Flocking, automotive flocking, dashboard flocking or just flocking stuff… whatever you call it electrostatic flocking has made it’s way from motorsport only into the mainstream. It’s a great way to refresh trims, hide repairs and modifications, reduce glare, noise and condensation or just to add the wow factor to boring plastics. Pretty much anything can be flocked with the correct adhesives, metal, plastic, wood and even certain fabrics – interior and exterior!
Of course the most popular is dashboard flocking, which has migrated directly over from motorsport where it’s main function is to stop light reflection and glare.
The process of flocking is fairly simple. Depending on the surface a suitable adhesive is either sprayed or manually applied, the flock is then electrostatically ‘sprayed’ into the surface of the adhesive to create the velvet/suede like finish. The flock itself is usually synthetic and made from dyed and cut nylon strands thousandths of a cm in thickness and ranging from 0.3-5mm in length. Adhesives are epoxy, polyurethane or acrylic based depending on the surface to be flocked.
To apply the flock the applicator charges the flock and earths the adhesive causing the fibres to be attracted into the surface to be flocked, this is done with thousands of volts (but very low amperage!) so that that finish is dense and uniform.
Once applied the flock is waterproof and resistant to solvents. It can be cleaned with a soft brush, hoover brush or normal interior cleaner.