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Expert's Corner — smooth

Spraying Latex Paint with HVLP Systems

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Spraying Latex Paint with HVLP Systems

HVLP systems are not designed to spray heavier bodied latex paint. However, with some understanding you can successfully do so. The viscosity (thickness) of latex paint makes it hard for spray guns to fully atomize the paint, meaning that it's difficult with a lower pressure turbine unit to break the material up into small enough particles to get an ultra smooth surface. It is essential that you use a good 4 or 5-stage turbine simply for the added pressure and power. The second thing is to use a larger needle/nozzle. A 1.8mm or larger works best. You will also want...

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Tip 1: Strain Product: Always

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Tip 1: Strain Product: Always

Straining is a topic that we talk a lot about in our Prep to Finish paint training program (preptofinish.com). Conventional wisdom and common sense dictate that straining is a great way to remove contaminants from product while it is still in liquid form. This is certainly true, but there are other, more subtle considerations that make straining a good idea.Specifically, building the habit of straining ALL product every time you load your cup gun is cheap insurance at a deeper level. As the product world transitions more into waterborne platforms, the practice of shaking a can of product is not...

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TIP: Repairing Sand-Throughs on Edges

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The easy way to repair sand- and rub-throughs on sharp edges is with a marker of a similar color to that of the stain used. These markers are widely available. If you sand through an edge between coats of finish, simply color in the sand-throughs and apply another coat of finish, to keep the marker color from being rubbed off. If you rub through an edge on already finished furniture, woodwork or cabinets, it will be more difficult to apply a protective finish after replacing the color. The easiest methods would be to wipe just the edge with wiping varnish,...

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TIP: Paint Grain First

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When coloring in lighter rub-throughs, glue splotches or wood-putty patches, it’s usually best to paint in the grain first, then add the color to each side of the grain. If you go the other way, coloring in the entire area before painting in the grain, you’ll often get the grain too dark. Trying, then, to lighten the grain by rubbing off some of the color with steel wool will lighten the entire repair, causing you to have to start over.

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TIP: Applying Stain

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The most efficient methods of applying stain are by wiping or spraying. Brushing is very slow, often too slow with water-based stains that dry rapidly. When you have wetted a given surface with the stain, quickly wipe off the excess. With water-based stains, try dividing large projects into smaller sections to give yourself enough time to get the excess wiped off before it dries. Wiping the stain on the wood is my usually preferred method because spraying then requires doing a thorough cleaning of the spray gun. Of course, spraying could be a good choice when staining large or multiple...

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