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Discussion Starter #1
So the side panels came out decent but the Fender Pan came out blotchy paint gun issues and experience and I don't know what else but my question is I used rest oleum enamel John Deere green if I paint it again in a couple days do I sand it 1st and rough it up with like 1500 or 2000 grit and then put another coat on?
 

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Yeah, sand it. Just need to rough it up some.
I'd highly recommend using JD rattle can paint. I know its pricey, but 1 can goes a long way and it sprays really nice.
 
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I have alot of the rustoleum quart. I want to give it another whirl. Trying dad's better gun, my harbor freight cheapo had issues. If I sand and recoat can we get smooth consistent finish?
 

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That's getting above my pay grade, lol.
I'm a rattle can painter.
 
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I used mineral spirits to thin, no hardener. Could of my outlet pressure totally screw up a paint job?
 

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ptz, I'm not a painter, but I've painted enamel & latex with good results...to me anyhow!
I've found too low an air pressure results in paint kinda dribbling out nozzle or very large droplets hitting you job. Too high a pressure results in very small droplets...pretty much atomized... and tend to hit & bouncing of your job. I usually spray around 30-35 psi and I'm happy with results.

Blotchy paint. To me, it sounds like the paint wasn't mixed enough and you didn't get an even distribution of pigment throughout the paint. Many of the pigments are really heavy. A "light" stirring will mix some and the rest are lying on the bottom of the can. Each stir or shake mixes them somewhat, but not totally. I use the flat paint stirrers after shaking. Press stick FIRMLY against bottom of can and scrape stick around can. If you have a different color on the end of the stick than the rest of the stick, pigment is still stuck on bottom. After paint is thoroughly mixed, add thinner. Personally, I don't like spirits as a thinner and use lacquer thinner...but that's me!

Before spraying, look around for a piece of scrap sheet metal or even plywood. Mix paint, then thin, then spray test pattern on scrap. Adjust air pressure to get a full pattern with no spaces/blobs. A lot of messing IS needed! Air to the gun, air to the nozzle fan, and trigger pull/amount of paint sprayed.

One more! I think 1500-200 paper is a little too fine. Great for a final wet sand, but I'd use a 400 or 600 grit to "roughen".

As I said, I'm not a"painter" so all are free to correct or agree with me! Bob
 
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I'm thinking about 1. Trying better quality paint gun 2. Monitor pressure better 3. Making sure to completely mix 4. Maybe even trying JD quart next time. That's a few things.
 

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You have the essentials already right? Clean dry air? Steady flow of well regulated clean dry air?

Like many here, I'm not a compressed air painter, however, I worked with a guy that was a very, very good compressed air painter for over 20 years.

When you say blotchy, what exactly does that mean? Bright and heavy, well laid down, paint in some areas and lightly covered in others? Raindrops? Spatters? Fish-eye's?

Bob covered a few important areas, too much atomization results in dry paint hitting the work surface. Too little atomization results in blobs and drops of thicker paint hitting the surface.

The paint HAS to be mixed good and it has to be filtered before going into the spray can, but I assume you already know this.

Equal distance from the work surface with all parts of the fan pattern at all times. Spray in multiple directions. He used to thin his paint pretty severely and lay down multiple coats in a row one right after the other to 'build' the paint up. Overlap seemed to be his key. But he would go perpendicular with alternating coats.

As I said, this is only from watching him work. I have zero personal experience with it so YMMV.
 

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Thanks for all that Randy, I think i have a multitude of things to work on. Mainly from inexperience combined with little patience. I'm working on both. Thanks again to all. I'm sanding on it and dad is going to assist. I'll get better! As for blotchy yes dark in some areas light in others. Like it isn't smooth glass finish but like as you move around if it's very inconsistent, shady looking?
 

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Sounds like you've had enough advise but I'll mention a few things that other skipped. I use a Rockler HVLP turbine finish sprayer I purchased years ago for cabinet work. It has always worked well for me. HVLP (high volume low pressure) is todays standard and high pressure air compressor guns have all but faded away for many reasons. (For the handyman an electric model form Rockler or others will do fine.) Mainly water and humidity control, low over-spray, and consistent air flow and pressure. Unlike a cycling air compressor which pumps water into the lines and pressure is always changing. The key to good paint jobs is always prep. Use the same brand chemicals and primers as the paint your using. By the way, John Deere does not make paint. Control all foreign substances as far away from your work as possible. And especially silicone. Nothing ruins a finish quicker than that stuff. Even gloves will give you grief. I think others have explained you blotchiness and mixing would be my excuse also. But if your mixing different brands of paint and thinners it can cause separation and God knows what. The worse thing you can do is buy a brand name and use off the shelf thinners reducers and hardeners. Even cleaning your gun you should use the recommended material on the label for the paint your using. It's that important as left over residue can destroy a good quality paint. If all of that is too much your better off with rattle cans.
 
