Paint Gets No Respect

Firetrucks are large, complex pieces of machinery designed to do life-saving work under brutal conditions.

But the first – and possibly only – thing that the average person will ever really notice about them is that they’re red.

Coatings matter. And while those of us in the finishing industry can talk all day about why they matter from a corrosion protection perspective, it doesn’t take an expert to acknowledge that they matter aesthetically, too.

Anyone who cares about first impressions should care about coatings. So why are they the last thing on anyone’s mind?

I’ve blogged about this before: my feet are held to the fire every day by fabricators who expect me to perform miracles because they didn’t schedule adequate finishing time. 

A colleague who’s worked in the industry for 40 years recently confirmed that it’s no different in retail. People budget meticulously during the construction or manufacturing process, yet often completely overlook the costs involved in coating the parts, walls, or floors, creating unnecessary panic for themselves at the end of their projects. 

(“Paint gets no respect,” he sighed. I couldn’t agree more.)

Finally, the more I hire, the more I realize that even trade schools don’t give the finishing industry its due. Community colleges in my area churn out welders at length of day without ever telling them that all that metal needs blasting, pretreatment, and coating.

Finishers, weigh in: does your experience match mine? If so, what do we do about it?



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