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Motion Control Engineering & Manufacturing Resources

Capability Spotlight: Weber Knapp Industrial Powder Coating Services

Capability Spotlight: Weber Knapp Industrial Powder Coating Services

Posted by Weber Knapp on Jan 26, 2024 3:09:32 PM

industrial powder coating serivces

Editor's Note: This piece is an installment of an occasional series that looks at metalworking and fabrication services offered by Weber Knapp.

The right metal finish can make all the difference in the lifespan and functionality of a product.

Just ask those who made the wrong finish choice.

While the metal finishes you choose largely depend on the application and what's expected during a useful life, powder coating is one option that stands apart from others.

Bringing enhanced protection to what it covers and even improving functionality in certain cases, using industrial powder coating services for your products represents an investment in longevity.

What is Powder Coating & How is it Applied?

Consider the components of a gantry crane at a busy seaport. 

A mammoth machine, it's built to quite literally do the heavy lifting of moving cargo on and off of large freighters. As it works -- and even during downtime -- the crane is constantly exposed to water, salt, sunlight, and the occasional impact. During useful life, these elements can run roughshod on the crane and its components, compromising their integrity if they're not protected.

Enter powder coating.

Inspect any gantry crane, and you'll be hard-pressed to find one that doesn't have at least a few of its metal parts with a powder coat finish. 

The same goes for equipment and machinery used in virtually any industrial or heavy-duty application – powder coating has a place almost everywhere.

What is powder coating?

A dry finishing process, powder coating is increasingly recognized for its advantages in creating a durable, high-quality finish. It's sometimes referred to as electrostatic powder painting

In a basic sense, powder coating is essentially baking a dry powder onto a piece.

Unlike traditional liquid paint (the go-to of exterior finishes for many applications), powder coating doesn't require a solvent to keep the binder and filler parts in a liquid suspension form. Let's look at the powder coating process step-by-step:

  1. Preparation: The first step in the powder coating process is properly preparing the item that will be coated. This typically involves cleaning the surface to remove any oil, dirt, rust, or old paint that could interfere with the adhesion of the powder coating. This is often done through chemical pre-treatments or sandblasting.
  2. Application of Powder: Polymer resins, curatives, pigments, and leveling agents are mixed and ground into a fine powder and applied using a spray gun. The powder is electrostatically charged as it leaves the gun, which causes it to stick to the grounded item being coated. This process ensures a uniform application.
  3. Curing: After the powder is applied, the item is placed in a curing oven. The heat causes the powder to melt, creating a smooth, continuous film. The heat also triggers a chemical reaction, causing the melted powder to harden into a durable, resistant finish.
  4. Cooling: After curing, the item is allowed to cool. During this stage, the coating hardens further, becoming more resistant to damage.

Powder coats aren’t one size fits all — there are several different options. The two most popular types are epoxy and polyester. 

Epoxy powder coats are known for their superior chemical and corrosion resistance, making them ideal for indoor use where durability is a priority. Polyester powder coats, on the other hand, are favored for outdoor applications due to their excellent UV resistance and overall weatherability. Beyond these, there are specialized powder coats like polyurethane, acrylic, and fluoropolymer, each offering unique properties such as enhanced gloss, smoothness, or resistance to specific environmental factors.

Type of Powder Coat

Key Features

Ideal Use


Superior chemical and corrosion resistance

Indoor applications


Excellent UV resistance, good for outdoor use

Outdoor applications


Enhanced durability and gloss

Versatile indoor/outdoor


Smooth finish, good color retention

Aesthetic applications


Outstanding weatherability, long-lasting finish

Extreme outdoor conditions

Industrial Powder Coating at Weber Knapp

Powder coating is one of several metalworking and fabrication services we offer. It's also a finish we use regularly on what rolls off our manufacturing lines. 

As we've found, powder coating is one of the most effective finishes for metal. It's durable and offers a wide range of benefits (we'll talk about those later) that prolong and improve the useful life of our products. In fact, about 90% of what we manufacture leaves our facilities with a fresh powder coat.

Beyond protection and the other benefits it provides, powder coating also gives a boost to product functionality in some cases.


Using a textured powder, powder coating can enhance aesthetics and hide fingerprints. We also use a high gloss powder coat on components that require a smooth finish for other parts to slide against, like our keyboard arm tracks.


Why Choose Powder Coating?

When it comes to metal finishing techniques, there are plenty of options, each with their own pros and cons:

  • Painting
  • Electroplating
  • Steel Galvanizing
  • E-coating

And while each finish type has its place and ideal applications, powder coating brings together many of the best features of other methods. 

You've probably noticed the same word coming up a couple of times to describe powder coating: durable.

Absolutely, powder coating creates a surface that can withstand the rigors of use and provide an extra layer of protection -- an important consideration for exposed components or products used in industrial applications.

But durability is only part of powder coating's story in what it brings to the table as a metal finish -- and it's an element we'll lead with in looking at what powder coating can do for your products:

  • Durability: Think of powder coating as a protective armor. It can take a hit and ensures performance and appearance, safeguarding against scratches, chips, fading, and impacts. It can also offer protection from environmental factors, such as salt and UV rays.
  • Corrosion Resistance: Hand-in-hand with our last point, powder coating also offers superior protection from corrosion and rusting. The curing process creates a barrier that prevents moisture and corrosive materials from reaching the metal surface it’s covering.
  • Aesthetic Variety & Customizability: Powder coating offers diverse and adaptable finish options. It's not just about a wide color palette -- powder coat finishes also have a number of textures you can choose from as well. Options range from matte to gloss and wrinkled to smooth.
  • Cost: Think of it as an investment. While the upfront cost might be a bit more than say, traditional painting, this finish is made to last. Using powder coating means you're not constantly revisiting repairs and touch-ups. Long-term, it's a wallet-friendly choice.
  • Environmental Impact: Powder coating is an environmentally friendly option. Without harmful solvents present in other metal finishing methods, powder coating reduces the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Industrial Powder Coating Services for Your Order

Looking to bring the benefits of powder coating to your products or project? We can absolutely help.

Here's what we'll need to know:

  • What's your deadline? Was it yesterday, or is your schedule a bit more flexible?
  • What are we powder coating? If you can provide a finished piece, all the better -- seeing exactly what we'll be working with goes a long way.
  • How (physically) big is the piece we'll be coating? This one's important. While powder coating is a great option for any metal component, bigger pieces require a bit more work on our end to accommodate. Our powder coating equipment can handle pieces 16” wide, 50” tall, and 20” deep. If your pieces are outside that range, we can still help -- get in touch with us. 
  • How large is your order? Are we looking at one run of a few hundred pieces or will it be a few thousand?
  • What material (metal) will we be coating? In other words, what's your piece made of?
  • What are the piece's critical areas for coating? Does the entire piece need a powder coat or are there certain faces that can go without?
  • What kind of powder coating are you looking for? Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all option. 

Ready to Get Started on Your Powder Coating Project?

Get in touch with us today!

Contact Us

Topics: Finishing, Aesthetics, Services