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Discussion Starter #1
Hopefully, this could be sticky material for noobs like myself. So...

Let us know what you are using/have used... and and also what you like/dislike about your equipment.

Peace!
 

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I have three SataJet guns. It's pretty much all I will touch for spraying base and clear. I also have a crappy Devilbiss gun for spraying primer... as it does fine and you need to sand it so much anyways that it doesn't really matter.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Any recommendations for a newbie? I personally like the HV3500 by Campbell Hausfeld because of the turbine setup.Been searching a round for reviews on it. Just about the only negative thing I've heard is that one user didn't like the way it layed down bc/cc, and thinks it may be due to the fact that the air delivered is somewhat hotter because of the turbine feed.

Anyone with experience with Turbine Paint Guns?
 

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The Sharp guns I have heard good things about (like serpentracer said)... and they are fairly inexpensive. Pretty much the best value for painting out there.

Never shot with a Campbell Hausfeld... but judging by the other air tools they use, STAY AWAY.

Just get a gravity feed HVLP gun with a 1.3mm nozzle for base/clear. I've never used a turbine gun, never talked with anyone that has used one, and I'm pretty sure there's a reason for that.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'm hearing that the Sata Minijet is good for motorcycles, which is where I'm starting, but the largest available tip is 1.0mm. From my research, it seems several folks have had success using it for BC/CC, one even said he uses it for primer. Do you gys think a 1.0mm tip is too small for BC/CC?
 

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You can order the minijet with a 1.2mm tip. I know because I have one. It works great for base coat, and pretty darn good for clear coat. My NR2000 works much better for clear, but before I got it I used the minijet and it worked out pretty good.

1.0 is WAY too small for clear, though. You might be able to do base with it, but any decent, thicker clear is not going to work well.

And there's no way in hell you'll be able to lay decent primer from a 1.0. My primer gun is either a 2.0 or 2.2, and even then sometimes the high building primers don't like to come out perfect, depending on the temp and humidity and stuff.

That being said- the minijet retails for like 350 bucks. If you're not going to use it a LOT, go with a set of slightly cheaper guns. Or something like a Sharp with a couple size nozzles, that way you can use the same gun for everything.

The only downside of the Sata guns is that the nozzle, needle, and air cap are a matched set... so it's like 250 bucks for each diameter set up. The other brands of guns you can change the nozzle for like 30 bucks, which is REALLY nice to be able to do.

The Finex is a decent gun, and is only 150 bucks.

How much painting to do plan on doing, exactly?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I recently bought an '05 R1, which was dropped, so I've done most of the prep work, and plan on painting all the plastics again. That's the immediat reason for buying a gun but I would like to venture into painting more motorcycles and also cars in the future. It will not be a full-time job (hopefully, unless I get laid off!!).

It's part time, hobby stuff.
 

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Yeah, then it probably in your best interest to get a decent gun that you can change the tips in. Get like a 1.3 and a 2.2 tip for it, and you should be able to get the job done.

No offense, but your first paint job is going to be FAR from perfect. If you get a SUPER-nice gun, it's going to be kind of a waste. The nice thing is that you can usually get a decent price for a used gun, so even if you spend 200 bucks on the gun and another tip, you'll be able to get over 100 bucks for the stuff if you ever decide to sell it.

With me, I did that, and ended up keeping the gun to just spray primer with, because it does a fine job and primer gets so nasty that it's not even worth buying a better gun... it'll just take even longer to clean, and if anything breaks (I use the primer gun the most, obviously.. it's just how bodywork goes), it's MUCH MUCH more expensive to fix.

Painting stuff yourself is a very rewarding thing to be able to do, though. I've saved an unbelievable amount of money from doing it, and it also is nice to be able to fix stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Oh yeah. I want to be able to do this in my free time as a hobby, and still make some money from it. I would like to graduate to cars eventually, because I have an eye for a few 15 year-old luxury cars that would be in my price range. A guy down in miami put up a minijet 3 on craigslist on Friday. $80.00!!

I call him today, and he sold it on ebay already for 170.00 or so. :(

So I guess I'm looking at the Devilbiss line. I'm the type who likes to do tons of research, and then hear from those in the know, like yourself, and then make an educated purchase. Thanks for your time.

