I really enjoy powder coating. It works great with small objects that can fit in a toaster oven, but what about coating larger objects or even furniture? Unfortunately, a full-sized powder coating oven big enough to fit those is crazy expensive – we’re talking thousands of dollars.
Powder coating is such a fascinating process. You take a powder that is electrostatically charged, and you spray it onto whatever object you want to coat. The powder sticks onto the surface, kind of like magnets. Then, you heat cure the coating by baking it in an oven. The heat fuses all of that powder into a smooth, durable, uniform finish.
So I had an idea – what if I could build my own DIY powder coating oven on the cheap? That way I could powder coat larger parts for future projects. I did some research and came up with a plan. In this post, I’ll walk you through how I built my own powder coating oven and share what I learned along the way!
- Building the Infrared Heater Components
- Building the Rolling Stand
- Assembly and Powder Coating
- Next Steps
The key to a powder coating oven is having a heat source that can get up to about 400°F. I found some inexpensive infrared heat lamps on Amazon that could work. They come fully assembled though, so I’d have to do that part myself.
I carefully wired up each infrared tube heater, making sure not to break the glass. I mounted the heaters onto metal brackets I could attach to my oven stand. Having them on brackets means I can angle and adjust them as needed to aim the heat where I want it.
Wiring up these heaters was a bit tricky. At first I just connected both heaters together to the same power cord. But when I tested it, it tripped the 20 amp circuit breaker in my shop! These heaters draw a lot of power. So I re-wired them separately to individual heavy duty extension cords. Now I can run each lamp on a different circuit.
With the heaters ready, next I had to build something to mount them on. I envisioned a rolling stand with an upright support and a horizontal cross-arm I could mount the lamps to.
I wanted something adjustable so I could aim the heat at different angles and heights as needed. So the cross-arm needed to pivot. I used some steel tube scraps from a previous project to weld together the stand components.
The base is welded from curved steel tubes left over from some benches I made. The curves actually work great since there’s space to roll up to the oven between them. I attached heavy-duty casters to the base so I can easily move the oven around.
For the vertical support, I welded steel tubing to the center of the base. The cross-arm is a bar with holes drilled in each end and the center. It pivots around the vertical support rod using a welded captive nut and a bolt. This lets me lock it in place at any angle.
I really wanted to powder coat the stand itself, so it was time to give the heaters a try. I fully coated the stand with blue powder and slowly used the heaters to cure the stand in sections until it was fully cured. I was super impressed with how well it worked!
With the stand fully painted, it was time to attach each heater to an end of the stands arms. Once fully assembled, the heaters could easily be positioned and locked at various angles to help easily cure a large powder coated object.
Now I want to start powder coating some bigger projects using my new DIY oven. Let me know if you have ideas for what I should try coating first!
Eventually I could see adding more heaters for more power, or building modular oven boxes around the lamps to help hold heat in. But for now, I have a solid DIY powder coating curing stand to start practicing with!
I hope you enjoyed following along with this project. Let me know if you decide to try making your own powder coating oven too! I’m excited to keep learning and improving my powder coating skills.
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- MIG welder *
- Welding mask (auto darkening)
- Welding gloves
- Welding magnet
- Angle grinder *
- Cut off wheels
- Metal cutting bandsaw *
- 10″ Evolution Miter Saw for cutting Steel, Aluminum, Wood, etc.
- Soldering iron
- Third hand kit
- Wire strippers (not the ones I have, but good ones)
- Thin solder
- Anti static mat
- Fiskars cutting mat
- Plastic parts cabinet (24 drawer)
- Plastic parts cabinet (64 drawer)