New Paint Course Raises the Bar

18 April 2010

“All SAIW courses need to be periodically reviewed and, when necessary, modernised and upgraded,” says Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW) Executive Director Jim Guild. “At the end of last year an opportunity arose to attend to the Painting Inspector course, which has been running for many years.”

The course, which currently attracts up to 100 students annually, involves the training of inspectors in the corrosion protection of steel structures with protective paint systems. This is of particular relevance to the processing and structural steel where coating systems fulfil a critical role.

The new course scheme was developed in cooperation with British industrial and marine coatings expert Bill Waugh. Waugh has trained and examined students in more than 30 countries and has developed, or has helped develop, painting schemes for overseas training institutes.

Some 30% of the old syllabus has been revised and upgraded, turning the new course into a hybrid of Levels 1 and 2 of overseas painting courses, says SAIW Training Manager Etienne Nell. It will be known simply as the SAIW Painting Inspector course. “The course duration will remain at five days so the learning intensity will be increased, making it a more interesting and more challenging course.

“The new course is both more in-depth and more practical. We have focused on the activities of the paint inspector and tailored the syllabus to meet their job responsibilities. As always, we have had excellent input from our industry clients, so we are sure we will meet their requirements.”
The theoretical modules of the course are: corrosion theory, surface preparation, paint technology, coating manufacture and testing of coatings, coating application, coating faults, maintenance painting, working practices, health and safety legislation, and inspection duties. Practical training consists of environmental testing, identification and use of abrasives, surface preparation, wet film thickness measurement, dry film thickness measurement and safety.

The examinations have been revamped and now include a theory exam with both multiple choice and narrative questions and a practical examination which tests a student’s skills in test methods used in day-to-day activities, as well as the ability to report on inspections and tests.

Training the trainers

To ensure SAIW staff are up to the job, Bill Waugh made a second visit to the Institute to present the new course and examine lecturing and examination staff. Etienne Nell was very pleased that all staff members managed to pass the new course with flying colours.

The course comprises four days of theoretical and practical training followed by a one-day examination. A maximum of ten students per course will be accepted because of the practical slant of the syllabus. SAIW has invested significantly in new practical equipment to support the course.

The new SAIW Painting Inspector course is geared towards coating applicator inspectors and plant or welding inspectors who wish to increase their knowledge and become dual purpose inspectors. The course is also suited to other personnel who wish to gain an introduction to coating inspection as part of a wider plan to enter the corrosion protection field.

The course will also be an integral part of the Institute’s new Inspection diploma. For more information please visit the SAIW website or contact Etienne Nell the SAIW on 011 2982100.