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As pickup trucks have gained popularity, savvy shop owners have capitalized on the trend by adding spray-on bedliner businesses to their body shops.
As a body shop owner, you’re likely looking for new ways to increase the efficiency of your shop — thereby increasing your profit margin. An excellent way to do this is by adding a spray-on polyurethane bedliner business to your body shop. Spray-on polyurethane bedliners prevent damage/corrosion in pickup truck beds and can be used in commercial/industrial applications as well.
Essentially, all you need to set up your a bedliner business is a preparation area, an area to keep the equipment and chemicals, and an area to apply the polyurethane. Unlike paint, spray polyurethane application doesn’t even require a paint booth; if you’ve got approximately 350 square feet of space available in your shop (or about enough room to spray a large pickup truck), you can create a spray polyurethane application area using curtains made from inexpensive polyethylene tarps available at mass merchandisers nationwide (see spraybooth illustration). If you make it larger with taller doors/curtains, you can further increase your business by applying spray polyurethane to specialty applications, such as motor-home roofs (helps seal leaks), street sweepers (inside the hopper; prevents long-term damage, increasing vehicle service life), dump trucks and more.
In your layout, allow enough space for the equipment room (120 square feet is usually more than enough) since it needs to be located next to the application area so the line set can pass from the equipment room into the spray application area (typically through a small 1-x-1-foot trap door or port). The equipment room should contain a work bench, delivery equipment and the chemicals (see equipment room illustration).
Finally, you’ll need a good, strong source of dry air, which you probably already have in your shop. A five-horse or stronger compressor with in-line desiccant dryers or a refrigerant drier will suffice.
If you want more information on how to set up a shop for spray polyurethane running side by side with your body shop business, contact any of the more reputable spray polyurethane manufacturers for complete details.
Writers Lou Frank and Allen Warner are with Perma-Tech, Inc.
Diagrams provided by Perma-Tech, Inc.; check with other manufacturers for varying needs depending on standard equipment provided.