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Discussion Starter #1
I am interested in how early people were seeing powder coat failure on their newer Ariens?

I have a 2006, and from a distance the outside housing looks new still, but when observed up close there are big problems. These aren't the normal abrasion wear-away of the impeller house. To me this powder paint they are using is the improper coating to use for any sheet metal in a saltwater environment.

True enough, the powder paint is very tough against scratching in a perfect world, but the problem is it's this hardness that makes it very brittle. Brittle is not good for extremes in temperature and flexing. Both of which snowblowers experience repeatedly. The other problem is the powder paint Ariens uses does not adhere to sharp edges of thin sheet metal. I can see numerous instances where flexing, abrasion, or corrosion starts at sharp edge and the powder delaminates from the substrate in sheets. Water is then trapped behind the coating and up against bare metal. This problem is not confined to housing sheet metal, it is also is happening on the auger rake edges, the support bar, and pretty much wherever there is a sharp edge. Consistently the coating fails on these edges

Bubbling is also very common with this powder paint even in the middle of sheet metal when there is no apparent breach. So, on the surface it still looks protected and has a shiny new appearance, yet below, extensive corrosion is occurring.

I was wondering from someone that owns late model blowers, if this is occurring, and how long until it begins to set in?...Please check your sharp edges for any sign of delamination, because what looks good from a distance isn't always the case.

Also, if any member works in the coatings industry, It might be nice to hear some possible solutions. My guess is Ariens has gone with a powder coating for environmental and cost reasons. Yet it can't be the optimum solution.
 

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Hi HillnGullyRider
I am not an expert but I don't think that powder coating is any better than a properly applied paint using traditional methods. It has the advantage of being more environmentally friendly as there is less waste and emissions but like any paint process it all boils down to the quality of the paint used and of course surface prep. I believe that spraying with a urethane enamel will have better results than powder coating with an inferior paint. I have had part powder coated before and was disappointed with its durability.
Cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yes, we even know the delivery system (Nordson automatic) and the brand (TCI). Plus I suspect they been using powder for at least 3 decades (as I see the same type of problems not present in the earlier models.)
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Hi HillnGullyRider
I have had part powder coated before and was disappointed with its durability.
Cheers
Durability is only one part of the equation, you also need adhesion and flexibility... Anything can get scratched including ceramics and solid steel, so I'd rather have a coating that scratches a bit easier as long as the rest stays adhered. That way the corrosion is limited to only the exposed scratch and can be easily touched up. What you don't want is it to flake in sheets.
 

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I've had delamination of the coating on the auger housing of my 2011 Pro.
It happened in an area the gets little chance of bumping into something or flexing. It was on a corner. I just assumed that the surface was contaminated prior to applying the paint at the factory.
I wrote to Ariens about it and asked for a can of their spray paint They complied and I "fixed" it. I know it's not as good as a properly applied factory coating but what is one to do?
I would be interested in knowing if many others have had similar problems.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
It's not contamination, the powder fails at the sharp corners and moisture quickly progresses between the coating and the substrate.

The first pic shows the typical corner failure and the black outline is the progression of delamination.

The second pic shows the adhesion failure and bubbling (presumably from flex) as well as the typical and normal abrasion wear in the impeller house.
 

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Pic #1 is the problem I had. There are a lot of sharp corners on my machine, many places to develop corrosion. Disappointing.
 

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They Should have stayed with the Tough Paint used on the 10000 series.
 

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I for one think powder coat is junk. In 1997 I bought a new plow that had it. It looked great the first winter, by the end of second yr it was peeling off in sheets. In 2001 bought another new plow. Same thing happen. I all so had a scag lawn mower. Again paint peel.
 

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I for one think powder coat is junk. In 1997 I bought a new plow that had it. It looked great the first winter, by the end of second yr it was peeling off in sheets. In 2001 bought another new plow. Same thing happen. I all so had a scag lawn mower. Again paint peel.

