Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

December, 2000

Highly Reflective Coatings Over Plastic

Q. I am trying to find a paint or coating or combination of primer and paint that I can use to paint the dark gun cases that I use in my basic safety classes. When I am at the range teaching the cases will warp within an hour of exposure to the sun. I think they would not get as hot and therefore not warp if they reflected the incoming solar heat. Are there such paints? Where would I get them?

A. There are coatings that have high reflectivity, such as coatings that contain aluminum pigments. You might need to do some experimentation before actually painting the boxes, as the plastic might alreay have oxidized, in which case it might be difficult to get a good bond between the primer and the plastic.

If you go to your local industrial paint center (not a hardware store) they might be able to give you an epoxy primer followed by an acrylic or polyurethane topcoat.

Again, the adhesion to the plastic will need to be checked.

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