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Industry News from our Publication Partner - Products Finishing

PPG Foundation Donates $40,000 to NDSU Coatings and Polymeric Materials DepartmentOpen in a New Window

The PPG Foundation has donated $40,000 to the NDSU Foundation and Alumni Association to benefit the Coatings and Polymeric Materials Department at North Dakota State University to help establish and provide scholarship funding for a professional Master of Science program in color technology. According to PPG, this new program will complement the university's long-standing coatings and polymeric materials program, one of few that provides academic research and education focused on polymer organic coatings. A $30,000 PPG Foundation grant made on behalf of PPG’s science and technology function is helping to cover infrastructure, equipment, faculty and other costs related to establishing the program, and an additional $10,000 grant will establish a PPG scholarship fund for the program. Dean C. Webster, department chair, coatings and polymeric materials, says NDSU is creating the program to help address a need industrywide for trained graduates. “There is currently a need for an academic program in the U.S. offering training in color technology, because there is a great demand from employers like PPG to fill color-science roles in the paints and coatings, cosmetics, plastics and agriculture industries, to name just a few,” he says. “We are very grateful for PPG’s support in helping us establish the need across many industries for degreed color scientists, and for the grants the PPG Foundation provided to support our new program and help satisfy this need.” PPG scientists have actively served on the NDSU Coatings and Polymeric Materials Industrial Advisory Board over the years, joining other coatings industry representatives to help guide the department’s curriculum. This advisory board encouraged the addition of a color science program at NDSU, and last year, PPG members led a forum in which learning objectives for the color technology program were established. “PPG values North Dakota State University’s coatings and polymeric materials department because it helps prepare students for careers that relate directly to PPG’s business,” says Bill Eibon, PPG director of technology acquisition for automotive coatings, and an NDSU advisory board member.


The Powder Coating Research Group Expands into New LaboratoryOpen in a New Window

The Powder Coating Research Group (PCR Group), an independent research and development company, has relocated to a new facility in Columbus, Ohio on the west side of the city. The new facility boasts a 3,000-square-foot operation including an expanded processing area, two isolated spray rooms, a comprehensive testing lab and conference room. “Our new location gives us greater processing and evaluation capabilities” says senior testing manager, Nick Page. “In addition, this modern facility offers greater convenience and amenities compared to our former downtown location.” The PCR Group will host the 2017 PC Summit in October at the Columbus Westin and in the new lab. The Powder Coating Research Group provides expert consultation, research and development and coating evaluation services. They provide formulation assistance and powder sample preparation using state-of-the-art processing equipment that is scalable to production machinery. For more information, visit


Top Shops: Part Inspection Hours Per WeekOpen in a New Window

    The amount of time a shop spends inspection finished parts is usually determined by requirements from customers, or as part of certification requirements. In the latest Products Finishing Top Shops Benchmarking Survey results for electroplaters, the Top Shops spent 240 hours a week checking part quality and looking for imperfections. All other shops spent just under 33 hours per week, with the median being 80 hours per week. For more information on the 2017 Products Finishing Top Shops Benchmarking Survey, click here. 


California Platers Holding Special Legislation Day on Aug. 29Open in a New Window

The Metal Finishing Association of Southern California is holding a special Legislation Day on Aug. 29 to put pressure on politicians regarding new air quality rules that the group is calling a “witch hunt.” From the MFASC: MFASC will be having a follow up Legislation Day on Tuesday August 29, 2017. This was recently planned as an attempt to put strong pressure on our politicians in Sacramento regarding the AQMD Rule Making and Enforcement. What is currently happening in Paramount and Compton has turned into a witch hunt based on bad science and unfair regulatory enforcement, and will most likely travel quickly throughout California affecting all of us. We need every voice available to help keep the coming plating rules from putting many of us out of business in the future. If you would like to attend please contact MFASC Director, Bryan Leiker at (818) 207-1021 ASAP. The association will reimburse up to $200.00 to cover travel expenses. The schedule for the one day event in Sacramento is listed below. Thank you for supporting Metal Finishing Association of Southern California. Location: Jerry Desmond Lobby Firm, 925 L Street, Suite 175(First Floor Conference Room), Sacramento, CA 95814, 916-441-4166 Times: 8:00 am - Room Open, Coffee and Danish; 10:00 am - Prep/Handouts; 11:00 am - 3:00 pm - Group Visits at the State Capital  Meet at the Hyatt Regency Bar after for review. 