+1 on that ! Back in the late '89 I bought a new Toyota 4x4 and added some aftermarket step tubes. powder coated. Three years later they looked like crap, between the road salt and rock chips and it all started at the edges of the steel tube or welds.

I paid a coworker to sandblast them down to bare metal, used some rustoleum ruddy brown primer, and then a few light coats of black rustoleum paint. Kept the truck a total of 10 years and they looked better when I sold it (7 years later) than after the initial 3 years. :cool:
 

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They all have been doing it for decades

Most anything manufactured since the 80's has benefited (the manufacturer) with these one step paints. When was the last time you saw the paint coming off the PRIMER and that being left behind? Long long time because they all stopped priming and just use paint on whatever metal prep voodoo process they happen to like. Why do they do it, simply because it's quicker and cuts out a process as well as drying time.
The use of thin light gauge metal doesn't help the process any either. They can claim gas mileage on a car due to weight saving but who ever wanted a lighter snow blower any more than they wanted a light tractor? :mad:It's what you are stuck with today, oh well. That thin steel flexes and vibrates in ways that just ask the paint to flake off. Welds are spaced pretty far apart and the isn't much you can do but weld it better and fix it then paint with good primer and paint. All in all my 2002 Ariens is plenty stiff enough and welded well enough so just the paint on the bottom is abraded or flaked so it's an easy annual fix.
That paint in those pix above don't look like flaking but moisture penetration. There is no big flake popping loose to reveal metal or (ha ha bare primer) from lack of adhesion. That is just plain rust pop. It got in and spread then popped the paint off. It sucks and shows poor paint but is easy to fix. If the whole thing looks like that you might as well strip it all off with a wire wheel on a 4.5" grinder priime and paint again.
I'm no fan of Rustolium these days either. I have it and use it but it is nothing like the early 80's stuff by far. I did the bottom of a car with it back in05. Sandblasted etched with phosphoric acid then blew on Rustolium Rust Metal Primer, painted with black then undercoated. I couldn't believe it when I saw rust bloom all over the very next Spring. Oh well old car no big deal. Since then I have watched carefully and well I just don't like how the stuff holds up on even tiny little touch ups. Now i did paint my boat with the old style rusty metal paint using a gun. Aluminum boat no less and it's still there today almost perfect having sat out in the NY weather since 87. Something has changed greatly. Besides no matter what you do those old style noz.zles just have to plug. Krylon on the other hand doesn't seem to ever plug up which amazes me and from what i have seen it holds up pretty darned well if you put enough coats on.
Remember, while I always prefer a gun the spray can stuff needs a lot more to do a job. You just can't get thicker paint out that small hole reliably so it has to be thin. Turn that 2 coats into 6 and you have something. Just keep the coats thin and put in sun or force dry with a fan and paint again and make sure you prime first ( a few coats). Hit that rusty area with a wire wheel or sandpaper and get the rust off. You can get phosphoric acid etch at Sherwin Williams ect. Lowes used to carry it but stopped it seems years back. Sand the area with 220 black wet or dry sanpaper to feather the edges ( many say 400, I prefer the TOOTH you get with 220 from the scratches it leaves) just feather the edges so it's fairly smooth . Clean it and spray it on with a dollar store spray bottle or even wipe with a rag let sit 15 minutes and wash off, dry then prime then paint. It all goes faster than I can describe it here and you are done.
Just look it over every year at seasons end and do this to the abrasion areas and flakes and it will hold up indefinitely. That 2 part catalyzed stuff usually won't hold up much better and is such a major PITA to use that I avoid it for touch ups. If you run that stuff through a gun and don't take it apart and clean it right afterwards like an antique rifle it will start plugging up and soon be useless. I don't have the time for that crap for a squirt or two so just use the regular stuff it works fine.
Oh yea FWIW some damned nice primer and paint is TEMPO brand. They make a great Zinc Phosphate primer in a spray can. The local regional airline used to use that on their turbo props for touchups and it does stick well even to aluminum. It can be hard to find though unless you order through Aircraft Spruce and Specialty which sells online.
 

