First attempt at spraying lacquer - some questions.

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Forum topic by George M posted 07-30-2011 01:00 AM 1261 views 2 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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George M

118 posts in 2938 days

07-30-2011 01:00 AM

Tomorrow I will be attempting my first HPLV spraying of lacquer. It will be going on a project made of cherry with water based stain. I have been reading and think I have it all figured out, but thought I would see if I am missing anything.

Using a precat lacquer.
Thinning to 10% to 20%
Using a 40 sheen.
My gun is one of those from Harbor Freight that has good reviews
Using a 1.4 needle.
Pressure at 35 – 45 psi.

Does all that seem correct?
Should I be sanding between coats? 400 or 600?
Will the lacquer be OK left in the gun between coats? Drying time to sanding is 5 to 10 minutes.
How do you store the left over lacquer (that is already thinned)?

Any other things I should look out for?

-- George, Parker Colorado

6 replies so far

View Tim Kindrick's profile

Tim Kindrick

369 posts in 2727 days

#1 posted 07-30-2011 01:54 AM

I don’t think you have to sand between coats of lacquer because each coat “melts” into the one below it.

-- I have metal in my neck but wood in my blood!!

View Dark_Lightning's profile


3285 posts in 3282 days

#2 posted 07-30-2011 03:47 AM

I’d recommend against leaving the lacquer in the gun, unless it turns out you don’t like the gun. That stuff will kick harder than the plastic the gun is made of.

-- Random Orbital Nailer

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George M

118 posts in 2938 days

#3 posted 07-30-2011 03:22 PM

You meen that between every coat (10 – 15 min) I need to empty the gun and run lacquer thinner throuhg it?

-- George, Parker Colorado

View DaleM's profile


958 posts in 3557 days

#4 posted 07-30-2011 03:42 PM

I do sand between coats, not to rough it up, just really light to knock down any dustnibs or any “goobers” that might have been in the lacquer. 400 grit would be fine for this. I do not clean out the gun between coats. I just use a small brush that I dip in lacquer thinner and brush over the tip to remove any hardened lacquer around the tip before I spray the next coat. If you don’t, you sometimes get a small amount of hardened lacquer around the tip that could affect the spray pattern, or come loose and end up on your finish. That’s the only hazard I see to not cleaning between coats.

-- Dale Manning, Carthage, NY

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 4179 days

#5 posted 07-30-2011 04:36 PM

There really isn’t a “correct” set of parameters for spraying lacquer. You can compensate for differing viscosity with pressure and atomization tweaking. You’ll know you’re in the groove when it lays down in a nice wet coat that feels smooth when dry.

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View George M's profile

George M

118 posts in 2938 days

#6 posted 07-30-2011 07:31 PM

That was Fun! Two hours – eight coats – great.
DaleM, thanks for your info. I did as you said and all went well. I did use 0000 steel wool every third coat rather than sand paper.

Glad I tried this. It is a small project (Bed for my grandaughters American Girl Doll). Am anxious to try a larger project now.

-- George, Parker Colorado

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