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Old 10-12-2010, 12:51 PM   #1
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Painting rusted steel rafters


I need to clean and paint the steel rafters in an airplane hanger and I am looking for advise as to how to go about it. The rafters have rust and paint that is flaking off, falling onto the planes below. It does not matter how it looks. All that is important is that the stuff stops falling onto the planes below. Here are a few pics of the beams. They are about 50' at the tallest point, and the hanger is around 100' x 200'. Thanks for any help you might have!

closeup: http://www.flickr.com/photos/onesevenmiah/5075807454/

top point: http://www.flickr.com/photos/onesevenmiah/5075807394/

overview: http://www.flickr.com/photos/onesevenmiah/5075210137/

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Old 10-12-2010, 05:51 PM   #2
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Painting rusted steel rafters


Not to "pass the buck" but if I was in your position I would contact my local paint store - SW, Ben Moore, etc.. and let them send their commercial/Industrial rep to the site and take a look. This is going to be one of those jobs that you are NOT going to want to do again any time soon. Both companies have a huge variety of commercial products - Ben Moore might even tap into their Insl-X division (if they don't offer that I would certainly suggest it).

How were you planning to attack this job? I'm assuming you have a lift? Were you planning on spraying? Brushing? Rolling?? If you are going to spray they make "dry fall" or "sweep up" coatings that may work - but again - I wouldn't be comfortable suggesting anything without being on site and looking at the entire job..

Good luck!

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Old 10-12-2010, 11:18 PM   #3
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Painting rusted steel rafters


i will have two, maybe three, boomlifts. I am trying to figure out what is going to be the best way to clean up the beams. either with pressure washing, media blasting, or by hand with drills and wire cups. including myself it will be a crew of 3. once the loose bits are cleaned i planned to spray prime and 2 coats of paint. i was also looking at possibly using on eof the many rust converters out there. the options are endless it seems so i'm off to the shops in the morning to talk to the professionals. thank you all for your help, and please keep this dialog going. i appreciate all different opinions on this.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:32 AM   #4
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Painting rusted steel rafters


Try posting in here. http://www.painttalk.com/

Seems this is not s DIY project, more of a professional type. You might get better results there.
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:00 AM   #5
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Painting rusted steel rafters


For me I would sand blast the old flaking paint off then apply a metal primer using a sprayer and then spray on the finish coat.
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:23 PM   #6
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Painting rusted steel rafters


you would suggest sand over any other blasting medium? why?
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Old 10-13-2010, 05:40 PM   #7
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Painting rusted steel rafters


As a cleaning method, it is often used for priming a surface for the application of paint or a sealant. When painting the surface you donít want to trap dust, dirt, or bubbles in a previous layer of paint or other imperfections under the new layer even if itís just steel rafters your painting. By using this method you are assured that all imperfections are knocked loose and the cleaned rafters can then be easily washed off creating an incredibly smooth surface to lay a new layer of primer and paint on. Just note that you are required to wear protective clothing, having an alternate air supply and have proper ventilation.
You can buy the sand at Lowes I think in a 100lb bag and rent the pressurised container system. If you have never done sandblasting before itís fairly easy to learn. Just make sure you read the manual that comes with your system or the rental place will give you a run down on how it works. Also the sand is reusable when you run out just sweep it up and use a screen to filter out any debris and then you can reuse the sand as many times as you want.
Hope that helps...

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