Plastics painting has become an incredibly competitive market space, where small batch painting, and just in time delivery are paramount to a company’s ongoing success. The term “innovate or evaporate” is commonly used across the industry, where manufacturers can’t afford to waste paint through poor transfer efficiency. Using electrostatics, rotary atomisers (or bells are they are more commonly known) can provide extremely high levels of transfer efficiency to the part (in many cases, above 90%). The result in a significant amount of waste reduction at the point source of origin.
Robotic solutions can be designed for solvent borne, waterborne, 2-component and 3-component applications, depending on the nature of the material being dispensed. Plastics are typically painted with a 2-component paint (a mix of resin and hardener) because of the low oven cure temperatures required. These 2-component paints often have an isocyanate component that may be carcinogenic when atomized, providing occupational health and safety concerns for manual operators. A robotic solution keeps operators away from the atomized isocyanates. In parallel, with the correct path development, the application can have a consistent film thickness, minimizing the excess paint required to meet specifications.