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Yet another HVLP comparison

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Forum topic by tblake1984 posted 06-23-2015 03:45 PM 2437 views 0 times favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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tblake1984

28 posts in 633 days


06-23-2015 03:45 PM

I have been looking at HVLP sprayers again, and again, and again and I cannot for the life of me make a decision. A few weeks ago I thought I was pretty settled on the Earlex HV5500 but now I am looking at the Wagner Flexio 890. I am hoping someone may be able to shed some light on these two units and which one is better for (A) a beginner, and (B) spraying all different types of finishes from latex interior paint to stain to primer… I really need something that can do it all as home renovation doesn’t stop at building furniture and cabinets.

So far, the P/C list for each unit is as follows :

Wagner Flexio 890

Pros :
Self contained package – everything packs up inside the turbine case (will stay dust free)
Comes with two guns with different nozzles
Significantly cheaper
Reviews are confident in its ability to spray unthinned paints
Very positive reviews (4.5 stars on Amazon)

Cons :
Plastic, plastic, plastic (looks like a toy)
Looks like it uses a proprietary gun hookup so only Wagner guns can be used (although they are cheap)
Reviews state that cleanup isn’t as straightforward as other setups

Earlex HV5500

Pros :
Industrial looking build quality. Metal gun and non-proprietary turbine hookup
Very positive reviews (4.5 stars on Amazon)
650 watt turbine (Wagner doesn’t state the spec on the Flexio 890)
Add-on nozzles for the gun are affordable
Reviews state that cleanup is very easy

Cons :
$100 more expensive
Latex paints must be thinned
Non-self contained storage (will be stored in my shop so wood dust is a concern)

Right now, the biggest con I have against the Wagner is simply it’s brand name. I have a bad memory of my dad drop-kicking one of their first sprayers across the yard in the early 90’s – since then, I have had a bad vibe about anything Wagner (I know Earlex was purchased by Wagner a couple years ago as well). Any suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated; I have a feeling that it may come down to a coin toss.

Tim


24 replies so far

View ClammyBallz's profile

ClammyBallz

309 posts in 598 days


#1 posted 06-23-2015 04:23 PM

.

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


#2 posted 06-23-2015 04:36 PM

Tim,
I recently purchased the Earlex HV5500. I can’t compare it to the Wagner, but if you go the Earlex route, I found that Woodwerks a good deal on it. I paid $299, no tax, shipped free, and it was on my doorstep 4 days after I ordered. It came with both the 2.0 and 1.5 needles, the separate cleaning kit, the DVD, and 10 strainers. The cleaning kit and the additional needle, which I needed anyways, sold it for me.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

4853 posts in 2275 days


#3 posted 06-23-2015 05:08 PM

It sounds like you are just getting into spraying. Do you have a compressor? If so I would recommend starting with a gravity feed HVLP conversion gun. Even the cheapest gravity feed gun will lay down a beautiful finish. I have three that range in price from $15-100, and they all work great. Considering the minimal cost, you could abandon the “all-in-one” theory and dedicate a gun to furniture finishing. My lacquer gun only sprays lacquer. If I have to spray latex, I use an airless.

Really it depends on the size of the project. If you want to paint some latex trim, then a gravity feed gun will work fine (use a 2 mm needle and cap set) but if you want to paint your house an airless will be more efficient.
By the way you could buy an airless AND a gravity feed HVLP conversion gun for the same price as a turbine HVLP.
Good luck with whatever you decide. Having a spraying system is fantastic, and I use mine on projects large and small. I already had a mid sized compressor for running brad nailers and filling up tires etc, so for me a compressor driven gun made good sense.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View Earlextech's profile

Earlextech

1159 posts in 2152 days


#4 posted 06-23-2015 05:13 PM

If your concern is latex paint, they are equal. For a “fine” finish with latex, it will be thinned in either system. If you want to paint exterior walls, the 890 will do a great job using the iSpray nozzle, if you want to paint furniture (latex is never the right choice) then you will be thinning it slightly and using the detail nozzle. It’s not two guns, it’s two nozzles.
The 5500 is the much better choice if your concern is quality of finish on trim, cabinetry and furniture, using stains, clear coats, lacquers and such. It comes with two needles at Woodwerks and at Woodcraft.
The fact that Wagner now owns Earlex only means a couple of things. 1 – Earlex is now American made! That’s right, we are the job creators. 2 – Earlex now has a bigger backing organization to work from. Providing us more money for R&D, marketing and infrastructure. It’s all good at Earlex.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View CharlesNeil's profile

