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Mass Finishing with Black Paint

You won't find our 'painting' in any art gallery, or on the wall of a collector. But you will find it in many office environments throughout North America, as well as in the interior of a number of vehicles on the road today. At Plastico Industries in Cambridge, Ontario, we're painters of a different kind. Our Aquence (A-coat) process is a dipping line, with large tanks and robotic cranes, designed to move racks of parts.

 

 

What is A-coat?

A-coat is a black wetting agent that relies on a reaction rinse to complete the process and bond the paint to the surface. That surface can only be an iron substrate. Anything else simply will not hold the paint. It is a 'rare' process by comparison to other coating options in the market, however, it is an ideal solution for the right part geometry. 

 

Plastico Industries is the only commercial 'A-coater' in Ontario. We built our line nearly a decade ago to answer specific demand in the automotive marketplace. Since then, we have grown that business, not only in automotive, but also in agriculture, heavy equipment, railings and fences, fitness equipment, and as you can see from the picture above, even office furnishings. Our line can literally paint thousands of parts per hour, depending of course on the geometry of the part. Some of the distinct advantages of A-coating your parts are...

  1. Aquence can be used to coat full assemblies. In the past, where Teflon or rubber bushings may have been a concern, a-coat cures at lower temperatures so it will not attack moving components
  2. Aquence coats everything it touches (iron only of course). This offers a big advantage when coating tubular products. Because we are working with a wetting agent, and not an electrostatic charge, our paint will coat the entire inside of a tube or channel, providing significant corrosion protection properties
  3. No Faraday Effect! In the coating world, The Faraday Effect, essentially it is an interaction between light and a magnetic field. In our world it refers to a result often found when coating with an electrostatic charge. The charge can pull paint away from an area, leaving bare spots or inconsistencies in the coating thickness. With A-coat, that doesn't happen as, when working with a clean iron substrate, our paint coats everything it touches, consistently.

 

Our Process

Our multi-stage coating line includes both an alkaline and acid wash, rinse tanks, and a choice of two black coatings. One, our 866 is a matte like finish, and the other, our 930, is more semi gloss. The next stage is our reaction rinse, which bonds the paint to the surface, and then into our curing oven.

 

 

A full cycle takes the better part of an hour, but in that hour we are moving through multiple racks, each rack with the capacity to hold hundreds of parts.

 

How Does it Look/Perform?

From an appearance standpoint, the finished part is quite similar to other coating options. While the aesthetics are clean and consistent, A-coat is considered to be more of a 'Class B' finish, more suited for interior parts that aren't as highly visible.

 

It is also a popular primer coat, often used as a base layer to our nylon powder coat or our plastisol dipping. Plastico Industries has also worked with a few local powder coaters who have used our Aquence as a primer.

 

Depending on which paint we are using, Aquence has been tested to withstand up to 700hrs of salt spray, which is equal to or even above some other coating options.

 

So Why A-coat?

More often than not, the need to A-coat is born out of necessity. While it does have a few limitations, it also has some very distinct advantages, which make it the perfect coating solution for many part geometries.

 

Why Plastico Industries?

Plastico makes sense on so many different levels. First off, we've been in the coatings business since well before the turn of the century. We've been in the finishing business since 1977.

 

We have a number of coating options. Aside from out large A-coat line, we also offer a variety of solutions in plastisol dipping and nylon spray and dipping. Our fully automated processes are developed by a well experienced team of Engineers and Operators, and our equipment carries the capacity to move millions of parts each week.

 

As if this weren't enough, located in our building is our parent company, Latem Industries, the market leader in mass finishing. In some cases, parts may require preparation before coating, and Latem provides that service. From shot blasting and parts washing to vibratory finishing to remove sharp edges, working with Plastico Industries (and Latem if need be), provides the benefit of a single source supplier.

 

 

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August 17, 2017
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