wheel powder coat will cost you $60-100, where a fence may cost $40 per linear metre. The links below will take you to our area specific lists of powder coating companies.

  • Powder coating services & facilities in the Sydney area (NSW)
  • Powder coating services & facilities in the Melbourne area (Bayswater, East & West)
  • Powder coating services & facilities in the Perth area (WA)
  • Powder coating services & facilities in the Brisbane area (Northside & Southside)
  • Powder coating services & facilities in the Adelaide area (SA)
  • Powder coating services & facilities in the Gold Coast area (QLD)

If you wish to gain more information on powder coatings, or need a contractor for a project, contact us! Our experts are here to help. Just click on the “Request a quote” button at the bottom of this article and take advantage of 100% free quoting service.

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