Manufacturing facilities utilize various types of coatings, some of which are two component paint. These formulas must be mixed properly in order to properly adhere and perform in the field as designed. This case study highlights a solution that allowed the customer to maintain tight paint ratios, minimize waste, and remove hand mixing from the process.
A leading manufacture within the truck and bus industry located in North Carolina.
This truck and bus manufacturing facility has multiple paint booths due to their high volume, high quality, and high standards associated with the paint application. They use a two component primer and paint, and have to maintain automotive quality finish on their production line. The main paint line utilizes a Graco Proportioning System to dispense on ratio paint to operator; however the offline paint repair/touch up facility still relied on manually mixing (or “hot potting”). Hot potting tended to be very wasteful as the paint mixed wasn’t always sprayed prior to gelling, or the two parts were mixed off ratio causing imperfections within the finish aesthetics and quality. Due to hot potting the general work area was considered “messy” as operators were physically hand mixing paint and catalyst out of drums.
Air Power’s Solution
Air Power in partnership with Graco, proposed a solution utilizing the Graco ProDispense platform of product. This proportioning solution allows the offline operators to mix exactly how much they need for each application on ratio every time. There is no guesswork when it comes to material being mixed or how much is needed, and the work area is self-contained with little to no mess. The offline paint process has become streamlined as the paint operator only has to know how much paint he needs (in liters) and what color. They select the desired paint volume and color from a custom touch screen user interface. Once selected the exact amount is dispensed and mixed into the paint applicator. The operator then removes the paint applicator and performs the associated painting task.
Operators are no longer mixing paint by hand. This alone has saved the company time and money due to costly mistakes associated with the hand mixing process. The waste output has been reduced due to the ability to accurately and repeatedly meter, mix, and dispense the exact volume of paint in which the operator needs on time and on ratio. Aesthetically the workspace is much cleaner. An added benefit to management is the ability to now view, track, and have visibility of paint usage, due to the ProDispense reporting capabilities, within an application which historically has had none. Allowing for better ontime tracking, shipment, and forecasting.
Graco’s ProDispense is a cost-effective and user-friendly electronic system that dispenses preset amounts of fluids. The ProDispense system allows durable goods manufacturers to quickly and accurately fill cavities with oil, grease, water, or other industrial fluids in assembly line environments where accurate dispensing is essential. ProDispense can deliver up to eight different fluids at multiple dispense points, and accurately measure volume.
- Consistent fluid dispense
- Reporting capability tracks volume and usage
- Easily connects to PLC and barcode scanners
- Return on investment assures that ProDispense quickly pays for itself
- User interface provides simple operation and data entry
- Local or integrated control
- Manual or automatic dispense
- Tracks dispense results for process verification