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Zero Rust Surface Preperation

zero rust gallon click here to purchase zero rust
  • Single-package, air-dried, direct-to metal
  • High solids, low VOC's
  • No lead, no isocyanates
  • Topcoats are optional
  • Easy to apply over fully or marginally prepared surfaces
  • Does not require sandblasting
  • Needs only a scuff sanding to recoat or repair

Zero Rust is a phenolic-modified alkyd coating which controls rust and corrosion by putting down an impermeable barrier at the steel level. Zero Rust has two superior traits: (1) It provides maximum adhesion to steel -this is called chemical affinity. (2) Its dielectric ability is extraordinary. Steel is isolated from the electrolysis process which converts steel to rust. (In laymen's terms, this means that if you can starve the oxygen from the substrate, oxidation cannot occur.)

Zero Rust exceeded 2000 hours at 3.5 mils d.f.t. (dry film thickness) in the ASTM-Bl17 salt spray tests. This was previously unheard of in an air-dry coating.

The effectiveness of Zero Rust on bare steel surfaces is optimized at 3.0 to 3.5 mils dry film thickness over profile. Zero Rust should provide five years of protection for every 3 mils of d.f.t..

Thoroughly clean all surfaces of any dirt, oil, grease, silicone, and any other contaminants. Remove all loose rust. As with any paint product, a direct relationship exists between surface preparation and product performance.

New steel (mill scale): Remove mill scale before applying Zero Rust. Any mill scale left intact will become the weak link in the system; then, if the Zero Rust film should break, rust will move sideways between the mill scale and substrate.

Rusty surfaces: Work down rusty surfaces with two goals in mind: (1) Remove all loose scale and powdery rust. Minimizing air entrapment in the substrate is the key. Leave no oxygen behind to continue the rusting process. (2) Remove as much pitting as possible. The smoother the surface and the tighter the remaining rust, the less product you will need to span the highs and lows to achieve the 3.0 to 3.5 mil coverage.

Partially rusted, partially painted surfaces: When repairing a painted surface that has deteriorated, total removal of old paint is preferred. When this is not feasible, treat as you would mill scale from the standpoint that the old paint becomes the weak link in the system the cleaner and tighter the surface, the better the resultant paint job. Pay particular attention to paint edges that lift and curl. For best results, use a rotary sander to feather out exposed steel to adhering paint edges.  

Galvanized steel: For aged, rough galvanized steel, Zero Rust will bond with the addition of either one teaspoon of dry Portland cement or half a teaspoon of high-calcium hydrated lime per gallon of Zero Rust.

For new galvanized steel, use a vinyl wash .primer before applying Zero Rust. The dry mil thickness of the primer should not exceed 1/2 mil.

Application with airless spray equipment requires no thinning and can be done directly from the can.

Because Zero Rust is heavy bodied, thinning is required for siphon gun application. A reduction of 15-20% with xylene is typical. Recommended thinners are xylene, lacquer thinner, acetone, and acrylic enamel reducer. Do not use mineral spirits or VMP Naptha for thinning. Application with airless spray equipment requires no thinning and can be done directly from the can. (A thinner may be required at temperatures below 60 degrees.) When using a brush or roller, thin to suit.

Zero rust meets the current Volatile Organic Compounds (VOG) limits for architectural coatings (AIM), as published by EPA on 9/11/98. For those customers who fall under the AIM category, thinning must be done with an EPA-approved exempt solvent, such as Acetone or Oxsol 100.

Mix well before using. Apply with spray, brush, or roller. Zero Rust is a high-solids product with 54% solids by volume. This means that 2 mils of wet film yields 1 mil of dry film after solvent evaporation. If thinned before applying, additional wet film thickness must be applied.

For best results apply a minimum of two coats, using a crisscross pattern from one coat to the next to help preclude holidays (pin holes) and thin spots. The first coat should be about 3 mils wet (1.5 mils dry). To assure adequate coverage, an easy visual barometer is to use two dissimilar colors for the first and second coats-i.e., a coat of red oxide followed by enough of the final color to hide the red oxide. Allow adequate time between coats for flash off; 20 to 30 minutes is typical. NOTE: Red oxide and black are the best for sealing. We recommend using either of these colors as the first coat.
Do not apply too heavily, and allow adequate flash off time between coats. (20 to 30 minutes is the minimum flash off time between coats.)

This is extremely important Because Zero Rust is formulated to be impermeable to oxidation, the surface of the film starts closing when the solvents start flashing off. This impedes the migration of solvents from the interior of the film. When a thick coat is applied, or if adequate time is not allowed between coats, the paint takes much longer to dry.

When closing bulk containers for later use, pour a 1/4" layer of thinner on top of the Zero Rust before closing the lid, this will stop skin from forming during storage.
There is a possibility of color chalking or fading on exterior applications. If gloss and long-term color retention are important, we recommend top coating with our Crystal Coat™, which is a non-yellowing clear acrylic topcoat that is formulated for optimum ultraviolet screening and gloss retention with exceptional film clarity.

NOTE: Zero Rust is not recommended for submersion applications.

Zero Rust dries to touch in 30 minutes and is tack free within one hour, depending on the relative humidity and temperature. Drying time can also be affected by film thickness, flash off time between coats, amount of thinning, air movement and temperature.

Zero Rust can withstand intermittent temperatures of 250-300° before the resin starts baking out. Heat resistance will vary by color.

Use methyl ethyl ketone (MEK), xylene or lacquer thinner for clean up. Dispose of wastes and residue in accordance with regulations applicable to that are of use.

288 square feet per gallon for recommended 3 mils (.003 inch) d.t.t..

12 oz. aerosols, quarts, gallons, and 5 gallon pails

black, white, gray, red oxide, "cat" yellow, green, tan, blue, safety yellow, & safety red

V.O.C.: 3.3 Ibs / gallon; 398 grams/liter Weight per gallon: 10.6 Ibs (± .2 Ibs) Viscosity: 72 -80 Ku's Non-volatiles by volume: 53.6% Non-volatiles by weight: 68.3%

Commercial topcoats may be applied within 24 hours or after solvents have evaporated. Zero Rust is compatible with a wide variety of commercial topcoats. As it is impossible to cover all topcoats or topcoat combinations here, you will need to do test panels to determine compatibility and the dry time window for your selected topcoat/topcoats.
Two-component automotive urethanes that are acetone-free and contain high solids can be used successfully. Urethanes that contain acetones, however, make top coating air dry finishes more difficult. Acetone is now V.O.C. exempt and is increasingly being used in urethanes. Because acetone is an aggressive paint stripper, it can soften and wrinkle or lift the undercoat, thus shortening the lift-free window. More precise timing is required when top coating with low viscosity urethanes that contain acetone or that are thinned with acetone. A 4 mil wet film of Zero Rust can be top coated within three to six hours with minimal solvent trap problems. If you cannot apply the topcoat within this time frame, it is advisable to wait 24 hours before top coating. Additionally, applying a light bridge coat of the urethane before the flood coat will help stop solvent dive-in, which can aggravate lifting.
Crystal Coat is a non-yellowing, clear acrylic topcoat for use as a color stabilizer over ZeroRust. It is formulated for optimum ultraviolet screening and gloss retention with exceptional film clarity. Cured films have excellent resistance to mineral acids and alkaline materials.

Crystal Coat may be used to resurface and brighten properly de-chalked but otherwise sound surfaces. Other uses include oxidation protection for nonferrous metals; i.e., brass, bronze, aluminum, copper, and chrome.

Crystal Coat is sold only in Aerosol Cans -- click here to order.