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The ONE thing about spray painting with compressed air.....it's VERY expensive to do it right! rattle cans are pricey, but overall much less expensive for that same volume of spray. Consider for example that one quart of paint and the required chemicals from Napa (very good paint supplier BTW, or they used to be), can run about $300+. That's a lot of paint, but now consider what you get for the same amount of a quality paint in rattle cans. Even at $10 a can you have so much more usability. It has a shelf life so something is going wrong you can stop and fix it and not waste a pot of $200/quart paint that you just added $20 worth of hardener, $15 worth of thinner, and the time wiping the work down with that special paint cleaner that cost's $149+ gallon.

That's not to say you are using these expensive paint components but you get the results you pay for. Actually, these prices would still be of the less expensive paint components.

Regardless, you never get good at something when it always goes right. Keep trying, just understand it can be, and usually is, an expensive hobby (compressed air paint work that is). That's why some of those professional car jobs cost upwards of $10,000.
 

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1. Mix mix mix 2. Make sure gun is clean and working correctly 3
Be sure pressure is correct. 4. Make sure water isn't an issue. 5. Thin to appropriate level with correct thinner 6. Spray at correct distance multiple layers, overlap. My main mental notes as of now 1-4 I already admit were lackluster.
 

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The ONE thing about spray painting with compressed air.....it's VERY expensive to do it right! rattle cans are pricey, but overall much less expensive for that same volume of spray. Consider for example that one quart of paint and the required chemicals from Napa (very good paint supplier BTW, or they used to be), can run about $300+. That's a lot of paint, but now consider what you get for the same amount of a quality paint in rattle cans. Even at $10 a can you have so much more usability. It has a shelf life so something is going wrong you can stop and fix it and not waste a pot of $200/quart paint that you just added $20 worth of hardener, $15 worth of thinner, and the time wiping the work down with that special paint cleaner that cost's $149+ gallon.

That's not to say you are using these expensive paint components but you get the results you pay for. Actually, these prices would still be of the less expensive paint components.

Regardless, you never get good at something when it always goes right. Keep trying, just understand it can be, and usually is, an expensive hobby (compressed air paint work that is). That's why some of those professional car jobs cost upwards of $10,000.
Agree Randy, The first thing to to realize is it's a garden tractor. No need to spend a fortune especially if you keep the machine in a garage or shed. I usually buy my paint from Rural King and believe it or not, it's pretty good stuff for the price. Nowhere near what top shelf auto store paint costs. And they have colors to match any brand of farm equipment and compatible primers. I think its called "Majic" and works very well especially with the hardeners they sell. It's very forgiving, flows nicely is humidity and temperature tolerant and works well with a HVLP. As I recall about $30 bucks a quart for paint, and around $20 for the reducer. The hardener is also around $20 bucks. But that's material enough to do several tractors. Much to the dismay of the wife I keep it in the refrigerator after its been opened. Great stuff and they also carry aerosol cans with good match provided you didn't reduce the original paint too much. It's hard to thin paint in an aerosol can.

I keep noticing other posts referring to air compressors. If you are any kind of a handyman the turbine HVLP I mentioned above is a great piece of equipment to have around. I believe I paid around a $125 for it from Rockler, which is a high end woodworking outlet. It is lite weight, self contained, and all you need is 110 volts. There is absolutely no messing around with pressure settings or danger of water popping out the nozzles. It supplies air equivalent to a vacuum cleaner. Meaning little or no overspray. I've painted aircraft with these things and those folks are the fussiest dudes ever born.

For touchup work I use the little Preval sprayers. Basically an airbrush. They come with a aerosol can with a bottle attached to it. You can paint your wife's fingernails (if they are small) with these things and when done, just let the paint harden and chuck it. They can be bought on Amazon.

This might be a whole lot more info than what PTZBRG and others requested but that's what we're here for. Giving up our secretes before we watch the mower from the other side.
 
