Hempatop Direct 460 goes on fast for CF Rail Services

When leading railcar leasing company Mitsui Rail Capital (MRC) needed its fleet of well cars painted on a tight schedule, it asked CF Rail Services to apply the coatings. CF Rail Services is an experienced railcar service company, and it knew the project had two main challenges.

As the cars had to be completed quickly, MRC needed a fast-to-apply single-coat system. Not only that, but MRC needed the paint in a proprietary shade and it had to be delivered in a very short timeframe as the cars were already en route. In addition, MRC had previously struggled with railcar coatings chalking (the premature fading of the finished coating), so the company wanted a low-chalking solution that would represent its brand in the best possible light over the long term.

Our solution was Hempatop Direct 460, a new direct-to-metal coating that goes on fast, and has been developed specifically to address the challenge of chalking on railcars.

We chose Hempatop Direct 460 because we want to represent our brand well and we were confident that the new technology from Hempel would minimize chalking. Applying a new product always carries risk, but Hempel is known in the rail industry for high-quality coatings and we trust the Hempel brand"
Dan Penovich, President, Mitsui Rail Capital

The challenge

Well cars are used to carry intermodal containers in freight transport. They need a tough coating that can protect them from the harsh weather and mechanical abrasion.

As one of North America’s premier railcar leasing companies, MRC’s railcars carry cargo for many of the world’s largest shippers. Coatings on railcars have traditionally chalked, negatively impacting the aesthetics of the assets. Therefore, when MRC needed its fleet of well cars coated, it wanted a protective coating that wouldn’t chalk, even after years of UV exposure.

CF Rail Services was contracted to do the job. A full-service railcar repair, coating and cleaning company, CF Rail Services is dedicated to working efficiently, with focus on quality, safety and environmental performance. With the deadline for the job tight, CF Rail Services needed a fast-to-apply coating that would enable its applicators to keep productivity high.

The solution

MRC chose our new Hempatop Direct 460, a single-coat solution for railcars. An innovative new low-HAPS epoxy, Hempatop Direct 460 chalks to its original color. This extends its aesthetics and gloss for longer, ensuring MRC’s brand will be well presented for many years.

Hempatop Direct 460 can be applied at high DFTs without sagging and dries quickly, making it ideal for high productivity production lines and projects that need to be completed fast. To ensure timely delivery, we had bi-weekly meeting with CF Rail Services to coordinate volume needs. In addition, our Services team trained CF Rail Services’ applicators in how to apply Hempatop Direct 460 safely and quickly, and were on hand throughout the project to oversee application. Both CF Rail Services and MRC were very pleased with the result. 

At a glance


End customer

Mitsui Rail Capital, one of North America’s largest railcar owning and leasing companies


CF Rail Services, an established full-service freight car repair, coatings and cleaning company


Coating well cars


CF Rail Services’ workshop in Meridian, Mississippi, USA



Coating system

Hempatop Direct 460


9,750 gallons (37,000 liters)