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Paint sprayer recommendation?

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  • Paint sprayer recommendation?

    I have in my future some smaller projects- furniture, toys and boat bits, that will be fussy to paint. Finishes will include varnish, plain old alkyd enamel, one-part poly and maybe two-part poly. Nothing thicker.
    Is there practical spray equipment that would be good for these jobs and doesn’t need a compressor? I don’t have shop space for one.

  • #2
    Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

    I have an older version of this,

    Two included nozzles are easily interchangeable for everything from lacquer to latex—features Earlex® HVLP technology.

    that I have used to spray everything you listed. It works well but you have to be meticulous with your clean up and strain all your finishes before putting them in the cup. The air is heated and filtered by the turbine. For the most part this works great but I had some trouble spraying System 3 LPU water borne paint. It was drying too fast to flow properly. I ended up using an extra long hose that went through a trash can of ice water.

    I make cabinets and furniture for a living. In my shop I have a monster compressor so I use the 3M Accuspray HVLP system. The finish quality is amazing and clean up super easy. It uses disposable cup liners with built in filters. The spray tips come in four sizes and are easy to clean and only cost $5. I use a different tip for each finish type. If they wear out I can just use a new one.


    • #3
      Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

      Your description calls out for one solution. The only issue, though, with the self-contained (no outside compressor) turbine HVLP systems are they they're a tiny bit wimply. They won't push heavy viscosity material. Unless by now, they've improved in that department... though I haven't heard of any. But for most clear topcoats, paints that'll hold up to some thinning, stains, etc. -- they're fine for hobbyist use.

      Personally, though, I'd use this as an excuse to FIND room for a compressor... then use one of the wide range of HVLP Conversion Guns on the market. AND have air available for brad nailers, DA sanders, blowing things off, etc.
      David G
      Harbor Woodworks

      "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)


      • #4
        Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

        The HVLP compressor is great for inflating an air mattress.


        • #5
          Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

          If you get a quality 3 or 4 stage turbine turbine HVLP with a pressurized cup you'll be able to spray anything short of undercoating. Something like this,

          Graco FinishPro HVLP 9.0 Standard Series, 17N264. Four-stage HVLP sprayer with, Graco EDGE II gun, 1 quart cup, 2 fluid sets, 20 ft hose.

          You'll just need to spend north of a $1000 and buy jets for each viscosity that you spray.

          Everything and more that the OP mentioned will spray fine with a cheap HVLP. I should mention that the cheap ones wear out. I seem to replace one every 3 years or so. They'll spray great at first but after a while one notices a decline in spray performance.


          • #6
            Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

            I have a self contained electric airless Graco that is clunky and heavy with a small capacity(1 quart-ish) that works really well and will spray almost any liquid.
            The cordless version uses Dewalt 20v batteries.
            Sleep with one eye open.


            • #7
              Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

              Dad bought a Fuji HVLP unit for painting duck decoys which he never got around to making and the sprayer has sat on the shelf for 28 years or so , was never used . I plugged it in and it works fine . The spray gun is gone so just the blower unit fuji.jpg and hose . Were these ones good ?


              • #8
                Re: Paint sprayer recommendation?

                I have a friend who ran a very busy furniture refinishing shop for years. He sprayed everything with a turbine hvlp. His system was top grade, I'm sure. It sprayed everything but he chose to not spray latex paints, or any paint if he could help it. When I got into spraying I chose a conversion gun because I already had a large air compressor. So, I've used both and both are great. Cheap spray equipment will cause nothing but frustration.

                Homestead finishing is a well regarded supplier of equipment and finishing materials. I've purchased from them for years although not recently. But only because I've not needed anything.