Tag Archives: dual voltage

    • Perfectly Powder Coated Wheels- 10 Tips to Make Your Wheels Look Great

      It's a known fact that a set of wheels can make or break a car. We've seen some of the biggest "junkers" become legendary with a nice set of wheels and a ride height adjustment. The opposite can happen when you have a nicely restored vehicle that has dirty, beat-up, or badly finished wheels. It can ruin the overall appearance of the car or truck. We're here to show you how to make your rolling stock look as good as your ride with these 10 tips to powder coated wheel perfection.

      1. Preparation Is Key!- Powder Coating, like traditional paint, requires a clean, dry surface for the best results. We suggest to media blast your wheels down to bare metal for the best powder adhesion. Powder coating is a "high-build" coating that will fill the texture left by media blasting. Eastwood offers DIY Media Blasting Kits that make it a pretty affordable option. The other option is to remove the finish chemically or mechanically. Both methods can be quite messy and time consuming, but they do the job. Once the wheels are free of any old coatings, wash them down with a solvent like PRE or After Blast to remove any grease, dirt, or grime. At this point we'd suggest wearing clean rubber gloves. The oil from your skin can transfer to the surface and actually cause imperfections in the powder during curing. Remember, the cleaner the better!

      Removing Paint From Wheels Chemically

      2. Pre-Bake Wheels- The wheels on your vehicle are subjected to some of the harshest conditions on your vehicle. They see extreme temps, brake dust, grease, grime, salt, and anything in between. No matter how often you cleaned the wheels (especially cast wheels), they'll still have some residue or contaminants baked into the metal. Those contaminants can release when the wheel is heated up. If that happens when baking and curing your powder, it could cause popping, bubbling, or even a fisheye effect in your cured powder. We suggest to bake your wheels at 350-400 degrees for 30 minutes to an hour to assure that you have released and baked out the years of contaminants in the metal. This way when you apply the powder and cure it at a similar temperature, those contaminants would have already been released.

      Pre-Baking Wheels

      3. Assure you have a good ground connection- Grounding your wheels to the powder coating gun is very important. Most wheels have some tight corners and crevices that can be difficult to get the powder into. The static charge that is created by grounding the wheels and charging the powder is what helps the powder cling into every crevice. Without a good ground the powder won't stick in these spots and you'll get an uneven finish. We've had luck by running thin metal wire around or through each wheel and then connecting the ground to the metal rack the wheels sit on for coating and curing. This allows you an easy spot to clamp your ground clamp to the rack or even the wire under the rack.

      4. Hot-Flock you wheels- "Hot-Flocking' is a procedure where you preheat the part and immediately coat the wheel. The hot wheel will help the powder "stick" to the surface easier as the powder may begin to melt as soon as it hits the surface. This technique takes some practice to perfect. You will need to be quick with laying the powder down so the part doesn't cool too much. Also be mindful to avoid laying too much powder during this method as you can get "runs" or "clumps" of powder that will collect in one spot.

      5. Use High Temperature Masking Tape- Use this high temp tape to mask off lug holes, hub bores, and any other areas that have a tight tolerance and could cause issues when refitting the wheels. You can also use this tape to mask off portions of the wheels to apply a second coat of powder for a custom application.

      6. Apply Clear Coat Powder- Use your choice of clear powder to add an extra layer of protection to your wheels and make cleaning brake dust and road grime off easier (high metallic and textured powders especially hold dirt and grime!). Additionally our high gloss clear powders really give your finish a "deep" "wet" look.

      Gloss Clear Powder over Wheel Sparkle Silver Powder

      7. Protect the inside of the wheels- One of the nice things about powder coating is that it helps seals the metal and keep your wheels from corroding. We have found a good practice while powder coating your wheels is to apply a layer of powder on the inside barrels of the wheels to protect them from corrosion. The inner barrels or hoop see the harshest conditions. You can make the coating as basic as satin black powder or go full custom and use an eye catching Translucent or Candy Powder.

      Custom Powder Coated Wheels

      8.Remove anything that shouldn't be coated- If you don't want it coated or it can't handle the heat, you must remove it before starting the process. This includes valve stems, sealing rings, trim pieces, lug covers, hubcaps or center caps, etc.

      9. Use metal or high temperature filler on damaged wheels- Have a wheel with some "curbing" or damage? Use an all metal filler like Lab-Metal to fill and sand imperfections smooth. Powder Coating can have some filling properties, but heavy scratches or gouges need to be filled. Alternatively you could use an AC/DC Tig Welder to weld and fill major damage.

      10. Use a Quality Powder Gun- As mentioned earlier, powder coating wheels can be difficult with all of the crevices and tight areas you need to coat. Not all powder coating guns are created equal and you need to make sure you use a gun that has the ability to switch to a lower voltage that allows the powder to cling to those hard to reach areas. Our Dual Voltage Powder Coating Gun is one example of an adjustable voltage gun.

      If you follow these tips and take your time, you can make your wheels look as good as the rest of your ride and last just as long too!

