Author Topic: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP  (Read 2217 times)

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Offline scholar

  • Posts: 112
Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« on: April 06, 2018, 10:15 AM »

I am a hobbyist/enthusiast, not a pro, but I like to have the right gear for the job.  I have got into spraying as vastly preferable to hand painting or paint rolling. 

I have a Fuji Q4 HVLP set up that I have used a lot.  I have various accessories for it - the ones I use most are the 3M PPS mini cups that I use for small jobs and a 2.5l stainless steel pressure pot that I use for larger jobs.

I also have a Graco ST Max II 495 Airless sprayer - I have not used this much (as I am behind on decorating), but I have used it successfully for painting walls.

Technology has continued to move on and there seems to be a much wider acceptance of Air Assisted spraying (I know it is not that new).  I am thinking about whether I should convert my Airless sprayer to use an Air Assisted spraygun.

So some key questions I am pondering on are:

- what do I need to convert to Air Assisted?
       AA gun (see below)
       Compressor (I have this)
       Air cleaner and regulator
       Air hose to gun
       Fluid hose to gun (see below)

- re the gun, does anyone have experience and recommendations?  I have been looking at the Graco G40 gun for starters; this comes in two versions, flat tip and RAC tip (not sure if the RAC tip would be interchangeable with the one on my existing Graco contractor style gun)

- re the fluid hose, the existing one on the Airless sprayer is 1/4” with a beefy pick up hose, all of which takes quite a volume of paint before you get to spray anything.  The AA setups I have seen have 1/8” fluid hose, so presumably it would be better with one of these?  Would I need to exchange the pick up assembly?

- if I do this, I could use the Graco in Airless or AAA mode, so would I still want to have the Fuji? (I think that the cleanup of the HVLP is much less hassle than for the Airless, so I imagine for small jobs, the HVLP would still be useful).

Any actual experience and insight would be much appreciated.

Cheers
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 10:20 AM by scholar »

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Offline Getmaverick

  • Posts: 123
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2018, 12:03 PM »
I actually just did this in my shop. You can order the G40 with the flat tip assembly and its actually cheaper. Flat tips are the way to go. I got my gun and 2 tips for a little over 700.00. I ordered this kit https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00OJX6CJ2/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o06_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1 and it works just fine.
Get you 25' 1/4 air and fluid hose. Been using this for several projects now and glad I invested in it.

Offline Ves

  • Posts: 35
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2018, 12:12 PM »
Titan cap spray. Use Titan FF tips then you can adjust your fan width from the gun. Great benefits of air assisted. HVLP finish, but a lot faster like airless

Edit: if you have IG dm me and I’ll point you in the rite direction for reference
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 12:15 PM by Ves »

Offline Getmaverick

  • Posts: 123
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #3 on: April 06, 2018, 12:22 PM »
Air assisted is a "little" slower than airless, but your using half the paint.

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 3469
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2018, 12:24 PM »
Titan cap spray. Use Titan FF tips then you can adjust your fan width from the gun. Great benefits of air assisted. HVLP finish, but a lot faster like airless

Edit: if you have IG dm me and I’ll point you in the rite direction for reference

@ Ves  not sure the last line means but if you are suggesting that the op get info from you offline please reconsider so everyone can benefit from your advice.

Offline Ves

  • Posts: 35
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2018, 12:40 PM »
Titan cap spray. Use Titan FF tips then you can adjust your fan width from the gun. Great benefits of air assisted. HVLP finish, but a lot faster like airless

Edit: if you have IG dm me and I’ll point you in the rite direction for reference

@ Ves  not sure the last line means but if you are suggesting that the op get info from you offline please reconsider so everyone can benefit from your advice.

I was going to show him someone else’s set up and the work so the op can get an idea. I don’t personally own an air assisted but I’ve done a lot of research and hope to own on in near future.

Offline jmbfestool

  • Posts: 6620
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2018, 02:03 PM »
Regarding AA gun I would recommend Wagner 4700AC

Mainly because it uses large filter compared to others AND even though it’s a flat tip it’s reversible still so if you get a blockage you can quickly unblock it.   This is what sold it me and it’s a brilliant spray gun. 


