I still use my old siphon paint sprayer, but after watching American Hot rod, I knew that I need to get out the Stone Age. The paint guy at the body shop was using a gravity feed sprayer with the hopper above the gun and to say the least I was impressed. Looked like he was holding the gun two feet away and getting a perfect spray pattern. Are these guns that good or is he that good? What are the pros and cons of the gravity feed spray guns and which brand and model would you recommend? I hate painting, but if they work that well, I just figured out what I want for Christmas!
I think the majority of gravity guns you'll see are HVLP models. We've got a siphon feed HVLP DeVilbiss gun that cost over $300, and it doesn't work nearly as well as a no-name gravity feed import HVLP that we bought for about $100. It takes a little getting used to the way a top-cup gun feels since the balance is different than what you're used to, but once you use one for a bit you'll probably prefer the feel of it over a traditional gun. I know a couple guys who do auto paint work for a living, and both of them swear by gravity guns made by Sata or Saita or some name similar to that. They're fairly expensive though, and probably not worth investing in for anything less than auto painting or some similar appearance critical application.
I'll second MM's recoomendation on the low cost gravity feed guns.
I bought mine a the paint PPG shop. Cost was +/- $60.00
I seldom use a siphon gun unless it is for a big job then I have a Northern 2 qt. system that was $74.95. I real bargain that has shot 100's of gallons of paint.
The high dollar Euro guns are nice but even my close pro painter is using an Asian knock-off.
This is a similar gun.
I have a siphon gun that's fine for painting battleships or the like.
Picked up a mid range $200 Sharpe HVLP gravity fed - and it was excellent. Worth every penny. Heck the paint saved on a couple of paint jobs pays for the gun. HVLP = more paint on the target, not in the air. Gravity feed = use all of the paint in the hopper and don't worry about running 'dry' when you still have 3/8" in the hopper.
I like the DeVilbiss gravity feed guns. You can buy a good one for around $100 give or take a little.
Try looking at spraygundepot.com, they have good deals.
I needed to spruce up some pretty ratty equipment at work without getting to involved in time or expense, so ran down to the local Horror Frt outlet and picked up their ($50-60??) HVLP gravity feed. Well, I was VERY surprised, so much so that I went back and got one for my home shop. It is a little awkward at first, and has a 20oz cup instead of a quart. One thing is, you WILL need a means to hold it for filling, either buy the odd little wire shaped gizmo made for it, or plan to make one yourself.
I'd like to try one of those high dollar guns, they must be something, if a el-cheapo like I got will do as good as it does.
After 32 years in the Auto Body business I sold my shop and semi-retired last Nov. I had 3 Sata Jets when I left and they were the finest spray guns I have ever used. The big advantage to a "High Volume Low Pressure" gun is the simple fact that it takes 15-20 lbs of air pressure to create a suction in the conventional spray gun "bottom cup". With the HVLP gun it just takes enough air to force the paint through the head and make a pattern. They will pay for themselves in the paint they save because the overspray is cut in half at least. Ive sprayed with the 29.95 ones and when new they work just as well as a 600.00 Sata but wont hold up to production work.
I do some painting...
I use a grapvity feed HVLP touch up gun...
75$ brand new on ebay...
i paint bicycle frames with it...
I have a nearly new Snap-On HVLP that I would sell if anyone is interested.
I use a Sharpe HVLP pressure cup siphon gun.
Works as well or better than a gravity gun.
It was discontinued because it looks like an older style gun, but is light years ahead of one.
Around $200 will get you one and it can be run off a small cheap homeowners aircompressor since it uses so little air.
I have a gravity feed gun - "Wellmade" brand. Depite the not-very confidence inspiring name, it is a superb spraygun and was under $US70 at the time. Ith has painted a couple of vans, and misc motorbike bits. My suction feed gun is relegated to primer spraying. It will run (just) off a 2hp compressor
IMO, one of the biggest advantages is they are so easy to clean - no suction tube and everything comes apart easily and you can get into everything.
Don't wait, get one.
Ditto on all the points above.
What you will also notice with the "top feeders" is that you can spray the underside of objects. They are also "dripless" when shooting a large horizontal panel like a hood or top. Try holding the siphon feed gun parallel to a shoot and they usually drip from vent tube or hole.
I've got two Satas and two Sharpes but for the home shop there's less expensive guns that do a fine job. I did my first car with a $19 Sears can. After 30 yrs, the car still looks like it belongs on the cover of a magazine. The point is that an expensive gun won't make you a painter it just makes painting easier and cheaper in the long run.
Forgive my ignorance about these paint guns, but after looking at them on the web, I am a little confused about one thing. Some state “gravity feed” and HVLP and others just say gravity feed. Is there a difference or are they saying the same thing?
If it doesn't say HVLP then it isn't. On some even when claimed to be HVLP, are borderline and can only itomize the paint well enough for a good finish at a higher pressure.
I forget the exact spec for HVLP but it's something like 50% transfer rate at 10psi at the mixing cap. Some of high-end guns will do 85%+ and lay powder fine droplets of paint, if you want. On a standard (non-HVLP), you're lucky to get 35% transfer rate. The rest goes into the air.
At $800 a quart for some automotive paints, you can see a benifit to the high-end models.
I paid my dues shootin old Binks and a host of cheap guns.Sprayin everything from laquer to latex,from furniture to M/Cs............Was shopping for a new gun years ago for some auto repair on,but one of wifeys car oops.At the local paint joint got sold a high $ sata.Anyhow,after a little goofin around with it to get familiarized shot a door that wifey crunched and was slackjawed.The difference that gun made in the finish was waaaaaay better than original.Sold me,I know the sata's are pricey......but dang!They're worth it!Best of luck,BW
Well there is no waiting for Christmas to get one ,but gees the prices start at $20 and go to infinity. Would a gun in the $60 to $120 range do a decent job? Any problems with the plastic reservoirs?
if it's your introduction to HVLP, I don't think price would be the main issue. Go to sears and get thier run of the mill HVLP to get your feet wet. I advise against plastic cups,though. Solvents chew them up if you choose the wrong one and you'll just have to replace it anyways.
There's nothing saying that an HVLP under 120 is a terrible gun. MAC tools are overpriced IMO and you're just paying for a name and somebody in a shiny truck to bring it to you. Why not check out harbor freight and the like? I'm sure they have some good deals on them,no?
My only other advice is to buy ( at the point of purchase) an extra seal kit for your gun. Sometimes they break at the worst moments and you'll be glad you spent the extra 12 dollars for it.