So Im Lost, I do a fare bit of woodworking, Beds, High Boys, night stand
etec and Im tired of finshing everything by hand. Now Im in the market for
an HVLP. The question is, which is best for my needs. I would use it to
spray sanders sealer and poly, mabey some stain now and then. Im looking at
the FUJI Q3 for $600 but is there a better cheaper unit out there?
Although not an expert, I have learned a few things about HVLP. First,
heat is your enemy. The less expensive units get real hot and that
sends hot air down the hose. This is bad. Hot air comming out of hose
causes 1 of the 3 components of your product to start drying before it
hits the wood. A hot gun is uncomfortable to hold.
If you are spraying 1 table leg, a single motorcycle fender or
otherwise a small surface, then the less expensive units might do. But
try spraying your wifes bureau in 1 even coat and your hand will burn
off. The pre-drying issue is more prominent with enamels and laquers.
I sprayed 2 motorcycle fenders in a row and I had to redo the second.
It just did not have the same sheen and depth of the 1st. This is yet
another example of you get what you pay for. Tom.
Thanks for the advice...how about some bottom line recommendations...which
> > > So Im Lost, I do a fare bit of woodworking, Beds, High Boys, night
> > > etec and Im tired of finshing everything by hand. Now Im in the
> > > an HVLP. The question is, which is best for my needs. I would use
> > > spray sanders sealer and poly, mabey some stain now and then. Im
> looking at
> > > the FUJI Q3 for $600 but is there a better cheaper unit out there?
What can I say, I own a Fuji so I recommend a Fuji.
Does that mean any other unit on the market is deficient in some way? Nope
it doesn't. As near as I can tell if a unit puts out around 80 CFM at 4 or 5
PSI at the nozzle and has the correct nozzle/needle combination it will
spray as good a coat or normal woodworking stains and finishes as you are
The last part is the kicker. HVLP isn't a magic wand that will give a
perfect finish it does take a certain amount of practice and
The more money you spend the better the parts are which means longevity and
versatility in what can be sprayed.
From what I have been able to determine from the posts here by the owners of
the under $100.00 Rockler and Harbor Freight units they do a pretty good
job. Of course I wouldn't expect those units to survive under a heavy
spraying regiment nor be able to spray anything heavier then properly
thinned lacquer but, with in limits, the owners seem to be pretty happy with
Yea, I bought the $80 turbine HVLP from HF. It comes with 3 needle sizes
but only one cup. You can get a 3 year no-questions asked warrenty for
about $20 that will even cover you if you forget to clean it. The unit
works reasonably well for easy to spray material. I've had good luck with
shellac but terrible results with WB lacquer. Also, I don't notice a lot
of heating from it. I later bought a HF conversion HVLP gun that is non-
bleeder and has more adjustment. It's easier to put on a better finish
with this than the turbine setup, though it keeps my little compressor
running. I'd have to spray a lot to justify the additional cost of a Fuji
or similar when you can get good results for < $100.
I was in the same place as you are about 2 weeks ago, and I bought a
Turbinaire 1235 with accessory kit at the Wood show in NJ. I just
used it to spray oil base primer on 4 75" x 36" bookshelve units and 4
base cabinets, and 20 removable shelves. It takes practice, but after
the second unit I got much better. No issue with heat, the gun is
well made, but I think that i have to experiment with the needles and
caps to get the overspray down a bit. Based on first impressions, the
unit performed well. The advantage, and I did use it, to the
Turbinaire unit is that the speed of the turbine is adjustable, as
opposed to the Apollo (I don't know if the Fuji is adjustable or not),
and allowed me to vary the spray a bit. None of these units is cheap,
and I seem to think if you go with a Fuji, Apollo or Turbinaire you
will likely be pleased.
Now, everybody tell me I made the wrong choice with Turbinaire!! :-)
I don't think you made the wrong choice. ;)
Of course, I have that exact one you have - the Turbinaire 1235.. I like it
and have used it with oil base on shutters, which made the gun a real pain
in the butt to clean afterwards, nitrocellulose on guitars (the main reason
I bought it), and a nice garden bench. It perhaps is not a machine for
everyone, because, as you say, you do have to play with it to get it right.
But then, of course, the beauty is that you can play with it to get it
right, and when you get it right it's a breeze.
Take a periodic peak at the Force Machinery home page. Last spring they had
a rep from Turbainairre come and give a demonstration that lasted a couple
of hours. It was very informative, and they offered discounts on the water
based lacquers and accessories afterwards as well.
I have been using the Apollo conversion gun for the last 4 years. I like
it. I have sprayed 30 - 40 gal of various paints with it. I have used it to
spray shellac, poly, enamel, conversion lacquer, and stains very
successfully. My 2 hp Sears air compressor supplies all the air volume I
ever need for it. If you already have an air compressor large enough to run
a high pressure paint gun, I think this is the way to go. I found that I
did need to purchase the additional tips for the gun that are offered as an
accessory to be able to spray a variety of finishes. I have not had good
results spraying latex paints even though the accessory kit contains a tip
and larger air cap for these thicker paints. The gun is relatively easy to
clean up. All of its wet parts are made out of stainless steel and they
have held up very well to the wear and cleaning over the last several years.
I have had good service from their customer service department in replacing
consumable gaskets and seals for the gun which will have to be replaced
ocassionaly if the gun is used very much.
One comment that I didn't see here. I prefer a non-bleeder gun over a
bleeder. Non-bleeders stop the flow of air when you let go of the
trigger (like standard spray guns). Wagner makes all their sprayers
with NB guns and I recently saw that Fuji is shipping their units with
one too. Bleeder guns continue to allow air to flow through them even
after you release the trigger, which while not a huge problem, always
Hope that helps.
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