Porcelain enamel frit is an inorganic, glassy coating fused at high temperatures to form a mechanical and chemical bond with a metal substrate. The glass is permanently fused to pre-formed metal in a furnace under temperatures as high as 1550°F. Molten glass and red-hot metal are inseparably bonded to form a rock-hard finish, which will not scratch, rust, fade, or peel.
The main ingredient in porcelain enamel frit is a product called “frit.” There are literally hundreds of frit formulations. The most important basic ingredients include silica, borax, soda ash, fluorspar and sodium silica fluoride. There are numerous additives such as clays, electrolytes, and metal oxides to suspend the glass, provide the desired color, and enhance the properties such as heat resistance and bond.
Porcelain enamel frit can be made with many metals, including cast iron and aluminum. However, over 85% is used on steel.
The glass properties of the porcelain enamel frit finish make it superior to organic materials, such as paint. It is a hard, scratch-resistant coating that remains colorfast and glossy after years of use. It’s smooth, glassy finish cleans easily and is resistant to acidic and alkaline chemicals. Porcelain enamel frit is extremely heat resistant, generally able to withstand temperatures up to 1000°F.
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