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February 27 - March 4, 2012

If a paint data sheet notes a required primer thickness of 125 microns, but the project specification calls for 50 microns, how is this resolved?

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Selected Answers

This matter has to be discussed in a pre-job meeting or before coating application begins. I have faced the same situation where the paint material supplied by our client and specified primer DFT is lower than minimum required in the specification. The specification is not always right and clear, sometimes, because of revision and changes in the properties of chemicals in the coating material. But the specification might be an old version. So I would suggest a meeting with the paint manufacturer's technical staff for any information required or usage of material.

From James Jeanes of Leher painting on September 16, 2013:
The contract is between the client and the contractor and can only be change by mutual agreement. Thicker coating, more coating, increased cost. The contractor should be compensated. This issue should be resolved at pre-job meeting when all parties are present and any change can be agreed to and made in writing.

From Billy Russell of D&R COATING INSPECTION on September 16, 2013:
The product data sheet is nothing but a guide, and is subject to change.  Manufactures and technical labs will write anything you want them to say in data sheets, even in the event they are contradicting each other. The specification rules over all other documents. A  product data sheet is not worth the paper it is printed on anymore.

From Tom Schwerdt of Texas Department of Transportation on September 12, 2013:
Both of the thickness requirements are badly written: They should list a DFT range, not a specific thickness. Nobody will be applying precisely 125 microns. They may be able to apply 100-150 microns.

From FRIDAY OWAJI of DELATTRE BEZONS on September 7, 2013:
This issue can be resolved in the pre-job meeting where all parties involved in the coating project will be present.

From Kumar Kolur Vadivelu of Sadara Chemical Company on March 25, 2012:
 Sometimes, the project specification is not adequate with respect to paint manufacturer's recommendation.  In this case, we can arange a meeting with client/paint manufacturer and resolve the same. My openion is we have to follow paint manufacturer's recommendation to obtain optimum coating performance.

From Karen Fischer of Amstar of WNY on March 2, 2012:
     The more important question is WHEN this discrepancy should be resolved and by whom. Ultimately, there are three players involved, all of whom may be "damaged" by not getting this resolved prior to the start of the work. The coatings manufacturer needs to insure that the product is applied per the data sheet (warranty issues); the contractor must apply the coating to insure the best possible performance required of the specifications and contract; the specifier/owner must insure the work is performed to obtain the best value and best performance. If Specifiers require a specific system, they should specify that the system is to be applied per the PDS, thus, making the PDS the controling document for mixing, application and curing/recoat. OR, there should be a statement in the contract documents that the more stringent requirements be met if there is a conflict between the contract documents and the PDS.

From mohame okaz of international co. on April 22, 2012:
     I must follow the specs, but advise the specifier.

From M Ehab of North Valley on February 29, 2012:
     Apply Data Sheet minimum DFT.

From Jay Mitchell of James Hardie Company on May 16, 2012:
     The problem as stated is not clear on whether or not the project specification called out the exact same primer as the one on the data sheet from the supplier. If only a certain type or class of primer is specified, then it would be advisable to find an alternative to the supplier's primer that would meet performance requirements at the lower film thickness. It is possible, though, that the supplier data sheet or the specification contain erroneous data for the film thickness. The only way to resolve this adequately is to obtain clarification from the supplier and specifier, confirmed in writing, including any required deviations, before proceeding with the project. Otherwise, the contractor runs the risk of paying fines for non-compliance and/or product failure.

From Erik Andreassen of CFPS on February 29, 2012:
In 40+ years of our wonderful industry, I have come across this so many times. Whilst we should, as others say, follow the specification, I question the ability sometimes of the people who specify systems without first consulting the coating suppliers.When you check specifications, they quote products but at the last resort usually cover themselves by saying all products shall be applied as per the recommendations of the coating manufacturer in use.

From Bill Patterson of Retired on March 2, 2012:
     I concur with the four answers to date, but the technical aspect they address is only ½ of the answer. The other ½ is the money. If the technical answer is 125 microns, the successful bidder will want to be paid for 250% of the original material cost, whereas, if the specification includes the proviso to comply with the manufacturer's recommendations, the owner will disagree and the spec writer will likely side with the owner.

From Mohd Irzal Ridzuan of Carigalihess Operating Company on March 15, 2012:
     Follow the specifier or the end user. With respect,  the specifier knows exactly the purpose of the specified DFT for the material.

From ROYER Jean baptiste of protective engineering on March 2, 2012:
Usually, you specify in the data sheet the optimum thickness according to the formulation. An optimum between particle size (you might have coarse micaseous iron oxide, for example) pigment, binder ratio ... all that concour to the efficiency of the coat. I think you better keep the producer data and discuss on the intermediate coat thickness.

From Jacek Bordzilowski of CES on March 5, 2012:
The primer has to be applied according to PDS recomendations. Too thin a primer coating will not ensure sufficient protective properties. In this case, the specifier should be asked to change the primer.

From James Albertoni of CA Department of Water Resources on February 27, 2012:
The best approach would be to contact the specifier and figure out if there is a specific reason for the discrepancy. Then get the coating manufacturer involved to ensure that the discrepancy will not affect the coating's performance. At the end of the day, the specifications always govern.

From Wilfred Offor of Intertek Moody on March 2, 2012:
The thickness required by the project specification governs the application of the primer thickness irrespective of the paint data sheet; that is, the contract was written without error. Unless, if the contract or the scope of work was written in error or from lack of knowledge, then the data sheet primer thickness supersedes the project specification.

From david cuthbertson of savcor on February 27, 2012:
     Generally, it is resolved  by submitting a Technical Query to the specification writer with the most recent Product Data Sheet recomendations. This should be sufficient, but the specifier may have very good reasons for the difference. So go with the specification.

From Steve Drinkell of Home on February 27, 2012:
    For best clarity, you must get both the material manufacturer and the specifier around the table. It is their responsibility to resolve specification issues.

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Tagged categories: Coating / Film thickness; Primers

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