Powder coating at home

[j_tenkely] wanted to do his own powder coat painting at home so he built everything he needed, including a coating booth and baking oven. The oven is double walled and built around a frame of steel building studs. Electric oven elements are controlled by a digital control panel and thermostat.

A spray booth is fashioned from a large storage bin. The powder coat gun used in this setup is a commercial project. But don’t fret, this is something you can build rather than buy.

[Thanks goat]

Comments

  1. Abbott says:

    Wow… Much easier than I would have imagined something like this to be. I love the oven design – [fairly] cheap and effective. I’ll have to keep this project in mind for future builds…

  2. Impressive work. I’d have been reticent to take this on due to the combination of high heat and powder coating materials, but clearly he knows what he’s doing and the result appears to be high quality.

  3. DanS says:

    You don’t need an oven to do powder. I use a couple of directional propane heaters. It’s not speedy, but I managed to cook an entire car frame in about 4 hours by moving them around.

  4. xrazorwirex says:

    Getting nit-picky on the physics here: wouldn’t un-even baking like what you’re doing to the car frame cause inconsistencies with the way the coating is sealed, kind of like when you weld a pipe but stop a few times to go around and it’s not anywhere near as strong as if you never ‘broke fusion’ and did everything consistently and in one pass?

    I ask because I’m totally not going to get around to building / funding an oven, but I would love to be able to powder coat things. If I can just blast the coating with heat and not worry about ovens and stuff then that would be awesome.

  5. Spork says:

    @DanS
    I’ve used a heat gun for smaller parts, but when you’re doing wheels, something intricate, or if you’re doing large quantities of coating, there is nothing better than an oven.

    I, for one, bought an old electric oven from craigslist and it does very well for most parts. Still have problems when you try to do a car frame though.

  6. DanS says:

    I’ve never had any problems. I’ve never had anything crack or peel. Even with all the abuse my car takes. It may or may not be as good as an over, but the price is right.

    I don’t stop and let it cool when I move the heaters. I move them slowly around. To use your analogy: just like how you have to move a welder around to weld an entire seam. (does that make sense?)

    My work looks just as good as anything I’ve had professionally done. But I do use a commercial gun and I was taught by a professional.

  7. Spork says:

    I haven’t seen a problem with uneven heat when powder coating and using the heat gun either.

    Though I would have to say that when welding, if you’re doing full pen welds or using an Exx10 or Exx11 rod, there is no problem with stop and go in the welds.

  8. Zuni says:

    Very Nice…

  9. Terry says:

    I’ve never built anything with metal studs or sheetmetal but I’m tempted to give this a try. It would be really cool if the builder make a webpage detailing some of the build notes.

    I wonder how hot the oven gets on the outside or if it needed any insulation inside the metal walls.

  10. blue carbuncle says:

    MMMM cocaine donuts or a bike made out of cocaine at least.

  11. Bob says:

    I like the use of metal studs for the frame. I had that exact same idea for my oven. I’m just using a old kitchen oven right now, but I planned on making it bigger using this same method. Nice. I wonder how well using a propane heater to heat the inside of a metal box would work as an ‘oven’

    Here is another home built design using similar materials. http://www.machinebuilders.net/plans/gallery%2FBig%20Kids%2FPowerCoat%20Oven1.pdf
    It’s where I first got my idea at.

  12. Am Bron says:

    Nice project. I have been powder coating for industry for many years, and have installed multi-mega$ systems. The preparation of the surface to be coated is very important. And the cure (melt, flow and cross-linking) of the powder polymer is next in importance. Under-cure as well as over-cure can give a coating that appears good, but will not give the properties (impact, scratch & corrosion resistance) that you need. Flame curing auto parts is not, based on my experience, neither a controllable (time & temperature) nor a particularly safe practice. But hey, if it works for you, go for it. Kinda like making dope in the bathtub. You’ll get the buzz – so what if it kills ya.

  13. Dennis Gentry says:

    Aside about welding seams: In most welds, you actually don’t want to make one giant continuous seam. Well you might *want* to, but you don’t, because the workpieces warp and distort less when you do the weld in short segments, allowing some time for the heat to dissipate between welding sessions.

    When you do the weld right, it is still as strong as the workpiece.

  14. Blaschkinator says:

    That oven is sick! I am looking to make one pretty much exactly that size. Thanks for the inspiration!

  15. Bruce says:

    This oven should maintain a constant level of heat so it should work fine. Many home applicators use ovens where the heat fluctuates widely so the powder doesn’t bond properly.

  16. Marie says:

    It’s weird how many individuals still don’t know about this! Thank goodness for spreading the word on this!

  17. Austin says:

    Hey I was wondering for the man that used the directional propane heater how many btu’s where they rated for?

  18. Raph says:

    I find it pretty interesting that most home powder coating setups seem to be centered around refinishing bike frames. Same reason I’m looking to do this.

  19. Sean says:

    Nice oven build, I’m trying to get ideas for my future oven build. For those commenting that are interested in learning how to powder coat at home, check out this guide:

    • Troy says:

      And what guide might you be talking about??? You end with “check out this guide: “with this : at the end which makes it look like you were posting something yourself but nothing there. Are you just referring to “powder coating at home” video that is already here?

  20. Daniel says:

    When looking at this design… The heat elements are on the bottom. Would your heat be uneven?
    So in this case the back of the bike frame is very close to the heating element. I would think you would want any part that you are coating to be in the middle of the oven to keep an even level heat all around your part.?.? Is this an invalid thought?

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