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Best Ways to Remove Powder Coating From Aluminum

Posted on: December 13th, 2017 by byersbushblog

Every so often you may decide to strip the powder coating from your aluminum products. This is not an easy process to do and will require substantial time. It would help of course if you know what types of processes are possible to remove powder coating from aluminum. So let’s take a look at some possibilities.

4 Best Ways to Remove Powder Coating

Chemical Strippers

This is a common option and relies on a variety of chemical strippers that have been formulated specifically for the removal of powder coat from surfaces. You need to find the right chemical stripper for the type and size of job that you will undergo. If you will work on small parts only, then you can use chemical strippers that can be applied with a brush, otherwise you may need a dip tank for bigger parts.

chemical strippers

Chemical strippers are capable of completely removing the powder coat resulting in a uniform surface. Compared to other stripping procedures, this is comparatively better and can be used ideally for both small and large products. The strippers are also conveniently cheap to buy.

Of course, you have to be aware that it is always dangerous to work with chemicals. There are also strict requirements on its proper disposal. Depending on the reason why you want to strip the aluminum, it is important to know that chemical strippers will not leave a profile for the new coat to be applied. You may also need different equipment depending on the type of project you are working on.

Thermal

Another option to remove the powder coat from aluminum is to use thermal or heat. The process normally involves baking off, burning off, or using a fluidized bed system. All of these will rely on heat and the only difference is the level of temperature that each will apply. The amount of heat will also dictate the speed at which the powder coat will be stripped.

thermal

For bake off systems, the temperature is typically from 640 to 750 degrees and takes around 3 to 6 hours on the average. For burn off systems, the temperature can be anywhere from 1000 to 1200 degrees and can strip the coat in a few minutes. This is commonly used for production facility environments to take advantage of the speed of stripping.

The fluidized bed operates at a temperature of 800 degrees and makes use of heated abrasive media to remove the powder coat. Thermal solutions are fast, convenient, efficient, and quite friendly to the environment. However, the cost of equipment is high and you will need ample supply of electricity or gas to generate high temperature levels.

Abrasive Blasting

If you want to remove powder coating, you can also rely on abrasive blasting. This means using abrasive media that is propelled at high speeds to strip away the coating on the surface. The technique would depend primarily on the size of the product you want to strip.

abrassive-blasting

Normally, steel grit or aluminum oxide would be used as media. There are of course other options, but the selection process would depend on the thickness of the coating layer. Glass beads have so far yielded the best results. This stripping process is normally ideal when dealing with small parts. If you are planning to coat the material again, this is commonly preferred because it leaves a profile on the surface.

The method though is not as fast compared to chemical stripping and thermal methods. It is also not suitable in a production setting. The cost is another consideration and you need to have substantial experience in sandblasting to efficiently control the level of compressed air.

Laser

The last option you can consider is laser stripping. This is rather costly since investing in a laser is not really that cheap. However, it does allow you to remove powder coats from even the smallest parts. The laser also does not change the substrate so it is a completely safe option for you to use. The surface of the product will not be altered as well. The surface will not retain any profile though.

laser

These are the options that are available to you when you want to strip the finish on a product. If you want to know how to remove powder coating from aluminum effectively, the best way is to call on Byers Bush Powder Coating. Experts always do the best job, so call them today.

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