A powder coating is basically possible for all electrically conductive materials. In the automotive sector this mainly concerns vehicle frames, rims and other metal parts. In addition to the automotive industry, the process of powder coating is mainly used in the field of household appliances, furniture coating and facade finishing. Powder coating over rubber part of wheel is not much beneficial.
The work steps for applying powder coating
Powder coatings have only been used as automotive coatings since the 1990s. If a powder coating is to be applied to a rim, the surface to be treated must first be freed from the old paint, then roughened and finally powder-coated.
The paint stripping is carried out in a chemical immersion bath. To roughen the rims, they are then sand or glass bead blasted. This also favors the chemical and metallic purity of the surface.
The powder coating itself is done by means of a spray gun, at the top of the paint. Particles are charged either by an electrode or by friction. In the course of the counter charge of the sprayed surface, the particles adhere to the rim. In general, this procedure includes three coating operations (primer, color coat, clear coat).
After each pass, the rims must then be heated to 200 ° C for 45 minutes. The burn-in causes the polyester resin particles to form a solid layer.
Advantages and disadvantages of powder-coated rims
Many Alus are already powder-coated ex works. Due to the high dirt repellency, water and a light rim cleaner are usually sufficient to remove dust and grease from the powder coated rims. Due to its thickness (150 to 200μm) and its elasticity, the powder coating is extremely impact-resistant and scratch-resistant. The smooth texture of the surface also ensures a very uniform look.
However, the disadvantage is the slightly higher price (compared to the order of a conventional wet paint). For example, you usually pay from 30 to 60 euros per rim for powder coating. In addition, it can come in aluminum rims, which were powder-coated, due to the high film thickness and the degree of gloss to form a kind of “orange peel”.
Cover damage with powder coating?
If the rims show signs of damage (such as notches or scratches), they can be repaired with a putty knife before powder coating. However, the damaged areas must not be too deep, since the rim otherwise loses its operating license for road traffic. This can lead to the termination of your insurance cover in case of emergency! Therefore, damage must always be assessed by an expert. If the rim is no longer roadworthy, must be a new model ago.
Powder-coated rims have mostly the optical benefits. Powder coatings give a very noble look on surface. In addition, virtually all RAL colors can be used (both matt and high gloss). In addition, rims that are powder-coated, relatively easy to clean. Because on the very smooth and even surface dirt and grease can neither adhere well nor penetrate.