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The Electrocoat Association will hold an Ecoat Boot Camp, September 11-12, in Ridgeland, Mississippi, which includes a tour of Systems Electrocoating’s facility in nearby Jackson.

The group says industry experts have designed this interactive program to meet the varying technical needs of electrocoaters and those interested in learning more. Attendees will review the basics of ecoat before taking a deeper dive into cost and process efficiencies, quality control, troubleshooting and innovative technology. 

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Northern Indiana Anodize (NIA), a startup aluminum anodizing company, says it plans to invest $6.9 million in its first location in Fort Wayne, Indiana, and create as many as 48 new jobs by the end of 2021. The company plans to use 32-foot tanks to accommodate aluminum parts as long as 30 feet.

“With the economy growing, we’re seeing companies changing from steel parts to aluminum for weight and performance purposes,” says Bruce Fogler, chief financial officer. “We know there’s a high demand for anodizing providers and a shortage of large-tank anodizing facilities, so we’re starting this company to provide high-quality services in a growing industry.”

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It can repel water, oil, alcohol and even peanut butter. And it might save the U.S. Navy millions of dollars in ship fuel costs, reduce the amount of energy that vessels consume and improve operational efficiency.

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) is sponsoring work by Dr. Anish Tuteja, an associate professor of materials science and engineering at the University of Michigan, to develop a new type of “omniphobic” coating. This chemical coating is clear and durable, can be applied to numerous surfaces, and sheds just about any liquid.

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SWD Inc., a Chicago-based maker and finisher of fasteners, is spending $3 million on a 26,000-square-foot expansion of its existing 160,000-square-foot facility. With this addition, SWD projects growth of 15 percent in year-over-year sales and expects to create between 12 and 15 new positions. The project is expected to be finished by November.

SWD says the expansion is the second phase of a project that added 60,000 square feet in 2012. The additional 26,000 square feet is expected to help with process flow in the coating production facility. It has been designed to allow for more warehousing, the company says, with an automated racking system for part storage along with new office space for centralized shipping, receiving and order entry processing.

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On the heels of celebrating 60 years of success, Precision Finishing recently held an open house for a 40,000-square-foot facility in Quakertown, Pennsylvania, that was built last year to support new equipment, processes and capabilities.

The company says the new building was purpose-built to support its business strategy of working with customers to establish a finishing process, and then selling them equipment or providing the finishing service.

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