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Frequently Asked Questions
Is ceramic coating the same as powder coating?
- No! This process is ceramic based, Nano-technology coating and is designed for thermal management, friction management, and/or chemical resistance. Although it can be decorative, it is primarily a functional coating designed to increase performance and durability of the part..
What about corrosion resistance?
- Our coatings have been rigorously tested up to 5, 000 hours of five percent salt spray.
What parts should be treated?
- Any part subject to friction, loss of lubricating film, heat damage, corrosion or abrasion. In addition, enhanced appearance is possible for parts such as headers, intakes, valve covers, brackets, and brake and suspension pieces.
How much power will I gain?
- This will depend upon many factors that will vary from application to application. Testing has shown significant power increases on a dyno. In addition, certain changes can be made in such areas as tolerances, timing, jetting and the lubricants used, which will increase torque and horsepower and are only possible through the use of coatings. Horsepower, torque, and volumetric efficiency gains of up to 10 percent have been measured in independent dyno testing without any other modification.
How long will the coatings last?
- Depending on the coating, part life increases from two to ten times what is normally seen. The dry-film lubricants may burnish until they are no longer visible; however, the active materials are bonded into the pores of the part and continue to provide protection. The thermal-corrosion barrier coatings may provide corrosion protection for ten years or longer.
Will I see a temperature change?
- Parts will run cooler. Engine oil and water temperatures have shown a reduction. On headers, the radiated heat will be substantially reduced, leading to lower underhood temperatures and less heat absorption by nearby parts and surfaces. The higher the temperature, the greater the percent heat reduction. Independent lab tests have shown up to a 800F direct contact reduction in temps from an EGT of 1590F.
Do you have Polished Aluminum coatings?
- Polished Aluminum coatings (Chromex™, Cermakrome™, etc.) are also known as Bright Ceramic or Metallic Ceramic coatings. We have discontinued the use of these coatings as they can only withstand a 1200F base metal temperature. We have seen to many parts showing signs of exceeding the temp rating of the coating. this is due to today's vehicles running very lean due to computer controls and ethanol in the pump gas. this raises the EGT's above the 1200F base temp on way too many vehicles and causing damage to the coating.
What kind of temperature can your coatings withstand?
- Depending on the coating type and purpose, our coatings can withstand temps of 500F, 800F, 1100F, 1800F, 2000F, and even up to 2500F. Our high heat thermal barrier coatings that we use on exhaust systems start at the 1800F rating.
I’ve seen headers at car shows that look like the coating is dull and gray-looking near the top of the header. Why is that, and can your coatings do that?
- The reason for this is that all metallic ceramic coatings that have polished aluminum to chrome finish have aluminum in the coating for the chrome look. Aluminum and it's alloys start to melt at 1200 degrees Fahrenheit. At 1200 degrees, the aluminum in the coating turns to a dull gray color. As EGT temps increase further, we have seen the coatings start to "bubble" and leave "pock marks" when cooled as well as going to delamination of the coating from the base metal in extreme cases. We no longer use this type of coating due to the high EGT's that result from today's vehicles using ethanol in pump gas.
Will the coating hide surface imperfections like scratches, grinding marks, rough casting, weld splatter, rust pitting or seal holes and cracks?
- No, the coating does not hide any imperfections in the substrate. The coating doesn't fill in holes or cracks in the substrate either. The coatings that are applied are very thin and vary from 0.0005" to 0.003" thick, depending on the coating type. Even though the coatings are extremely durable and effective, they will not fix surface imperfections. Imperfections will show through on the finished coated product as well as any engraving such as serial numbers. If you want a smooth finish, you must clean or smooth out these imperfections before you send your parts in for coating. Should we discover issues such as rust pinholes in the process of coating your parts, we will stop our process and let you know of the issue so that it can be repaired prior to continuing the coating process.
Does the coating require any maintenance?
- Ceramic coatings do not require any other maintenance other than occasional cleaning with soap and water.
What about clearances?
- The dry film lubricants will burnish as they run until they are no longer visible. They are applied at thicknesses ranging from .0005" to .0015". However, before assembly the coating may be burnished back to less than .0002" with gentle buffing using "Scotch-Brite, TM" or similar material. NO CHANGES need to be made in clearances due to the use of these coatings, though in many instances because of the reduced part temperature and increased lubrication tighter clearances may be run. Firearm coatings are applied at 0.005" to 0.002" and may require fitting after coating. If you are using our services of disassembly, reassembly, fitment, we take care of this for you. If you are performing this function, you are responsible for the refitting of parts.
What about engraving, machining, balancing?
- All engraving and machine work should be done first. Please ensure that any engraving is at least 5 mils deep so that it is still visible after coating. Some thin laser engraving will not withstand the material preparation process and will be obliterated.
What tuning changes will be necessary?
- The changes necessary will vary from engine to engine and depend on how many parts are coated. In general coating the combustion chamber surfaces will allow you to run less initial timing with no loss of power (usually a gain will occur). You may also be able to run significantly less fuel, due to the more efficient oxidation that occurs with the coated parts. There are cases where the opposite applies. Obviously no specific recommendations can be made as every engine/combination will be different
Can used headers and exhaust components be coated?
- Yes. Used parts need to be treated to remove rust and contamination. There will be some extra charges for this.
Can previously coated parts be recoated?
- Yes, most previously coated parts can be recoated. Some old coatings may need to be completely removed prior to applying the new coating. Certain old coatings (Chrome, Powder, galvanizing, flame spray, damaged polished aluminum ceramic, etc.) may require additional work to remove the old coating, which may result in an extra charges.
How do I send my parts/firearm in?
- You can drop off or pick up your job during normal business hours. If
you would like to come by after hours, please give us a call to set up an
appointment. You can also ship your job to us as well.
For non-firearms: Please follow all shipper's policies when shipping a job to us. Please insure your parts for their proper value. Shipping insurance is cheap, parts are not! If you have any questions about shipping, please call us first. We will return ship to the address provided to us with the appropriate insurance amount. Please fill out a workorder form and include it in the shipment as well. We must have a detailed list of parts to ensure there is nothing missing from the order or we will not be responcible for lost/missing parts.
For Firearms: Please follow all federal laws and shipper's policies when shipping a firearm to us. Please insure your firearm for its proper value. Shipping insurance is cheap, firearms are not! If you have any questions about shipping, please call us first. We must have a photocopy of your photo ID (Driver's License, etc.) that shows your address included in the shipment to us. We will return ship to that address with adult signature required and the appropriate insurance. Please fill out a workorder form and include it in the shipment as well. If your are shipping less than a complete firearm, we must also have a detailed list of parts or we will not be responsible for lost/missing parts.
Note: ALL incoming firearm shipments MUST have "adult signature required" so that they are brought in to the shop and not left outside.
What is the turn-around time?
- Most jobs usually run 5 to 10 business days. This varies based on the work we have in-house when your job comes in and the size and scope of your job. Larger and more complex jobs take longer. We can give you a better idea of the timeframe when your job comes in.