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Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

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  • Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

    With work slowing down again, I anticipate doing some smaller side projects that will require finishing. In the past, I subbed out furniture-grade finish work to a pro finisher because my own results have been mediocre, and my time expended on it was unproductive. But with more time on my hands, I may play with it some more.

    I have not sprayed before, and I'm looking into spray equipment and a finishing system (system being a line of finishing material, stain, lacquer, toners, etc.), that can give me furniture-grade results with the least learning curve.

    The millwork shops I have worked for in our area use solvent-based lacquer or conversion-varnish, with Mohawk being the most popular. However, I am hoping to find a water-based system that can give similar results. I do not have access to a spray booth.

    I will be doing a very small volume, so the cost of the finish material is negligible. Likewise, the spray equipment should be geared to doing very small runs, and will never see any significant volume as long as I own it. On the other hand, again, anything to reduce problems or learning curve for me would be worth spending more money on.

    I would like to be able to spray stain, topcoat, colored lacquer, with latex paint being a bonus, but not essential.

    All thoughts or advice appreciated.
    "If you only have a hammer, all problems look like nails"

    Vintage wood window repair and restoration in Chicago
    Wood storm windows in Chicago
    Weatherizing vintage buildings in Chicago

  • #2
    Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

    I run a little Earlex HVLP sprayer I got from Woodcraft ($350), its the blue and chrome one. Does a great job in my opinion, love the HVLP over any airless. If you are looking for waterbourne laquer, I have used Crystallac - (runs $40-$50 a gallon), I got it through McFeelys, and you can almost spray it without a mask, it hardly has an odor. Great hard finish. I am no finishing expert, but it has worked for me in the past. Just run the 1mm tip with waterbourne.
    Strong Tower Construction
    Service Exceeding Expectation

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    • #3
      Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

      Here are a couple of sites you may want to check out:

      http://www.homesteadfinishingproducts.com/index.html Jeff Jewitt can hook you up with the right system after you discuss your needs with him, very good to work with.

      Here's a forum for target coatings (waterborne finishes):

      http://www.targetcoatings.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=7
      Jay
      http://www.CraftsmenCarpentry.com
      http://PremierBasements.com/

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      • #4
        Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

        i use automotive guns, the small ones are a binks m1g ( http://www.spraygunworld.com/product...s%20Mach1G.htm )
        and for smaller i have a sharpe touch-up gun ( http://www.spraygunworld.com/product...%20SHP7040.htm )
        no experience using any water based products at all.
        i really like the flexability and repairability of conventional solvent based finishes.

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        • #5
          Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

          We recently got a Graco HVLP to spray a bunch of shutters on a job, I should have bought one 10 years ago...they work that good.

          Not cheap, $1000, but they advertise it as being capable of producing "automotive finish" quality.
          There are two theories to arguing with women, but so far neither has worked.

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          • #6
            Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

            I have a CapSpray CS 5100 and a CS 10,000 both HVLP the 5100 is for stains and small things. The 10,000 stays full of lacquer for topcoating bigger jobs. Both are great for my needs.
            Lamar

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            • #7
              Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

              For what you're planning on using it for, I'd go for a compressor driven hvlp with either a pressure cup, or small pressure pot. It will be easy to spray the heavy materials, & still be reasonable to clean up after use. The trick is the pressurized cup. Siphon feed won't feed heavy material as well as pressure feed. Gravity feed is better than siphon, but not as good as pressure feed. If you get the right fluid needles, & air caps, a decent 2hp compressor is all you need.
              Turbine hvlp's work ok for thin materials, but the 3/4" hose is a pain, even with a good whip.
              If you plan on doing large paint areas (walls) with latex, I'd go airless.

              Joe

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              • #8
                Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                For your use, I'd have to look at the Wagner conversion gun. It always gets excellent reviews, has stainless where needed for water bornes, seems to atomize well, & as a bonus, has an adjustable spray pattern, simply by twisting a knob. Parts are readilly available at resonable prices.

                Try here: http://www.gleempaint.com/hvcongunnew.html
                and: http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/w..._389504_389504
                Check out the review left by a professional at the Northern site. HO handymen reviews mean little.
                Joe
                Last edited by Railman; 08-19-2009, 08:26 AM.