Having smaller fluid hose and shorter hose is brilliant for clean up and saving on paint.

But

Reducing the hose size reduces amount stored pressure if that makes sense this is also true with a shorter hose this added with a graco 495 can generate heavy pulsing because it’s a piston pump which causes pulsing but the hose can make it worse or better.

Using a flexible, longer and larger hose can  reduce the pulsing a not sure on the technical side but I found it must be because like I said before you have more stored pressure and it gives the piston pump more time.    You will never stop it completely because that’s the nature of the beast when using piston pumps

You will have to buy a diaphragm pump to eliminate pulsing.

I converted my 490 to AAA



 
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Offline scholar

  • Posts: 112
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2018, 11:07 AM »
Regarding AA gun I would recommend Wagner 4700AC

Mainly because it uses large filter compared to others AND even though it’s a flat tip it’s reversible still so if you get a blockage you can quickly unblock it.   This is what sold it me and it’s a brilliant spray gun. 


Having smaller fluid hose and shorter hose is brilliant for clean up and saving on paint.

But

Reducing the hose size reduces amount stored pressure if that makes sense this is also true with a shorter hose this added with a graco 495 can generate heavy pulsing because it’s a piston pump which causes pulsing but the hose can make it worse or better.

Using a flexible, longer and larger hose can  reduce the pulsing a not sure on the technical side but I found it must be because like I said before you have more stored pressure and it gives the piston pump more time.    You will never stop it completely because that’s the nature of the beast when using piston pumps

You will have to buy a diaphragm pump to eliminate pulsing.

I converted my 490 to AAA

I’ve been a bit distracted.

I found your comments very helpful @jmbfestool  thank you.  I am going to take your advice and get a Wagner GM4700AC.

I had a look at the other info and videos you posted on this thread http://festoolownersgroup.com/finishing/t54704/msg535842/#msg535842 and I have a couple of queries, now that I have had a proper look at some of the details of the Wagner gun (their product information is not really very good, but that seems true of most of the industry).

As far as I can tell:

- the gun comes in two versions - Red aircap for low-viscosity material (they say good for solvent-based) or Blue aircap for high-viscosity material (they say good for water-based).  Looking at one of your videos, you are using a red aircap for water-based - I would expect to spray exclusively water-based paint, so other than seeing your video, was intending to get the blue version - do you have any other advice?

- the gun appears to come as standard with two alternative pressure adjusters - 160 bar and 250 bar - any comments on which you tend to use?

- the gun comes without any tips and tip sizes is a bit of a mystery to me.  I saw in your video you were using a 11/40, but also had in the box a packet showing 10/20 - the latter one is confusing as it does not seem to be a current offering.  Anyway, I would be interested to know how many different tips you find you need - the typical application for me would be cabinetry, doors, windows and sundry woodwork trim.

Thanks for the insight on hose size - I will stick with the larger hose and just have to have a bigger reserve of paint.

Cheers




Offline jmbfestool

  • Posts: 6620
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2018, 02:03 PM »
Regarding AA gun I would recommend Wagner 4700AC

Mainly because it uses large filter compared to others AND even though it’s a flat tip it’s reversible still so if you get a blockage you can quickly unblock it.   This is what sold it me and it’s a brilliant spray gun. 


Having smaller fluid hose and shorter hose is brilliant for clean up and saving on paint.

But

Reducing the hose size reduces amount stored pressure if that makes sense this is also true with a shorter hose this added with a graco 495 can generate heavy pulsing because it’s a piston pump which causes pulsing but the hose can make it worse or better.

Using a flexible, longer and larger hose can  reduce the pulsing a not sure on the technical side but I found it must be because like I said before you have more stored pressure and it gives the piston pump more time.    You will never stop it completely because that’s the nature of the beast when using piston pumps

You will have to buy a diaphragm pump to eliminate pulsing.

I converted my 490 to AAA

I’ve been a bit distracted.

I found your comments very helpful @jmbfestool  thank you.  I am going to take your advice and get a Wagner GM4700AC.