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Most anything manufactured since the 80's has benefited (the manufacturer) with these one step paints. When was the last time you saw the paint coming off the PRIMER and that being left behind? Long long time because they all stopped priming and just use paint on whatever metal prep voodoo process they happen to like. Why do they do it, simply because it's quicker and cuts out a process as well as drying time.
The use of thin light gauge metal doesn't help the process any either. They can claim gas mileage on a car due to weight saving but who ever wanted a lighter snow blower any more than they wanted a light tractor? :mad:It's what you are stuck with today, oh well. That thin steel flexes and vibrates in ways that just ask the paint to flake off. Welds are spaced pretty far apart and the isn't much you can do but weld it better and fix it then paint with good primer and paint. All in all my 2002 Ariens is plenty stiff enough and welded well enough so just the paint on the bottom is abraded or flaked so it's an easy annual fix.
That paint in those pix above don't look like flaking but moisture penetration. There is no big flake popping loose to reveal metal or (ha ha bare primer) from lack of adhesion. That is just plain rust pop. It got in and spread then popped the paint off. It sucks and shows poor paint but is easy to fix. If the whole thing looks like that you might as well strip it all off with a wire wheel on a 4.5" grinder priime and paint again.
I'm no fan of Rustolium these days either. I have it and use it but it is nothing like the early 80's stuff by far. I did the bottom of a car with it back in05. Sandblasted etched with phosphoric acid then blew on Rustolium Rust Metal Primer, painted with black then undercoated. I couldn't believe it when I saw rust bloom all over the very next Spring. Oh well old car no big deal. Since then I have watched carefully and well I just don't like how the stuff holds up on even tiny little touch ups. Now i did paint my boat with the old style rusty metal paint using a gun. Aluminum boat no less and it's still there today almost perfect having sat out in the NY weather since 87. Something has changed greatly. Besides no matter what you do those old style noz.zles just have to plug. Krylon on the other hand doesn't seem to ever plug up which amazes me and from what i have seen it holds up pretty darned well if you put enough coats on.
Remember, while I always prefer a gun the spray can stuff needs a lot more to do a job. You just can't get thicker paint out that small hole reliably so it has to be thin. Turn that 2 coats into 6 and you have something. Just keep the coats thin and put in sun or force dry with a fan and paint again and make sure you prime first ( a few coats). Hit that rusty area with a wire wheel or sandpaper and get the rust off. You can get phosphoric acid etch at Sherwin Williams ect. Lowes used to carry it but stopped it seems years back. Sand the area with 220 black wet or dry sanpaper to feather the edges ( many say 400, I prefer the TOOTH you get with 220 from the scratches it leaves) just feather the edges so it's fairly smooth . Clean it and spray it on with a dollar store spray bottle or even wipe with a rag let sit 15 minutes and wash off, dry then prime then paint. It all goes faster than I can describe it here and you are done.
Just look it over every year at seasons end and do this to the abrasion areas and flakes and it will hold up indefinitely. That 2 part catalyzed stuff usually won't hold up much better and is such a major PITA to use that I avoid it for touch ups. If you run that stuff through a gun and don't take it apart and clean it right afterwards like an antique rifle it will start plugging up and soon be useless. I don't have the time for that crap for a squirt or two so just use the regular stuff it works fine.
Oh yea FWIW some damned nice primer and paint is TEMPO brand. They make a great Zinc Phosphate primer in a spray can. The local regional airline used to use that on their turbo props for touchups and it does stick well even to aluminum. It can be hard to find though unless you order through Aircraft Spruce and Specialty which sells online.
Interesting. Thank you.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Thanks for that reply Driz, that's what I'm looking for, solutions. I could always just buy another new housing, but they are expensive and the same thing will just happen again.
I've pretty much resigned myself to the fact that the only real way to deal with it is to strip the powder first. Like you pointed out these housings experience a great amount of low level vibration as they scrape along the concrete. So I need something flexible and permanent.
You mentioned sandblasting your vehicle after stripping, then experienced rust-bloom after using rustoleum and even undercoating on top of that? That got me remembering, I did the same thing myself in 01' only I didn't use rustoleum, and after 14 years there is still not a speck of rust. rustoleum is alkyd based I believe. What I used is a rubber based enamel from a tiny local manufacturer. They use this stuff to apply directly to below grade effloresced concrete block to stop water from working it's way into basements...But It was originally formulated by a German chemist to protect U-boat hulls.
You have to thin this stuff with acetone, normally it's brushed or rolled. but I've managed to get appearance quality results with a gravity gun on steel lawn furniture.
I think I will look into seeing if they can mix it up into Ariens orange.
This stuff isn't like the normal rubberized undercoat paints you find out there. This is tough as a 2 part epoxy paint, you can't scrape it off and saltwater won't affect it.

