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somuee 07-25-2012 01:22 AM

portable compressor + lvlp gun + latex paint?
hi there,
i'm wondering if it's POSSIBLE (not a good idea) for me to hook a small compressor (Makita 4.2 Gal 'Twin stack' Air Compressor, MAC2400) to a lvlp gun (Astro Pneumatic LVLP Spray Gun - EVO4018 - LVLP Gravity Feed Spray Gun w/ 1.8 Tip) and use that setup to paint my small apartment (under 1000sqft) with thinned interior latex.

i don't care if this is the best way or gets the best results or is even an efficient way to do it, i just want to know if i can get away with it. i already have that compressor and won't buy an airless rig and would prefer not to buy brushes/rollers. if my compressor can simply not generate the required flow, then sure, i will, but i would be really happy if i could 'airbrush' my place.


oh'mike 07-25-2012 06:19 AM

Sorry--not going to work well,if at all--rent an airless or brush and roll---

Gymschu 07-25-2012 06:49 AM

Like we tell lots of people who come on here with similar can brush and roll with just as much speed. By the time you set up an airless system, mask off and cover everything, then clean it all up, you could be done with a brush and roller.

somuee 07-25-2012 01:39 PM

thanks for the info guys! sorry i was in a rush and couldn't explain myself well.
i'll use rollers if need be, however, i'm an artist and am going to so some... unorthodox things to my walls (relief carving, sculpting, inlaying, using different paint sheens, etc) that aren't really conducive to traditional wall-painting methods. i've scoured the internets for the last week and am coming up with about a 50-50 ratio of info saying you can shoot (thinned) latex out of a lvlp gun with a 3cfm compressor and the rest saying you would need at least 7cfm. problem is i can't find info on someone that has actually tried latex with 4cfm and can tell me if paint will even come out one end... which is how i found this fine forum.

so that's why speed and efficiency isn't an issue. i'm more concerned with texture transition from wall to sculptured areas and LACK of texture for areas that i want smooth. also, this will be a work-in-progress lasting weeks or months so renting an airless isn't financially viable.

i could just rent a larger compressor for the main job, but my issue is buying a lvlp gun (around $200) and not being able to use it later. that would kinda suck. also, i had visions of using a lvlp setup for priming canvas as i work with fairly large ones.

Will22 07-25-2012 02:11 PM

HVLP is fine for oil paints and lacquers/varnishes, but not for regular latex paints. The projection sets and the air caps do not have an orifice that will atomize this product efficiently. Thinning the material will result in overspray and poor coverage/transfer efficiency.

somuee 07-25-2012 02:26 PM

Thanks Will22. Forgive my noobness on the subject, but does this pertain to lvlp guns as well? As I understand, the low volume is supposed to reduce overspray for even thin mediums.

I hear you on the cap issue...I'm more than a little concerned that even thinned latex won't make it out of a 1.8mm tip.

Will22 07-25-2012 03:45 PM

LVLP units would be the same.

jschaben 07-25-2012 05:19 PM

The question is kinda academic. The gun you linked to wants 6.0CFM@40 PSI and according the specs at Amazon, your compressor will do 4.8. Those tanks wont hold out very long.
I have sprayed latex with my Earlex turbine HVLP and yes, it does take more thinning than one is used to but by layering on several coats while wet, I haven't noticed any degredation in sheen. I just give it a minute or two to flash off and hit it with another thin coat. That gives it enough time to prevent runs.:)

somuee 07-26-2012 02:36 AM

thanks again! i headed down to the tool store that carries the spray gun and talked to a guy who knew his products well (he carries the same compressor too). he said the same as jschaben and suggested attaching an auxiliary tank to my system... and to not be in a rush. he wasn't sure what the results would be but he figured something should come out the end :laughing:

so, i ordered the gun and picked up a gallon of clearance paint at benjamin moore. will try things out and report back.

somuee 08-07-2012 06:29 PM

update: it worked, though not very well. i ended up having to thin my primer 1:1 with water to get any sort of decent spray but with the 50% duty cycle of my compressor, i could only get a 15-20 spray off before my compressor would kick in for 30 seconds. this was expected, but between waiting, noise, runny paint and not-great coverage, i went with brush and roller. if i have to paint over any sculpted areas i'll just use a small roller and a brush.
thanks for the input, however!

Brushjockey 08-07-2012 10:06 PM

Thats called.. the hard way.
The easy way would be listening to those who have been there, done that.
But any way is better than no way!

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