Laser cutting has been a go-to fabrication method for metalworkers since the early 1960s. This thermal technique enables automakers, aerospace professionals and more to make precise cuts along metals to produce exterior attachments. Laser cutting technology makes it possible to create components in specific shapes and sizes by melting surfaces in a similar manner as welding.
Anyone that has worked with heat-sensitive fabrication equipment knows that these procedures can leave layers of oxide scale behind. A thin layer of laser oxide scale is enough to interfere with powder coating processes, so it is crucial to remove buildups before applying the powder coat.
What Is Laser Oxide Scale?
Laser oxide scale is a term used to describe films that form on metal surfaces after laser cutting. As an equipment operator makes a cut, inner layers of metals are exposed to extreme temperatures and oxygen. This reaction can create quality control issues because oxidation buildups make it difficult for finishing coats to stick in the long term.
Companies that sell metal parts, equipment, machinery or consumer products want to eliminate traces of laser oxide scale, as these films appear blue or silver across edges. Rather than having powder coats that hold their texture and color, oxide scales cause paints and finishes to flake, chip and lift when bumped, even mildly.
Laser Oxide Scale and Paint Adhesion
Anything that sits between a metal surface and an exterior coat will interrupt paint adhesion. Automotive parts, industrial equipment and outdoor furniture are susceptible to laser oxide scale, due to the use of laser cutting in production. Before paint and powders can stick to a metal surface, professionals must remove laser oxide scale through mechanical or acid pickling means.
Removal of Oxide Scale
The removal of laser oxide scale helps metal fabricators smooth edges for a final installation. Blasting equipment and grinding wheels are popular methods for eliminating small buildups after cutting. These techniques demand incredible attention to detail, as it can be challenging to get rid of oxide scale trapped in hard-to-reach places.
Partner With Keystone Koating for Powder Coating Services in Central Pennsylvania
Keystone Koating has 30 years of industry experience in powder coating services for original products. We serve numerous industries, and our 8-stage pretreatment process allows us to achieve an exceptional level of adhesion. Rely on our experienced team to clean metal materials and coat surfaces for an appearance that meets your expectations for texture and color.
Interested in our powder coat offerings? Get the finish that lasts. Request a quote today.