Laser processing of CDC-coated components

Decoating: Gentle, selective removal of the cathodic dip coating for functional and decorative purposes as well as for marking.

Laser-based removal of the cathodic dip coating: Process

Organic layers such as CDC can be removed using laser processing – both on entire areas and selectively. It is possible to remove layers completely (down to the substrate) or to simply remove individual functional coatings layer by layer (e.g. down to the primer). The surface layer material is usually vaporised (sublimed) directly from its solid state. The cathodic dip-coated component that requires stripping is not damaged by careful laser removal. High-precision laser processing makes the complex, unsafe procedure of locally masking areas that are to remain uncoated no longer necessary.
Cathodic dip-coated components can be labelled and provided with a logo, a marking or a contact point by simply removing the uppermost layer using laser technology. The laser beam removes the surface layer selectively and with high contour accuracy without damaging the base material below it. Laser processing can be carried out in the form of dots, in lines or on entire areas.

Uncoated areas for functional and decorative reasons

For some cathodic dip coating applications, the component is not supposed to be completely painted for functional reasons. For example, when the component in question needs to remain partially conductive after CDC coating (such as to create an earthing point or for contact points and frictional connections on screws for better setting behaviour, etc.).
Other reasons for CDC-free areas can be decorative, such as for the application of logos via laser processing. By removing the black cathodic dip coating, the logo appears directly on the substrate and thus stands out from the CDC coat.

In addition, laser processing of CDC-coated components can also be useful for labelling and marking. For instance, direct marking as is frequently required in the automotive industry (e.g. barcodes for traceability, but also for marking part numbers to facilitate process control).

Laser removal of the cathodic dip coating: Advantages

The laser processing of cathodic dip-coated components is a gentle and efficient method to selectively remove either certain spots or whole areas of coating. The method completely avoids the high error and rejection rates experienced with other methods, such as masking or the use of stoppers, which often lead to defective coatings due to detachment or infiltration. Furthermore, the method eliminates the handling work of masking and reworking each component. The CDC process and subsequent removal of the paint layer does not damage the phosphate layer.

Laser processing makes it possible to remove the cathodic dip-coated layer accurately and repeatedly, even for complex components, recesses or interiors as well as on uneven surfaces. The versatile, flexible material removal process enables a wide range of filigree contours, lettering and markings such as logos, barcodes and item numbers to name but a few.

Further information

  1. Gentle and efficient method to selectively remove cathodic dip coating
  2. The method avoids the high error and rejection rates experienced with other methods, such as masking or the use of stoppers, which often lead to defective coatings due to detachment or infiltration.
  3. Laser processing makes it possible to remove the cathodic dip-coated layer accurately and repeatedly, even for complex components, recesses or interiors as well as on uneven surfaces, but areas have to allow direct light incedence (for complex components, feasibility is individually tested).
  4. Less handling work of masking, srewing and reworking each component.
  5. No pre- or after-treatment necessary.
  6. Laser processing is 100% automatic
  7. Removal of CDC-layer with laser can be carried out in the form of dots, in lines or on entire areas or on structured surfaces.
  8. Up to a certain degree processing can be carried out on plain and slanting surfaces or even for complex components, recesses or interiors as well as on uneven surfaces (feasibility to be checked individually).
  9. Filigree contours, lettering and markings such as logos, barcodes and item numbers can be lasered.
  10. Very accurate outlines
  11. Clean sublimation of coating produces accurate outlines free of burrs
  12. Accurate laser treatment enables more filigree structures and contours as masking methods
  13. Exact repeatbility
  14. Small lot sizes possible
  15. Versatile and flexible method for marking and lettering
  16. Decoated areas can be exactly defined with CAD-data
  17. Movements of laser can be freely programmed
  18. Individual masking of each part possible
  19. Laser works contactless and wear-free as well as gentle and without thermic strain

Shadowing can reduce oder even prevent the laser output. Areas to be treated with the laser process have to be freely accessible. Feasibility of laser precessing will be individually testesd, especially for complex components.

  • direct marking for automotive industry (e.g. barcodes for traceability, marking part numbers to facilitate process control)
  • to create an earthing point, i.e. for conductiveness (contact points)
  • for better setting behaviour (frictional connections on screws)
  • coating-free areas for sealing, i.e. on steel
  • to create coating-free joints for further process steps such as adherence, joining, assembling

Henrik Rein

Phone: +49-2663-9415-11
Fax: +49-2663-2717-6
E-Mail: 

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