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The PermaStar® Process...

Application
Advantages
Market Potential
Environmental Testing
PermaStar® Patent Protection
Changing Market




Application
Application of the PermaStar® finish consists of a patented, three-step process:

  • First a primer paint is applied as a base coat.
  • Second the substrate is placed into a Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) vacuum chamber where our patented PermaStar® multi-step process is applied. In the chamber multiple layers of metals are applied to create a mirror-like finish that has all the quality of traditional show chrome without the use of hexavalent or trivalent chrome that pollute the environment.
  • Finally, a clear coat is applied to protect and seal the finish.
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Advantages
The versatility of the PermaStar® process allows it to be used with many different substrates. Different top clear coats can also be used to provide specific desirable properties, such as increased scratch resistance or more surface flexibility, to meet the special requirements of any part. The many advantages of the PermaStar® process include:

  • Up to a 75% reduction in coating costs over traditional chroming methods.
  • Uses no hazardous materials and produces no hazardous by-products when used with powder coatings, nearly eliminating waste management costs.
  • Requires very little to no mechanical polishing of the substrate, thereby reducing material costs and costs associated with labor and disposal of the hazardous waste residue from abrasives.
  • Outlasts traditional chrome in all environmental testing performed, thereby reducing replacement costs.
  • The color of the chrome coating can be changed inside the chamber (e.g., from traditional silver, to black, to chestnut and back to silver) with only the push of a button, thereby increasing line production and versatility.
  • Weighs up to 90% less than traditional chrome, an automotive wheel may have up to 2.5lbs. of chrome.
  • PermaStar® chrome can also be painted using traditional paint and graphics methods.
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Market Potential
The potential applications of the PermaStar® process are very broad, expanding into many industries and applications:
  • Automotive vehicles: passenger cars and light trucks
  • Commercial Vehicles: medium and heavy duty trucks
  • Specialty Vehicles: Emergency vehicles, heavy equipment, public transportation and passenger trains
  • Recreational Vehicles: ATV's, motorcycles, motor homes, trailers and snowmobiles
  • Other Vehicles: golf carts, tour carts, utility carts and vending carts
  • Marine: personal water craft, yachts, commercial water craft, public ferries, boat trailers and house boats
  • Aerospace: commercial, military, passenger and space exploration
  • Furniture: office, educational, medical recreational, institutional and home
  • Appliances: washers, dryers, blenders, mixers, microwaves, ovens and refrigerators
  • Hardware: architectural, construction, commercial and residential
  • Plumbing: commercial, residential and institutional
  • Sporting Goods: equipment, practice machines and exercise equipment
  • Electronics: medical equipment, computers, printers and research equipment
  • Gaming & Vending: slot machines, digital gambling games, vending machines and ATM machines
  • Toys: games, bikes, wagons, trucks, cars and doll accessories
  • Medical: Wheel chairs, metal beds, equipment racks etc.
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Environmental Testing
The PermaStar® process has undergone an extensive regimen of environmental testing required by the automotive manufacturers for a painted wheel, rather than a chrome plated wheel. Testing for painted wheels is much more intense and generally requires a scribe mark to be inserted into the part prior to the testing.

The testing included the specifications from the primary OEM manufacturers:

  • General Motors Corporation
  • Ford Motor Company
  • The Chrysler Group of Daimler Chrysler Corporation
In each case, the PermaStar® Chrome replacement process met or exceeded the OEM's known requirements. We are proud to say that Chrysler Corporation has approved the PermaStar® process for wheels and other exterior metallic parts. (View OEM Test Matrix)

The PermaStar® process has been in use on board the USCG Cutter Barracuda, stationed in Eureka, California for more than a year and still looks as good a the day it was put into service. (See USCG on Testimonial Page)

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PermaStar® Patent Protection
Goodrich was granted a United States patent (US Patent #6,399,152)on the PermaStar® process in June of 2002. Corresponding applications were filed in Europe, Mexico, Canada and Australia to expand Goodrich's patent protection. In addition, a United States patent application covering Goodrich's novel compositions was filed in late 2004 and is currently awaiting examination.

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Changing Market
Demand for chrome coated parts was once concentrated in the North American market. However, the demand for chrome has grown not only in Europe but South America, Asia and the Middle East as well.

As we proceed into the new century, this increased demand cannot be addressed with traditional chrome, due to tightening regulations.

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