LVLP and Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane

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Forum topic by jhillyer posted 07-26-2016 02:38 AM 333 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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8 posts in 2109 days

07-26-2016 02:38 AM

Topic tags/keywords: lvlp spar urethane

does anyone have any experience spraying Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane? i am not spraying a large area, just small signs. i use the Spar Urethane cause is leave a nice glossy finish and lasts in the weather. i know they have the spray cans of this, but it is expensive when you spray a lot of signs, (just not at once) it is cheaper to buy it by the gallon, i currently brush it one but it is a pain sometimes and i was wondering about switching over to LVLP. any thoughts? i don’t need a real thick coat cause it is not going to be in the water just outside.

-- Jason Hillyer, Decatur IL

7 replies so far

View bondogaposis's profile


3969 posts in 1768 days

#1 posted 07-26-2016 03:25 AM

Urethane is not a good choice for outdoor use and Helmsman is not the best brand. I’ve had a lot better luck w/ Mcloskey’s Man O War varnish for outdoor applications.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View jwmalone's profile


769 posts in 120 days

#2 posted 07-26-2016 05:30 AM

I have spayed lots of helmsman with a hvlp no problems but if your only doing one or 2 signs at a time, the set up and clean up is not worth it, properly cleaning you’re hvlp is time consuming and you need lots of thinner or kerosene. much faster to brush. What you need is a bunch of cheap throw away foam brushes or even chip brushes 50 cents apiece nice finish on those small signs throw em out when you’re done, trust me been doing it a long time.

-- "Boy you could get more work done it you quit flapping your pie hole" Grandpa

View AlaskaGuy's profile


2392 posts in 1726 days

#3 posted 07-26-2016 06:23 AM

Urethane is not a good choice for outdoor use and Helmsman is not the best brand. I ve had a lot better luck w/ Mcloskey s Man O War varnish for outdoor applications.

- bondogaposis

What he said.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3839 posts in 1911 days

#4 posted 07-26-2016 11:51 AM

If you’re selling those to customers, consider using something else.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View OSU55's profile


1039 posts in 1407 days

#5 posted 07-26-2016 11:53 AM

You might look into waterbased finishes developed for exterior use. One is Target Coatings EM9300. They spray well, almost no smell, and dry (not cure) more quickly than solvent based varnishes. Another option is exterior house paint with no pigment. I think it’s the higher “base” numbers that will dry clear.

Using water based, spray guns are easy to clean – warm/hot water and maybe some DNA and things are clean.

View splintergroup's profile


719 posts in 640 days

#6 posted 07-26-2016 03:25 PM

Epifanes varnish (Amazon or

The longest lasting non-paint finish I have found for outdoors (even is doing better than some west systems epoxy).

View jhillyer's profile


8 posts in 2109 days

#7 posted 07-28-2016 01:29 PM

Thanks everyone, I think i will try to find a different product. does anyone have any luck with some Water based outdoor finish (clear gloss)?

-- Jason Hillyer, Decatur IL

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