Traffic Control and Pavement Markings
Many roads are marked for traffic to control merge lanes, bike lanes, through and turn lanes as well as stop locations and crosswalks. Along with signs the pavement markings can provide orderly flow of traffic and safe passage for all vehicles and pedestrians using the roadway. The markings can be constructed with a variety of materials, among which paint is the most common, but thermoplastic is nearly always used as well. Some roadways require a coat of paint while the roadway is new and curing, and then a final coat of thermoplastic 30 days later.
What is Thermoplastic?
Thermoplastic is exactly what the term implies, heated plastic. Material comes as a powder and is loaded into melter pots and heated to around 400 degrees. This can take some time, After it is heated it is dumped into applicators and extruded through dies to make the right width line for the required marking. At the same time, a beading system provides a coating of glass beads to the fresh surface and beads are embedded, producing an excellent reflective mark for night driving conditions. Thermoplastic can also be hot sprayed but the coating is usually thinner.
Painted Pavement Markings
Like extruded thermoplastic, paint is applied at about 15 mil wet thickness with a coating of beads immediately embedded. Colors include white, yellow, red, blue, black, and actually any color that can be made from these. We have actually mixed green for delineating fuel efficient and electric vehicle parking zones.
Falcon provides both thermoplastic and painted markings. We have large melter pots that pre-melt the material where it is then loaded into applicators with extrusion dies. Our paint equipment is both short line and long line in that we have a truck mounted unit that can spray up to 3 foot wide lines with pressurized beading systems. Out short line equipment is hydraulic based and is driven by a unit called a line driver that can attach to the back and can be driven for longer lengths of painting. These units also contain pressurized beaders. The scope of work we service includes small city roads, intersections, and airport markings. Long highway striping is not a market we service.