I had a look at the other info and videos you posted on this thread http://festoolownersgroup.com/finishing/t54704/msg535842/#msg535842 and I have a couple of queries, now that I have had a proper look at some of the details of the Wagner gun (their product information is not really very good, but that seems true of most of the industry).

As far as I can tell:

- the gun comes in two versions - Red aircap for low-viscosity material (they say good for solvent-based) or Blue aircap for high-viscosity material (they say good for water-based).  Looking at one of your videos, you are using a red aircap for water-based - I would expect to spray exclusively water-based paint, so other than seeing your video, was intending to get the blue version - do you have any other advice?

- the gun appears to come as standard with two alternative pressure adjusters - 160 bar and 250 bar - any comments on which you tend to use?

- the gun comes without any tips and tip sizes is a bit of a mystery to me.  I saw in your video you were using a 11/40, but also had in the box a packet showing 10/20 - the latter one is confusing as it does not seem to be a current offering.  Anyway, I would be interested to know how many different tips you find you need - the typical application for me would be cabinetry, doors, windows and sundry woodwork trim.

Thanks for the insight on hose size - I will stick with the larger hose and just have to have a bigger reserve of paint.

Cheers

I have both air caps Red and Blue.   The Blue has a higher CFM demand so it’s a little more taxing on your compressor.   

With my little portable compressor I can only get it to maintain just under 4bar using Blue cap
With the red air cap I can maintain 4.6 bar max pressure.  So you can see the blue aircap let’s more air escape dropping the pressure. 

A bigger compressor would be able to maintain higher pressure.

No point really as I typically run my compressor at 2.5bar max so that easily powers the red and blue cap

The blue cap just beats the paint about more but having to much air can cause problems with finish and increase overspray.

That’s why I always use my red aircap because I get a perfectly fine finish with it so I never use my blue cap.  I bought it because I was unsure and the caps aren’t that expensive.
Knowing what I know now I would have just got the red cap only but it might come in so I won’t be throwing it away.   

All my paints I try and use now are water based and the Red cap sprays them perfectly fine.



The pressure caps I just use  250bar always have because when cleaning I  stick the Graco pump at full speed so it will reach higher pressures.

I think it’s just makes the trigger easier to pull as their is less push on the spring. However I’ve never tried the other lower pressure cap so don’t know.


The tip size are confusing if your a airless sprayer as a 210tip airless is 10/20 tip Wagner flat tip.

Nice thing about AA guns you can narrow the fan width down by turning a knob on the gun.
Also increasing air pressure squeezes the paint fan width down aswell. 


The gun should come with one free tip of your choice mine did anyway.

For kitchens and windows etc

You want to be sticking with -/20 tips   So a 08/20  or 10/20  are nice tips and are my most often used tips.  Although I lost my 08/20 couple weeks ago and it was pretty new so little annoyed at £90 a piece. 

So I’m just using 10/20 at moment 😂  as I normally try and use 08/20

Saying that I do prefer the 10/20 because the 08/20 can block to easily sometimes especially with quick drying paints.  The tip dries up and blocks don’t seem to get that with the 10/20.

Even numbers like 08/20 they double atomise uneven numbers single atomise.  So the black tips are uneven numbers and silver tips are even numbers. 

Best using even numbers.

So you don’t need many tips

My advice would be get a 10/20  and could get 08/20 and maybe 10/30 if you wanna go little wider for larger stuff but I find -/20 wide enough for kitchen doors and you can go narrow enough for windows.   Although might wanna go narrower if you spray a lot of windows to reduce amount of overspray waste
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Offline scholar

  • Posts: 112
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2018, 06:05 PM »
Hi @jmbfestool

That info is very helpful - thank you very much.

I have looked up the various details and boy, Wagner don’t make it easy to find or buy their stuff do they?

Most of the Wagner material (on their main websites etc) does not mention the 4700 AC gun, but rather the 4600 AC - as far as I can tell, the only difference is the filter housing where the 4700 takes a wider filter (that seems to have some better qualities).

