Paint Sprayer Techniques

mrm54November 4, 2012

Does anyone have any spray painting techniques they would like to share? I have a lot of experience painting but not with a sprayer. I have recently started repainting my kitchen cabinets and my dear spouse bought me a Graco TrueCoat Plus. What I am interested in is the best way to get a THIN coat of paint. Should I thin the paint and use the finer spray tip, use unthinned paint and use a medium spray tip or use the one they recommend? I am priming with Zinsser 123 on the inside of all the cabinets and using SW Adhesion Primer for the outside. Also using Cabinet Coat paint. I have the two tips it came with plus the one for medium paint, the 315. Thanks in advance.

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I was considering spray painting my cabinets but after several tests, I found that I could do an equally good job by rolling them with a 3" white foam roller and applying thin and very quick coats of GF milk paint and then GF water based high performance satin poly.

The thin coat is easily done because those products are water based and the fast drying time means that you won't leave brush/roller marks.

I am not a professional so take this advice or leave it.

In my own recent experience, I paited kitchen cabs with far less muss and fuss rolling rather than spraying.
I started by quickly painting a thin coat on the edge and crevices of the door (where the roller would not get into) and then followed up with the foam rollerl, first applying pressure and finishing with almost no pressure on the roller. No more than about a minute per door total, then get off of it and let it dry. Ready for sand recoat in 1.5-2 hours which means you can continually work if you are doing several doors. By the time you are done sanding and coating several doors it isn't long before you are ready to do a second coat over your first one.

I sanded between every coat with XFine sponge sanders and used the recommended catalyst for the water based poly to ensure that I have a durable finish. 3 consecutive coats of milk paint in one day and 3 consecutive coats of water based poly on another day. No setting up and cleaning out sprayer parts.

I went over raw wood/new cabinets, but the GF milk paint has very good adhesion and if you prepped the surface, I know that stuff will stick because I tested it over some old cabinets.

As far as the result, the milk paint with coats of clear coat on top looks fantastic. I can see why autos are sometimes clear coated. It adds depth that one cannot get with paint alone.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 8:48PM
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I have tried the foam roller method and I liked the brush better. Was just trying to hurry this process along using latex acrylic paint and the sprayer. I feel someone out there has experience with this thing and was hoping they could offer some advice. So far I have not had any major faux pas with it, but was wanting a thinner coat. I feel like there is combination of sprayer tips and paint viscosity that would do the trick.
Now that you have put the poly on, are you going to have to sand all of that off if you want to repaint them? I was not planning on putting any coating on top of my paint.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 6:06PM
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Have you used GF milk paint? It is a very thin water based product that goes on much thinner than acrylic or latex based paint.

As far as going over the satin poly/crosslinker with GF milk paint, I could do that after a light sanding, but I am certain I would never want to do that. The cabinets have turned out fantastic. No brush or roller marks and a deep and beautiful finish that makes others wonder how it was done.

I built certain sections of my cabinets out of birch ply, like the fridge enclosure and I have added some unfinished poplar fillers and trim, some crown and base, so having the ability to hand finish in the house with a water based hand applied product was important.

May I ask, what color are you thinking of painting your cabs?

    Bookmark   November 7, 2012 at 11:20PM
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I am painting them a grayish beige color. They used to be plain white. I have left all the other woodwork in the kitchen white. I think I am going to like the color, but I also think I could have painted them a slightly darker shade of the same color.

I am sort of shocked no one else has come up with some sprayer tips.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 10:09AM
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I just googled your GF milk paint. That looks really interesting. Can you use it over latex or oil based paint? what about the glazes, are they any different than the ones at Lowes? Could I use this glaze over my latex painted cabinets, provided I ever get finished with them. I like the slightly antique look.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 10:15AM
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I am just a user and an aficionado of their products. That is great company though and the folks up their including their chemists always are happy to respond to questions.

If I had to recommend products and a color as you describe it, I would say try the GF "Millstone" color milk paint.
I think the wife will like the color.Use at least three coats.
Then use GF High Performance water based poly and Crosslink it to get a durable finish for your cupboards.

I did not use the glaze because I have a more metro looking kitchen but shoot an email to GF or call them. They will also answer your sprayer questions.

If I have time, I will take a picture of the finish on my cabinets. You won't believe I did it with a foam roller rather than a sprayer.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2012 at 12:06AM
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