- Hot Coat Powder Coating System - How To Use Guide & Troubleshooting Instructions
Original HotCoat Powder Coating System
Powder Coating provides a premium coating ideal for many automotive, marine, home, and garden applications. Eastwood’s HotCoat Powder Coating System is a breakthrough refinishing system for the home hobbyist providing professional performance at a fraction of the cost of industrial equipment. The cured finish resists most chemicals, fuels, acids, thinners, brake fluid, UV light, and is much more durable than liquid coatings (up to ten times). Powder coating is environmentally friendly! It produces no toxic wastes and uses no solvents. The Eastwood HotCoat® PowderCoat System allows you to coat a part and return it to service in less than an hour! Now you can powder coat any metal part that can withstand the 400°F (204°C) cure temperature utilizing an electric oven or our Infrared Light Cure System.
Powder coating dust, like common household dust, when confined and suspended in air, poses a fire and potential explosion hazard if ignited. Good housekeeping, adequate ventilation, dust control and isolation from potential ignition sources is required!
Sweep up unused powder from the floor. Do not vacuum unless the vacuum is equipped with an explosion-proof motor. Never smoke while powder coating. Do not apply powder coat near any source of ignition, e.g. open flames, sparks, etc. Use the same precautions that you would for liquid solvent based coatings. DO NOT USE A GAS OVEN!
Safety Tip For Coating Internal Surfaces:
When coating internal areas such as boxes, tubing, etc., apply powder in stages so that a dense dust cloud will not form. Coat small areas at a time and allow cloud to dissipate before moving to next area. DO NOT TOUCH EMITTER TO OBJECT! This will create a spark which may ignite dust cloud.
Danger: High Voltage!
DANGER: HIGH VOLTAGE! READ AND UNDERSTAND ALL DIRECTIONS BEFORE PROCEEDING! The power supply is a sealed unit and contains no user serviceable parts! Contact with the emitter will result in an unpleasant shock! To eliminate the shock hazard, touch the emitter to the ground clip after each use. (If you have a medical condition or pacemaker check with your doctor before using.)
Contact with the emitter will result in an unpleasant shock.
DO NOT TOUCH THE EMITTER BEFORE CONTACTING IT TO THE GROUND CLIP!
Electrical Safety Tips
Electrical Safety Dos:
- - Make sure you, your work area, and your equipment are dry.
- - If you are using an extension cord, make sure it is a grounded cord in sound condition with no damage or frays, and of the correct wire gauge.
- - Never bypass the ground plug. Grounding is important for operation of the unit and prevents shock.
- Do not touch the emitter until after the activation switch is released and the emitter has been touched to the ground clip to discharge the emitter.
- - Once you are spraying the part with the powder, avoid touching the gun to the part or other grounded objects.
- - Do not step on, kink, or pull the wires. Before using the gun inspect the condition of all wires.
- - Do not touch or hold the part while coating.
Electrical Safety Don’ts:
Before you begin using the HotCoat™ Powder Coating System make sure you have the following:
- - An electric oven or toaster oven large enough to fit the parts you will be coating. If you’ll occasionally be coating larger parts, you may want one of our Infrared Light Curing Systems. Do not use an oven used for food preparation or located in a living area, as mildly toxic fumes are given off by the powder during the curing process! Do not use a gas oven! Used ovens can be obtained very easily for little or no money by checking your local newspaper classified section or by calling appliance stores and remodelers in your area.
- - An air supply source for the gun. A modest air compressor capable of at least .5 cfm at 5-8 psi. You can even use a portable air tank with regulator. The air supply must be dry and the use of a moisture trap is strongly recommended.
- - A grounded 110-120VAC outlet or heavy-duty grounded extension cord to plug in the 6’ power cord. NOTE: Unit must be grounded to work properly and safely!
- - A clean, safe, well-lit, well-ventilated work area.
- - An activated charcoal respirator like our Professional Respirator to wear while the coating is being cured.
- - A Dust Mask to wear while handling and applying powder.
- - Disposable vinyl or Nitrile gloves to handle powder and cleaned parts.
- - A pair of goggles to provide eye protection during coating and gun cleaning operations.
DESCRIPTION OF PRODUCT PARTS
Before you begin, remove all items from the box. Compare with list below to make sure unit is complete.
- Model 10198 HotCoat™ Powder Coating Gun: applies a wide range of specially formulated powder coatings.
- #4066 Disposable Filter: removes contaminants down to 1 micron from the air supply. Designed to supplement existing moisture trap on your air supply.
