I have noticed a number of builders saying that they need to remove the paint from steel parts where the parts contact a bearing surface. I'm wondering if I powder coat these parts if that will cause me problems later? What do other builders think of powder coating versus painting, and masking bearing surfaces?

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I have been powder coating all the steel parts as I proceed with construction. I certainly like the surface finish and the seeming durability as well. The material is not difficult to remove with a wire wheel on a bench grinder or by heating it and wiping it off. The powder coater should be able to cover threads, plug holes and cover surfaces that need to fit intimately if you show them what fits to what.
I have found it's fairly easy to remove my powder coating where needed with a scotch-brite wheel on an angle grinder. I paid about $250 to get all 49 steel parts done. For the money it was worth it to not have to rig up for a 2-part epoxy job and do it myself. IMO, it's very tough stuff & I'm glad I went that route.
Don't powder coat it can hide cracks under the coating. Paint White Tremclad so and cracks will show through the paint as ugly rust stains. Use High Heat enamel on engine mounts.

I would agree with Bob to a degree - I've been powdercoating some parts, but not the engine mount or cabin frame or any other part that has critical welds. Nearly everything I've read says to not powdercoat engine mounts and paint a white/light color so weld cracks will show up as a dark line. I think powdercoat is great for non-critical parts like the side panels of the optional center console - the tough coating will hold up better to getting kicked and scuffed, etc.

By the way, you can get true 2-part/2K epoxy primer in a spray can - Rustoleum makes it. You won't find it at the big box stores - usually you have to get it from an industrial supply like Grainger. It's really pricey - about $30/can, and once activated (you push a button on the bottom of the can to mix the 2 components), it has a 4-day pot life. That's what I used on both my engine mount, cabin frame, and gear/strut mounts. The cost is worth it, though, no spray gun clean-up when you're through! For economy, just keep prepping parts and priming until you run out of epoxy!

Regards,

John

I didn't believe it, so I checked...it does exist! Thanks for the tip. That would be the way to go for me, next time.

I've had too many bad experiences with rattle can paint & would not use it anywhere I was serious about rust protection. Maybe it's the Gulf Coast environment I'm in, but I get rust within 1 year with rattle can paint jobs.

Here is a link to the 2 part epoxy primer at Grainger's. http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/RUSTOLEUM-Aerosol-2K-Epoxy-Primer-...

A few years ago I was giving a BFR in a homebuilt aircraft. On the second landing the pilot lost control and ground looped the aircraft. Fortunely no body hurt and little damage. Upon looking at the tail wheel which had been  powder coated the arm was broken off. upon further examination there was intergranulsr corrosion beneath the powder coated part which had been broken .

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