Seeking comments on HVLP sprayer

I saw a $99 sale on a single turbine HVLP spray gun at a Woodworking store It included the gun, compressor, hose, viscosity cup and a few accessories. I would want to use it in a middle school wood tech lab to spray "Deft".
Any comments pro or con. Yes I would love to have a 3 stage unit but budget constraints won't allow it. :-(
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I thought Deft was formulated for brushing. Does the label suggest spraying it? I know they also have aerosol cans of Deft, but I was under the impression that the brushable version doesn't spray properly. I know I heard that "SOMEWHERE", but can't recall. Chances are someone he will correct me! :) Be aware that it is gonna be highly combustible so you shouldn't be spraying it without ventilation and if you use a fan it needs to be an explosion proof type. Don't blow up the school!
dave
Sam Soltan wrote:

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I think Deft has retarders or something that makes it flow better when it is brushed but I have sprayed it many times with a cheap cup-syphon gun with very nice results. Thinned about 75/25 and about 30 psi or so. It is all I use.
Regards, Charlie in Kentucky

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thanks for setting the record straight on Deft, Charlie. I had a feeling I wasn't totally correct on Deft's sprayability... <g>
dave
Charlie Campney wrote:

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Several years ago a post said a special proprietary solvent was needed for thinning for brushing but lacquer thinner could be used if spraying.
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I don't know what was or wasn't posted several years ago but the post would have made sense then since to make a nitrocellulose lacquer brush you have to slow the cure which lacquer thinner would not do. It would have had to have been a proprietary retarder.
Evidently, sometime in the last year, Deft has taken to making only brush lacquer which can be thinned with lacquer thinner for spraying. A quick read of the first line of their thinning instructions makes it clear that this is pretty much due to environmental factors.
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Mike G.
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Deft makes/made a "brushable" and "spray" version of it's nitrocellulose lacquer. As you note the brushable version probably does contain retarders but they would be to slow the cure rather then getting a better flow. Though a case can be made for the two being the same thing.
In the last several months I've noticed the "spray" version has disappeared from the local shelves and has been replaced with the brushable version.
Deft being my nitrocellulose lacquer of choice I did some checking. They are only selling brushable now. They still advertise it as having excellent spraying qualities, and it is still thinned with lacquer thinner.
All in all a delayed cure can be of benefit since it will allow more time for any trapped bubbles to escape and more time for self leveling, hopefully making it even better resistant to orange peel.
As a side note, you are right on the money relating to thinning. Deft recommends, for better spray results, thinning 20% to 30%. Of course there is that first little bit, but that's another story.
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Mike G.
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"Sam Soltan" wrote in message

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I haven't used the $99 version of an HVLP unit, but the $150 version from Campbell Hausfeld (perhaps made with the same Chinese/Taiwanese parts, and in the same factory) works very well for my limited spraying purposes ... primarily spraying shellac.
You get what you pay for, but if your use is limited to the ocassional spray job, and once you get your adjustments dialed in, it will certainly do what the more expensive units will do ... but perhaps with a bit more fuss in the adjustment stage, which may even be of more educational benefit in the long run.
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Sam,
I use a hvlp system in my vintage and antique travel trailer restorations and love them. It's a great sprayer for solid colors and clears. I do have doubts about a $100.00 system especially in a school enviroment. You might watch ebay or your local want ads. We got our unit lightly used for $200.00. A friend of mine uses this one : http://www.lemmer.com/t55-hvlp-turbine.htm which was 399.00 last time I looked but is now $423.00 with shipping. I would keep an eye out for a used system.
Good luck,
AZCRAIG
www.azcraig.us

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Hi Sam
I switched from convention spraying to turbine powered HVLP several years ago. Both Harbor Freight and Rockler have <$100.00 units and I believe the unit you are talking about is going to be similar in that it has a turbine unit rather then a compressor. A small but not insignificant difference.
In any case I started out by getting a remanufactured Campbell Hausfeldt unit that ran under $200.00 from the factory. I like the HVLP so I upgraded to a much more expensive Fuji Q4. A beautiful and quite tool.
My point is that I've used both an inexpensive unit and an expensive one. I've also followed most of the posts regarding HVLP units in various forums.
So, based on experience with an inexpensive unit, a up town unit, and the vast majority of the posts I've seen on the subject, any unit that produces four to five PSI at the nozzle and eighty plus CFM, and apparently even the inexpensive units do, will give you an "as good as the user is capable of", finish assuming the proper nozzle/viscosity,.with standard woodworking stains and finishes. Latex paint may be stretching the point a bit.
What you lose and what may be important to you is ruggedness and longevity. Taking the compressor alone, they run hot and heat is a killer of any machine. One has to assume that a very inexpensive unit imported from Asia is not going to have the quality of parts in it's turbines and long and continuous use will quickly take it's toll on such things as poor quality bearings. Going further there is the use of plastic, low grade aluminum, and non stainless steel parts in the gun. They will require careful attention and maintenance to keep them in top operating condition. Of course even an expensive gun should get the same thing but it will give you more wiggle room if you have a lazy day.
In short, there is a very high possibility that the unit will do the job but for how long it will is very much up in the air and will depend a great deal on how it is used and the care it gets.
Deft is my nitrocellulose lacquer of choice, Crytalac my water based lacquer of choice. With the Deft I go out of my way to get the spray/non brushable type, however I don't believe the inhibitors in the brushable Deft that is now so common in the home stores will greatly hinder the spraying process. At least I hope not since I just know I will be eventually forced into using it due to it's ready availability over the non brushing type.
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Mike G.
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I bought a Wagner Finecoat for about $200 several years ago and have sprayed 8-10 gallons of Hydrocote and thinned latex with it with excellent results. I recently went to their web site and found replacement parts available for the whole system.
@yahoo.com says...

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I thought "Wagner" and "excellent results" were mutually exclusive terms! I've got a Wanker up in the attic I'd sell for $3. Friends and family I know have gotten Wankers and exiled them to the deepest, darkest recesses of closets, attics, and sheds, rather than ruin another project. However, let me state for the record, that I'm too gun shy to try another Wanker product and so haven't used a Finecoat.
Don't freak out at my comments, Dennis, I'm just messing with ya! :)
dave
Dennis Johnson wrote:

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