Improving product flexibility to meet recognized market needs has allowed Tnemec to continually expand market share while enhancing the benefits of its product range to customers.

From classrooms to food processing plants, sports facilities and modular jail cells, improving product flexibility to meet recognized market needs has allowed Tnemec Co. Inc. to continually expand market share while enhancing the benefits of its product range to customers. Pictured is the Suffolk County Jail, Boston.
From classrooms to food processing plants, sports facilities and modular jail cells, improving product flexibility to meet recognized market needs has allowed Tnemec Co. Inc. to continually expand market share while enhancing the benefits of its product range to customers.

When its Series 83 epoxy was replaced with the new Series 84 Ceramlon ENV™, the range of interior institutional markets that this new, higher-performing coating can serve expanded dramatically.

The Series 84 modified aliphatic amine epoxy does more than improve upon its predecessor. The environmentally friendly coating more effectively meets the increasingly stringent requirements of educational, correctional and health care institutions, as well as food, beverage, and pharmaceutical processing facilities.

Recognizing the demographic issues created by the aging Baby Boomers and their children, it’s obvious that certain specific construction markets will be significantly impacted. The children of this generation will impact a scenario in which, by 2007, more than 6,000 new schools will be needed in the United States to accommodate this “Baby Boom echo.” Meanwhile, by 2005, Boomers’ prescription drug needs will require a significant increase in pharmaceutical research and production facilities. Effects of these issues are already beginning to be seen in the marketplace today.

With the broad initial acceptance Tnemec has seen from contractors, architects, engineers and facilities managers, Series 84 is destined to gain a significant share of the $180-million institutional coatings market, the $90-million food and beverage processing market, and the $200-billion pharmaceutical market.

Improved Product Features

Three benefits of the modified aliphatic amine epoxy system include its low temperature cure, improved resistance to amine blush or flattening and its low-yellowing properties. It offers a higher resistance to abrasions, staining and chemicals due to its harder, more durable high-gloss surface finish. Most stains such as grease, blood, coffee and crayon can be removed simply with soap and water.

For contractors and facilities managers, the lower VOCs in Series 84 means less solvent fumes. This durable coating can withstand repeated exposure to chemical fumes and splashing. Its high-build formula can be spray-applied up to 10 wet mils in one coat, has a rapid dry time (7.5–8.5 hours to recoat at 75°F) and has a convenient 1:1 mixing ratio. It cures down to 35°F and can be applied on concrete, concrete masonry units, and steel by spray, brush or roller. It is available in a full-color palette, and can be packaged in five-gallon pails and one-gallon cans.

Contractor Benefits, Versatility

Reducing the number of callbacks — or the need to apply additional material to correct problems — is a priority for contractors. Among its forgiving application characteristics, Series 84 virtually eliminates problems due to marginal environmental conditions, according to Chuck Ditsler, president, C. Ditsler Co., Richmond, VA, whose most common application is modular jail cells painted outside, where the product is constantly exposed to the elements during the application process.

“It’s a high-solid, high-gloss, fast curing, fast moisture-resistant epoxy material,” says Ditsler. “We found that with conventional fast-cure, low-temperature-cure epoxy products, high-humidity and/or marginal temperatures led to many problems; Series 84 has pretty much done away with those problems and concerns.”

Series 84’s fast drying, quick turnaround ability is its most significant advantage, according to Pat Murphy, partner, Design Coatings, Pittsburgh. “Contractors like the product because it dries really fast, allowing them to apply two coats the same day if they’re rushing through a project,” he says. “It also dries at low temperatures. Most epoxies on the market need 50°F to cure, but this will cure at 35°F without a third component accelerator.

“I work with a very large precaster and the dry time is really important to them because they can paint a unit in the morning, and then have the trades go into the prison cells in the afternoon to put light fixtures in, etc.,” explains Murphy. “When we do a weekend retrofit project at a food plant, for example, we need the coating to dry quickly so that by Monday, the food plant employees can start up again. Also [with Series 84], contractors can achieve a high film build, which allows them to apply one finish coat.”

Most important to Ditsler is the epoxy’s rapid cure response or moisture resistance time to avoid an amine blush, which he said would flatten the appearance or produce an inconsistent gloss due to the climatic conditions.

Ditsler says Series 84 offers versatility, a seamless tile-like finish and terrific stain-resistance in conjunction with various cleaning agents. An easily cleaned hygienic environment is especially important for jail cells, according to Ditsler, which are actually bathrooms/living quarters.

