Any tips for using Wagner power painter??

Old 01-10-07, 05:01 PM
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Any tips for using Wagner power painter??

I recently bought a Wagner and used it to paint new cabinet doors for family room. Did it pretty quickly and the doors came out looking good. But the one problem I had with the Wagner power painter was frequent clogging. Could only get 1 or 2 doors painted before it would clog and I would have to stop and remove and clean the little valve that is removable fromthe nozzle area. (I used latex paint purchased at Ace Hardware.)

I've been told that the secret is to thin the paint substantially. Is that correct? If so, is there a rule of thumb for how much thinning the paint can stand?

Also, my next project also involves painting doors, and I assume I have some options as far as type (latex. oil-based, etc.) and brand of paint. Is there a particular paint (type or brand) that is known to work best in these power painters (i.e., infrequent clogging, good result, etc.)?

Thank you.
Old 01-10-07, 05:17 PM
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I'm not familiar with home owner type spray guns but if it sprays a decent fan I'd be leary of thinning the paint much. It is always a good idea to strain paint that is to be sprayed. You can buy a straining bag at any paint store, an old panty hose will also work.

Generally the better the quality of the paint, the better it will brush, roll and spray. Big box stores aren't the best place to shop for paint - better to go to a paint store like SWP or B Moore.

If your doors currently are coated with oil base enamel, you will need to stay with oil base or sand and coat the doors with a solvent based primer first.
Old 01-10-07, 08:00 PM
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I have sprayed doors on occasion using a Wagner, never had any trouble with clogging. I've had good luck using a high gloss Lucite latex enamel that I purchase from Menards. I disassemble the doors and spray them upright, first going side to side, then doubling back and spraying top to bottom. Latex paint can be thinned with flotrol. If it doesn't spray... sprays off and on... or spits paint, then the paint is too thick and needs to be thinned. Make sure you are using the right color tip for the type of paint you are using. (see manual)
Old 01-10-07, 09:11 PM
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I just took two of them back for the same reason.I will never try it again.
I thinned the paint till it looked like white water and it still clogged.

The first one I bought clogged from the start.
the second one I had HD replace lasted three cans of primer and clogged never to be unclogged again.I pulled it down cleaned it oiled it each time.
I almost threw it under the bus but then I would not have got my $62.50 back

I will redo this the old fashion way..... brush and roll.

Glad you ask about this I needed to vent
Old 01-11-07, 04:50 AM
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Sounds about right for the Wagners
I only pull mine out about once a year as a last resort for tough spots where it's not worth setting up a real rig (5-20 minute jobs)
Even then I'd rather use those disposable CO2 sprayers
Old 01-11-07, 06:15 AM
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Given the extra prep work to account for overspray, sometimes it's easier to just roll and brush.
Old 01-12-07, 03:04 AM
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Hello Ken,
Wagner airless cup guns are noterious for clogging.
Paint itself is horribly filled with all sorts of spray-unfriendly things.

Helpful tips:
- Strain the material through an old pair of nylon stockings/pantyhose - or better yet go to the store and buy a new pair so it's sure not to have "runs" that will allow debris to pass through. The plasitc strainers and paper mesh strainers are useless.
Start by dipping roughly 1/3 of the contents of the can into a smaller round vessel. Don't pour the material - you need to keep the rim of the can free of paint in order to maintain a proper seal.
Next - stretch the nylon over the mouth of the smaller container and invert it inot yet another container. Go ahead and let the "tail" of the nylon fall into the smaller container. Let the material seep through. It will take considerable time. When it's almost all through, put on a disposable plastic glove and "milk" the tail by gently squeezing it.
Not so amaziingly, you'll find a "slug" of semi solid junk about the size of a golfball inside the "tail".
That's the stuff that's been clogging the gun.

- Buy the top of the line gun. The Pro 230 model is the minimum for spraying anything but extremely light bodied material. Even at that, the 230 has trouble with aqueous suspension/aqueous dispersion/aqueous emulsion coatings - in plain english - typical latex and/or waterbornes,, as they are popularly known as. I avoid using anything water miscible in my 350 where possible.

- Heat your material rather than reduce it. Adding solvent or water will reduce the viscocity, but at the cost of "drawing" out the material. Heating it will also reduce the viscocity, but allow the material to remain "full bodied".
Don't overdo it though by putting it near or on a heat source. Keeping you material inside a heated house is what I'm getting at here. Buy it well in advance and store it in the living area, not the basement or garage.

- Keep your working pot small and keep it covered to avoid "skimming".

- Keep you gun spotlessly clean. If you break for lunch, flush the gun and cup (or hose if your working that way), take the tip & difuser out and clean them also. Put the tip and difuser back in place and tighten them down. When they are in place, that part becomes a closed system and will prevent any remaining material from setting up.

- Use the largest orifice you can control. Usually that's the .8mm "standard" round pattern tip.

- Work slowly,,but in a real hurry! Even at the low flow rate of the cup guns, they put out a tremendous amount of material at one time.

FWIW - no doubt due to the amount of material prep time I do, I seldom have any problems with my Pro 230 clogging and/or spitting. I agree 100% with some of the above comments though about brush/roll being more time effective. Unless it's a job I hate doing with a brush (louvered shutters spring to mind - I can't STAND brushing even one!) or something that requires spray (cane furniture), I reserve using mine for specialty jobs.
Old 01-12-07, 12:02 PM
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Rich you sound like a true pro.
Old 01-12-07, 03:50 PM
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Hello ifllc,
You're too kind. Thank you though. I'm glad I could give a small something back to the forums.

I spent quite a bit of time putting finishes and wallcoverings on, and quite a bit more behind the counter selling them.

Working for a paint store in the winter leaves a lot of free time to brush (ugh - bad pun I know ) up on the tech side by reading the tech sheets & manuals, chewing the fat with the pros, plus a lot of time in the warehouse getting my hands dirty with the products.

I spent close to 20 years behind the counter, and close to 5 years on the other side. My wife and I recently got into rehab work on rental property we own and are planning on buying, so I'm back behind the tools again

Both of us work full time jobs, and with the rehab work it adds up to a pretty full schedule. (It's fun though, and very rewarding when prospective tenants come in and tell us how much nicer our rentals are than anything else on the market.)

PS. - I'll be hitting you up here pretty soon for some tips on laying laminate flooring. I have a kitchen and a bath to redo.
Old 01-12-07, 05:31 PM
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I would add only relentless stirring to Rich's advice and then it's good for any kind of spray finishing. Any kind of gun will clog. In fact, it's fine advice for brush work if you want a good finish. They should a sticky out if that fine essay.

Old 01-12-07, 07:07 PM
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Rich help please!

Rich will you look in on my "Paint bubbled" thread maybe you can answer the question.

I was told there is a antiflex compound that should have been added by a local painter,but the guys on this board said they have never heard of such a thing.

I agree Jan

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