- Cup: holds powder (fill 1-2 inches from bottom of cup)
- Discharge Tube: fluidizes powder
- Pick Up Tube: provides exit of fluidized powder to nozzle
- Static Tubes (3): induces static charge to powder
- Deflector: deflects powder pattern to assure even deposit
- Complete HotCoat™ Power Supply unit with:
- - A 6 ft. 120 volt, 15 amp electrical input cord
- - A 6 ft. lead with ground clamp which is attached to the part you are going to powder coat
- - A remote activation switch with 6 ft. lead
- - An 8 ft. high voltage gun power lead
- Activation Switch: Applies voltage to Emitter: hold-on, release-off
ITEMS TO MAKE COATING EASIER
- - A sheet of clean glossy paper or spoon for transferring powder
- - A roll of aluminum foil
- - A roll of High Temperature Masking Tape to mask bolts and other areas where powder build is not desired
- - High Temperature Silicone Plugs to seal threaded holes and close tolerance openings. These plugs also work great to support parts in the oven during curing
- - A spool of .041” Stainless Steel Safety Wire (#43045) to hold parts while powder coating and curing. It’s better to use clean wire than coated wire to prevent contaminants from falling on to the powdered surface
- - Clean cotton rags or lint free paper towels
- - An extra disposable Moisture Separator (#34066) It should be replaced monthly if used daily.
- - A pair of leather heat-resistant gloves
- - A quick disconnect air coupler
- - A timer
- - A tarp to collect powder dust for easy clean up
- - PRE Painting Prep
PREPARING THE PART
As with normal refinishing, powder can only be applied to clean, bare metal surfaces. Properly clean the part to be coated by removing all traces of old paint, rust, grease, oil, etc
Filling Minor Low Spots:
Metal-2-Metal Polyester Filler (#10021Z) can be used as a filler for corroded or pitted areas prior to powder. Apply Metal-2-Metal as you would any body filler and finish by level sanding and feathering all edges with 180, 220, and 320 grit paper. Do not build filler more than 1/16” or lifting may occur during heat cure. Filler applications should be pre baked at 400°F for 20 minutes before final sanding and powder coating to assure against shrinkage. If you prefer a single stage (non-catalyzed) filler, try Hi-Temp Lab Metal filler.
Grease and Oil Removal:
MASKING THE PART
Once the part is thoroughly dry the powder can be applied. Handle the cleaned part with vinyl or Nitrile Disposable Gloves to avoid contamination. Finger prints can affect adhesion! Determine how the part should be positioned in the oven before coating. Use the High Temperature Plugs and/or High Temperature Tape to protect critical tolerance areas.
Both should be left on the part during the coating and curing process. Since the powder will coat around corners, be sure to mask all appropriate areas.
TECH TIP:Use aluminum foil to mask areas or intricate parts.
Practice masking, applying powder, and curing test pieces prior to coating final parts.
PREPARING FOR CURING
Hanging or Placing the Part for Coating
Bend wire hooks to hold the part during powder application and curing. Our Stainless Steel Safety Wire works well for this application. Don’t use a coated wire as debris from the wire coating may fall on the part during the curing process. High Temperature Plugs can often be used to support the parts above the trays, and plug bolt holes.
Preheating the Oven
Before powder coating the part - preheat the oven to 450°F (232°C). Check temperature with an oven thermometer or the Non-Contact Infra Red Thermometer (#11476).
NOTE: Preheat to 350°F for Gloss Clear powders and allowed to cure at 350° F after complete flow out has occurred. Curing at higher temperatures may cause yellowing.
Use of Oven Tray
Make sure the oven is clean. Use aluminum foil to keep racks clean. Practice moving part from area where powder will be applied to inside the oven to avoid damaging the uncured powder you will soon apply.
TECH TIP: To minimize bumping the piece after its been coated: hang the piece from the oven rack, clamp it to a bench, apply the powder, and insert the rack with the piece hanging back into the oven to cure.
Coating Porous Materials
In many cases, contaminants in porous materials will cause pits in the powder. Porous cast iron, die cast, cast aluminum and magnesium parts trap contaminants, that, when heated will outgas and cause porosity problems when the powder is cured. See Preheating the Part, below.
NOTE: Die-cast metal varies widely in formulation, many of which can be difficult to powder coat and, in some cases may even melt at 400° F. Some aluminum and magnesium alloys can be weakened by exposure to the cure temperatures. Check with part manufacturer if unsure.
Preheating the Part
To prevent pits from occurring, preheat the clean part. The time that a part needs to be preheated varies with size. Preheat the part at 450°F for 20 - 50 minutes, remove from oven. Once part is cooled, use PRE Painting Prep or acetone to remove the newly exposed contaminants, repeat the same preheating cycle. Powder may be applied to hot or cool surface.
PREPARING TO POWDER COAT
Use a clean sheet of glossy paper (to avoid lint), a spoon, or a funnel to pour the powder into the cup. Fill the cup no more than 1” or 2” with your color of choice.
TECH TIP: Handle powder as if you were handling liquid paint. Use clean disposable gloves when handling powder to avoid contamination. Keep powder containers tightly closed.
