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What is Powder Coating — by Doug Laird (DoItCave.com)

Powder coating is a type of "paint" coating that is applied electro statically as a free-flowing, dry powder. The main difference between a conventional liquid paint and a powder coating is that the powder coating does not require a solvent to keep the binder and filler parts in a liquid suspension form.

After the coating is applied, it is then cured under heat to allow it to flow and form a "skin". The powder may be a thermoplastic or a thermoset polymer. It is usually used to create a hard finish that is tougher than conventional paint. It holds up to harsh exterior weather and chemicals such as organic solvents (acetone, thinners, etc.).

Powder coating is mainly used for coating of metals, such as aluminum extrusions, and automobile and bicycle parts.

I select this protective coating on many projects, but it can be expensive to pay someone for this process. Last year I built a 3' wide by 2' deep by 5' tall powder coat oven to have this "tool" available to me.

Recently, I was approached by a neighbor to build a double gate entry to his driveway. He expressed his desire to have copper panels on these gates to attain a patina color. Since the cost of copper is four times that of sheet metal, I searched the Internet to see if others had achieved this "patina look" using powder coat. I did not find anyone attempting this process. In fact, I found some say this "patina look," can not be accomplished this way. I decided to experiment.

I downloaded photos showing various copper patina colors. I then selected appropriate powder coat colors and used some non-conventional techniques to apply the powders such as water spray, sponging, and wiping. Since pictures can be worth a thousand words, I video taped the process and posted it on my web page at

www.doitcave.com and look for my posted videos.

or visit YouTube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1iO-ABklO0

My You Tube channel: dougout92

You may e-mail any comments or questions you have regarding this process. My "Doitcave" is a place dedicated to giving you ideas in making things in wood, metal and/or other mediums. I encourage you to improve on my ideas and go... "Do it."

Doug Laird


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