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Old 11-27-2016, 11:13 AM   #1
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Pros/Cons on Types of Paint Sprayers

I am looking for thoughts on different types of paint sprayers. I would like to spray my bus because that seems like it would be a nicer finish. However I do not have a sprayer yet. I already have a 30 gallon air compressor so I can use that if needed.
In addition to my bus it would be nice if I could use it on other things too, like the outside of my house.
What do you like or dislike about any you have used?

I always look to Harbor Freight first because I have had very good luck with the infrequent use of their cheap tools. Thoughts on any of their models?
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Old 11-27-2016, 11:54 AM   #2
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What volume of are (CFM) can it put out at say, 40-60psi?
Do you have a pressure regulator and filter?

I used a cheap gun (think harbor freight) and a large 220 60gal compressor and got mixed results - mostly because of poor regulator/filter issues. I had very variable air pressure..it would start out high then drop as I used air..inconsistent air pressure (or flow) will give inconsistent results.

the newest guns are all HPLV (hi pressure low volume). These have the paint on top of the gun instead of in a can underneath. Supposedly they're more environmentally friendly...less overspray I suppose.

Don't know how these work compared to the 'old' style guns as I've not used them.
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Old 11-27-2016, 01:15 PM   #3
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I suppose you have a few options. The first being the HVLP style. HF has these for well under $100. They work good, the paint needs to be thinned and it takes a little practice to get a god finish. You need an air compressor, but not as large as an old style gun. This style may require several coats to get the coverage you want.
Next would be a Wagner Power Painter type gun. Electric, no air needed. This can be used around the house on the fence, and walls of the house, etc. You would not have to thin the paint as much, or at all depending on the paint used. The finish will not be as good as an HVLP, but would be good enough for a bus. These are a bit slow also, but will waist less paint in over spray. May cover in one coat, could need two.
Third would be a rented commercial sprayer. You would need to rent one for oil based paint to do the bus. These put out a lot of paint real fast. The finish would be fine for a bus and would get the job done fast. These will use a bit more paint due to the over spray, they move a lot of paint. Would be cheap, as you only rent it for the day. This would cover on one coat.
So, all depends on how you want to do it.
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Old 11-27-2016, 01:19 PM   #4
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I can't seem to find the link, but remember several members having a lot of praise for a Wagoner HPLV gun. Hate that I can't stumble over the model #, but plan to get one when I reach that point. I believe that a guy on you tube sowed it well, in his video. Search "painting a bus", and I bet you find it.

Good luck
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Old 11-27-2016, 05:32 PM   #5
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I think I use this HF spray gun It works well with proper pressure. I clogged my first one from using ceramic beads with my paint, but I also got a one year warranty with intention to abuse it. I don't have a lot of experience with using spray guns so I can't tell you how good it is, but it looks a lot better than using a roller. The reviews on the website seem to favor others.
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Old 11-27-2016, 05:51 PM   #6
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Found what I was looking for. The Wagner Power painter plus seems to have good reviews.

onward
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Old 11-28-2016, 09:13 AM   #7
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"good enough for a bus"...LOL.

Translate to "i'm lazy and not willing to do it right so I'll just do like an idiot instead"

C'mon folks - do it right, it's not that much more difficult and often easier in the end WITH better results.

I've seen people rattle can cars, paint with a brush, use housepaint, etc...really?

And you wonder why some campgrounds don't like skoolies?
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Old 11-28-2016, 09:25 AM   #8
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"good enough for a bus"...LOL.

Translate to "i'm lazy and not willing to do it right so I'll just do like an idiot instead"

C'mon folks - do it right, it's not that much more difficult and often easier in the end WITH better results.

I've seen people rattle can cars, paint with a brush, use housepaint, etc...really?

And you wonder why some campgrounds don't like skoolies?
Kind of harsh but hard to argue with....
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Old 11-28-2016, 09:36 AM   #9
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different paint is made for different things - you COULD buy the cheapest house paint at walmart and paint your bus.

You SHOULD use car paint and spray it.

It's 'foreign' to most of us - the tools, the chemicals, the costs, the procedures. I get that.

But it's the proper tool for the job, so to speak.

I'll spray it for ya - no problem. that's EASY.

Prep work is what determines how good the end result it..and that's where all the time and sweat comes in.

I've sanded a couple of vehicles for painting..i'd rather be covered in honey and thrown on a fire ant pile. And a bus is a whole lot bigger.

but go look at the pictures of buses - you see cool ones and crap ones..a big difference? PAINT!

This?



Or this?



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Old 11-28-2016, 10:12 AM   #10
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Good enough for a "School Bus" can also be translated into....

"Not looking to get a car show, two foot deep gloss finish, just want something that looks good and seals the steel and other materials from the weather and road grime."

Having been in the construction biz for 25ish years I've needed some of my work trucks to look decent but didn't want to spend a ton of money on tools, time and paint. I agree 110% it's all about the prep but money can be saved on the paint and tools. Before spraying your rig spend some time spraying some different materials to see how it comes out based on paint thickness and gun adjustments. Keep track of your formulas and have enough product ready to go to finish the area you started.
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Old 11-28-2016, 10:19 AM   #11
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how old is your bus? And how is the paint?
How often do you paint your house/porch exterior?

I get MAYBE 3 or 4 years from a house paint..and 20 from a car paint. Often much longer.

And the house isn't subject to cleaning like the car (i don't wash my car often, but I never scrub the house) and the house isn't subject to rock chips, bugs, tar, salt, etc.

And a 2 foot deep shine is a whole nother process.

