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Metal Finishing - Powder Coating and Painting




I'm new to the forum as a user but have frequently visited the site for useful info. Great site!

My question to anyone "out there" is: Is anyone involved in QS9000 for metal finishing? Example: Powder Coating or Painting.

I'm new to QS and have read all the manuals and have found that much of the material is hard to relate to metal finishing. SPC would be a good example. Any help would be appreciated.

Al Dyer


Glad you joined the forum. Are there any other specific areas of QS-9000 that you could point out that are hard to relate?

Maybe some examples?



In powder coating you basically have two outputs of the coating process. One is coating thickness and the other coating cure. Thickness is verified by using a mil thickness gauge and cure is confirmed by doing MEK tests. The overall powder coating process is quite simple and variance of the ouputs are nil. Maybe I'm making this harder than it really needs to be. It just seems like much of our documentation is redundant in the aspect of our processes actually changing to the point of producing a poor product. QS9000 compliance for a powder coating operation appears to be very simple - I just don't want to overlook anything. We are only QS compliant at this point, as this is all our customer requires. I can forsee in the future that our own management will want to become registered and when that happens I don't want to be blind-sided by anything.


We are also in the Metal Finishing Industry.
We are currently going for QS 9000 certification. You will have to meet 18 of the 20 sections plus customer specific section II. You purchase chemicals and powder dont you? So you need an approved supplier list. You have a business, you will need a business plan. You use gages to measure coating thickness, you will need a calibration control system. You will need to run a gage R&R on your gages. You will have to prove capability by using the coating thickness measurements for cPk. You will eed a continuos improvement plan, with documented proof. You will need a Quality Manual and Procedures Manual.... need I say more, the list goes on and on.. good luck, buy the 7 manuals from the AIAG if you dont already have them and go at it. Hope this helped.


Great! I'm glad I met someone in the industry.

We already have a quality system in place including a Quality Manual, Procedures, Work Instructions, Calibration Control etc in accordance with QS9000. When you say we have to only meet 18 of the 20 elements, which two don't we have to abide by? In our Quality Manual we currently conform to 19 of the 20 elements with the exception of Element 4.4 (Design Control). Which other element am I missing? You do bring up a good point about the customer specific section II. I will look into that.

We currently do monthly Capability Studies. The studies consist of doing mil thickness tests and MEK cure tests on 30 consecutive parts as they come off the line. What does your procedure state?

Our quality system was designed by someone with no quality experience at all. I must say though he's done a pretty good job. I'm a Design Engineer just recently transformed into a QC guy. In my previous position with another company I did go through ISO 9001 registration. As a Design Engineer my responsibilities were mainly focused on element 4.4. But I did go through all the paperwork and audits and have an understanding of that aspect. I have read, re-read and re-read again the seven manuals (hence the blood shot eyes on my original posting!).

If you would be willing, I'd be interested in discussing and comparing various procedures and policies with you.


Willy, glad to meet you. The other element that we are not required is 4.19 servicing, because we do not service in the field. It sounds like to me that you have a great start on meeting the QS requirements. You asked about SPC. Do you have a pretreatment System? if so we monitor temp, concentration, Ph, and soil load. We transfer the daily readings to a moving range chart and watch it for trends to reduce varability.

Also, you will need to have a continuous reduction plan. We accomplish this by monitoring PPM of rejects using a pareto chart. This allows us to focus on the largest reject factor and not the trivial few. Graph your success over time and report it to upper management.

For now I will have to work with you through this forum, we are having trouble sending emails to the outside, they dont always go out.
Hope this helps!

This forum has helped me through the task of bringing QS to our facility, and Im sure it will for you also.

Some general comments...

I've worked in plating and commercial heat treating and successfully applied ISO/QS to commercial service companies in metal working. I think the key in applying the standards is defining your standard "product" provide a service to a customer's supplied part. Your product is your specific operation (e.g. "coating", "plating", "heat treat"). ISO/QS in these industries is a bit different than creative!

As to the sections that wouldn't apply to most heat treaters and platers (painters too!), that would be section 4 (design) and section 19 (service).
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