The Challenge: A large diesel manufacturer approached DECC with a significant challenge: they needed the inside of a valve in their over-the-road engine powder-coated to protect from corrosion as a result of new EPA requirements. As it was, powder-coating aluminum castings was their best option to deal with the corrosive byproduct caused by these new regulations. Not to be deterred, DECC jumped at the opportunity to showcase their problem solving capabilities.
The Solution: After various tests, DECC approached the customer with an alternative wet coat solution that could be applied to aluminum. DECC ran parallel studies with both the wet coat and powder coat to demonstrate its effectiveness. DECC’s ingenuity and vast knowledge of coatings and their applications paid off. The diesel manufacturer, which had already specified the powder, changed to DECC’s alternative solution.
The Result: As a result, the customer saved a significant amount of money over the course of the program for various reasons. The powder coat option could not be reworked while the wet coat solution could, saving money as a result of not having to scrap parts. In turn, the powder coat also made it difficult to meet the tight quality standards necessary as the coating migrated while processing, which increased rejects. However, the wet coat was easier to process and meet the demanding quality standards, ultimately lowering scrap costs even more from where they would have been. The wet coat solution allowed for the use of lighter and less exotic metals, such as casted aluminum instead of stainless steel, lowering their material and machining costs. The use of lighter metals also contributed to a longer life for the engine components. DECC and their customer worked together to install a new, state of the art robotic application line for the new process, which was implemented under budget, as well.