Axalta Boosts Refinish Learning, Developing OfferingsOpen in a New Window

Axalta Coating Systems, global supplier of liquid and powder coatings, announces enhanced refinish learning and development offerings available to customers in the U.S. and Canada including live virtual training classes and an enhanced Master Certification. According to the company, the new offerings strengthen Axalta’s learning and development program that offers classroom, hands-on and e-learning options. Axalta’s live virtual training, which covers the same curricula taught at Axalta’s Learning and Development Centers, is a solution for paint technicians who recognize the value of face-to-face learning, Axalta says, but are not able to travel. Over two morning sessions, a qualified refinish instructor trains participants via a live, interactive, web-based broadcast. In the afternoons, participants apply newly learned skills to a project, then upload a brief video for the instructor to review and issue a certificate of completion. Axalta’s enhanced Master Certification program enables refinish technicians who complete 100, 200, and 300-level courses in person, online, or virtually to earn a Master Certification in refinish after completing a 400-level course. 400-level courses are exclusively offered at Axalta’s Customer Experience Center located on the Hendrick Motor Sports campus in Concord, North Carolina. “Our learning and development programs are carefully designed with the participant’s experience in mind,” says Patrice Marcil, Axalta’s director of customer experience, Americas. “From a virtual course, to a program at our world-class destination like the Customer Experience Center, we are deeply committed to providing the content, delivery methods and experience that exceed the expectations of our customers.” Axalta’s Learning and Development programs are designed to improve customer performance by providing the skills and knowledge to help eliminate waste, reduce costs, keep cycle time to a minimum, and increase retention by investing in employee careers. To learn more, visit Axalta’s training page.  


TCI Powder Coatings Names Tom Hanson Architectural, Building Products Segment ManagerOpen in a New Window

TCI Powder Coatings names Tom Hanson as architectural and building products segment manager. Hanson brings over 20 years of industrial powder coating commercial experience to this position with TCI. His prior work history spans across several different disciplines such as sales and sales management, market development and general management. Most recently, Hanson held a regional sales manager position with PPG Industries. Prior to this, he worked for finishing companies Spraylat and Valspar. Hanson is a graduate of St. Cloud State University with a B.S. in Business and he is a former board member of the Powder Coating Institute (PCI). Jack Bostock, TCI’s vice president of sales and marketing, says, “Tom is a great addition and we are excited to have him join the TCI Powder Coatings team! Tom brings a new level of expertise to TCI that will help us better serve our customers and further advance our position as the premium powder coating brand in the architectural and building products segment.” For more information, visit  


Asterion Welcomes Back Doug Trageser, Southeastern U.S. Regional ManagerOpen in a New Window

Doug Trageser rejoins Asterion as the company’s Southeastern U.S. regional manager. Acknowledged as a trusted and reliable industry expert, the company says Trageser is responsible for the sales and technical service of the company’s high-performance chemistries, equipment and powder coatings in Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Georgia and South Carolina. Trageser was president of Southeastern Chemical Inc. prior to the company’s acquisition by Asterion in August 2014. A metal finishing veteran for over three decades, Trageser’s hands-on experience and knowledge of plating chemistries, equipment, powder coatings and anodizing processes span technical service, sales, manufacturing and customer support functions. Blair Vandivier, president and CEO of Asterion, says, “It is my absolute pleasure to welcome Doug back to the Asterion family. A consummate professional, Doug’s commitment to delighting customers and delivering integrated process solutions is admired by both customers and competitors throughout our surface finishing industry.”


Top Shops: Environmental Management HoursOpen in a New Window

  The Top Shops in the Products Finishing Benchmarking Survey spent 50 hours per week on managing environmental services at their shop, or more than 10 times the number of hours spent by all other shops. The top 20 percent spent a considerable more amount of time than all other shops, which averaged about 5 hours of environmental management each week. The mean was at 41 hours per week, and the median was at 20 hours. 


CenterLine Welcomes New Account ManagerOpen in a New Window

CenterLine Limited announces the addition of Kyle Smith to the position of account manager. Smith joins the team with nearly five years of sales, customer relations and weld support experience in the automotive and medical industries. As account manager, Kyle will be representing CenterLine branded products and services within the U.S. market. Prior to joining CenterLine, Smith held sales positions with OPS Solutions, RoMan Manufacturing and RoMan Engineering Services. These positions enabled him to gain experience implementing sales strategies, securing new accounts and meeting sales objectives.  During his time with RoMan Engineering Services, he was contracted for two years with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Center of Compliance to assist with new model launches.  Headquartered in Windsor, Ontario, CenterLine is a Canadian-based, privately held corporation specializing in advanced automation processes and technologies for resistance welding, metal forming and cold spray application needs. For more information, visit  


Top Shops: Tracking SoftwareOpen in a New Window

  More than 67 percent of those electroplating shops taking the Products Finishing Top Shops Benchmarking Survey use software that monitors overall process in their shop. Close behind was software that tracked quality and defects in parts at 66 percent. Tank sensors were used in 58 percent of shops. Personal devices (PDA) were used in only 26 percent of shops surveyed. For more information on the Products Finishing Tops Shops Benchmarking Survey, please click here.