How to paint window scrren

A screen room outside my home has fixed plastic "screens" that are waterproofed by a thin coating of clear vinyl or similar plastic sheeting. Portions of the waterproofing layer are flaking off, exposing the underlying screen grid. I would like to paint about 30 square feet of the screened area with an opaque paint to match the house trim, as i have seen done to similar screen rooms in the neighborhood. But none of my neighbors know how the paint job was done on their homes. I would expect to sand lightly to remove flaking plastic. What should I use for paint and how do I apply it to both the intact plastic areas and the porous grid areas where the plastic has flaked off?
Newt -------------------------------------
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On Apr 30, 10:47 am, newt511_at_tampabay_dot_rr_dot snipped-for-privacy@foo.com (enewton) wrote:

I dont know about cleaning, but spray the sceen.
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On 30 Apr 2009 15:47:20 GMT, newt511_at_tampabay_dot_rr_dot snipped-for-privacy@foo.com (enewton) wrote:

You aren't going to like this answer but your screen is shot and needs to be replaced. The sun has destroyed it. I bet you can poke your finger right through it
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enewton had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-How-to-paint-window-scrren-370709-.htm : I hadn't thought of that and I just checked. It turns out the underlying screen is metal - aluminum I suppose - and is in good shape. It's apparently just the plastic coating that has been sun damaged. I am not opposed to replacing if I must, but even then would prefer to install a solid-color panels, which would require more re-engineering than I want to do. Newt ------------------------------------- snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

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enewton wrote:

Use some sort of vile chemical to dissolve the plastic. Then spray with your favorite paint.
In the era before aluminum screen mesh and convenient spray cans, screens were painted (and the steel wire HAD to be painted) with a brush! (This was even before rollers.) Sometimes the voids filled with paint so you had to go back over the screen with a toothpick to open them up.
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enewton had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-How-to-paint-window-scrren-370714-.htm : Thanks, HeyBub
It turns out the underlying screen is steel or aluminum, as you suggest. What I am trying to achieve is a solid coating of paint over the screen, sealing all the mesh. So it seems like I would use a fairly thick paint spread thin on both the inside and outside, and probably a second coat to cover and produce a smooth finished surface. I know that my neighbor's window down the street has this exact effect, but have no idea what paint or technique was used. If I screw it up, all the screening will need to come out, which, of course, may be the end result anyway.
Newt ------------------------------------- HeyBub wrote:

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Reasons are not yet clear why 1. it seems you did not ask at a window/screen store; 2. it seems you did not ask your neighbor.
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
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enewton had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-How-to-paint-window-scrren-370747-.htm : 1. The generally knowledgeable hardware store owner I spoke to never heard of putting a solid coating over mesh screens. Same with paint store. Asking at HD or Lowes seemed like a waste of time.
2. The neighbor inherited the screens already coated and in good condition. Prior owner said he had had them painted but did not say with what or what technique.
Thanks for the input, nevertheless. I suppose I can just buy a quart of exterior latex semi-gloss and go at it. Worst case is I'll have to rip out and replace the screens with something else, but that will still leave the color issue. I don't want clear/translucent plastic; i want solid color, solid-looking panel. It doesn't look like there is any substantial knowledge base out there on this subject. Newt ------------------------------------- Don Phillipson wrote:

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enewton wrote:

http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-How-to-paint-window-scrren-370747-.htm
A can of latex ain't gonna work. I doubt you can put it on the screen without turning the screen into a colored sheet. With the mesh density on today's screens, surface tension alone will cause the paint to jump to the next wire! The minimum thickness of the applied paint is probably greater than the distance to the next warp or woof!
(I exaggerate, but probably not by much.)
Get a can (probably several) of spray paint and stand way away from the target.
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enewton wrote:

It's not clear to me whether these are separate screens with an aluminum frame and a rubber spline holding the screening material in the frame, OR, a wooden frame with screen stapled down and wood trim covering the edges.
In either case, I think I would re-screen it. Go to the home store and buy a roll of screening material in the proper width - you can get metal screen, or fiberglass in various sun-blocking densities.
For the aluminum frame/spline type, just pull out the spline, throw away the old screen, stretch the new screen, and reinsert the spline. You can reuse the spline unless it's really deteriorated.
Wooden frame, remove the trim, pull the staples holding the screen, staple in new screen, replace trim. Easy-peasy.
I replace the screen in my patio slider about every 2 years, due to pets, kids, etc.
Jerry
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On Thu, 30 Apr 2009 15:36:16 -0700 (PDT), Jerry

Do yourself a favor and throw the spline away too. Old spline gets stiff and hard to work with. It is hard enough for the average DIY guy to get the screen rolled in tight, don't handicap yourself over a dollar's worth of spline. It is cheap. If you and your neighbors want to do screens, chip in and buy a roll. It will last you all a life time. Be sure to get the right kind. There is flat and several sizes of round. They are not interchangeable.
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In the past I would spray paint screens then before the paint dried hit them with compressed air to clear holes that were filled with paint.
JImmie
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JIMMIE wrote:

Oooh! Swell idea!
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enewton had written this in response to http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-How-to-paint-window-scrren-370912-.htm : Jerry, Jimmie & Others
Thanks for the suggestions, but it is clear that I have not communicated very well, and I apologize. The "screens" I am working with are designed to have a thin plastic coating or membrane that seals the screen against the elements. They are, in effect, solid transparent sheets of plastic with a metal mesh "skeleton." I do not want to change that character except to renew the waterproof membrane where it has flaked off and make the screens opaque; I want the result to be a flat, solid panel, with no holes. I could rip out all the existing screen and install thin solid sheets of aluminum or other solid paneling and paint that, but I don't want to do all the fussy detail carpentry that would be involved. (There are 6 irregularly shaped panels.) A neighbor's similar panels were successfully painted without removing the coated screening, which (along with the splines) is in good shape. All I want is a paint that will cover the areas where the plastic membrane is intact (about 90 percent) and plug the holes on the other 10 percent where the plastic has flaked off, so the result is not a screen at all, but a solid membrane the same color as the house trim. I suspect that latex paint will be viscous enough to bridge all the holes, although it is going to ooze (I can only reach one side at a time.) One thin coat to form the new membrane and one finish coat for a smooth texture (I hope). Thanks to all who responded. Newt ------------------------------------- JIMMIE wrote:

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enewton wrote:

http://www.thestuccocompany.com/maintenance/Re-How-to-paint-window-scrren-370912-.htm
Aircraft dope is what you are looking for, like they used to paint fabric-covered airplanes with. Not a clue where a civilian would buy it, other than the tiny bottles model airplane guys use. Probably chock full of VOCs and all sorts of stuff that the gummint doesn't want us to play with any more. I suspect the stuff they sell to paint plastic car bumpers with may be worth a try- it is designed to bond to plastic and stay flexible.
-- aem sends...
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aemeijers wrote:

probably not, that is just catalyzed enamel like you'd use for the rest of the car, but with a flex additive. Waaaaay too thin to bridge gaps (designed to be sprayed,) and not cheap either. Regular house paint probably has a better chance of working.
nate
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replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
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