Accuride Corporation announced Tuesday the introduction of a new three-phase coating process called Steel Armor for its commercial vehicle steel wheels.
The company says the process enhances corrosion-fighting properties that extend steel wheel service life by up to two years compared to standard coatings currently in use in the industry.
“Corrosion continues to be a multi-billion-dollar problem for fleet operations,” says Rick Dauch, Accuride President and CEO. “Steel Armor’s…premium rust protection leap-frogs other wheel coatings with its ability to dramatically reduce fleet maintenance costs.”
The new Steel Armor powder coating technology employs a proprietary protection process that improves the look and life of steel wheels, Dauch says, adding Steel Armor can save fleets upwards of $630 per truck by deferring wheel refinishing costs.
Craig Kessler, Accuride Vice President/Engineering, says Steel Armor’s sharp-edge protection provides reduced corrosion on wheel edges, where rust tends to form first, including flanges, hand holes, bolt holes and hub holes on stud- and hub-piloted steel wheels.
Kessler says Steel Armor inhibits the growth of corrosion by blocking rust at the point of entry when gouges, chips, scrapes and scratches expose the metal.
In testing, Accuride says it exposed Steel Armor coasted wheels to a broad range of corrosion performance tests that eclipsed traditional industry testing standards, completing 12 independently performed tests in all. These included industry-standard salt spray and chip resistance tests, plus exacting cyclic corrosion testing methods commonly used in the automotive industry that are better able to determine product performance in strenuous road and climate conditions, such as UV transmission and Xenon testing.
Accuride says it will convert to 100 percent steel powder coated wheels in early 2014, with Steel Armor becoming the company’s standard going forward. There will be no additional up-charge for Steel Armor coated wheels, the company said Tuesday.
Steel Armor coated wheels will be available in January.