5-1/4” American-Darling® B-84-B-5 with Earthquake Joint System® Base

Upper Barrel Coating System

All AMERICAN fire hydrant upper barrels are furnished prime coated with an epoxy and finish coated with a two-part polyurethane top coat.

The Coating Performance Criteria and Specifications are as follows:

1. ADHESION: ASTM D3359-02

Specification: Adhesion – ASTM D 3359-02

Coating system test panels shall meet the requirements for adhesion according to ASTM D3359-02. Adhesion shall meet the requirements of rating scale 5B according to Test Method B – Cross-Cut Tape Test (5B = Best/ 0B = Worst). These test methods cover procedures for assessing the adhesion of coating films to metallic substrates by applying and removing pressure-sensitive tape over cuts made in the film. [Test Method A is primarily intended for use at job sites while Test Method B is more suitable for use in the laboratory.]


A sharp razor blade or similar cutting device is used to scribe six vertical and six horizontal lines on the test panels. The scribe lines are about 20 mm (3/4") long and are spaced 2mm (5/64") apart. Pressure-sensitive tape that is about 25 mm (1") wide is applied to the test panels over the scribed lines. The tape is then removed using a prescribed method. The coating adhesion is rated according to the amount of coating material that is removed from the test panel according to the following table.

Classification Area Removed
5B 0% (none)
4B less than 5%
3B 5–15%
2B 15–35%
1B 36–65%
0B greater than 65%


RESULT: 500 Hour salt spray exposure with no corrosion areas greater than 0.060” with little, or no, creep.
Specification: Corrosion Resistance – ASTM B 117-02

Coating system test panels shall meet the requirements for corrosion resistance when tested in salt spray according to ASTM B 117-02. After being exposed to test conditions for a period of 500 hours, the test panels shall not reveal individual areas of corrosion larger than 0.060 inches in diameter or evidence of corrosion (creep) extending beyond the edges of the spots.


Two diagonal lines are scribed from opposing corners on the test panels. The test panels are placed into a salt spray chamber for testing. The ASTM B 117-02 standard specifies the construction of the test chamber and test methods. The test panels are exposed in the test chamber to an atomized sodium chloride solution (salt spray). The tests are conducted at a specified temperature and pH level throughout the duration of the test period. At the conclusion of the test period, the test panels are evaluated as to whether or not they met the test specifications. (Note: The ASTM B 117-02 standard does not specify test times and corrosion limits. The 500 hour test time and maximum corrosion specifications were specified by AFC.)

3. GLOSS: ASTM 523-89

RATING: Minimum specular gloss of 90 @ Beam Axis 60 degrees and 80 @ Beam Axis 20
Specification: Gloss – ASTM D 523-89

Coating system test panels shall meet the requirements for gloss according to ASTM D 523-89. The test panels shall have a minimum specular gloss of 90 at beam axis angle of 60° and 80 at beam axis angle of 20°.


An incandescent light is used to furnish a beam of light onto the surface of the test panel at a specified angle. The test angle is specified as angular degrees from perpendicular to the test panel. Therefore, a light beam with a beam axis angle of 0° would be perpendicular to the test panel. A photosensitive receptor is used to receive the light that is reflected off of the test panel. The amount of light received by the receptor is compared to a test standard that is assigned a value of 100. So, a rating of 90 would indicate 90% of the light standard is reflected, etc.


1,000 Hours = Accelerated Weathering Conditions
RESULTS: Retain 80% of Initial Gloss @ Beam Axis 60 and 20 degrees; Delta-E color change of 3.0 or less
Specification: Weather Resistance – ASTM D 2565-99

Coating system test panels shall be exposed to 1000 hours of accelerated weathering conditions according to ASTM D 2565-99. The test panels shall retain at least 80% of the initial gloss at beam axis angles of 60° and 20°. The color of the test panels before and after the exposure shall have delta-E of 3.0 or less. [Delta-E 1.0 is thought to be the smallest discernible amount recognized by the human eye. A maximum number for delta-E is not typically noted nor identified.]


Test panels are placed into a test apparatus and exposed to a xenon-arc lamp. Standard test conditions specify exposure cycles including water spray in order to simulate accelerated weathering conditions. Gloss readings of the test samples are taken at 60° and 20° according to ASTM 523-89 test methods. The ability of the test samples to retain their color during the test is measured according to ASTM D 2244-02.