Waltco invests in liftgate finishing excellence

Waltco Truck Equipment Co has invested $3.2 million in an automated product finishing system installed in its liftgate manufacturing facility in Tallmadge OH. The new powdercoat paint system produces a finish that resists corrosion and abrasion.

In the first stage, parts are loaded onto the conveyor, then routed by computer to either an Autowheel shot blast machine or a manual blast machine.

Parts then pass through a vacuum clean-off area, where blast residue is removed. The parts are inspected and then either returned to the blasting station for touch-up or sent on to one of two paint stations.

Liftgate platform parts move on to the powder paint line, where they pass through a powder booth. Automatic and manual powder paint guns deliver a constant, electrostatically charged mist of powdercoat. After the powdercoat is applied, parts move on to a 65-foot-long gas convection oven, where they are baked at 400° F for one hour.

Those parts that do not form the liftgate platform move through two opposing liquid paint booths. One booth sprays one side using a high-volume low-pressure (HVLP) system, while the second booth sprays the other side.

Painted parts are then lined up along the conveyor for further drying and cooling before being unloaded and assembled.

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