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Lippert Components Inc. has laid the groundwork for construction of a powder coating facility that will bring the more durable, eco-friendly process to the company’s recreational vehicle frame building operations in Southern California.
The new 15,000-square-foot facility, slated to break ground this summer in Rialto, Calif., will service Lippert’s four surrounding production plants, including operations run by subsidiary Zieman Manufacturing Co.
According to Jason Lippert, president and CEO of the Goshen, Ind.-based supplier, powder coating has become a standard for the company’s customers in Elkhart County.
“Powder coating has been available for some time in Elkhart County and our customers in the Southern California area have been asking for it,” Lippert said, noting companywide Lippert Components produces approximately 180,000 RV frames annually. “Right now, we’re applying a wet coat, which is basically just spraying paint over the steel frame.
“Powder coating is an electrostatic process. It gives a more uniform coating, eliminating runs while also painting the underside parts. We have four powder coating facilities in Indiana and we’ll be duplicating that process in California.”
Lippert said the approximately $1.5 million facility will be used for RV frames, along with marine and specialty trailers, and feature a 350-foot-long powder tunnel. Product will run through a four-stage process, including an aluminum oxide sand blast and ending in a high-heat oven that bakes the powder to the frame.
Lippert emphasized that the system also is environmentally clean, noting, “it’s a zero emission process.”