painting backside of pipe?

I have a 6" drain pipe running floor to ceiling in my new office. It is one inch from one of the walls that is already painted. I have painted 3/4 of the way around the pipe, but there is a 4 or 5 inch strip running from floor to ceiling that still needs to be painted. Anybody got any bright ideas on how to paint the backside of the pipe without getting paint all over the wall? With only 1" between the wall and the pipe, any tarp or plastic sheeting placed against the wall is just gonna find itself grabbing the wet paint on the pipe. I've been thinking that a thin sheet of cardboard could be used as a shield in one hand as I paint with the other. Is there any accepted, proven way of doing this; I have no desire to reinvent the wheel. I've already killed a perfectly good long weekend by painting all day Saturday and Sunday, so I want to knock this out first thing Monday morning.
Also, is there anything better than a small brush for this type of task? Any special tool that is better than a brush for painting pipes?
Thanks.
Steve snipped-for-privacy@pacbell.ent
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hollywood_steve wrote:

get one of those paint applicators, its like a pad with a knapp on it that you apply the rough side to the paint in a pan and then hold it in your hand and then push it behind the pipe and rub it up an down....or you can put some plastic sheeting behind the pipe and attach it to the wall kinda taunt so it does not touch the pipe and then go to town with a paint brush.. the paint will get to the backside of the pipe and will also paint the plastic sheeting, which you will remove and throw away when it dries....
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Here is an idea that may work. I had seen this done in an apartment a friend of mine had! He took two pieces of 1 X 12 lumber painted them wall color, then attached the one side to the pipe by looping two pieces of plumpers strap around it. The trick here was to attach the one end of the strap that was closest the walls then "U" it around and attach the other end (of course). Then after the two straps (one at the top and one at the bottom) He set the piece that was attached against the one wall as tight as possible bending the strap into position. The other piece of 1 X 12 he attached to the leading edge of the first piece boxing in the pipe behind the false box he was creating. This allowed for no damage to the walls and hides the pipe pretty good! Of course he touched up the screw heads after the two pieces were fitted together. Later he went back a molded the thing out with nothing more then liquid nails attaching the molding to the box to get it a "finished" look. I know that isn't what you were really asking but it may help in the long run.
Sincerely, E5
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hollywood_steve wrote:

I have used a replacement pad for a paint pad. It works easy and fast.
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hollywood_steve wrote:

Got some tin foil or heavy plastic? Masking tape? Tape something impervious to the wall with masking tape. Get a small foam roller at HD, bring it home, dip it in paint, and roll. When the paint is dry, take down the mask.
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There are some skinny rollers made to get into tight spots. The roller along with some plastic taped to the wall should allow you to paint the pipe.

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I ended up using the pad from a ceiling edge tool. (the thing with the two wheels that you use to cut in along ceilings) The replacement pads for these things are flexible and when I put it in the palm of my hand I was able to make it conform to the shape of the pipe. The 8FT pipe took about 3 minutes!
For masking the wall behind the pipe, I used the masking tape that has 2FT of very thin plastic sheeting attached. The plastic is so thin that it hugged the wall, maybe by static electricity. I stuck the tape to the ceiling grid along the wall and the plastic hung down 2FT. I then repeated the process 3 times, each time attaching to the bottom of the level above. 4 strips reached the floor. Because the tape was stuck to the ceiling grid, not the wall, I could leave it on until the pipe was completely dry without worrying about the tape pulling up any paint.
Thanks for all of the suggestions!
Steve snipped-for-privacy@pacbell.net
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