MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE BARSTOW, Calif. --
Cost Work Center 749 aboard Maintenance Center Barstow, located on the Yermo Annex of Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow, has recently acquired a new system to help train and enhance employees’ painting abilities.
The Spray Technique Analysis and Research for Defense Program began in 1994 and focused on providing private small businesses, such as auto body shops and community colleges, with a spray paint training program, according to Mike Jackson, supervisor at CWC-749. STAR4D improved efficiency by as much as 30 percent and was able to increase transfer efficiency by nearly the same percentage.
According to an article written by Ray Davidson, Marine Corps Logistics Command Albany, Ga., the program is being utilized to apply the Chemical Agent Resistant Coating required on all combat, combat support and combat service support equipment. CARC is a polyurethane paint that provides superior durability, extends service life for military vehicles and equipment, provides surfaces with superior resistance to chemical warfare agent penetration and greatly simplifies the process of decontaminating equipment when necessary.
The STAR4D website (www.star4d.org) states that the program focuses on overall knowledge of the entire painting process and improving spray techniques. With STAR4D, employees are able to reduce the amount of harmful volatile organic compounds being released into the environment, the amount of paint wasted during application and the time spent in the paint booth.
In addition, the site mentions that the program also teaches effective spraying of specific components, equipment, vehicles and surfaces to maximize coating efficiency and minimize environmental pollution. The primary goals of the program are to identify the concerns of the military refinishing industry and to provide spray technicians with advanced tools and training that will enable them to use less material and improve finish quality.
“It is hands-on training allowing workers to judge their distance, thickness of spray and allow them to develop speed without the waste of using a booth,” Jackson said. “It prepares workers, giving them an idea of what is to be expected and develop a rhythm.”
Davidson also states in his article that currently the maintenance centers in Barstow and Albany are experiencing a 40 percent transfer improvement efficiency with a 20 percent projected cost saving. There is an average savings of approximately 60 gallons of paint per year for every 300 gallons used. This can easily represent approximately $200,000 in savings and provide increased material readiness.
“We have the ability to train our employees without having to worry about the amount of paint we are using, or any air pollution that we would have to worry about from constantly using the painting booth,” explained Jackson. “The system is constantly getting better, and the more it does, the better we can train our employees and also save money on things such as paint. Along with saving the time that we would be using the booth for training, we can now use it for pushing more products off the line.”