Corrosion Protection

Thermal spray applications for the prevention of corrosion in the automotive and transport industry

Metal or thermal spraying is a technology that applies a variety of coating materials that protect traditionally iron and steel from corrosion by means of a barrier or a sacrificial coating.

For the automotive industry, this could be thought of to stop car bodies going rusty. Typically, for mass production, thermal spray coatings are not commonly suitable due to time and economic factors. However, cherished classic cars are often restored using metal spray to repair and protect body panels.

The beauty of thermal spray corrosion coatings for the transport industry is that the size is no limitation. For this reason, several companies use metal spray coatings to apply zinc onto truck and semi-trailer chassis components.

Railway carriages, tube train wheel-sets, freight wagons and shipping containers are all commonly metal sprayed. Even railway tracks are coated to prevent corrosion in harsh locations. Some of the historical photos and case studies will give an idea of the age and pedigree of this process.

But there are some more obscure applications. Did you know that your air conditioning radiator is commonly coated with zinc to prevent corrosion and assist with manufacturing. The same technology is used in the cooling circuits for the latest electric vehicles to keep the batteries cool.

Even manhole covers in roads can be coated with a durable, non-skid coating to help prevent skidding, especially for motorbikes approaching traffic lights or in corners.

If you have a component in a car, train or truck that goes rusty, there’s every chance that a thermal spray coating could help you out. Check out below a small list of the possible case studies and applications and get in touch if you think that we could help.

Case Studies

Flamesprayed Zinc Onto Body Panels

Metallisation Equipment Repairs Body Panels

Reason for use: The anti-corrosive properties of the metal spraying process are widely recognised in the automotive industry Download PDF Metallisation Flamespray equipment is the preferred option for classic Volkswagen specialist repairers Vanshack Ltd, to repair and protect the vehicle body panels of its Volkswagen Vanshack (VWV) customers’ cherished vehicles. Flamespray Equipment for Car Body Parts: Vanshack provides a range of services including servicing, engine rebuilds, engine re-specification, MOTs, body repairs and customisation to VWV customer’s vehicles and have recently…

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Application Data Sheets


Multivoid aluminium tubing for AC Condensers

Reason for use: Corrosion protection and brazing during assembly Download PDF Corrosion of heat exchangers for automotive air conditioning units can be a major problem. The unit is often located near the front grille of the vehicle and hence is exposed to a severely corrosive environment, with road salts, rain and high temperatures all contributing to high corrosion rates. In order to reduce the rate of corrosion, historically several methods have been tried: zinc diffusion by flux brazing, sacrificial anodes…

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Example Applications


Railway coal wagons

Reason for use: Corrosion protection and abrasion resitance Download PDF Go to the Process Page 100 tonne coal-carrying hopper wagons in New South Wales have been metal sprayed to protect against corrosive attack following the abrasive action of the coal loading and unloading processes. Corrosion protection Research into the problem determined a metal-sprayed zinc coating of 200 microns (0.008”) thickness was most suitable. The work was carried out at the works of Goninan Limited, the wagon manufacturers, using two Metallisation…

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Exhaust pipes – anti-corrosion

Reason for use: To prevent external surface corrosion Download PDF Go to the Process Page Heat resistant surfaces produced by the metal spraying process have many applications; the photograph shows a rather unusual variation of this theme. Two independent exhaust systems, fabricated from steel tube in the Ford GT.40 sports car, have been metal sprayed with 175 microns (0.007”) of aluminium using the latest Metallisation Fine spray electric arc techniques. The treatment has been found to be fully effective in…

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AC 11 Chassis Metallisation

Chassis Components

Reason for use: To provide corrosion resistance without heat distortion to irregular and large shaped chassis’. Download PDF Go to the Process Page The problem of corrosion on road vehicles is receiving ever-increasing attention and various systems are being devised to protect private cars. The specification for the treatment carried out on the chassis shown in the photograph was gritblasted followed by 100 microns (0.004”) zinc sprayed with a Metallisation gas pistol. The manufacturer’s usual decorative paint finish was then…

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