How to Select a Paint Spray Gun
Questions to consider when selecting an Air Spray Gun or an
HVLP Spray Gun.
1. Who will be using the spray gun?2. Will it be a man with big hands or a lady with small hands?3. How long will they spray at one time?4. How much paint will be sprayed per shift?5. What paint chemistry will be used?6. Will I have enough compressed air to operate the spray gun and achieve proper atomization?
Let’s begin with the first question. Who will be using the spray gun? Will it be someone who will use it for a farm and home application? Will it be an owner of a small paint business who wants the highest quality spray gun? Will the conventional air spray gun or HVLP spray gun be used by employees who may not care for the spray gun as carefully as the business owner?
Next let’s look at the spray gun user. The wrong selection of a spray gun may contribute to fatigue. As the day wears on the stress and strain of a spray gun that is to heavy will likely contribute to an increase in paint defects such as runs drips and sags and or an out of spec paint film thickness.
How long will they gun be in use by the painter daily? Is the work piecemeal or small volume? Is the work large volume? This answer will direct you to select the size and type of paint supply method. For example if you are spraying a small amount of stain, the gravity cup selection will range from 450ml, 700ml to 1000ml. A siphon set up may be the answer for volumes of 1 quart of less. Pressure cups range from 1 to 2 quarts. Larger volumes may be supplied from a pressure pot with sizes ranging from 2.5 gallons, 5, 10, 12, 15 gallons. The pots have either a top or a bottom fluid outlet. Air regulation and air agitation maybe selected to tailor the pot to your application. Air and fluid hoses may be cut to the desired length and come in various inside diameters. For use in paint applications, air hoses are standard i.d. s as follows: ¼”, 5/16”, and 3/8”. For fluid hoses the standard i.d. is ¼”, 3/8”, and ½”.
How many color changes and how much of each color will be sprayed during a shift? This will guide you into mixing only what you need to do the job and select the right size paint source for the job. Would you select a 15 gallon pot to spray a quart of material? No. You would select a size of paint supply to allow you to finish the job with the least amount of labor and materials. The correct size also makes cleaning the equipment less expensive.
Is the paint an air dry solvent enamel? Is the paint a plural component or reactive paint? Is it a waterborne chemistry? This is important because the types of materials the spray guns, cups, pots and pumps are made from react to different chemistries. For example some models like the TomCat, Tomahawk and CPR-T3 has plated brass fluid passages. The Lynx and Jaguar, Panther, CPR and Cat-X spray guns have stainless steel fluid passages. The material of construction for cups range from the plastic 3M PPS to one quart siphon and one quart aluminum pressure cups. The Techline 2 Quart Pressure Cup is aluminum. The 2 Quart Bandit is Stainless Steel. Pressure pots are either mild steel or stainless steel.
What is the cubic foot per minute of air required for the selected air cap? Do you have enough air supply volume and at pressure to atomize the product finish? If you have a limited supply of CFM (cubic feet per minute) will require the selection of a Low CFM gun and air cap.
- What market will be served?
- Will it be a general purpose application?
- Will it be a fine finish wood application?
- Will it be a corrosion control application such as the coating of water tower, or bridge?
- Will abrasives be sprayed?
- Will it be an architectural multicolor latex finish?
- Will it be a high quality automotive refinish?
Each type of material to be sprayed may require a different gun or gun setup to properly apply the paint, coating or finish. The selection of nozzle and needle size will depend on if the coating material is:
- A thin coating 14 to 21 Seconds #2 Zahn or 5 to 14 seconds #4 Ford Cup typically stains and lacquers.
- A medium coating 20 to 30 seconds #2 Zahn or 18 to 28 seconds #4 Ford Cup typically enamels and urethanes.
- A heavy coatings 30 seconds or greater #2 Zahn or 28 seconds + on a #4 Ford Cup, typically latex and epoxies.
The needle /nozzle size needs to be the correct size for the viscosity of the material to be sprayed. Range of sizes:
Conventional Air Spray Guns provide superior atomization such as:
· The Lynx 100C is a general purpose spray gun.
· The Lynx 300C is a fine finish spray gun.
· The Lynx 100C is for Architectural Multicolor Finishes
· The TomCat 100C is a economical general purpose conventional spray gun. Weight is 19 oz.
· The Tomahawk is a general purpose light weight (15 oz) conventional air spray gun.
· The Jaguar 300C is a fine finish gravity feed paint spray gun.
· The Lynx 100CVT is for spraying abrasives.
· The Panther 200Z is a rugged general purpose conventional air spray gun for spraying zinc rich coatings.
· The Panther 200C is a general purpose air spray gun for the corrosion control market.
· The Panther 100G is for applying adhesives and Panther P100G Waterborne.
The selection of an HVLP Spray Gun provides greater paint mileage.
· The Lynx 100H HVLP is a General Purpose device.
· The Lynx 300H HVLP is a Fine Finish Spray Gun.
· The C.A.T. SLP HVLP is a Fine Finish Spray Gun for fine finishing.
· The FE-Line is a Fine Finish weighing in at 15 oz.
· The FE-Line LCFM is a Fine Finish HVLP spray gun requiring only 6 CFM.
· Panther 200H is a Heavy Duty HVLP Spray Gun for use in harsh environments.
· The 60-TRBN -2 HVLP non-bleeder cup gun.
· The Jaguar 100H is a gravity feed general purpose HVLP Spray Gun.
· The Jaguar SLP HVLP Stainless Steel Low Pressure Fine finish HVLP Spray Gun.
· The TJR is an economically priced gravity feed mini HVLP spray gun.
· The Techline T3 HVLP Gravity Spray Gun is an economically priced.
The Compliant Spray Gun is the Best of Both Worlds offering Fine Finish of an Air Spray Gun while actually providing greater transfer efficiency of HVLP.
· The Cat-X is a Gravity Feed Fine Finish for wood or automotive refinish applications.
· The CPR-G C.A.T. Pressure Reduced Fine Finish Gravity Feed
· The CPR-FE is a C.A.T. Pressure Reduced Finish Excellent Fine Finish.
· The CPR-C.A.T. is a Pressure Reduced Fine Finish.
· The CPR-T3 is a C.A.T. Pressure Reduced Economy Gravity Feed Spray Gun.
The selection of the correct spray gun is important to the success of the finishing operation. If you are not clear on which spray gun will be the best for your application please contact us to aid in the selection process