Now, tell mw. Since this is my bike, and I have the time to put into prep work, I imagine I should be able to get a top notch job with a budget spray gun (Devilbiss?). I have every intention of sanding the primer, sanding the basecoat, and sanding/polishing the clear. Sounds like a better gun will reauire less sanding, which results in less wasted paint and time. Is this the major benefit??
 

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Oh yeah. I want to be able to do this in my free time as a hobby, and still make some money from it. I would like to graduate to cars eventually, because I have an eye for a few 15 year-old luxury cars that would be in my price range. A guy down in miami put up a minijet 3 on craigslist on Friday. $80.00!!

I call him today, and he sold it on ebay already for 170.00 or so. :(

So I guess I'm looking at the Devilbiss line. I'm the type who likes to do tons of research, and then hear from those in the know, like yourself, and then make an educated purchase. Thanks for your time.

Now, tell mw. Since this is my bike, and I have the time to put into prep work, I imagine I should be able to get a top notch job with a budget spray gun (Devilbiss?). I have every intention of sanding the primer, sanding the basecoat, and sanding/polishing the clear. Sounds like a better gun will reauire less sanding, which results in less wasted paint and time. Is this the major benefit??
Devlibiss or Sharp both have some decent guns that should work out well for you.

You don't really need to sand the base coat... the primer needs to be sanded, for obvious reasons. It just doesn't and will never go on very smooth. It sands so easily that it doesn't really matter much, though.

The base coat you only put on thick enough to get complete color coverage, so it ends up being VERY VERY thin... not even enough there to sand, as you'll go right through it on the first pass.

The clear goes on much thicker, and you WILL have to wet sand and polish it to get a nice, smooth, glossy finish. This is where most of the time and finesse comes in. If you get good enough, you can get the clear to lay out so smooth that it takes almost no time to sand and buff... but if it gets messed up it can easily take 8 hours to buff out a whole bike.

The higher end guns waste less material when you spray... and this comes in handy when you are working with paint that costs a ton of money. You will also get a little smoother spray pattern... but most of getting a smooth finish comes from technique and experience.

Also- the high end guns are MUCH easier and faster to clean out than the low end ones. I don't think I've ever taken apart my mini-jet... I just flush it with thinner and it's good to go.

But damn- if you could have scored that for 80 bucks it would have been SWEET.

But yeah- if you take the time and do it right, a moderately priced gun should be able to get you a nice looking paint job. Just don't expect it to be factory-perfect your first time out.. there's a steep learning curve when it comes to mixing paint, getting the correct temp reducers for it, setting the pressure on the gun, making sure everything is clean, etc, etc...
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have a buddy with a part time mechanic's shop. I can borrow a hood from an old civic and screw around with that to learn some techniques.
 

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The Sharpe Finex are probably the best gun you're going to find for the money currently. If you can afford a Sata MiniJet, and know how to make use of it's performance, then you probably wouldn't be on here asking about guns.

If you are going to get the finex, purchase the smaller Finex FX1000 Mini gun (298198 - 289222). These smaller cup guns are ideal for getting into the tight areas on sportbike panels. I use the .6 head for liquid pearls and certain clearcoats. HOK's clear shoots BEAUTIFULLY through the .6 when I'm trying to get a perfect surface on a part that I can't polish. The .6 head makes the Finex shoot a controlled fog nearly identical to an Accuspray.

I use the .8 head for light grain metallics and most of my pearls and basecoats. Certain manufacturer's candy colors I'll use the .8, but sometimes I use the .6 depending on the viscocity of the candy.

I use the 1.0 and 1.1 for prime-ing. As far as not being able to shoot through the 1.0 and 1.1; I shoot Matrix MP3-HS through the 1.0 tip without overreducing it with no problem at all. Granted that's with some good air pressure behind it.

Technically, you could purchase one Finex FX1000 and then just extra air caps/needle assemblies. You'd end up with about $130 in a setup you could use on pretty much any bike part.


I use the Finex's as my daily work horses. I have some Sata Mini's and a couple digitals that I use for certain jobs. But day in and day out, the Finex's are what I beat on the most without worrying about quality or breaking something. Once dialed in, they spray nearly as good as my Sata 2000. They can't touch the new Mini's or any of the tulip-head stuff. But 99.9% of the time they work way better than their price tag says they should.
 

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Binks...have owned a couple for decades
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Went to the paint shop today. Guy says his DeVilbiss plus shot better than his Sata 3000. Only person I heard say that in all my research.

