Back in October, Ian Cherry of Whisky Tango Firearms, provided a fantastic interview with The Gun Writer on the benefits of the two major coatings that dominate the firearms industry, Duracoat and Cerakote. With the video, Ian goes through details on the application of the coatings including his remarkable aftermarket and patterned designs.
He goes through the details and differences between the coatings. To start, he says the durability and wear characteristics of the two is largely similar and that to get a coating done correctly, the applicator must spend time on the prep work. Its common to have to clean parts multiple times to get something done correctly.
Cerakote is primarily a heat-based curing product. This is advantageous for those wanting to have a component ready to go as soon as the oven baking process is complete. On the flip side, Duracoat is air-based, which has a long curing time (up to 4 weeks), which is not for the impatient types. Still, it can be easily used for items that are temperature sensitive like electronics and optics.
In short, Ian does more Cerakote jobs, which is primarily due its immediate curing characteristic. However, he says that Duracoat is better to work for the more complex jobs and has more possibilities of unique coatings.