Comments 6 Comments

Every year sometime during April when the weather has hopefully turned a bit warmer, I give the outside of the ‘shop a couple of coats. I use a wax based, weatherproof finish so that it’s got ample time to harden off over the long hot (!) summer. This year is no exception except that instead of using a large paintbrush I’ve been trying out the Fuji PaintWIZ HVLP (High Volume Low Pressure) sprayer, suitable for paint, stain, varnish and many other products than can be used around the home.

Never having used a paint sprayer of any sort, I was intrigued about the difficulty of setting up the machine. By studying the book of words inside the box, it all seemed pretty straightforward. The main element to consider is the viscosity of the liquid being sprayed; determined by using a special measuring cup, whereby it’s timed when it runs out of a hole in the base. If it’s too thick, it won’t spray properly and is liable to cause spattering on the finished surface. If this happens, it should be slightly thinned following the advice usually found on the outside of the container.

There are two sprayer controls; the first is a rotary dial on the trigger which sets the volume of liquid being sprayed. Turning the dial clockwise increases the volume and turning it in the opposite direction decreases the amount. There are three spray patterns to select by turning the air cap on the nozzle a quarter of a turn to the appropriate position; horizontal, vertical or circular.

When the viscosity of the liquid being sprayed is right, using the PaintWIZ presents no real problems but the user must carefully adhere to the instructions.

Once the spraying has been completed, the complete gun should be dismantled. All the separate parts must be individually cleaned in warm water or the appropriate cleaning solution. A solution of warm, soapy water should be sprayed through the reassembled gun and the exterior cleaned with a damp cloth. When using any sort of paint sprayer, it’s imperative to thoroughly clean all the component parts. Without this the slightest trace of dried paint or stain will considerably impair its performance the next time it’s used.

The last section of the instruction manual contains a page on ‘troubleshooting’. It’s a relatively easy process to learn but producing a consistently good, even spray pattern is slightly trickier. If you’re struggling, this is where the final page is really useful!

  • Steve

    As a champion of protecting your lungs with your recent dust extraction series, I’m surprised you didn’t feel the need to say if such protection is necessary if you use this spray equipment indoors.

    • Rob Stoakley

      Hello Steve – thanks for your comment and of course you’re absolutely right. Hands up to that one and a slapped wrist at the same time!

  • AlexK

    Hi Rob, The link for the Axminster Email billed this as a review but you make no mention of how it feels to use, how much back-splatter there is (if any), should you wear a mask when using outdoors, how well it covers the wall, do you need to use a second coat? etc.
    As reviews go, there’s not much information 🙁

    • Rob Stoakley

      Hello Alex – there was some ‘splattering’ in use as the liquid I was spraying was quite thick. Coverage was pretty good but as a general rule, I would put on two coats. A mask could be used outdoors if needed, but I didn’t wear one, mainly because I forgot! Old clothes are a ‘must’ and if you wear glasses, I recommend wearing an old pair as well.

  • Bertram Sømme

    got an apollo – one of the smaller ones – yes i did use it for spraying pre cat(and catalised) but found it not good enough for the final finish – however for a base coat very good.
    For final finishing always a compressor and kit – the comp and kit went with me when i emigrated but luckily enough i have made excellent friends with a superbly equipped furniture factory nearby (just got their new 7 axis cnc rounter last week) Just being able to walk in the door and know the temperature is correct – pick up the spray gun and go – the booth takes care of drift – no cup for the gun either. However im still dissapointed that there seems not to be available a good enough kit with external air intake for the mask – i finally made my own which was 100% – the only one i see that is anywhere near good enough fits on the compressor. Ordinary masks only go up to 3.5% saturation – when you become aware that you need another set of £10 filters is when the smell gets too bad – external air supply the only thing you need to be aware of is a wasp flying up the pipe.

    • Bertram Sømme

      making your own mask with an external air supply is very simple – hole in wall, blower, some kind of regulator (i used a variac from a sale) my mask is a firemans type – no filters necessary. I cannot say how important the health issue is – we should not be reliant on very expensive filter masks which dont work if there is too much saturation in the air.