Ingredients Matter: The Basics of Paint
Each paint that goes through our lab includes three basic building blocks.
Paint is a science of ratio. At the core paint involves three components: solvent, pigment and resin.
Each of these basic building blocks can be manipulated to create different paint varieties.
- Solvent, either water or oil, is the component in which the chemicals are dispersed. Water based paints typically dry quicker and are friendlier for the grass and environment.
- Pigment impacts the concentration of the paint. Higher pigmentation will result in a more concentrated paint. This component can be tweaked in order to create the perfect color match for specific logos or branding. Powders or colorants are what give the paint it’s pigment.
- Resin/Latex/Binder are the variables that give each paint its unique properties. For example, resin will dictate various factors like dry time and durability.
Additives can also be included in the ratio to combat issues like foam and mold or additives that impact drying times and durability.
Each paint that goes through our lab is non-hazardous and includes these basic building blocks. However, when making paint for synthetic turf and natural turf fields, there are different factors to consider.
By virtue, natural grass paint is temporary because it’s constantly being cut away by mowers. Additionally, our natural grass paints are created for a living breathing product, so we want to ensure that our ratios are healthy for the grass. Natural grass customers may want to dilute their paint 3:1, have the brightest lines in the league or use a specific striping machine. We achieve meeting these needs by considering dilution, rheology, viscosity and opacity.
- Dilution: Our natural grass paints are dense. This allows the customer to cut or dilute the paint to fit their needs. This also gives them control over how the paint will spray from the machine. No matter how they cut the paint, the mixture is formulated to be sprayed without any over-spraying effects.
- Rheology and Viscosity: This means resistance to movement, which impacts how the paint flows. We want lines to be tight even when diluted, so rheology and viscosity are tested to ensure crisp lines and hard edges are achieved when painting.
- Opacity: At the end of the day, grass is green. In order to coat the blades, quality paint and ingredients must be used to create the paint.
Synthetic turf paints are designed for two separate purposes, durability or removability. Rheology, viscosity and opacity are still important factors but are manipulated to meet a different set of needs. Unlike natural turf paints, durable synthetic paints are not intended to be diluted. Instead they’re created to be long-lasting, water resistant and quick drying.
Removable synthetic paint must include properties that can be chemically de-natured. This means that the resin component of removable paints return to its liquid state when it comes in contact with a remover solution. This allows the paint to be easily scrubbed off the field. Synthetic paints are delivered ready for use and are glossier than the matte finish you’ll find in natural paints.
At the end of the day, it’s the time in the lab and the quality of ingredients that turn the three basic building blocks into truly unique products. Stay tuned for more insights from our labs and your fields with our Ingredients Matter blog series!