No.59: Establish the painting process

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7 Practical Guidelines for Paint Workers 

Article 4: Establish the painting process

Key Notes 

Condition Assessment of the Substrate: It is very important to accurately understand the condition of the substrate when designing the painting. 

Establish the painting process

Proper establishment of the painting process is fundamental to achieving high-quality painting work. This article will discuss the importance of establishing a painting process, using the example of painting lines for mirror finishes on wooden boards and flooring materials. 

Basic Principles of the Painting Process: In Japan, there has long been a proverb that expresses the basic principle of woodworking painting: the finish of the painting is directly affected by the quality of the base. 

Case Study Introduction: We will introduce a case study of a mirror finish on flooring materials. MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) was used as the substrate, and the process involved applying a printed film to enhance the design, followed by a thick coating with UV-curing paint. Immediately after painting, the reflectance of the fluorescence was high, confirming high reflectivity. However, a few months later, the reflection of the fluorescent lights became distorted, indicating the presence of fine unevenness on the painted surface, which led to a decrease in reflectivity. This phenomenon was caused by unevenness of about 1µm on the surface of the paint film, which is considered to be visual. 

Cause and Countermeasures: The UV-curing paint on the MDF material initially finished smoothly with a thick coating, but the paint film underwent a volume shrinkage of about 3% over time, resulting in an estimated dimensional change in film thickness of about 1%. Due to the unevenness of the material, there are parts with large film thickness (200µm) and small film thickness (100µm). Each experienced shrinkage strains of about 2µm and 1µm, respectively, causing the surface layer of the paint film to deform over time according to the unevenness of the substrate, leading to a decrease in reflectivity. This case highlights the importance of substrate preparation. 

Comparative Case Study: The mirror finish of a piano involves five painting processes and six polishing processes, resulting in a reflection of fluorescent lights as clear as a mirror. In piano painting, more than 60% of the total process time is spent on the polishing process, and this strict process management guarantees high reflectivity over a long period. 


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