Metal is ubiquitous. It is in almost everything. From tools to home appliances to cars, we have come to expect metal everywhere we look. Have you ever wondered how that metal stays looking shiny and new year after year? If you’re a car lover, don’t you wish your wheels and rims would stay polished too? Well, you’re in luck, because we are going to learn all about it right now.
Powder Is Practical Magic
Getting metal to stay looking brand new over years of use and wear and tear is actually not that tricky of a feat. The process by which it occurs, though, is rather complicated, involving complex chemistry.
It’s known as powder coating. It is very much like paint in its purpose, but is far less likely to degrade over time.
According to the Powder Coating Institute, it is “based on polymer resin systems”. These systems include “curatives, pigments, leveling agents, flow modifiers”. Then the ingredients “are melt mixed, cooled, and ground into a uniform powder”.
The powder itself is then sprayed on some kind of metal element or piece. The spray component applies “an electrostatic charge to the powder particles”. The powder is “then attracted to the grounded part” of the metal. (In simple terms: it sticks.)
This all sounds complicated; in part, that’s because it is. Luckily, you do not have to understand it all to use it. In this way, it is akin to many scientific processes we use every day. In fact, it is actually quite simple to operate.
Again, like painting, you can use the powder on almost any metal surface you need coated. While paint is, in typical use, applied using a brush, the coating from powder goes on in a spray form.
The benefits of using powder coating over liquid paints are pretty fantastic. It is able to protect everything from manufacturing machinery to kitchen appliances. The finish lasts much longer than paint and withstands severe weather environments.
According to Powder Coating Plus, which provides Los Angeles powder coating services, it is cost-effective too. Also, it is good for the environment and can be smooth, textured, or matte in finish quality. It’s beginning to look like this is the panacea for secure, long-lasting paint jobs!
Indeed, all this does sound like a great solution to coating, as well as an alternative to paint, if that is what you need. But, as mentioned at the top, you might also want to use it on your car.
So, let’s turn to that now. We will see if powder coating functions as well on wheels and rims as it seems to work on everything else!
Spray It, Don’t Paint It
The short answer is yes, you can rest assured that powder coating the wheels and rims on your car is safe and effective.
But don’t take my word for it. The Powder Coating Factory mentions five reasons to powder coat instead of painting: toughness, looks, value, color, speed, and price. Powder coating car parts sounds the same as applying it to anything else, huh?
Without spending too much time on each, let’s break each one down.
Powder Coating Factory says that powder coating wheels lasts longer and looks better. It’s as simple as that. The coating is durable and “resistant to dings caused by rocks” or anything else.
They caution against using paint, because it may peel away much quicker, nd it can make your car look pretty rough in the process.
Second, contrary to popular belief, you do not have to coat your rims black. Powder Coating Factory has every color in the rainbow, and a few more besides. In fact, they have 210 colors. That’s pretty remarkable.
If you are looking for price efficiency, powder also has the market beat. As Powder Coating Factory puts it, “Buyers notice wheels.” If all you do is throw on a set of standard rims and do nothing to them (or even paint them), you aren’t adding value.
And last, we all know the one basic need: the need for speed. Powder coating is great in this respect as well. Not in how fast your car travels, but in the very short amount of time it will take to have your wheels powder coated.
Taking It a Step Further
If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, there are plenty of resources available to help you get this job done. From videos to websites to books, there is enough to make you an expert overnight. Okay, not that fast, but, with effort, you will get there.
For one, check out YouTube. Eastwood Company has “The Ultimate Beginners Guide to Powder Coating“. They’ll let you know exactly what to get and how to use it in an effective and efficient manner.
To keep a physical guidebook by your side, grab this handy text from Amazon. It’s a “How-to Guide for Automotive, Motorcycle, Bicycle and Other Parts”. It is a fantastic resource for anyone looking to try powder coating for themselves.