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Inexpensive HVLP turbine or compressor/cheap gun?

 
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JaminJames



Joined: 07 Sep 2017
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:08 am    Post subject: Inexpensive HVLP turbine or compressor/cheap gun? Reply with quote

I've never shot a guitar body in my life. But I did grow up working on paint crews and have a fair amount of experience spraying out cabinets and interior woodwork. Not the same I know, but in a familiar universe.

First build will be a neck and body for a P bass I've recently ordered from USACG. Was going to have MJT finish it, but after thinking about it, for what I'd pay them, I could get an inexpensive HVLP set up.

After doing some research, I feel pretty confident that it's something I wouldn't have any problem picking up fairly quickly, and also something that I might enjoy as a hobby. I've always enjoyed woodworking and have all the tools I'd need to build solid bodies. I thought maybe building and finishing bodies would be a good excuse to get out of the studio on the weekends and give my ears a break. I'm not naive in thinking I'll have an MJT quality body my first go, or that I'll be saving money. I realize thats not the case at all.

So, to my question. What benefits am I going to see with an inexpensive HVLP turbine system like the Fuji Pro 2 ($425 on Amazon) over a compressor and an inexpensive gun? I've read that using an inexpensive gun and a compressor really isn't a true HVLP setup, and you're not really getting the benefits of the low pressure, and a lot of the finish is bouncing off and being wasted. Lacquer isn't too expensive, but it's certainly not cheap, so I'd like to make it go as far as possible.

The finishes I like are not the deep, high gloss finishes. I prefer the aged look. Not reliced, but flatter, more color and less clear coat depth, if that makes sense. I've even thought about forgoing a clear coat on my bass and just shooting a couple extra color coats and polishing that up a bit.

Will one of these guns facilitate that kind of finish better? Regardless of the gun, both will need to be flattened and polished to some degree, but would one make that process quicker? I know a lot of that will depend on my technique as well.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts and opinions!
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Lon



Joined: 30 Dec 2003
Posts: 6085
Location: Stephenville, TX

PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 8:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have an Apollo Turbine unit and have found that it is kind of a one trick pony in the world of guitar finishing. When I first bought it I was doing cabinet work and finishing, so it worked really well for that. In my shop, I find it stays in storage more than in use.

I have a decent compressor and various guns, airbrushes and air tools, that get a lot more use these days. I've installed air lines, filters, etc throughout the shop to allow for movement or needs in different areas of the shop.

Comparing price and uses, I think a good compressor/accessories would be more advantageous over a turbine unit. Each has it's place in finishing. JMHO
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#313. Praisegig
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JaminJames



Joined: 07 Sep 2017
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Wed Oct 25, 2017 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lon wrote:
I have an Apollo Turbine unit and have found that it is kind of a one trick pony in the world of guitar finishing. When I first bought it I was doing cabinet work and finishing, so it worked really well for that. In my shop, I find it stays in storage more than in use.

I have a decent compressor and various guns, airbrushes and air tools, that get a lot more use these days. I've installed air lines, filters, etc throughout the shop to allow for movement or needs in different areas of the shop.

Comparing price and uses, I think a good compressor/accessories would be more advantageous over a turbine unit. Each has it's place in finishing. JMHO


I definitely see the benefit of the compressor in regards to accessories and additional tools.

Most of the setup guides I find on YouTube and what not, are all for auto painting. They use lots of inline regulators and air filters and it seems like itís lretty pricey. Iím guessing painting a car has a lot less margin of error, as opposed to painting a guitar, which is relatively tiny and easy to sand our imperfections.


If I go the compressor route, which aspects of that setup are wise to incorporate? Do I need the inline filters and multiple regulators? Are some of them more critical than others?

Thanks for your input!
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Gem



Joined: 12 Sep 2017
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 2:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi. Not that I'm a pro finisher, but I've got great results using cheap HVLP guns and a half decent compressor with no filter, I got the biggest compressor I could because I was spraying a vehicle tho
Now it lives in (outside) my workshop. I can't remember the size offhand, but it's overkill for guitar bodies and necks..
As an added interesting note, my compressor if left on used to recharge every 15 minutes or so, when I wasn't using it. One day, I felt where a leak was coming from, a brass bolt, so when it was empty, I unscrewed bolt and wrapped it in ptfe tape (plumbers tape) now, it keeps its pressure for a week at a time..
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Lon



Joined: 30 Dec 2003
Posts: 6085
Location: Stephenville, TX

PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bare minimum would be a compressor that would carry your gun's CFM requirement + 15%, a requlator and a disposable water/oil filter stacked at the gun's inlet and a 3/8" ID air hose. Then build from there to meet future needs
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Gem



Joined: 12 Sep 2017
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 8:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been getting away without the filter.. I should get one really
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JaminJames



Joined: 07 Sep 2017
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Thu Oct 26, 2017 9:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lon wrote:
I have an Apollo Turbine unit and have found that it is kind of a one trick pony in the world of guitar finishing.


Lon, just wanted to clarify the one trick pony part. Do you mean one trick pony as it sprays finish and thatís it, as apposdd to a compressor that will fill lots of other duties around the shop? Or do you mean as far as finishing, it provides you with one option for finishing, where as a compressor and conversion gun will allow you a wider variety of options in regards to laying down your finish.

Have you found one over the other puts down a nicer finish that requires less sending in the end? For me, starting out, would one of the other be a little fool proof and easier to learn on?
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Lon



Joined: 30 Dec 2003
Posts: 6085
Location: Stephenville, TX

PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JaminJames wrote:

Lon, just wanted to clarify the one trick pony part. Do you mean one trick pony as it sprays finish and thatís it, as apposdd to a compressor that will fill lots of other duties around the shop? Or do you mean as far as finishing, it provides you with one option for finishing, where as a compressor and conversion gun will allow you a wider variety of options in regards to laying down your finish.

Have you found one over the other puts down a nicer finish that requires less sending in the end? For me, starting out, would one of the other be a little fool proof and easier to learn on?


With the turbine unit, it has it's pro/cons. In most cases, you will always have to thin the material to get an acceptable spray pattern. It always heats the material due to the air being compressed in the turbine to get enough CFM's to spray. Didn't have to worry about water in your finish. You will not a great finish out of a cheap turbine system. You don't have any options for cup size, so there may be a waste of material. Can't get the adjustment down to spray water based material. Don't get me wrong, I loved the system for doing cabinetry and large surfaces. Less stuff to carry to the site was a plus.

For the DIY'fer like us, it is more convenient to own a compressor, various guns, and bare system. Both give a great finish, with a little basic knowledge and practice. I paid $750 for my turbine unit 25 years ago and with that monies going toward a compressor and accessories, you can have a great system. JMHO
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Johnson82



Joined: 27 Aug 2007
Posts: 1733
Location: New Castle, IN

PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 2:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a 26 gallon compressor already, so I bought these after a recommendation here: http://www.grizzly.com/products/2-Spray-Gun-Set-w-Gauges-Metal-Cups/H7671

I've not sprayed a ton of guitars due to various circumstances, but the small one always did the trick for me. I did use the big gun to spray a school bus with acceptable results. This set was around $50 back then, though.
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Plaid Sabbath wrote:
What kind of operation is that? No sawdust...no empty beer bottles...no one is using extremely foul language...no one is spending 2 hours looking for lost tools...no dust on the bodies in the finishing roomÖ
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