If you want 'protection' then you need tractor paint, construction equip paint, railroad paint and similar rather than house or car paint.

give this a read...
http://www.gntrains.com/Documents/Paint.pdf
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Old 11-28-2016, 10:44 AM   #12
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Sorry if I mislead...A big no to house paint and a yes to tractor or industrial paint as a way to pinch pennies.
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Old 11-28-2016, 10:50 AM   #13
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Time and money play a big role in the finished product. Prep work is the most important part of this as is the proper tools and paint products. Taking the time to learn how to paint a vehicle right is not easy. Some need to get to paint there bus so it doesn't look like a school bus for them to get it into a rv park or somewhere to work on it. The three different conversions all fit the bill but fit different needs. The paint job is only going to be as good prep work with that being said if you use the wrong paint over good prep the results might not be to your liking. The paint should be at least an industrial grade enamel (rustolium) and needs to be thinned and hardener added to have a nicer finish. I am not a painter by trade but have done the prep and had my cars painted for me by friends that have that skill. Most buses don't need a bunch of body work just a color change. I have seen a old u haul that was painted with a commercial paint sprayer with the finest tip and it didn't look bad.
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Old 11-28-2016, 11:02 AM   #14
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i painted steps (wood in a house) once with a brush and car paint, unthinned. Wore like iron and no brush marks.

However..smelly, had to throw the brush away.

I would think also this would use a lot of paint compared to spraying.
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Old 11-28-2016, 01:22 PM   #15
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Hello All. Doctor Science here.

Just a quick note on HVLP spray guns.

1) HV stands for high volume of air through the gun--at least 10CFM to produce a decent paint job.

2) LP stands for low pressure at the spray tip--about 40 PSI max.

3) The HVLP spray pattern (fan or cone) is about 1/2 the size of the old fashion spray guns (think Binks with a #10 nozzle) therefore they are much slower to use. However, they produce nearly twice the application area of the older guns and way less than 1/2 the over spray. BIG savings on paint.

4) Gravity feed HVLP guns are much easier to keep clean than conventional siphon feed guns.

Conventional spray guns rely on high air pressure blasting very tiny droplets onto the surface being painted. The droplets splat our flat against the surface generating many even smaller droplets which are then swept away by the air flow as over spray. Sort of like a cow peeing on a flat rock.The HVLP with its smaller cone and lower pressure uses energy imparted to rather large droplets of paint. Each droplet receives a "spin" as it emerges from the gun so that when it hits the surface it spreads by centrifugal force and produces almost no over spray.

On to spray guns. I have one very high quality HVLP (Accuspray at $600) which I use only on jobs where the value of the vehicle is at least ten times that of the gun. I also have two Harbor Freight guns, one large and one small. I use the large one (20 oz. Professional HVLP Gravity Feed Air Spray Gun ) for finish work not worthy of the Accuspray and the smaller one only for primer and I am sorry to have to admit that both those HF tools are satisfactory.

When it comes to spraying paint, practice makes perfect. To that end, fill whatever gun you plan to use with water and practice spray patterns against a nice sun warmed wall--you will be amazed at what you can learn!

I guess the take away from all this is that you will save several times the cost of a basic HVLP gun with material savings on a project the size of a bus.

Jack
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Old 11-28-2016, 01:52 PM   #16
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Hello All. Doctor Science here.

\

When it comes to spraying paint, practice makes perfect. To that end, fill whatever gun you plan to use with water and practice spray patterns against a nice sun warmed wall--you will be amazed at what you can learn!


Jack
Great information!! Thank you for sharing it.

I do not quite understand the last part. Some of us (in the Pacific North Wet) are meterologically challenged and don't understand the "sun warmed" part.... Though it only rained here twice last week. Once for four days and then again for three days.
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Old 11-28-2016, 01:58 PM   #17
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Hello All. Doctor Science here.

I use the large one (20 oz. Professional HVLP Gravity Feed Air Spray Gun )
Jack

Hey Jack,

I looked at that one and see that they are calling for 15CFM @ 40psi. I have a pretty good sized compressor but I am not sure if it will keep up.

What do you think of this one: High Volume, Low Pressure Spray Gun Kit

It is a "conventional" HVLP with its own turbine.

Thanks again for the great info.

S.
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Old 11-28-2016, 02:01 PM   #18
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I would avoid the Wagner guns. I was not happy with it. The pieces are all cheap plastic, which other than durability is normally not a huge issue except in this case it really does affect the quality of the spraying. Its just too finicky. Also way too heavy, which sounds like a petty complaint, but after painting a 40' bus, it will kill your arms. I just think there are better hand held airless sprayers on the market.

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Old 11-28-2016, 02:26 PM   #19
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Steve, 10 CFM works fine on that gun. I wouldn't try it with any less CFM though. Also, the HVLP you pictured is very old technology dating back to the early days of HVLP development. Putting it delicately, it ain't worth a s%#t!

Justin, that Wagner gun is an "airless" and not a HVLP. The airless guns are great for latex house paint but just do a lousy job with automotive/tractor paint. I have used the larger wagner airless for years and it works great for us small time contractor types. https://www.amazon.com/Wagner-052301.../dp/B002XZLJIM.

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Old 11-28-2016, 06:31 PM   #20
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Steve, 10 CFM works fine on that gun. I wouldn't try it with any less CFM though. Also, the HVLP you pictured is very old technology dating back to the early days of HVLP development. Putting it delicately, it ain't worth a s%#t!


Jack
Thank you for the good info Jack.

I looked at my compressors and my "big" one is 6.6CFM@40psi. My little one is rated at 3.5CFM@40psi.

I can justify buying the HVLP gun but a 3rd compressor is going to be a challenge.

I don't imagine that running them in tandem would be a viable option...

What do you think?

Thanks again.

S.
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