Edit: I forgot to mention that i used Corlar 824S as a primer, so that may have helped, but this rubber enamel can be applied directly to prepped steel.

http://www2.dupont.com/Coating_Solutions/en_US/assets/downloads/tds/TDS_824S_E.pdf
 

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Hilln, I have been learned on this post. I have never had a "new enough" Ariens to see the paint issue. All the machines I have worked on have been old enough to have primer/paint. I redid (not a word) an old JD blower and suggested the augers were very hard to strip/repaint, now I know they were likely powder coat. Strong bond here, but firm "non-flexing" metal so they held like Obama. We should start a new post on how horrible anything black on a Toro rusts:D Not brand bashing, but Toro seriously dropped the paint gun on these black parts. They need to be repainted from new:eek:
I have worked on 1 month old Toro singles that have rust starting on the outside black shrouding. We're talking Ariens here, so..........
 

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I dont' think I'd undercoat anything on a showblower. It's stiff enough and easily accessible to just retouch as you need to .
You mention undercoat what I use is just old fashioned by the gallon rubberized undercoat. I dont'use a special applicator just a HF 15 dollar Rockshutz gun . I thin the stuff with simple hardware store mineral spirits.
It works really good and puts it on just like the pros. You can use that to shoot about anything. I just leave it on the wall with whatever is in it and add / thin and shoot next time around.
That little incident with the rustoleum rusty metal primer on my old cavalier really pissed me off. If i had had that done I would never believe the guy but I did it all myself in hot August condition and with undercoat no less. Would have been better to just shoot the undercoat really and saved hours of ugly work. I still use Rustolium rusty metal undercoat but not ever where it's subjected to road salt , not any more. It does seem to work fine on tractors and such though even now.
My weapons in using the old stuff like laquer and enamel based primers and paints in winter consists of a regular Wallyworld 16" square box fan. The breeze will do the drying for your repeated coats. Use that and or sit it out in the sun and breeze so it will dry faster.
As for rattle cans the secret is SHAKE like you are shaking your booty. the best advice i ever heard was from a paint rep who said "shake it as long as a song on the radio". Sounds stupid but you know what it works. My other trick is if its cold in the shop I get some hot water in a large say half quart open top cup and toss the can in and let it sit in the hot water . That will warm up the paint enough to do the deed and it will spray better through the chinsey little red button without plugging.
Of course you aren't supposed to do this stuff in the cold but hey, I've been doing it all my life this way as it can't all wait till Spring. Oh one other thing the spray button on top. There are a few of the better brands that are a bit bigger and they spray in a vertically oriented fan like you are supposed to paint and not in the cheap cone. They are easier to use especially if you aren't a practiced painter. You really can do a professional job with touching this gear up for a small price.
 
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