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O.T. Spray in bedliner business....

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Old 10-20-2003, 12:22 AM
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Got bored....thought I'd post a little info. This could get lengthy.

29scarab, you've mentioned buying a used sprayer. They are out there. But it depends on what and how you want to spray your product. There are two main processes and they take different types of equipment to spray. I would recommend purchasing a sprayer, used or new, through a franchise. This way you can get brand recognition, tech support, and training for your product.

There are two main types of liners that are sprayed. (there are other processes but these are the most popular and durable) There are Hot/High Pressure and Cold/Low Pressure. Cold/Low Pressure systems would be names like Rhino, Armor Thane, Toro and others too numerous to mention. Hot/High Pressure systems would be names like Arma Coatings, Line-X, Ameraguard, and Full Metal Jacket. (many others here too)

There are two companies that started this whole deal up in 1988. The well known "Rhino" and Arma Coatings. Rhino using the Cold method and Arma using the Hot method. ALL the companies you see today are spin-offs of these two companies. There are so many different legal battles and people leaving companies to start up there own it's not even funny. By the way, when you market a product to death it doesn't mean you have the best.

Pros and cons of the two systems...

Hot/High Pressure

Higher tensile strenght per mil of thickness.
Better looking product
Easier to maintain equipment and set up to spray
Dries VERY quickly (dries in 5-10 seconds depending on mix)
Easy to spray, user friendly. (hard product to run when spraying)
Usually a bigger mess because or more overspray
Not as soft and skid resistant as Cold
Easy to repair

Cold/Low Pressure Systems

Softer and more skid resistant
Durable
More set up time and equipment maintenance
Not attractive to look at (looks like black cottage cheese)
Doesn't dry as fast (some cold sprays cannot get wet for 24 hrs)
Easy to repair

Common myths about the two different products that need cleared up. You will hear the Cold Spray dealers saying that there's is better because it's thicker. They are actually putting down the same amount of chemical as a Hot Spray. It just a softer product than a Hot Spray, therefore needs to be thicker to get the same tensile strength. Mil for Mil the Hot will be tougher. If you have a Hot Sprayed liner sprayed as thick as a Cold Sprayed liner you would have a liner that is twice as tough as the Cold Spray. You would also have twice as much chemical.

There is money to be made doing this for a living, but don't expect to get rich. You asked about the commercial aspects of the product. This area is a vast part of the business that can be capitalized on for a good profit margin. I could go on forever on the different things that could be coated in different manufacturing processes. This is where one can make good money. If have done one or two 20k jobs for local factories with very little investment. We actually had around 3-4K invested in these jobs. This is where the money is. But the work isn't as steady in this market.

I average about 8 liners a week, but could do as many as 12. We limit our appointments to 2 a day due to other things we do for customers. With one person I couldn't see doing more than two trucks a day. With a small crew of techs, 3-4 people, you easily do 4 trucks a day if not more depending on space.

Our spray business has grown an amazing amount this year alone. We will probably do 4 times what we did last year. I do not advertise this business to death either. Just a couple of yellow page ads so one can get our phone number. The rest of the business has grown off word of mouth alone. I don't knock any of the competitors product to customers. I TRUELY feel that all of the name brand products currently on the market will do one good. Just tell my customers to find a dealer that will stand behind his work and stick with him.

My ONLY pet peeve about the business is surface prep before spraying. There are dealers (not certain brands) that feel a scotch brite pad rubbed around on the bed is enough texture to hold the polyurethane down. Not the case. The bed MUST bed HEAVILY scuffed and scratched with a grinder. The entire bed. If your dealer is promising you a liner in 2 hours or less, tell him to take his time and do it right. I tell my customers it will take me as long as it takes me to do it right....I don't like doing them twice. A customer came in last week with a competitors liner in his truck wanting me to do some work for him. I peeled back the edge of his liner abou 1/2 inch and showed him the nice shiny paint that was still under his $400 liner. I then showed him a truck we had just prepped and was getting ready to spray. He was not happy. You can't peel back the edge of one that is prepped properly.

29Scarab...you may want to call me. Let me know if you want my #.

Buck

Last edited by buck183; 10-20-2003 at 12:32 AM.
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Old 10-20-2003, 01:14 AM
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Buck also Rhino'ed his wood but in his haste he used the hot process and well lets just say the things people do Hey buck with 4 times the bus, I hope that means that you will be at LOTO next year with 4 times the boat
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Old 10-20-2003, 05:48 AM
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TTT,


Buck,

Very informative. Thanks for taking the time!
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Old 10-20-2003, 09:20 AM
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Jon....I was hoping to bring 4 times the women. Or maybe 4 times the woman? Hell, I dunno.

29scarab...let me know if you want to know anything else.

Buck
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Old 10-20-2003, 09:42 AM
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be nice?!?! awe come on...you take the fun out of everything!

Anyway i had the Line-x stuff in my dually and my buddy Karl had the Rino stuff in his Dodge.....i totaly like the Hot Line-x stuff better personaly. Buck you said in the pro/con list that the hot is not as soft and skid resistant as cold.....i beg to differ. Well in my case anyway the line-x had way softer and more skid resistance then the Rino stuff. I dont know if maybe they did the Rino stuff wrong but it looked all shiny like fresh water on a hood of a car. Maybe not that bad but its the only thing i could think of to compare it to. If you put anything plastic or what not in the bed it woudl be all over the place. And it scratched bad! We had a long block in the bed of the dodge once. On a cradle and it slid across the bed....left scratches worse then a key job on a fresh paint job!!! My line-x took a huge beating......had my snowmobile in the bed with a studed track (244 if i remember correctly) anyway i drove the sled off the bed and jumped it tot he ground instead of taking the ramps out......theres was minimal damage to the liner...just surface scratches.....like if someone tto their nail to a candle and scratched the surface! And thats with 1" studs!! So if i was to do it again with a liner i woudl definatly go with the Hot spray setup......maybe as you said they didnt prep my buddys bed the right way but the material that was on there just didnt do it for me on the cold stuff.....
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Old 10-20-2003, 10:30 AM
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Thanks Wally!! New you were lurking somewhere!!

I'm still researching sprayers. The cost of a hot sprayer is in the 18 to 30 grand range!! Lot of cash! My buddy had started spraying liners back home before his partner ran out on him. I'm going to get some info on the sprayer he has.
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Old 10-21-2003, 10:00 AM
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Old 10-21-2003, 10:28 AM
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Has anyone tried the kind you roll on? I thought it would look like chit, but a buddy just did his truck and it came out looking awesome!
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Old 10-21-2003, 10:49 PM
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Wally,

You are correct in everything you say about the performance of a hot spray polyurethane. My intent with my response was to not come across as biased or one sided with my opinions of the two different processes. I spray hot, prefer hot, and happen to think it's the only way to go. I never know when someone else reading my responses just happens to be someone that sprays for a living. I didn't want to offend if there was. I actually don't knock the cold when going over the product with customers. Just not professional IMO. I like the product to speak for itself.

Did I mentioin I prefer the hot process?

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Old 10-22-2003, 10:23 AM
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Buck, i didnt take it as knocking the cold stuff.....just thought you may have gotten them confused or wrote it down wrong.... I too prefer the hot process after having it done and seeing the cold stuff in person on a friends truck.
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