Attaching the Air Supply to the Gun
Connect a low pressure air line to the gun. The gun requires .5 or more cfm at 5 - 10 psi, with 8 psi being ideal. If you do not have an air compressor, a portable air tank with regulator can be used. The air must be moisture and oil free!
CAUTION: Never exceed 10 psi or damage tot he gun can occur
Connecting the Ground Clip
Connect the ground clip to the part you are powder coating. Grounding the part provides a path for static charges to dissipate and attracts the powder. Touch gun emitter to ground clip after each time activation switch is released!
Gun Spray Pattern
Before using the gun make sure the 3 static tubes are in place and deflector installed. Pull the gun trigger to check the pattern. Unlike regular paint guns, the HotCoat™ gun creates a fog of charged particles.
APPLICATION OF POWDER
Caution: Before plugging in the unit, make sure that all the cords are uncoiled and free to move.
- Plug the power supply into a grounded outlet.
- Maintain approximately 4 inches between the gun tip and part being coated.
- Depress the activation switch to energize the gun and charge the powder, while triggering the gun. Releasing the switch turns the power off.
- Once the activation switch has been released, a slight charge will remain in the gun until the emitter is touched to the ground clip. Be sure to touch the emitter to the ground clamp before touching the emitter.
- Move the gun in slightly different angles and in a circular motion to ensure that all areas of the part are covered.
- Powder is difficult to apply in deep recessed areas or into corners. Try repositioning the part to allow gravity to help assure coverage in corners.
- Be sure to coat deeper crevices and inside corners first to prevent uneven coating.
- The coated surface will have a dull opaque coating of powder. Make sure all areas of the part are coated evenly.
- Bare metal should no longer be seen.
- Practice on some scrap pieces of metal to obtain a uniform coating.
- Inspect part with a high intensity light to make sure you didn’t miss any areas. Touch up as necessary.
- If you accidentally knock powder off the part, it is usually best to blow all the powder off and start over. This is particularly important for the translucent colors which easily show blemishes.
Hold the gun at various positions and angles to get the best application of powder over the entire part.
Before Touching or Cleaning the Emitter
The gun becomes less efficient as powder builds up on the gun emitter. To remove powder build-up from the emitter, release the activation switch, and momentarily touch the emitter to the ground clamp. The resulting spark indicates the system is now discharged. Wipe off the electrode with a dry cloth. When you are finished applying the powder to the part, release the activation switch, touch the emitter to the ground clip, set the gun down and unplug the power unit.
CURING THE POWDER
Powder coatings cure with heat. The high temperature changes the powder from it’s dry solid state to a “glossy” liquid state. This is called the “flow out” or “gloss over”. The time the powder is in this liquid state and “flows” is called the gel time. To help maximize chip resistance and produce a smooth coating, the piece you are coating must be brought up to the cure temperature quickly and allowed to stay at that temperature for the specified cure time. To properly cure the HotCoat powders and achieve full chemical, heat, and chip resistance, along with the smoothest possible finish follow the steps below.
Note: Most powders inherently have a slight orange peel (the surface condition and preparation will affect smoothness). Refer to the troubleshooting section below for more information.
- Always preheat the oven to 450°F (350°F for clear).
- All ovens vary; this may take 5-10 minutes to achieve 450°F. Carefully place the coated piece into the 450°F oven and close the door. Check the piece every 5 minutes until the entire piece has flowed out or glossed over. Some edges or thinner cast sections of the piece may flow out or gloss over early, but wait until the entire piece has flowed out.
- Next, lower temperature to 400°F (350°F for clears)
- Always read powder instructions for specific cure temperatures. Allow the piece to cure with the oven on for 20 minutes.
- Remove the part from the oven Remove the part or turn the oven off, crack the door open and allow the piece to slowly cool. Once cool, the piece can be second coated, or the tape, plugs, and other masking material can be removed, and the part returned to service.
Note:Larger and/or heavy cast pieces may take 10-30 minutes to flow out, this is normal. Simply continue to check the piece until complete flow has been achieved, then set your temperature and timer as described above for curing.
TECH TIP: Use clean disposable gloves during all gun cleaning operations. It is also important to unplug the gun first and keep your dust mask on while cleaning the gun.
When you are finished using one color you must clean the gun before using another. Return any unused powder in the cup to the original container. Sweep up any clean loose powder for reuse.
To clean the gun, unplug it so no voltage is in the unit. Discharge the gun, by touching the emitter to the ground clip. Disconnect the air supply. Now the gun is safe to handle.
Using 30 psi or less of compressed air, clean the discharge and pick up tubes, cup, static tubes, and deflector thoroughly. With your gloves on, gently twist off the deflector and remove the three static tubes.
