PF Blog

Progressive Coating's Stephen Walters Elected CCAI-NI President

15. April 2016


Stephen Walters, president of Chicago's Progressive Coating, was elected president of the Northern Illinois Chapter of  the Chemical Coaters Association International (CCAI), a technical and professional organization that provides information and training on surface coating technologies.


CCAI works to raise the standards of finishing operations through educational meetings and seminars, training manuals, certification programs and outreach programs with colleges and universities.


Progressive Coating has been a member of CCAI since 1998 and Stephen has served on its Local Board since 2004.


“I’m truly honored and excited to lead this chapter of the association and I look forward to building momentum and tackling our objectives, including opening new doors for young people to explore career paths in the finishing industry,” said Walters. “As an industry we need to address the skills gap and an aging workforce. We also want to encourage members to get out of their own silos, join and be active in industry associations, and mix with other manufacturers. There is always something new to learn, and the more information you have, the more effective you can be.”

CCAI Chicago Chapter Tours Gatto Industrial Platers

13. April 2016


On March 15 a contingent of CCAI Chicago Chapter members took part in a tour and Q&A at Gatto Industrial Platers’ facility on Roosevelt Road in Chicago.


The objective of the event was to educate and inform, and to create an open dialog between platers and coaters with the goal of achieving optimal results.


Gatto discussed their process, and led a question and answer period regarding how powder coating and plating processes interact and affect each other, as well as concerns that powder coaters and painters have coating over plating, and how to address resulting issues.

Video Highlights Broad Range of PPG Automotive Coatings

11. April 2016



PPG has produced an animated video that details all the functional (non-decorative) automotive parts, surfaces and applications for which PPG provides innovative coatings products.


Using a generic sport utility vehicle (SUV) to illustrate, the animation depicts the five layers of protection and beauty that PPG coatings—such as pretreatment and electrocoat (ecoat) products for finished metal—provide for exterior body parts.


The video also shows PPG coatings on parts that make up the powertrain and suspension, as well as those applied to frames and structural components, wheels, wiper arms, bumpers, tow hitches and roof racks.


Additionally, electronic and conductive coatings by PPG are featured on the animated SUV. Inside the vehicle, they enhance the performance of antennas, air bag sensors, electronic devices and mirrors. Outside the vehicle, these coatings help advanced collision-avoidance systems detect obstacles.


Effy Carpenter, PPG segment manager, automotive parts and accessories-functional (APAF), says PPG produced the video to show automotive manufacturers and their tier suppliers how they can partner with PPG for single-source coatings capability, covering a broad array of innovative solutions for aesthetics, corrosion-resistance and light-weighting challenges.


“PPG is well-known and widely trusted in the auto industry for providing reliable corrosion prevention and unique external color and protection. Our goal is to continue to expand automotive customers’ awareness of our full range of exceptional coatings technologies and expertise,” she explained. “This new animation illustrates the array of solutions in our advanced auto coatings portfolio, highlighting both the proven and breakthrough PPG products that can help manufacturers and tier suppliers.”


The video can be downloaded from the APAF page on For more information, call 1-888-774-2001.



Winona PVD Coatings wins 2016 Quality Plant of the Year

7. April 2016


Winona PVD Coatings in Warsaw, Indiana, won the 2016 Quality Plant of the Year award from Quality magazine.


The company was established in 2006 and coats wheels with a bright finish for Ford's F-150, along with Hyundai, Nissan and BMW. The company focuses on quality, continuous improvement, and high-technology manufacturing—the coatings process is so automated that wheels are not touched by human hands in the six hours it takes to produce them.


In the past year, the company tripled its output and workforce. Construction of the original 66,000-square-foot facility started in early 2007 and production began in 2008. The production equipment was designed under the direction of Winona PVD’s engineering team to ensure the highest quality production possible. Six years later Winona PVD has expanded to a second line housed in a 68,000 square foot addition and a third production line in a new 101,000 square foot building across the street. Winona PVD is growing rapidly to meet demand for their Bright and Black G-Chrome finish.


Quality magazine points out that Winona PVD Coatings takes quality so seriously that out of the almost 1.5 million wheels shipped in the past 10 years, the company has seen the number of returns in the single digits.


For more information, visit Winona PVD Coatings at To read the article, please visit

The Science of Watching Paint Dry

5. April 2016

Researchers from the University of Surrey in collaboration with the Université Claude Bernard Lyon used computer simulation and material experiments to show how when coatings with different sized particles (such as paints) dry, the coating spontaneously forms two layers.


This mechanism can be used to control the properties at the top and bottom of coatings independently, which could help increase performance of coatings across industries as diverse as beauty and pharmaceuticals. 


“When coatings such as paint, ink or even outer layers on tablets are made, they work by spreading a liquid containing solid particles onto a surface, and allowing the liquid to evaporate,” said Dr Andrea Fortini, of the University of Surrey and lead author. “This is nothing new, but what is exciting is that we’ve shown that during evaporation, the small particles push away the larger ones, remaining at the top surface whilst the larger are pushed to bottom. This happens naturally.”


The team is continuing to work on such research to understand how to control the width of the layer by changing the type and amount of small particles in the coating and explore their use in industrial products such as paints, inks, and adhesives


The funding for this work comes from the EU project BARRIERPLUS, which aims at the reduction of environmentally damaging volatile organic compounds in paints.


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