Is fluidized bed powder coating a good fit for your products?
There are several questions that need to be asked. First, since fluidized bed powder coating generally applies a thicker coating, can the end part withstand the dimensional changes? Unlike electrostatic coating, fluid bed coating will generally smooth over any small details in the parts, such as embossed serial numbers, metal imperfections, etc. This can be extremely beneficial for parts where Faraday Cage effects are problematic. Welded wire products are good examples. Electrostatic spray has a hard time getting into the depths of the wire cross welds, whereas fluidized bed coating, due to the larger heat mass of the overlapping wires, encapsulates the entire weld.
Also, part complexity and geometry should be considered. If you have the right configuration, fluidized bed coating can be the way to go. Parts that will allow the excess powder to fall off the part work great. Others—with areas where trapped air or excess powder that will be difficult to displace—should be avoided.
The fluidized bed powder coating method is used to apply heavy coats in one dip, 3 – 10 mils (75 – 250 µm), uniformly to complex shaped products. It is possible to build a film thickness of 100 mils (2500 µm) using higher preheat temperatures and multiple dips.
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