The gun and components are to be cleaned with compressed air only, do not use solvents when cleaning your powder coating system. With your blow gun, thoroughly clean the inside and outside of all the static tubes and deflector. Direct air into the nozzle and the pick up tube to make sure no powder remains.
WARNING: Powder dust in heavy concentrations is potentially flammable! Due to the possible explosion risk, never use an electric vacuum, ShopVac or wet/dry vac to clean up powder! Always sweep up powder.
APPLYING A SECOND COAT
- Typically, one coat of powder is all that is needed. However, some finishes such as Argent Silver Base (#10102), Reflective Chrome (#10285), Chrome Smoke (#10543) and Gray Metallic (#10341) need to be top-coated with a clear or translucent finish to protect the metallic coatings from oxidation and dulling over time.
- Once the first cure is complete, allow the part to cool without touching the surface. Once cool, support it as you did for the first coat, in your spray booth or work area. ,br />
- Load the gun with the clear powder about 1/3rd full (about an 1.5” of powder).
- Attach the ground clip directly to a bare metal area on your part. You can do this by threading in an old bolt into an existing hole, or simply scraping the powder from an inconspicuous area, and attaching the clip.
- Apply the second coat in the same manner as the first. A good cloud of powder is critical in getting a good coating. If you have difficulty applying the 2nd coat, see troubleshooting section.
- After the part is properly coated, remove the ground clip. If you have a bare spot where the ground clip was connected, you can now apply powder with the gun to cover that spot.
- Cure this second coat in the oven, in the same manner as the first coat, but limiting the temperature to just 350°F.
PROBLEM: Pitted Finish
- - Make sure the gun is thoroughly cleaned before changing to another powder.
- - Make sure part is completely cleaned of all contaminants (see page 7).
- - After cooling, wet sand the areas with 400 grit to level pits. A second coat of powder can then be applied to the entire part.
PROBLEM: Coating Porous Materials In some cases, contaminants in porous materials will cause pits in the powder. Porous cast iron, die cast, cast aluminum, and magnesium parts trap contaminants that, when heated, will outgas and cause porosity problems as the powder is cured. To avoid this, follow these Preheating instructions: For large or heavy parts, and to prevent pitting from occurring, preheat the part to 450°F for 30-60 minutes. The time that a part needs to be preheated varies with size. Once the part has cooled, use PRE Painting Prep or acetone to remove the newly exposed contaminants. Wipe the part repeatedly until no further contaminants come off on a clean white rag. Let the part cool to room temperature before applying the powder. NOTE: Die-cast metal and solders vary widely in formulation, many of which can be difficult to powder coat and, in some cases may even melt at 400° F.
PROBLEM: Orange Peel “Orange Peel” is when the coated surface resembles the surface texture of an orange. A certain amount of orange peel is unavoidable especially with polyester based powders. An orange peel condition can often be removed by sanding the part with 400 grit sand paper (wet or dry) and compounding as you would conventional automotive finishes. If you want to buff by hand, use AutoSol Polish (#13170) . The main cause of orange peel is insufficient coating, over-baking, or excessive powder build up. You will know if powder build up occurs because the powder will start to stand on its end like hair. If this happens, stop applying powder and with light air pressure blow off some of the powder. If powder does not apply evenly due to moisture build up, replace moisture trap on gun and use fresh powder. Cured powder can be finished in the same manner as liquid paint.
PROBLEM: Poor Spray Pattern If the gun does not spray, the air pressure could be too low. Moisture could be clogging the Disposable Filter (#34066). Replace if necessary. The level of powder in the cup should be at least one inch deep from the bottom of the cup to flow efficiently through the gun. The deflector should be about 3/16” from the end of emitter.
PROBLEM: No Coverage or Poor Coverage in Recessed Areas Hold the gun so that the side or peripheral discharge of powder goes into crevices, recesses, and sharp angles. In extreme cases, gun can be used without a deflector and static tubes. Exercise care to maintain at least 3” from part being coated to avoid a spark.
PROBLEM: Poor Coverage When Applying 2nd Coat (Hot Application) Powders can be applied to hot surfaces. To use this technique, pre-heat the part to cure temp. This may take 10-40 minutes depending on size. After pre-heating, remove part from oven and immediately apply powder. You will notice that powder will flow immediately upon contact. Exercise care to avoid drips and runs. Place coated part back into pre-heated oven set at cure temp for an additional 20 minutes to complete the cure.
REMOVING CURED POWDER
The coating can be removed using DeKote Paint and Powder Remover. Remember powder coatings are more solvent resistant than other coatings and may require more time than paint to remove. To speed results, cover the part with a heavy coating of remover and cover the remover with a plastic bag to prevent evaporation. Media blacting is also a quick way to remove cured powder.
AVAILABLE HOTCOAT COLORS
There are nearly 100 colors available from Eastwood, plus you can use standard powders from anyone. Just click to start shopping: Eastwood Powders