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I am looking to start painting bikes or other metal things so my question is which method will turn out with a better result a airless paint sprayer or an air compressor with a spray paint gun attached
 

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For fine painting you want an HVLP gun(high volume low pressure) with a turbine or a compressor.

An old fashioned compressor driven gun will also work,but wastes a lot of paint and requires a big compressor.

I've got two turbines and they are very quiet and don't take a lot of space.--Mike---
 

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Rubbin walls since'79
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I agree- but it also depends on what kind of paint you want to spray.
For a real fine solvent base a conventional might be better. And you can get a gun that can dial down the amounts to almost pinstriping.
For waterborne ( and also some solvents) HVLP does wonders.
I would check with other bike dealers and see what they use- pretty specialty. Most of us here work on a little bigger scale..

Let me correct this after rereading your post. I think airless is out of the question. The decision is between conventional ( uses a compressor- not airless) and HVLP. Google is your friend if you want to know the setups.
 

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Hey bikerway,
If you were painting ten bike frames all the same color, an airless unit with a fine finish tip would be worth the effort, but if all that you’re painting is one frame then I would go with the conventional set up or the HVLP. Clean up time using an airless on one frame couldn’t be justified, and to do it right you would need a respectable airless unit for at least $700+.
 
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