“Series 84 has higher solids and significantly lower VOCs, lower odor, and less solvent fumes than previously used coatings,” says Ditsler, who in the past used other coatings made specifically for modular jail cells. “It’s very resistant to physical abuse, which I think is a very strong attribute for the correction facilities market or for any environment where you want to use a glazed finish or a seamless epoxy system. It has significantly lower yellowing properties, which means less touch-ups are required, and its 1:1 mix ratio minimizes mixing errors.”

Murphy says his Series 84 applications include prisons, schools, swimming facilities and food processing plants, such as Perdue Farms and Tyson Foods Inc., where a very durable coating within the food preparation areas is needed. “It has excellent hardness, impact and abrasion resistance,” says Murphy. “And in food plants, it seems to hold up really well under hot water cleaning with 160°F–180°F temperatures.”

Architect, Engineer, Administrator Benefits

Benefits of the series to architects and engineers include: compliance with VOC regulations; chemical crosslinking that creates a ceramic-like finish; excellent chemical resistance and adhesion, and superior resistance to graffiti; and dramatically differentiated performance data to fulfill the needs of the most demanding specifier.

For facilities administrators, Series 84 offers a hard, durable and clean, glossy finish; the ability to remove most graffiti and withstand daily washdowns; curing ability; high film-build formula; abrasion-resistance and easy maintenance.

Established in 1921, Tnemec is one of the largest privately held coating companies in the United States, specializing in industrial coatings for new construction and maintenance. Tnemec produces approximately 120 architectural and industrial coatings products used in a range of protective applications for steel, concrete, and other substrates.

Tnemec’s product line provides coating protection for a number of different industries including food and beverage processing, water and wastewater processing, power generation, pulp and paper, pharmaceutical and biotech, industrial process manufacturing and water tanks.

Headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., Tnemec has distribution facilities in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Indianapolis, New Orleans, Phoenix, Seattle, St. Louis, and Compton, CA. Manufacturing facilities are located in Kansas City and Baltimore. In addition, Tnemec has technical representatives in Canada, the Czech Republic, the Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico.

Sidebar: Color Remains a Key in Eye of the Consumer

Benjamin Moore & Co. and other architectural-paint companies are investing heavily in programs that help the consumer visualize color as it will appear when applied to a home exterior or an individual interior room.

Benjamin Moore has rolled out “Color Preview+,” an in-store color system that provides a virtual look at how a color will appear when applied to a surface in the actual setting. The system, two years in the making, consists of a new range of colors and the in-store viewing system.

The company says its color experts “went back to square one in their color thinking.” They came up with 16 “families of pure color” arranged on a large grid, with in-between shades radiating out in all directions. The final result was a Year 2000 palette of more than 1,400 colors, sorted into groups of “simple” and “complex” colors.

The Color Preview system allows customers to experience color selection “in a whole new interactive way,” the company says. The Color Preview Studio features the “3-D Room With a View,” a simulated 8-by-8-foot room environment where the user can insert large samples of colors into the room’s “walls” to provide a virtual preview of the finished paint job. The system includes other capabilities such as “real light,” which portrays the room in natural daylight that can be combined with home lighting. The “Trim Chips+” program allows visualization of trim colors.

In a similar vein, The Sherwin-Williams Co.’s Martin Senour and Pratt & Lambert paint divisions recently launched “virtual” decorating capabilities for visitors to the and Web sites. The sites allow visitors to preview paint colors and virtually “paint” rooms.

“This innovative site won’t actually paint a room, but it does the next best thing,” Martin Senour said in announcing the launch of the interactive Palette Match tool. The site allows visitors to apply paint to a “virtual” room or home exterior, print out information on the colors selected and obtain information on the nearest Martin Senour dealer.

The Pratt & Lambert site allows visitors to examine and “paint” several rooms and order a “Personal Expressions Portfolio” that is mailed at the visitor’s request. The portfolio contains the selected color chips, a digital printout of a room in the color selected, information on the nearest Pratt & Lambert dealer, and a discount on any paint purchase.

ICI’s Dulux paint brand offers also offer this sort of online “point and paint” capability. The Dulux “Color Schemer” allows the visitor to the Dulux site to choose from various room styles and apply different color schemes by clicking on the adjacent color swatches. The color scheme of the room then changes, based on the selections. The products and colors are listed underneath each picture.

Sherwin-Williams Paint Stores Group, meanwhile, recently introduced a color-software program, “Painting Images,” aimed at the consumer, professional and contractor markets. The program is described as a color simulator in which the user employs “point and click” tools to “apply” more than 500 exterior colors to a digitized image of the actual home or building to be painted. The “painted” images can then be saved or printed in photo quality. The technology allows the user to change the color scheme — body, trim and accent areas — by pointing and clicking on different colors.