I just wanted to give you a quick update on how much use I have gotten
out of your advice on spraying finishes.
First, in the "get to know your gun" department, I have now sprayed
about 4 gallons (yup, FOUR) of paint through my little Binks 115
knockoff. I have sprayed a lot of different items with it, but I am
proudest of the way my doors are now coming out. I actually know
enough now that I can diagnose what I am seeing on my piece of
sheetmetal (my gun setup/test medium) that I use to set the
pattern/flow and can now adjust and change the gun to what I need. I
have been having a blast with the Japan drier, and while I haven't
actually ruined a finish yet, I have made the gloss go to satin, which
is a sign of too much drier. So now I know my limits on that. I am at
about 1oz of Japan drier plus one oz of thinner per quart and it works
great on 70-75 degree days. I will certainly be toning that down for
our hot summer days.
As for flow, pattern, viscosity, and pressure, I have the most well
protected piece of plywood you can imagine in my backyard by my shop.
I don't know how much different materials and mixtures it has on it,
but they all dried up and it is now thoroughly plasticized. I have
taken some of oil base materials I had left over on one of my jobs (the
industrial stuff I am using starts catalyzing the moment it is opened
to air, and it not good even in a sealed container after about 10 days)
and tried all kinds of mixtures and settings.... all at 6 ozs. at a
I have found that my 2hp compressor is the one to use to shoot finish,
as the one that is just a little bit smaller is painful to use. Like
when shooting latex on doors, I like long unbroken spraying to spray
the entire door side without stopping. Even with the little gun, it
strains it just a little. But the 2 hp is perfect.
After the last exchange here, I decided to buy some urethane and set
the gun up on my piece of plywood before getting on the doors for my
client. I called them and moved the date to refinish, and got busy
with the urethane. I used the Deftane Satin that I got from my local
paint supplier and then went onto the Deft site to get the info on
thinning. It couldn't have been easier. Still mixing in the gradient
marked cheap sports bottles I have, I was able to measure out and thin
exactly according to their specs. I was surprised when I started my
practice runs as I had to turn the pressure all the way down to about
35 lbs since I was getting fog at 45. I was thinking it would take a
little more air than that.
It just wasn't needed. After I got the handspeed and gun position
down, it worked great. I was glad I shot a quart up on the plywood
because I was getting it too wet, and I had sags. I put the halogen
lights on it where I could see the reflection when it was wet, and then
adjust to about 30% coverage on the next pass (instead of the tried and
true 50% for oils and spray can stuff) and it worked like a champ.
The instructions said they were looking for about 3 mil wet finish
(!!!) and that it would dry to 1.5 mil. To me, that seemed really
thick for one application (especially vertical application), but in the
end, it is their product. So I followed you cue and sprayed one coat,
then another about twenty minutes later, just when I could see the
material starting to change from looking really wet. Worked like a big
So out to the job. I stripped, sanded as needed, cleaned that nasty 15
panel door up and let it have it with the Defthane. I have to admit...
I was a little surprised.... the doors turned out great. I mixed up a
couple of different colors of gel stain for the door to match the
interior trims on the house, and the match was good. And with the
Defthane on it, the door turned out like a million bucks. And I was SO
damn thankful I didn't have to brush that damn door. The door took
about 8-9 hours to dry before hanging, but with the heavy coat on it,
it looked totally sealed, and my client was thrilled. I hung it that
night around 7 or so, and I was finished with the job.
I can't make enough money finishing doors to just do that when I go out
for repairs and installations. But I CAN do well for my door
installations, etc., if I can install and finish the doors for people
since I can get them coming and going. And it is easy enough to set up
and spray a door and go finish more repairs in the house while it is
drying, so that make finshing a good thing. I just reinstall whatever
I finished/refinished before I walk out for the day.
Since all the new construction around here has sprayed oil on the metal
entry/garage/rear doors, people really want to see that on their new
doors that they purchase from the lumberyard I am affliliated with
since they see their new doors as new construction. And I don't care
how good a brush man is, nothing looks as sleek and clean as a sprayed
door. So I think there is a demand there, but I am still looking into
that. And of course, I can just add this to my toolbox of things my
company does when I am out on a job and someone says, "hey Robert, do
you have anyone that can refinish my cabinet doors/garage door/bathroom
Next on the gun trials: lacquer. I have an amigo that swears by the
"Old Masters" brand, and I will try to coax some out of him. I can't
see spraying lacquer on one or two doors, though. I use Deft lacquer
for interior doors and just pad it on. I use a disposable pad, and
pitch it when I am through. Too easy to do it that way, and Deft
lacquer is so forgiving it is almost foolproof.
BTW, here is the gun I finally settled on to be a companion to the
little wannabe Binks:
I haven't fired it up yet, but I will soon. I was interested because
of the low CFMs, especially since it is all metal and has a really
smooth action. It really seems like a nice gun, and when I got it it
was on sale for $11.95.
I just thought you might be interested to see how things went since you
were so generous with your time and suggestions. Both were a big help
to me. And for me, I always wonder what happened later when I have
taken the time and made some effort to help someone out. A follow up
seems like a simple courtesy to me, and certainly a sign of
appreciation for the help. This is mine.
So anyway, how you doin'?