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July 15, 2021
As we all know of course nothing can completely stop something from rusting, but we can sure as hell try and prevent it! Rust is a common name for a chemical reaction that happens when iron reacts with oxygen and moisture. You can also determine if something has rusted by its color. So how long do you have before it rusts? Well, the amount of time it takes for metal to corrode depends on a few different factors such as the alloy type, wear, and tear, and even the surroundings of the metals.
Red rust- is the result of high exposure to air and moisture.
Yellow rust- is the result very high moisture content.
Black rust- is the result of oxidation in a low oxygen environment.
When I think of rust, I generally think of a reddish-brown flaky coating that can quickly cover metal if not protected properly. Depending on the environment, rust can form within hours of being exposed to air or water without warning. Luckily, some iron-based alloys like stainless steel, are known for being rust-free. When using metals to fabricate different off-road accessories, we must take multiple things into consideration. Which metals are better to use? Which one are more likely to rust? Last but definitely not least; What can be used on specific metals to protect them or slow them from rusting?
Click on the photo above to watch how fast steel can rust
Painting- Painting over the metal, leaves a protective layer of coating to help keep moisture from reaching the metal. Using this method can help slow down the rust from forming. With that being said, the paint you choose is very important and it must be able to bond to the metal before it can protect it. So, be aware of the type of paint you are looking into. We recommend a high-performance rust protective paint like RUST-OLEUM.
Powder Coating- The most popular coating used in off-road manufacturing is a dry based mixture of color, resin, and other dry chemicals. Far from standard liquid paint, powder coating is typically applied electrostatically and then cured under heat. This creates a hard finish that is tougher than the standard liquid paint, making the coating more powerful and leaving it resistant to chipping and becoming scratched. We believe that powder coating is one of the more efficient way to protect products from rusting.
Properly Stored- In a perfect world, being able to store metal in an air-and water-tight environment would be ideal. However even the air we breathe contains moisture, which then mixes with the humidity and reacts negativity with the iron leaving the metal to rust. (We just can’t win.) For most of our raw non stainless and aluminum products, we treat them just like a cast iron pan, sometimes you just have to oil them up.
Most steel is extremely susceptible to moisture, leaving it easily to rust. When fabricating off-road accessories such as ditch light brackets, CB antenna mounts and much more, we have quickly learned using stainless steel is our best option for those items. Stainless steel is an iron-based alloy, which makes it rust resilient when exploring different climate changes. We of course, cannot fabricate all our products out of stainless steel. Therefore, we have chosen metals such as 1/8th cold rolled steel, 3/16th PNO (Pickled and Oiled) and others that need a little extra protection after being processed. These metals are especially vulnerable in snow, sand, and rain if not protected correctly. For that, we have chosen to powder coat them with the most premium powder coat on the market ensuring that our products stay safe and last longer in those high rust environments.
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