Paint Systems

A paint system includes all the necessary processes involved in painting an object or surface. The term “paint system” can be a general reference to the process of painting or to the equipment and tools actually used to do the painting. In one sense of the term, a paint system is the process of surface preparation, pretreatment, primers and top coats.

Typically, paint systems are understood to be the complete arrangement of equipment that is used for painting. Depending on the methods used to paint, there are different tools; the most common industrial method is spray painting. A basic spray painting system includes the spray gun nozzle, a pressurized paint container, an air compressor and hoses or tubes to connect these components. Paint systems are often sold as a kit and can be purchased for residential, commercial or industrial use.

Each piece of paint equipment used is vital for the performance of the entire paint system. These systems are used by manufacturers to paint, coat and finish products such as metal enclosures, electronic components, car bodies, workstations, bicycle frames, steel silos, watercraft and other items. Materials that receive coatings in paint systems include composites, containers, electronic and electrical components, extrusions and stock forms, glass, various types of metal, paper and paperboard, pharmaceuticals and food products, porcelain and ceramic materials, textiles and fabric and wood.

The parts of a paint system vary in size, capacity and power but are usually fairly consistent across the many different industries that use these systems. The spray gun is the nozzle attachment that directs the paint or coating out of the system and onto the surface of the product. Interchangeable tips allow for different spray patterns such as a full cone, hollow cone and flat stream. In electrostatic painting, an electrode may be mounted within the tip of the nozzle to charge the paint as it sprays out.

The spray gun is connected to a paint reservoir that is pressurized by an air compressor. Sometimes the paint is held within the body of the spray gun but for larger applications, the paint or coating is left in large buckets. An air compressor provides the necessary pressure to draw the paint through the tubes at high speeds. Airless paint sprayers use methods that do not use air compressors to accomplish this task. Pneumatic hoses and tubes connect the spray gun to the paint, compressor and power source.

Paint systems work quickly; paint from the tank or container flows to the nozzle while under low pressure. Air atomizes the paint as the compressor pushes it through the lines and the paint is broken into small particles which are propelled through the nozzle and to the surface of the product. Painting may take place in a spray booth for a clean work environment.