A powder coating oven is a special kind of oven used to cure and dry powder coatings. Powder coatings are used in many different industries for decorative and functional reasons.
If you need an efficient, build-it-yourself alternative to buying a pre-made oven, you can construct your own with some key features that will fulfill most of your powder coating needs. This article will walk you through the features of the most effective DIY oven design, and also discusses some of the factors involved in choosing a pre-made oven.
The primary feature of this kind of powder coating oven is that it needs to be able to sustain extremely high temperatures for extended periods of time.
Some people are able to build an oven with heaters all the way around the outside, but this design has many problems. For example, it is very inefficient because most of the heat will be lost before it even reaches the inside of the oven. Another problem is that if you want to move or reposition your oven, there can’t be supports in the middle of the oven. A better design is based on a heating chamber in the middle, with insulation around it to trap heat and allow for even curing throughout.
A frequently occurring question is what types of heating elements are typically used in powder coating ovens.
The best way to go about this is to decide how much money you are willing to spend and purchase the elements accordingly. For example, if you are on a tight budget, you can use simple lightbulb-style quartz heaters which will produce good results when there is enough insulation in the oven.
However, for better efficiency and higher temperatures that will shorten the curing process without lowering quality, ceramic rod elements are a better choice.
In the DIY world, heating elements are often available from scrap materials that you may already have access to, such as old electric heaters or water heater parts. If you want to purchase a set of heating elements for your oven, they can be ordered online – search for “thermco thermcoil”.
Once you’ve decided on the type of elements you want, it’s time to figure out how much power they will require. A good rule of thumb is that one quartz bulb or rod can replace about 25 incandescent bulbs (100 watts).
You also need to consider what kind of controls you want built into your oven. There are many different options for controlling heat, but they all come down to how you want to use your oven. For example, if you are using the oven intermittently for occasional curing of projects, a simple power switch will do the trick. But if you plan on baking large quantities of parts or batches within batches, something more sophisticated like a temperature controller would be necessary.
Finally, you’ll need to build an oven that allows for proper airflow. More often than not, this means having holes in the bottom and keeping the inside insulated with firebrick or vermiculite. With these considerations in mind, building your own powder coating oven is certainly possible.