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Painting Aluminium Composite Material

6 thoughts on “Painting Aluminium Composite Material”

  1. Would shellac-based primer (BIN) be suitabe for use a s a primer over Dibond–over a polyester factory finish?

    • Hello John,

      While we suspect that the adhesion would be good with the BIN Shellac based primer on the properly prepared polyester coating on Dibond ( sanded and cleaned ), we have not tested it so cannot say for sure. The other factor is that shellac is alkaline sensitive and so can be affected by the alkalinity of water borne acrylics or other alkaline compounds. We have seen that the white pigmented BIN seems to perform well with waterborne acrylic coatings over it, as it is often used as a stain blocker on house paint projects, but we have seen instances of alkaline sensitivity with plain shellac, and with the pigmented shellac ( BIN ) when used with India ink and our OPEN Acrylics. Here are some links to articles we published with some testing:

      Waterproof India Inks and Shellac Based Primers: https://justpaint.org/waterproof-india-inks-and-shellac-based-primers/
      Open Acrylics, Shellac and SID: https://justpaint.org/open-acrylics-shellac-and-sid/

      So, much will also depend on the specific media you plan to use over the BIN. If using our regular Acrylics, then we think it could work. If using India Ink or OPEN Acrylics we do not recommend using shellac based primers. Oil paints are most likely fine. If in doubt, then we recommend using the alkyd type primers or urethane primers we speak to in the article about painting on Dibond.

  2. If ACM panels are being used for an outdoor mural, primed and painted with acrylic paints, is there any need to protect it with a clear coat of any particular product to withstand the elements?

  3. I had been using a marine bonding primer in the past (that stuff is noxious!). I don’t have the space to do this now; I recently read a few established artist commentary on their use of ACM. They all simply clean the polyester coating with alcohol, light scuff of the polyester surface, another alcohol cleaning. One mentions the scraping is no different from an MDF panel, and a tape-on tape-off test didn’t pull any paint.

    I’m curious about this. I like the idea of the marine primer — but it’s pretty nasty to work with and requires active ventilation or outdoors. I also suspect the commercial brands that sell pre-gessoed ACM panels (at exorbitant prices) don’t use a marine primer. If their approach isn’t effective, it could open them to liability I’d imagine?

    • Hello Forrest,
      Thank you for your question. Several years ago we did testing of adhesion to DiBond ACM panels with polyester coatings. We found that scuffing or lightly sanding and degreasing (with alcohol) created a surface to which Heavy Body acrylics eventually adhered well. The results can be seen in the Just Paint article, “Painting on DiBond”. However if the panel is to be installed outside, a commercial exterior-grade bonding primer might be a good idea. We hope this is helpful, and if you have more questions please email us at help@goldenpaints.com.


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