If you've been a roller and brush decorator for many years, making the leap to a paint spray machine can be a daunting task. However with the right machine, support, technique and preparation you can achieve a flawless finish and reap the rewards of transitioning to the world of airless paint spray machines.
First Step: Always Prep
Preparation is essential in achieving a seamless as well as safe spray. Things to consider include
Masking up and protecting your space from overspray
Selecting the correct filter for your spray paint machine
Choosing the correct spray tip
Testing your spray pattern on a scrap piece of card before beginning
Selecting the correct spray tip is a science in itself and the more you use your machine, the more familiar you'll become with the number system. With the wide range of coatings available, it's important to select the appropriate spray tip for the job. Whether you're looking for precision work or rapid coverage, the spray tip regulates the paint flow and fan pattern. By controlling these factors, you can minimize paint wastage and project costs.
So, how do you work out the correct spray tip size? This involves reading the specification sheet of your paint to determine the recommended tip, considering the sprayer's maximum flow rate, and matching the tip size with the desired fan width. Remember, lighter coatings require smaller spray tips, while heavier coatings require larger ones. Tips will be marked with a 3 digit number. The first number (when multiplied by 2) indicates how wide the fan pattern is when sprayed from 12” from the surface. The second two numbers represent the orifice size in thousandths of an inch, essentially telling you how much paint will leave the gun. Check out our blog for further information and support with understanding tip size variations >
Our Top Tips on mastering the spraying Technique
When it comes to choosing the spray pattern, remember to go vertical when spraying from side to side and horizontal when spraying up and down. Maintaining a consistent distance from the surface is crucial to avoid runs and overspray. Aim to stay within 10-25cm away from the surface for optimal results. Another key tip is to use long continuous passes, keeping the spray gun at a 90-degree angle from the wall or surface. Avoid spraying at an angle or swinging the gun, as this can lead to an uneven finish. Remember to flex your wrist while moving at a consistent speed to minimize patchiness. Trigger the gun before each stroke and release before ending it to apply the paint evenly. Overlapping each pass by 30-50% will seamlessly blend the paint and prevent a striped appearance. Don't forget to start from the top and work downwards, and always spray the edges and corners first.
With these expert tips, your spray painting project will be a breeze!