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    • Powder Coating ATV Parts

      Here at Eastwood we have a love for anything with wheels. One of our product engineers, Evan, is a big time ATV enthusiast. He took this past weekend to give his quad a new look by blasting and powder coating the chassis and associated parts. He used the Eastwood Dual Voltage Powder Coating Gun, and a combination of HotCoat Metallic Blue Powder, HotCoat Black Stardust Powder, and HotCoat Reflective Chrome Powder to coat his quad parts. Evan wanted a tough coating that would continue to look good even after a day out at the trails and he knew HotCoat powders would be up to the task!

      Check out the pictures below of Evan's results, that blue metallic powder really pops!

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    • What's cooking in the Eastwood Oven? A weekend of powder coating.

      I'm building a few projects at once, and it seems just about every one of them needed some sort of powder coating done before I could start reassembly. I took this past weekend to tackle my growing pile of parts for powder treatment.

      There were 2 steps to this process. The first was cleaning the parts with the media blaster. Since I had some large parts that wouldn't fit in the blasting cabinet, I decided to use a mix of soda blast media and aluminum oxide in the dual blaster to quickly remove the years of paint, rust, and grime on these parts.

      An important tip is to sift your media through a strainer before it goes into the blaster. This is your last chance to make sure that there aren't any pieces of oversized media that weren't broken down enough. The smallest rogue piece could clog the blaster and cause headaches! This is extremely important if the media isn't high quality or has been stored in a questionable area where condensation could have gotten to the media. Either way it's a good habit to form. Sometimes you'd be surprised at what you catch!

      Once I blasted all of the parts I treated them with Eastwood After Blast to give them one final cleaning process and optimum powder adherence.

      The fun part of this process was finally here, and I started by grabbing my Dual Voltage HotCoat Gun and doing a layer of high gloss black powder followed by hot flocking a layer of ultra gloss clear powder over the parts. This combo is one of my favorites. It really gives an ultra-deep, shiny look to the black that is hard to beat!

      Once that batch had cured I moved on to do some engine brackets and other items in black wrinkle. This powder leaves a nice O.E. looking finish that is subtle, yet still clean.

      After all of this, I can say I am excited to bolt these freshly coated parts onto each car, I just need to find the time! We want to see what you are powder coating, feel free to share your photos on the Eastwood Powder Coating Forum!

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    • HotCoat Wins the Cage Match

      Shawn writes about the versatility of the Dual-Voltage gun (and the mysteries of the Faraday Cage).  Click Here To Read Full Post...
    • Brake parts need love too!

      As I mentioned in my introductory post, I have a 1976 VW Rabbit project that I am building from the ground up. This car is going to be built with a heavy vintage motorsport "feel", but still in the end, it will be a show car and most everything is going to be gone over and polished, cleaned, chromed and powder coated. One thing people often neglect to restore when building a car is brake parts and associated bits hidden behind the wheel. Since I will be buying new brake calipers, I decided I would clean and powder coat the carriers ahead of time. I figured I'd post some photos along the way of some steps I did for the tech geeks like myself, and also to prove to friends and family I actually do work on my 76 Rabbit more than once every 2 years! (I can hear your laughs from here Dad!)

      First step when dealing with old parts that are so close to the road like this, is to clean all of that thick grease, dirt and road grime off of the part. This part had obviously been victim to a couple of ripped CV boots and thus had a few layers of hardened grease on them. You wanna scrape the part with a screwdriver or something similar to get the bigger "chunks" off first. Next I hit the carriers with some of our exclusive Eastwood Chassis Clean . Our chassis clean is a very aggressive cleaner that even removes heavy baked-on brake dust and grease. I just sprayed the part liberally with the handy aerosol can. As you can see in the pictures it just washes the grime off and leaves a "clean" (do not mistake for blasted "clean") surface!

      After getting these parts degreased pretty well. I next dropped them in our blasting cabinet. I decided to use some of our Aluminum Oxide Blast Media to clean the carriers. Since I cleaned the parts with our chassis clean before blasting, the carriers blasted clean quite easily.  After both brackets were blasted, I washed and cleaned them with our PRE Painting Prep to get any and all left over dirt or grease off of the part.

      Since these parts were cast, I decided to pre-heat these items at 400 degrees to bake out any additional grease or chemicals that still may be lurking in the metal and could eventually cause "outgassing". After 20 minutes I took the carriers out and immediately sprayed them Semi-Gloss Black with our increasingly popular Dual Voltage Hot Coat Gun . With the part being pre-heated it makes the powder seem to almost adhere a bit better. You may even begin to see a bit of "flow out" of the powder as the powder lays on the parts (the finish will begin to go from the dull "powder" to a "wet" type finish). After I got a nice even coat on both parts, I took them back to the oven and cured them at 400 degrees again until the powder flowed out nicely. After pulling them out and hanging them to cool, I got to relax and admire the nice glossy black brake parts ready to be mated to some new brake calipers!

      I by no means am a professional at powder coating and found the dual voltage gun to be quite easy to use. In fact, I was able to manipulate the amount of powder coming out of the gun depending on the pressure I had on the trigger (vs. some other guns I've used where it is either "off" or "full blast").  Hopefully some of my fellow hobbyists out there will be inclined to take up powder coating their own parts after seeing how fairly simple the process is!

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