Fixing (and then preventing) runs in latex paint with airless sprayer?

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Forum topic by ADHDan posted 05-14-2014 02:32 PM 1701 views 0 times favorited 0 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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05-14-2014 02:32 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question finishing spray gun

I’ve been spraying some large cabinets with the HF airless sprayer. Everything looked more or less fine when I left the project, but when I came back the next morning there were quite a few runs, streaks and smears (including cat paw prints – d’oh!). I’m wondering what the best way is to fix the runs, and whether I should do anything different when spraying another topcoat to try to even out the finish. I’m using Behr Premium Plus Ultra interior satin enamel, with a Graco 515 tip for wide areas (sides, tops, bottoms, panels) and a 313 tip for narrower pieces (face frames, trim).

Currently, to try to rectify the runs, I’ve been scraping them down with a razor blade and sanding them with 220 grit to “deburr” and chipout edges. I have a few specific questions, and in addition I’m fully open to general advice:

(1) Is this an ok technique for dealing with large runs? I’m finding that the scraping often takes off paint back to the primer, but I’m concerned about trying to just sand them down for fear of gumming everything much worse.

(2) Assuming scraping and sanding edges is the way to go, should I try to feather paint into chipout holes so that my next spray coat won’t show divots?

(3) Should I do anything different for REALLY large runs – i.e., where it looks like a “wall of paint” cured while dripping halfway down the side of a cabinet?

(3) When spraying latex with an airless sprayer, should I add Floetrol and if so how much?

(4) What’s the best technique for getting an even coat with an airless sprayer, especially when trying to fix mistakes?

I don’t want to overstate the problem – the paint job is not so bad that I’d need to strip completely and start over. There are just a lot of little streaks, and a few larger streaks (but in areas that aren’t going to be extremely visible).


p.s. As long as I’m asking for advice, I figure I might as well toss out a helpful tip (that may or may not be obvious). For painting both sides of things like doors and shelves, and for propping up lots of trim pieces at once, I took some scrap 2’x4’ sheets of 1/2” plywood and shot a bunch of 16 gauge brads through them (spaced judiciously) to make nail beds. With proper spacing, only 4-6 nail tips need to touch the piece at any given time, and excess brads can just be bent down so they don’t touch. It took about 10 minutes to make supports for all of my workpieces.

-- Dan in Minneapolis, woodworking since 11/11.

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