I have packed a ton of detailed information into this article
for those looking to start using a spray gun for their painting projects.

the best way on earth to paint a chair besides hiring someone else to do it

I use an HVLP paint gun hooked up to a compressor to spray a lot of furniture. HVLP stands
 for high volume low pressure. I recommend starting off small and not investing too much
 until you know this is something you like and want to continue with. There is a lot of work
 involved and you need the space to use a compressor and sprayer. The picture below shows
 a small inexpensive compressor with the motor on top of a small air tank - 80 PSI / 3 gallon
 tank / $90. When you choose a small air tank the motor needs to run a lot more to keep the
 tank filled with air while you are spraying. You can't add oil to the motor of these little guys,
 they are essentially disposable. Once they stop working you send it to the scrap yard and
 buy a new one. The coily hose on this one is an after market item I like to have because it is
 much lighter than the heavy straight air hose that usually comes with a new compressor
 purchase. Be careful not to buy a super cheep hose because you will be replacing it in to time.

The HVLP Gun is a separate piece and a separate purchase, approx. $50. Below you can see
 what mine looks like. It is a Campell Hausfeld gravity fed spray gun. The paint goes in the
 white plastic pot that screws to the top of the gun. There is also a blue air filter which you
 see at the bottom and it comes with the standard 1.4mm spray tip. When I use ASCP I have
 to thin the paint for use with this size tip, I'll talk more about that below. Your gun will have
 a spray radios knob and an air pressure setting, one knob is on the back and one is on the
side of the gun. You will have to experiment with these while you get familiar with your gun.

Most paints need to be thinned to be used in a spray gun. I do not have an exact ratio of
 water to use when thinning ASCP or latex but it really isn't that much. You don't want
it runny like milk, you want it more like cream. Start by adding small amounts of water until
 you get the right consistency.  And the reason you need to thin your paint is because
the channels in the gun are very small and can get clogged easily. Another important thing to
 do is to use a paint strainer as you pour your paint into the pot this is going to help avoid
those nasty clogs. Paint strainers are available at any paint store and cost about 30 - 50 cents
each. I rinse and reuse mine several times. Below left is a crisp brand
new one and the top right is a well used almost finished one.

The reason I prefer a gravity feed system is because there is less waste of paint. All the paint
 will run down into the gun and can be used. Other systems include a pot that is below the
gun and the paint needs to be sucked up with a stationary straw, with those there is more
 paint left in the pot that will inevitably be washed away.


It is always best to purchase your large tools like compressors during the Christmas holiday.
Watch your store flyers cause you won't believe the deals you can get.
I got this 8 gallon / 2 HP / 125 PSI for only $127.00 during a Christmas sale.

Set your pressure gauge right around 45 PSI. This will regulate how much paint /air is being
 forced out and will eliminate too much over spray. Also do your best to keep your
 equipment from getting covered in over spray, it will shorten the life of it when paint starts
 to get into the motor.

Once you get into a bigger tank you get to maintain these motors and need to check and add
 oil. They keep up with your larger painting projects very well but these motors need to
run much longer to fill a larger tank.


from start to finish in 1 day with a spray gun and compressor


Have you stopped into firstfinds hardware store lately?
Here are just some of the ring pulls available for your projects.






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