Do I Want 1K, 2K, Primer, or DTM?

June 21, 2021

When it comes to choosing coatings, the variety of options can get confusing. What does it mean when a coating is 1K, 2K, or DTM? Does it matter? Do I always need a primer? A quick look at the advantages of each characteristic is a great way to get familiar with these terms and do a better job of recommending the right coating to others or choosing one for yourself.

1K Advantages
A 1K primer or coating is a single component system that does not require mixing of multiple parts before application. The benefit of this is faster application, less mess, less waste, and easier cleanup, which are a must for some situations where time, space, and resources are limited.

Rust-proof painted steel pipes in the factory. Red iron pipe2K Advantages
A 2K system has two components that must be mixed together just before application. This allows crosslinking between the two parts for enhanced durability of the coating. These systems are a good choice for field applications where a higher degree of chemical resistance is required.

Primer Advantages
Whenever possible, a primer should be applied first to achieve the best coatings system. In addition to good adhesion, primers also help provide a smoother surface finish by covering over minor irregularities in the metal.

DTM Advantages
DTM means direct to metal. DTM coatings are critical when painting metals to ensure proper adhesion. They come as either 1K or 2K systems and offer the advantage of less down time during application and repair work due to fewer coats being needed. Most Cortec® topcoats can be applied DTM if the painting crew is limited on time or budget.

Understanding these terms will bring you a long way toward good coatings selection. Test your knowledge today when you browse our primers and topcoats!

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