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Powder Coating Aluminum Racing Rims

Q. Hello, I own a small coating shop in Milwaukee, WI and wanted to know if there are any dangers in powder coating aluminum rims for race cars. Due to the stress these rims have to endure, will the heating process weaken the aluminum or make it brittle? What is the cut-off temperature for this? I know that many coaters currently coat aluminum rims however I want to make sure that it is safe.

Chad Imme
powder coating - Milwaukee, Wisconsin

A. The rims will only be in the oven for about 20 to 30 minutes at 375 degrees for the curing. The temperature is high enough to change the properties of the alloy, but you need more time in the oven to do so. In order to prevent me being the butt-end of a lawsuit, that's all I have to say on the subject. CYA on this one.

Sheldon Taylor
Sheldon Taylor
supply chain electronics
Wake Forest, North Carolina


A. Hello, in regards to powder coating alloy wheel rims, powder coat in Australia has a cure temperature of 180 degrees, time in oven is set for 15 mins to achieve full cure, alloy wheels are safely done without any damage due to heat of oven at above temperature, can test full cure by impact to powder coat to see if chipping, if not is cured, best results is to finely abrasive blast rim to improve adhesion, keep in mind profile depth should not exceed 30 micros profile depth to avoid air entrapment, application of powder should be finely applied and avoid high film build ups, with a little practice you should obtain a 2 pac like finish, we use a Nordson sure coat system with a small cup mounted, amount of powder used is 1 to 1-1/2 cups per rim, cleaning use a tack cloth [affil links] to clean surface of rim prior to coating and use a fine sieve to remove fine lumps present in powder. A word of advice do not try to coat magnesium rims the high temperature of oven can ignite and can't be extinguished so be warned.

Craig Hughes
- Melbourne, Vic, Australia

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