By: Alexandra Heater

What is it?

Electrostatic spray paint a system used for spray painting metal objects using charged paint particles. The paint is stored in a pressurized container and is released when a valve is pressed down. The paint that is being released of the container comes out in a thin mist, making it easily applied. It is used on metal items because using charged paint is the easiest way to get a consistent and evenly applied layer of paint on the metal object. This system of spray painting was developed by a man with the name of Harold Ransburg in the early 1930's.

Who Uses It

Electrostatic is mostly used by bike frame manufacturers and car manufacturers. These to industries use electrostatic spray paint because this type of paint sticks very well to metal and coats the frames in an even, constant layer of paint. Although electrostatic spray painting can be used for many different painting uses.

Powder Coating Bike Frame

How it works

The electrostatic paint system uses charged paint particles to paint metal. By using the "Law of Electrostatics" that opposite particles attract. The paint in the gun is charged at it leaves the gun. The gun is charged by rubbing through the barrel of the gun. This type of charging is called charging by friction. The paint that is charged now leaves the gun with a negative charge. The gun uses compressed air to propel the paint out of the gun. With the paint having a negative charge, the painter wanting the paint to attract to the object they must them give the object a positive charge. Once the object that is desired to be painted is charged positively the painter may begin. Since the paint particles have a negative charge and negative charges repel, they try to get away from each other. With the paint particles spreading out the paint not only covers the front part of the object, but the back part too. This is also how this system sprays a more even coat of paint, making it more efficient than a normal spray painter.

Side Note-The paint can be charged positively or negatively, but for the purpose of my smore we will say that they are negatively charged

Advantages of Electrostatic Spray Painting

The advantages of using this system of painting are that it is better for the environment as less paint is being wasted to paint the metal objects. It also is more efficient as the paint coats the item completely will little to none of the paint falling to the ground. Finally this is a great way to paint metal objects because it doesn't leave an awkward shadow of paint(bbc) and the paint is so attracted to the metal that it will paint not only the side you face, but the other side of the object too.