John L. Armitage & Co.  

545 National Drive        

Gallatin, TN 37066

Phone: 1-800-223-1876







John L. Armitage & Co.

About Us


The John L. Armitage Company is a privately held industrial coatings and paint manufacturer. Headquarters and manufacturing facilities are located in Gallatin, Tennessee. The Company has been owned by the Armitage family since its inception in 1876. There have been only four presidents in 135 years.


The Armitage Company began as a producer of high quality varnish and nitrocellulose lacquer for the automobile and furniture industries. In 1914, black Japan, a popular baking finish for metals, consisting of linseed oil and Gilsonite was added to the product line. This was when all automobiles were black. As the needs of the industrial community changed over the years, so did the products produced by John L. Armitage and Company.


The present course of the Armitage Company dates from 1949, the year John L. Armitage, grandson of the founder, became president. The company introduced a state of the art coating called Armorhide, a textured coating system based on vinyl dispersion resins. This product quickly became the preferred coating system of many furniture and coin operated telephones. The coating provided superior abrasion resistance and it easily covered spot welds, scratches and imperfections. Companies like IBM, AT&T and General Motors specified and used the product. The use of coatings on computers went down substantially due to the shrinking size of computers. What use to be done in computer rooms can be done on a PC. The company needed to change its direction.


In 1970, John L. Armitage & Company saw the need for more environmentally friendly coatings. As a result, the Ecolotex line of water reducible coatings was introduced. Xerox Corporation was one of the first to specify. More recently, John L. Armitage & Company has teamed up with Chemcoat, Inc. under a joint venture entitled Armorchem, L.L.C. Armorchem L.L.C. supplies the majority of the steel joist industry with an alkyd based dip primer called Armorchem 4500. In 1995, Armorchem introduced SP-1000, a quick dry alkyd primer for spray application. This product revolutionized the structural steel industry with a "dry to touch" in less than 10 minutes. Most of the joist paint is now in water-based coatings. This required the company to make its own resins, and in 2008 the acrylic resin reactor came on line.


In addition to these, John L. Armitage & Co. provides water and solvent based primers for the metal building market, coatings for structural steel roof and floor deck, and coil coatings for pre-painted metals. All Armorchem primers and coatings are VOC compliant products that are formulated to meet local, state, and federal environmental restrictions as well as the most stringent quality and performance standards. These products can be offered at very competitive prices due to the economies of scale associated with the volume of business in the structural steel market.


We have recently introduced our 5th generation water-based dip primer for the joist market. This product was formulated to eliminate blistering from hot welds with excellent rust resistance and dry time therefore increasing our customers capacity.


A look to the future sees John L. Armitage & Co. continuing as a major factor in the specialty coatings market, again due to advanced capability to develop coatings to meet ever tightening governmental regulations and increased product performance standards.