Ceramic Coatings Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How are ceramic coatings applied? How are the temperature ratings measured, and do you have viable testing data not just numbers on a page?
A. Ceramic coatings are applied like paint with a spray gun and compressed air. The coatings is applied evenly and normally within 1-2 mils of thickness. Once dry the coating is normally cured in an oven. Temperature ratings are measured as a burst measurement and normally not a sustained temperature rating. So a coating that protects up to 1600 degrees will do so under normal circumstances and not sustained at that temperature for long periods of time.
Q. Does the coating process change the structure of my components? How does the chemistry work?
A. In a nutshell the ceramic coating process bonds with the metal to create a barrier that is corrosion resistant and a thermal barrier. The chemistry is formulated to bond and adhere to metal for maximum protection and heat resistance.
Q: Do I need to prep my parts or clean my parts before sending them in for coating?
A: Yes you should clean your parts up as much as possible for the ease of processing and for a higher quality finished product. By cleaning your parts before hand it allows you to see damage, imperfections, and possible problems that may need repair before sending your parts in for coating. If the parts are cleaned before you send them in you save yourself time and money. Polished ceramic coated or chromed parts may require additional costs and cleaning methods.
Q: Does the coating hide dents, scratches, weld splatter, grinding marks, welding, rough cast finish, or any other surfaces imperfections? Does it fill in holes or cracks in the substrate?
A: No the coating does not hide any imperfections in the substrate that is being coated. The coating doesn't fill in holes or cracks in the substrate either. The coatings that are applied are very thin. Although the coatings are extremely durable and effective, they do not fix surface imperfections. The imperfections will show through on the finished coated product. Another thing to mention is the coating is also not meant for sealing up substrates in any way shape or form. The coating is designed to protect the substrate from breaking down and to perform. These sorts of imperfections will need to be taken care of before processing. If you want a smooth finish it would be wise to clean or smooth out these imperfections before you send your parts in for coating.
Q: Is there maintenance to the coating that I need to be aware of?
A: Yes there is maintenance required on certain coatings. The RUKse Polished ceramic coating requires constant care and cleaning. If anything gets on the polished finish like water, road grime, oil, etc. the coating will need to be cleaned and polished with soap and water and an aluminum polish. Be sure not to use anything abrasive to clean the RUKse Polished finish. All of the other coatings don't really require any maintenance besides a spray off and wipe down with a rag. If anything gets on the coating you shouldn't use anything abrasive to clean them or you run the risk of scratching the coating.
Q: Should I be worried about temperature rating on the coating I choose?
A: Yes you should be aware that certain coatings have certain heat ratings and thresholds. You don't want to push the coatings heat limits. If you know what your true EGT's are then you need to plan accordingly with a coating. It's always better to stay at least 200-300°F under the coatings heat rating to be safe. This ensures that you will never discolor or damage the coating due to heat.
Q: Can you coat the inside of headers or piping? Should I get inside coating done for my headers or piping?
A: Yes we can coat the inside of headers and piping. All other coaters spray in as far as they can or use a “float coat” gun to spray the inner diameter of headers and piping. Float coat guns can't make it past bends in headers or piping which leaves bare spots. So other companies can't truly coat the inside diameter of headers and piping. Our process is a full prep and the coating is actually fully applied to the inside of the header or pipe by submersion. Our submersion process ensures that the inner diameter receives full coverage and protection.
Should you have inside coating done? It's not necessary to have inside coating to achieve the performance and benefits that the coating has to offer. Inside coating is used to create a barrier of protection. You will see lower radiant temperature under your hood or on whatever application it is applied to, but you are already getting these benefits with the outside coating.
Q: Should I choose a polished finish over another ceramic because I like how it looks?
A: No you should not choose a polished ceramic finish over another ceramic coating because of looks. We offer other ceramic coatings that still have a bright finish, but perform better and are easily maintained over the polished finish. The polished finish is not recommended for any application that has any power. The coating has the tendency to discolor under higher operating temperatures and it requires constant maintenance. If you don't want to run the risk of discoloration or failure of the coating due to the lack of maintenance then you should not get a polish ceramic coating. Go with bright silver, black, or another high temp ceramic coating.
Q: When coating engine internals such as pistons and bearings do the parts need to be brand new or can they be used?
A: Pistons can be used as long as they are still in acceptable shape for the application they are going back into. It doesn't matter if they are used, just clean them up the best you can and send them in. Bearings need to be brand new. We can not coat used bearings. NOTE: Pistons must be completely disassembled before sending in for coating. This means rings, pins, etc. need to be removed before coating. We only want the piston itself for coating.
Q: When coating engine internals such as pistons do I need to change any tolerances or measurements that have been taken for the motor?
A: No you don't need to change any tolerances or measurements. The lubritic coating will not interfere with tolerances and your parts will perform as they should. The coatings applied thickness is approximately .0007.