New ceramic coating helps farm kit keep showroom sparkle

Tractor-proud farmers looking to keep their kit in sparkling condition can now order a paint-protecting film to prevent rust, scratches and UV fade for up to five years.

Unlike vinyl wrapping, the coating seals the micropores on metalwork, plastic and rubber to maintain a glossy look long after leaving the showroom.

Manufacturer Ceramic Pro uses similar products to provide corrosion protection for everything from offshore oil pipes and rigs to cars, mosaics and motorboats.

However, it reckons it could also help to protect the residual value of new tractors, keeping the bodywork in good nick as the hour clock ticks.

See also: Legal tips for buying and selling second-hand machinery

A full-coverage tractor application, which takes a week, costs roughly £3,000 and includes the chassis, wheels, back-end, cab trim and leather seat, which could prove money well spent if the company’s estimates of up to 15% higher trade-in values ring true.

However, it’s preventative rather than restorative, so won’t do much to stitch up the scars and reverse any UV fade on battle-worn equipment.

What is it?

The clear liquid nanoceramic coating forms a hard glass shield – 2.5-times stronger than paint – as it cures. This is different to a sealant or wax in that it deteriorates very slowly.

It also bonds to the target surface, penetrating and filling miniscule micropores to stop rust-causing oxygen, water, salt and fertiliser touching the paintwork or metal below.

These pores are formed by solvent gas that is released as the paint hardens, creating a labyrinth of tiny tunnels that eventually let the elements in.

This permanent adhesion can only be removed by abrasion – Ceramic Pro estimates it will last about five years – and extra layers can be applied to form a thicker skin.

Fading of the paint, plastic trim and decals is also reduced because the product contains UV filters and the increased gloss reflects the rays.

However, it’s only a few microns thick, so can still be chipped by stones or rock-hard clods.

How is it applied?

To make sure this barrier is maintained, machinery has to be extensively cleaned, degreased and polished before the coating is sprayed on by one of Ceramic Pro’s approved installers.

However, the extent to which this is done depends on whether the whole machine is being coated, or purely vulnerable areas – such as a sprayer’s booms, tractor’s chassis or the back of a fertiliser spreader. 

Once dried, oil and dirt should rinse off with relatively little encouragement as the crud can’t be embedded in the pores of the paint and areas that chip or wear can be touched-up further down the line.

The product is now available through Agco dealerships.

The company also offers products for textiles and leather, as well as a sanitation spray for cab interiors.