Regarding the tips, it was even more difficult to find details of the even-numbered tips, but I did eventually find a page in some online catalogue - that describes the better atomisation that you have mentioned. Your experience seems to suggest that you use narrower/smaller tips than the Wagner guidance suggests - see extract from catalogue below - I wonder if that is because you are using an airless machine (as I shall be) and consequently are tending towards higher fluid pressures?

Here’s the table



I did not find any UK dealer listing these tips - where did you get your stuff JMB?

Cheers



Offline jmbfestool

  • Posts: 6620
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2018, 02:29 AM »

They either don’t bother or don’t know how to promote their products luckily for them their products promote them self.

It’s like Festool for years they were unknown and not much information was about.

That’s why FoG was born it helped Festool grow to what I has become now.

Protool is another one and even when it existed not many knew so Festool merged Protools tool range with Festool and got rid of Protool all together.

Mafell is another one which is still very unknown by many.


Wagner is just the same it’s a hidden little gem many especially Americans see as a Diy product but Infact they make some of the best stuff out on the market costing ££££

They also own Earlex and Titan sprayers


Yes only difference between the 4600 and 4700 is the filter and fluid pipe are bigger allowing more fluid to pass more easily.


Even their Compass catalogue which is 2018 doesn’t show the new 4700 and calling it kompass makes it hard for people to find its strange why they do this.
https://cdn.wagner-group.com/fileadmin/produkte/1_Professional_Finishing/2_Kompass/Kompass_2018/Kompass_2018_EN_small.pdf


Any dealer who supply Wagner gear should be able to supply tip size you need. They just don’t list them on their websites.  Your best calling up.
 

You can even have a tip size made specifically for you if you wanted, I think minimum order is 50 tips if you want them to make a tip to your specifications.

I bought my gun and hoses and tips from
https://www.elmbridgesuppliesuk.com

They were best price at the time good service and knowledge on the Wagner products.

Paintshak are another good company you can use to get Wagner stuff again very good service and knowledge
https://paintshack.co.uk
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Offline scholar

  • Posts: 112
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2018, 04:47 AM »
Once again @jmbfestool I am indebted to you for all your help - I will get on with it.


They either don’t bother or don’t know how to promote their products luckily for them their products promote them self.

Even their Compass catalogue which is 2018 doesn’t show the new 4700 and calling it kompass makes it hard for people to find its strange why they do this.
https://cdn.wagner-group.com/fileadmin/produkte/1_Professional_Finishing/2_Kompass/Kompass_2018/Kompass_2018_EN_small.pdf


Couldn’t agree more - I did eventually get the page on the tips in the Compass brochure, but I had to search to find it - the Wagner website stated you can find details in our Compass brochure, but could I find that on their website? No, I had to do a google search for it and found it on some secondary site.

It does seem to be a problem with many non-UK European businesses that their websites are clunky and not well laid out - that is still true of Festool’s I think today where it is difficult to find stuff, even when you know exactly what you are looking for!  (I got frustrated trying to compare all the new smooth vac hoses the other day and gave up looking on the Festool site and just used the retailer sites - still managed to spend about £400 on three hoses.  Maybe the more difficult it is, the more you desire it!)

Cheers


Offline Pnw painter

  • Posts: 154
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2018, 04:53 AM »
Another good AAA gun is the C.A. Technologies Cougar gun. I bought mine for less than $600 from Sherwin Williams earlier this year.

So far I’ve really liked the gun. I’ve used it with quite a few different products and the results are amazing. One of the big challenges I’ve had is setting up the gun when using different products. You can make so many adjustments compared to a stand airless gun that it can be a little overwhelming.


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Offline jmbfestool

  • Posts: 6620
Re: Airless vs Air Assisted vs HVLP
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2018, 09:24 AM »
Another nice thing to know about Q-tech use same gun as Wagner 4600

Difference is Q-tech let’s you use Q-tech tips or Kremlin or Graco tips AND you can convert it to use airless reversible tips but with the added air.  Of course your not going to get a super super finish with these but if you wanna use your gun for other jobs rather spend £20 on a tip than £100!

I haven’t tried it my self but I can’t see why if you bought the Wagner 4700 you get some Q-tech parts to allow you to use other tips on the Wagner gun.

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