QUALICOAT Meet Online
As with many organisations at the present time, QUALICOAT have moved to an online meeting format. In early June over thirty members of QUALICOAT UK & Ireland joined the chair and general secretary for their quarterly Council Meeting.
Architectural powder coating applicators reported that they are back at work and operating at 50% or greater capacity with the expectation that business will increase over the coming months as more businesses return to work in the construction sector.
New applicator membership at the beginning of the year looked very promising with Warren Services joining early in the year but with a further three new applicator members delayed due to final plant and process inspections being halted due to Covid-19. It is hoped that with lockdown now easing, and the possibility of ‘remote inspections’ being introduced by QUALICOAT Zürich, that these potential new members will be able to gain their applicator licenses and join the ‘QUALICOAT UK & Ireland Team’. Since the last association meeting in February, a further two companies have expressed interest in joining the association and are awaiting first inspections.
With 419 architectural powder coating applicators in membership across the globe, statistics on all powder coating testing in 2019 have now been collated and QUALICOAT can confirm that the 78% of the membership, now use chrome free pretreatment systems. The results confirm the robust nature of today’s chrome free alternative pretreatment systems. Of the 22% balance of membership 20% use chrome based pretreatment and 2% of the membership now offer anodic pretreatment services which continues to grow.
For the applicators still using chrome based systems, REACH have yet to agree a sunset date for banning its use as an architectural aluminium pretreatment, as a result these chrome based systems will continue to be available for use.
Global HQ, QUALICOAT Zürich, is currently working to ensure that the few applicator production testing failures still reported, are reduced to 0%. The only non-controlled area of the powder coating process is the aluminium alloy itself. Extensive research into the quality of the aluminium used in architectural coatings is being undertaken in a new QUALICOAT working group. Known as ‘QUALICOAT 3.0’, it is currently looking into the impact of various levels of recycled content within aluminium extrusion on the adhesion of powder coating under the available pre-treatment methods.
Ongoing training of lab technicians working within applicator members, is a prerequisite of holding a QUALICOAT licence. The next course is still planned to take place in September at pretreatment specialists Chemetall in Milton Keynes. Lab technicians, who continually check the quality of powder coating output in applicator licence holders, require updating on the latest methodology in testing and recording which is provided by the course.
Copies of the new sixteenth edition of the QUALICOAT Standard, is available through the UK Association website, www.qualicoatuki.org together with an up-to-date list of approved Powder Suppliers, approved Pretreatment Suppliers and licensed Applicators. Printed literature and telephone support is available from QUALICOAT UK & Ireland Head Office in Birmingham on 0330 236 2800 or email email@example.com. The Association can also be followed on Twitter @Qualicoatuki
Qualicoat UK & Ireland with offices based in the Midlands is the National Association for Qualicoat approved companies. Qualicoat is a global quality label organisation committed to maintaining and promoting the quality of lacquering, painting and coating on aluminium and its alloys for architectural applications.
Please browse our website and should you have any questions about architectural powder coatings and the correct specification, please contact one of our local members or phone our office on the number below.
Qualicoat UK & Ireland Chairman