One thing he did say, however, is if you're trying to save money upfront, you'd be better off buying one standard size gun instead of a mini gun. Anyone disagree? I do plan on graduating to cars eventually. Given the price, I'm almost sold on the DeVilbiss.

I'll do some reasearch on the Sharpe.
 

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Went to the paint shop today. Guy says his DeVilbiss plus shot better than his Sata 3000. Only person I heard say that in all my research.

One thing he did say, however, is if you're trying to save money upfront, you'd be better off buying one standard size gun instead of a mini gun. Anyone disagree? I do plan on graduating to cars eventually. Given the price, I'm almost sold on the DeVilbiss.

I'll do some reasearch on the Sharpe.
The Sharpe is a MUCH better gun than a Devilbiss, from my experience.

As far as mini vs standard size... it all depends on what you want to do with it. The mini guns these days can get about an 8" spray pattern... so it's more then enough to paint cars with. I sprayed the trunk of my car, a targa top for a corvette, and a few fenders and bumpers with my minijet no problem. It works fine.

If you were going to do an entire car all at once, you'd save some time with a full size gun... but the pattern is about 10-14" on them, so for a motorcycle you end up with a lot of overspray.

And as far as some primers NOT clogging up a 1.0 or 1.1... it depends on the type of primer, I suppose. I use cheap primers. Because they are cheap. They also are thick as hell, but I can get almost 2 mils per coat with a building primer without a problem, so whatever. :)

Moral of the story- listen to grashopr. He does this for a living. I just fuck around in my garage and have pretty good results. His shit wins awards at shows.

And he's got a Triumph painted like the General Lee- that's gotta count for something.
 

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Devilbiss makes some very nice guns! As far as saying one gun sprays better than another, I think someone is leaving out some big pieces of information.

I've sprayed with a lot of different guns and each gun has it's strong points and it's weak points. The high-dollar ones have fewer weak points, but I haven't found or heard of a perfect gun yet at any price (the day they put out a gun that guarantees a perfect paintjob in one coat, I'll sell my left lung for it). Your spraying technique/skill plays a ton into how well a gun sprays. Also, the viscosity of the material you are spraying, if it's a pearl of metallic, the quality of the pearl or metallic effects how well the material lays down when you spray it.

If you want to get technical, the sharpness of the blades on the milling machine that turns big sheets of pearl into powdered pearl to be mixed into the paint determine how sharp the edges of every little piece of pearl. Whether those edges are clean cut edges or 'ripped off chunks' because of those blades determines how they travel in the air stream and how well they lay down in the solvent base when they hit the surface. How those chunks are dispursed determines how they reflect light, which changes the color after clearing.

Someone else can not tell you what gun sprays better than another. You have to purchase guns and spray with them to see which one fits your style of spraying best. But... a good paint job is not in the gun. Its in your hand. So dont beat yourself up by thinking that if you dont spend $800+ on some recommended gun that your setting yourself up for failure. If you're planning on making a career out of this, spend that $800 on some VoTech classes or something and skip the expensive guns. If you're wanting to blow money just to show that you can, it's easier to impress chicks with gold plated underwear than with expensive paint guns you'll only use once.

I like the Sata's, I like Devilbiss, I like Iwata, I like AccuSpray. Each gun has it's usage. But if you are planning on painting mostly sportbike parts... I would 100% recommend getting a mini gun instead of a full size gun. You can dial a mini gun up far enough to do anything you could ever want to do, but you can not dial a full size gun down far enough to lay a smooth clear coat inside of a deep set of SRAD Air Inlet Ducts. The smaller gun and cup weigh less, so it's way easier to pay attention to your pattern overlap and build thickness when the weight of the gun isn't dragging your hand around. There are guys who can spray very very technical stuff with a big gun. But there are also people who can ride a UniCycle down a stair railing. I dont recommend learning on the stair rail.
 

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Aww! Kevin! I had no idea you were so impressed with the General. LOL. You need to stop by and see the new shop next time you're this far south! Tons more goodies than last time you were down (and I still want that s3 back!).

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Yeah, if you can find all the parts to that S3, you can go ahead and dig them all out of my trailer, and I'll sell it back to you, lol.

And sadly, I'm not going to be making any trips to Kansas any time soon.... it was easier when I lived in Illinois, but now that I'm in North Carolina... yeah, we'll see.

But yeah- who wouldn't be impressed with a bike painted like that? It's badass, and I've always been a fan of the Dukes.
 
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