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                • #9
                  Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                  HD-Chicago

                  I'm going to throw in with CDA in Idaho. I bought the Earlex HV5000 a couple years ago and it has more than paid for itself. Piece of cake to put it in use. I believe they have a new outfit on the market if you want to spend $600 as opposed to $300.

                  I've been spraying Target WB lacquer as recommended here - this is a no-brainer. This stuff must be very forgiving - even a klutz like me can put a great looking finish on cabinets - quickly.

                  HD-Black Hills
                  If you can't fix it with a hammer - you have an electrical problem.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                    I guess I'll throw my supplier for 18 yrs in the mix:
                    http://www.cashcoatings.com/Finishes.html

                    I've tried lots of other products, & not found anything comparable. George Cash has been doing waterbournes for around 40 years now.
                    Joe

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                    • #11
                      Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                      I'm looking at either the Fuji Mini-Mite 4 or Q4 Pro system. Fuji's are sold as the "3" (three stage) system or the "4" (four stage) system. The Q Pro systems have sound proofing; the Mini-Mite versions are the same as the Q Pro systems, but without the sound proofing. For example the Mini-Mite 3 is a three stage HVLP without soundproofing and the Q4 Pro is a four stage HVLP system WITH soundproofing.

                      Take a look at: http://www.hvlpsales.com/. Their Fuji HVLP systems come with either the Fuji GT-X2 (pressurized gravity cup) or older XT-2 (bottom mounted cup) spray gun. I'm looking at the GT-X2. Here's another site with slightly better descriptions of the guns: http://www.hvlp.net/parts_accessories.htm .

                      If easy cleanup is an issue, you might want to check out the 3M PPS system too: http://www.levineautoparts.com/3mpps...FRlcagodMElskg.

                      Regards,

                      Dan.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                        Don't know if you've searched the forums, but I seem to remember some pretty good past threads on this.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                          I got an Accuspray HVLP about 2 1/2 yrs ago. Love it, use it all of the time and it has more than payed for itself. Accuspray was recently bought out by 3M. Some one else had suggested the Homestead Finishing link, that is a great sight. Jeff Jewitt is a good guy, really know his stuff and is helpful.

                          Most of my work is built-ins and cabinetry, so I spray it all myself. There are advantages and disadvantages to each system (cost, what you are spraying, what type of finish you want to spray, where you're spraying, etc.), so do the research.
                          Kevin


                          "As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received."

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                          • #14
                            Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                            I have been using the hvlp conversion gun from http://www.gleempaint.com/ for the past few years now and it has been great. I held off buying it for awhile but am glad I finially got it. Works great for furniture, stair railing, trim, really anything that you want a factory looking finish on. I have used it for paint and poly. No complaints and a great price.
                            good luck

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                            • #15
                              Re: Looking for advice on spray finishing equipment & system

                              Take a look at Target coatings, they have a full line of stains and finishes, they're just as good if not better than oil based, the finishes burn in like oil lacquer (even the polyurethane, which dries to touch in 10 minutes, re-coat in 1 hour) they don't require a spray booth but I would highly recommend an exhaust fan. The only real weakness with the target line is the lack of good solid colors other than black which is excellent. I've gotten good results with their white CV but it takes 6 coats to cover.

                              If you have a big enough air compressor get a hvlp gun, a friend of mine sprayed for years in a shop, he uses a cheap porter cable gun at home and gets great results. I've never used it but he likes it. It's a good start until you figure out what you want in a spray gun and starting out you aren't going to get better results with an expensive gun and when it's time to buy a good gun you have a backup or a stain gun.

                              I have a Fuji turbine that I've had for 16 years. It's more than capable of spraying any waterbased finishes. latex paint is pushing it's limits though but if is latex really something you want to spray on woodwork. I have 2 siphon feed and a gravity feed gun all made by Fuji. Instead of a pressure pot which is a pita to clean I would recommend the 3M pps system. Best thing I ever bought. Pressure pot's great if you're spraying a lot because the shoulders really get tired with the weight of the cup gun but the pps cups are really fast to load up, clean and change out materials

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