Sheffield based dp Doors and Shutters, who are currently celebrating their twentieth anniversary, recently invested £80,000 in a new in-house powder coating plant.
The firm supplies, installs and maintains a wide range of industrial doors, shutters and grilles for a variety of sectors across the whole of the UK. Founded in 1997 with just two people on the payroll and a 2,500 sq. ft. facility, the firm now has 42 employees and a 12,500 sq. ft. facility, with the new plant expected to drive more growth.
dp Doors and Shutters supplies some products from external manufacturers, but all roller shutter doors, fire shutter doors and high speed doors are manufactured in house at the firm’s factory.
And, as company Managing Director Alan Bolsover explains, it was a desire to boost manufacturing efficiency that led to investment in the powder coating plant: “We’ve always been quick and efficient when it comes to production, but have often encountered problems when we’ve sent products off for powder coating,” he says. “Firstly, you must transport your doors to the external plant, then wait for them to be coated – which can take days – and then transport them back. It seemed wasteful, time-consuming and inefficient and it was actually my 18- year old son who put together a feasibility study on getting our own facility, as part of his college engineering course. He looked at the cost to us compared to the expected returns and the numbers all added up – so we’ve gone for it!”
The new plant first puts the doors through a rigorous four-step cleaning process that removes all traces of dust, oil and dirt. This is a much more thorough process than simple hand washing and allows the coating to key to the surface very effectively. After the coating process, every door is then cured at high temperature inside the oven to ensure powder can fluidise and set, creating a smooth textured finish. The process works particularly well for aluminium products, which are notoriously difficult to powder coat and need to be incredibly clean before coating.
Alan Bolsover hopes that, as well as boosting the company’s own operations, the new plant will bring in trade from other firms: “This has been brilliant for us, it allows us to turn things around much quicker and puts us in charge of quality control,” he says. “But we’d also like other manufacturers to get in contact about powder coating – we’ve got a state of the art facility here that is bedded in and running like clockwork, so we’re open for business!”
dp DOORS AND SHUTTERS
Tel: 01142 889464