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Continuous Improvement Development Initiatives

Marcus Paint Company recently started serving a client who has multiple large volume dip tanks used to coat home furnishing mechanisms and related tubular assemblies. This client was experiencing quality issues and had two separate suppliers, each servicing one side of the client’s production. They needed one supplier that could provide one product for both operations. 

Marcus Paint’s development and technical team formulated a solution specific to the client’s application parameters and specification criteria for use on both operations.

Our team accompanied them during the charging of the tanks, guiding them on how to handle our product as well as producing training materials. Further, we provided recommendations for “basic” online test equipment to purchase, such as pH meters, viscosity cups, and temperature guns. We then set up a schedule for routine maintenance and daily tank log sheets were developed to keep track of tank additions and run parameters.

As with most technology, a long-term trial run was needed to fully evaluate the coating’s effectiveness. The client ran our product in production over several months and our product performed to the agreed-upon standards.

Challenge:

However, there was room for improvement with respect to minor “wash out” on HRS (hot-rolled-steel) mechanisms, from water trapped in the hinges from the prewash portion of manufacturing, and inconsistent adhesion on smooth CRS (cold-rolled-steel) assemblies after being packaged together. We approached our client with these concerns and outlined a plan to address them, including enhanced monitoring and sampling efforts with the existing product in conjunction with preliminary thoughts regarding a formulation enhancement.

Solutions:

MPC representatives took pictures of the problematic parts and gathered unpainted samples. The samples were brought back to the MPC lab, where our chemists worked to design an enhanced formulation to remedy both issues. Using Root Cause Analysis, we made changes to a base formulation and used a combination of samples and in-house substrates to confirm the performance of the new costing. 

After development and validation testing, we presented a formulation to address the issues identified and a product solution compatible for top feeding over the Generation One product. This allowed the client to utilize the first coating while transitioning to the new and improved Generation Two product, avoiding draining the tank and incurring unnecessary costs. While top feeding, we kept close track of the percentage of the new coating introduced to their tanks and pulled regular samples for physical and G.C. (gas chromatograph) testing and analysis to ensure all the dip tanks were trending properly.

Outcome:

Over a predetermined period, as the tank began to transition from the original coating to the new, improvements were seen in the products.  At 50% turnover, damage to the CRS assemblies decreased from 5-15% to less than 3%. The washout was reduced from 75% of mechanisms to only 10%. 

The client was very satisfied with the results. 

Marcus Paint Company continually evaluates our client’s coating-related operations and processes as well as stays closely engaged with senior management to ensure we’re in line with the pulse and success of their business. 

That’s the Marcus Way!

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