Corrosion protection begins at the drawing board, and regardless of what protection system is specified, it must be factored into the product's design. Similarly, all corrosion protection systems require certain design details and proper planning to ensure the highest quality coating. For hot-dip galvanizing, a total immersion process in molten zinc, the design engineer will want to ensure all pieces are fabricated suitably for the process. Most design principles necessary for success throughout the galvanizing process are easily and readily followed, and in most cases, ensure maximum corrosion protection. Incorporating these design practices along with those listed in ASTM A 385 Practice for Providing High Quality Zinc Coatings (Hot-Dip), will not only produce optimum quality galvanized coatings, but also help reduce costs and improve turnaround times.
One key to providing the best design for the hot-dip galvanizing process is communication between the architect, engineer, fabricator and galvanizer. Opening the lines of communication early in the design process can eliminate potential costly pitfalls later in the process. A few discussion topics good to cover while the project is being designed include:
• Steel Chemistry and Surface Condition
• Size & Shape
• Process Temperature/Heat
• Venting & Drainage
• Threaded Parts/Connections
• Post Galvanizing Design/Use
Understanding these aspects of the galvanizing process and how they can affect the coating and finished product's outcome will help ensure everyone's expectations are met.