CharlesNeil

1610 posts in 3332 days


#5 posted 06-23-2015 05:17 PM

5500 and call it a day …

View tblake1984's profile

tblake1984

28 posts in 633 days


#6 posted 06-23-2015 06:07 PM

Well it looks like the Earlex is the favorite here. I will indeed be using it for literally everything from interior latex spraying on walls to finishing furniture and cabinetry with primers, paints, and various finishes (lacquers and varnishes).

I do have a compressor but it is a little 6gal pancake compressor used mainly for my nail guns and blowing out the shop… I have read that using a conversion gun would quickly burn out a compressor like this.

Is it beneficial to pick up a second gun to dedicate for oil-based stuff?

View dhazelton's profile

dhazelton

2324 posts in 1758 days


#7 posted 06-23-2015 06:53 PM

You will do walls much faster with a roller than an HVLP gun. Just saying.

View tblake1984's profile

tblake1984

28 posts in 633 days


#8 posted 06-23-2015 07:03 PM



You will do walls much faster with a roller than an HVLP gun. Just saying.

- dhazelton

True. But I hate painting… its my least enjoyable renovation task. If I get to use a cool tool to do it, I’ll be a lot happier doing so.

View exelectrician's profile

exelectrician

2327 posts in 1889 days


#9 posted 06-23-2015 07:12 PM

I sold my HVLP 4 stage .. Why? I had a small trim job to do, and on a whim I bought a 2” foam roller, I put ‘Flowtrol’ in with my latex and did the job,,,, WOW it looked like, or better than spray.

I realized that I could get over $400 on CL for my sprayer and then get the router table I really needed.

My daughter in law is over the moon with the job I did on her house, I don’t have overspray all over everything in my shop, win win.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

2406 posts in 1771 days


#10 posted 06-23-2015 07:18 PM

I’m not a sprayer expert. I do own or have own several spray setups. I have had a turbine HVLP, and airless and a few gravity feed HVLP guns.

I don’t think you’ll find a cheap setup up that does it all. Spraying is not the answer to all painting.

Find more about Weather in Eagle River, AK
Click for weather forecast

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View Earlextech's profile

Earlextech

1159 posts in 2152 days


#11 posted 06-23-2015 07:24 PM

Actually for walls, the best tool I’ve found is this – http://www.homedepot.com/p/Wagner-9-in-Smart-SideKick-Multi-Room-Powered-Roller-System-0530010/204801788?MERCH=REC-_-NavPLPHorizontal1_rr-_-NA-_-204801788-_-N

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View tblake1984's profile

tblake1984

28 posts in 633 days


#12 posted 06-23-2015 07:36 PM

Im not saying that I am looking for a complete replacement to brushes and a roller… I need a spray system but I want one that is multipurpose. Thats all. I have a small shop and cannot afford the space for unidimensional tools (i.e., a hollow chisel mortiser – I would love to have one but can’t justify it over my plunge router that I can also use for other tasks). If I am going to spend money and space on a new tool, I need it to be something that has multiple applications.

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4822 posts in 2510 days


#13 posted 06-23-2015 08:03 PM

I had an Earlex and I sold it , why because the jobs I had never were worth the time spent to clean the gun afterward except once when I painted my garage.
I bought a set of HVLP gravity feed spray guns at HF on sale for around $20.00 and I am very happy with them; less cleaning

-- Bert

View Drew's profile

Drew

304 posts in 2562 days


#14 posted 06-23-2015 08:08 PM

I don’t understand why these guns would be less cleaning.


I had an Earlex and I sold it , why because the jobs I had never were worth the time spent to clean the gun afterward except once when I painted my garage.
I bought a set of HVLP gravity feed spray guns at HF on sale for around $20.00 and I am very happy with them; less cleaning

- b2rtch


-- TruCraftFurniture.com

View Drew's profile

Drew

304 posts in 2562 days


#15 posted 06-23-2015 08:09 PM

I agree with Charles


5500 and call it a day …

- CharlesNeil


-- TruCraftFurniture.com

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