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I've used the Harbor Frieght hvlp sprayers before. Always had good results, much better than I ever would have expected from a cheap gun. I think the real trick, is to make sure you VERY THOROUGHLY clean it to remove all the manufacturers oils and grease from it. Used it to paint an old Jeep with the Valspar brand paint that TSC used to carry before they started carrying the Majik (sp?) Brand. Like has been mentioned above, make sure your paint is mixed thoroughly, I usually stir the crap out of it, as shaking can introduce micro bubbles in certain types of primers and other paint. Consistent, regulated air source, and a decent moisture trap should get you a finish that will more than pass muster.
 

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I agree with most of the advice from all. I have painted a dozen 318's using a Harbor Freight HVLP gun with great looks after. I recommend using the MAJIC paint (can be found at most Farm & Fleet stores) with a hardener. It must be thinned a little out of the can. Make sure your gun is clean and your air is free of water! Practice on a piece of cardboard and use light layers. This paint with hardener will self level and give you a great job even as a beginner.
Here is a link to one of my projects from this site: Tired 1987 318

Good Luck and post some pictures when done.
Bob
 

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PTZ's 5 items can be controlled, 4 very easily, but one of them costs $$$$ !! And that's, " Make sure water isn't an issue." Water is present in air, period! The warmer the air temp, the more water it can/will hold. As air cools down, the moisture condenses out of the air and can "mix"...screw up is more correct... your paint! Take a nice cold beer from the fridge and set it down outside on a humid day and you have instant "sweat" on the can! This is the warm, moist air contacting a cold, or at least cooler, surface. The same can happen spray painting! As your compressor operates, it gets hot, so you already have a source of hot air! As it travels through the hose, it cools somewhat, but rubber air hose is also a good insulator, and you still end up with warm air !

A reasonable solution, dollar wise, is to attach the air line from your compressor/reservoir tank to a manifold system with 20' or 30' of copper tubing in it. Keep the entire manifold pitched downhill away from the compressor and add a tee at the end of the copper with a drip leg going downward, with a drain valve on the bottom, and your air supply going horizontal or preferably up for a few inches. Where ever you tap into the manifold, have the tap facing up. The whole theory here is too let the air cool and water condense out of the air and collect (drip leg) before it gets to your gun.

Other solutions are BIG $$$ air dryers...not suggested!... or paint when there's less humidity. Keep your reservoir drained too. Water in the tank can be absorbed by the warm air coming from the compressor.

Just more of my "useless information" that someone may not know and it may (??) help them, Bob
 
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PTZ's 5 items can be controlled, 4 very easily, but one of them costs $$$$ !! And that's, " Make sure water isn't an issue." Water is present in air, period! The warmer the air temp, the more water it can/will hold. As air cools down, the moisture condenses out of the air and can "mix"...screw up is more correct... your paint! Take a nice cold beer from the fridge and set it down outside on a humid day and you have instant "sweat" on the can! This is the warm, moist air contacting a cold, or at least cooler, surface. The same can happen spray painting! As your compressor operates, it gets hot, so you already have a source of hot air! As it travels through the hose, it cools somewhat, but rubber air hose is also a good insulator, and you still end up with warm air !

A reasonable solution, dollar wise, is to attach the air line from your compressor/reservoir tank to a manifold system with 20' or 30' of copper tubing in it. Keep the entire manifold pitched downhill away from the compressor and add a tee at the end of the copper with a drip leg going downward, with a drain valve on the bottom, and your air supply going horizontal or preferably up for a few inches. Where ever you tap into the manifold, have the tap facing up. The whole theory here is too let the air cool and water condense out of the air and collect (drip leg) before it gets to your gun.

Other solutions are BIG $$$ air dryers...not suggested!... or paint when there's less humidity. Keep your reservoir drained too. Water in the tank can be absorbed by the warm air coming from the compressor.

Just more of my "useless information" that someone may not know and it may (??) help them, Bob
All of those reasons is why a turbine HVLP gun is much better. NO water! Little or no compression to create water. Even on hot humid days. Just a nice constant flow of warm air which in most cases can be breathed. In fact many of these have attachments for breathable air for a full paint suit. But they do get hot to use in the summer. Great in the winter.


These work great! Here's the 317 I just painted. One of a dozen so far. By the way, I painted this in the early afternoon. 93 degrees and 90% humidity. Normal day in Tennessee.
259665
 
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