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    We have 110m2 of new plasterboard over insulation, ready for 3 coats of emulsion. A colleague suggested a paint spraying gun will be faster than my usual 12" roller. Has anyone used one, is it fast?

    Screwfix have one for £55, or should we hire a good one?

    Can a beginner get the finish good, does it show up plaster blemishes?

    I heard you get a lot of paint drifting onto other surfaces and need a lot of masking, any views on this?

    The ceiling and walls will be the same colour paint. There is no carpet yet. There are 3 windows and 3 doors.
    • CommentAuthorrevor
    • CommentTimeJan 5th 2018
    Interestingly was discussing this with a painter about spraying my plasterboard and his answer was it depends on how much masking needs to be done. Spraying covers much quicker than the roller but he often uses the roller instead of the gun because of the time taken in masking up. He reckoned an airless sprayer for this sort of job being preferable to the HVLP type which he uses on painting joinery items in a spray booth for a joiner friend of mine. Spraying is a skill how much time have to got to perfect and how much time have you got masking up will be the bottom line I think.
    • CommentAuthorSteveZ
    • CommentTimeJan 5th 2018
    Hi Will, I have a sprayer, which is the HVLP (High Volume, Low Pressure) variety and I have used it successfully. The downside is getting the viscosity right, using the viscosity cup. The overspray is not too bad, but masking is a good idea if the p/board is not the first job to paint. With your area of plasterboard, you should get enough practice to get a decent finish by the end.

    For my last bit of indoor area painting I tried a Paintstick paint roller, with a reservoir in the handle, filled from the paint tin at intervals. This one was a manual pump version, which works but is hard work, both to pump and control. I went back to a simple roller to finish the job!

    I then bought a battery powered version from Wagner (check Amazon or eBay for prices). This is brilliant - stick the filling tube in the paint and pump it into the handle, reverse the switch and pump it into the roller as required. I used this to paint an outside wall with smooth masonry paint. Very easy job, and finish is one I like.

    Cleaning the paintstick rollers and mechanism is harder (and is essential) than just a brush, but for a big job, definitely something to consider.
    We bought a Wagner Airless sprayer.

    We used it for a fair bit of the house but it wasn't a success
    - you have to mask EVERYTHING in the room you don't want covered in paint. Any slight slip of tape will end up with spray in a way you don't get with masking when rollering.
    - theres a lot of waste (the overspray) and quality modern paint is expensive so this does have a cost
    - it's not easy to get a finish that doesn't show spray marks (slight banding effects).
    - you can't 'touch up' with rollers as the texture is very noticably different.
    • CommentAuthorHollyBush
    • CommentTimeJan 5th 2018
    Apologies of you have already consider this (not clear from your initial post) - I spent a bit of time looking and in the end bought a roller on a long pole - much easier than masking things and depending on the amount of masking, could be quicker.

    The pole makes putting paint on the walls or ceiling over a much wider area much quicker than the short handled version, especially up a ladder or platform.
    Posted By: HollyBushApologies of you have already consider this (not clear from your initial post) - I spent a bit of time looking and in the end bought a roller on a long pole - much easier than masking things and depending on the amount of masking, could be quicker.

    The pole makes putting paint on the walls or ceiling over a much wider area much quicker than the short handled version, especially up a ladder or platform.

    That is what we do over here. All paint rollers come with a hollow plastic handles so you just buy a broom handle, stuff it in the roller and off you go. I find that with a roller on a broom handle I can do ceilings and walls without ladders or staging. (I use steps for the corners). It's quite quick as you get long sweeps with the roller.
    • CommentAuthornick1c
    • CommentTimeJan 5th 2018
    I also used a Wagner sprayer. Phenomenally quick to get the paint on & a perfect finish if you concentrate, but the masking was a nightmare. To do any remedial work I have used a small airbrush powered by an aldi compressor which worked well. It's completely impractical if the house isn't empty. On balance I will use a roller next time.
    • CommentAuthorcjard
    • CommentTimeJan 6th 2018 edited
    I bought a paint sprayer chiefly for the outside, but I used it inside with great success too. Getting the viscosity right was key, and washing the filter in the gun, as even though I filtered the paint on the way into the hopper, it still had bits in. Mines a Wagner airless, forget the model number, but it sounds a bit like a jet wash, motor runs intermittently as it pressurises a chamber

    If the paint is too thin, you get a run easily, too thick and the spray fan is a poor shape and uneven coverage. I second the comments about banding, you gradually learn to avoid it with technique, and decorating in different directions.

    I didn't do any masking off, and in places I wish I had, but for the most part I just made (out of an UFH spreader plate) something that looked a bit like a massive paint scraper, a metre long. That in one had and the gun in the other, I could mask off areas as I went. They're sold commercially eg http://www.decoratingdirect.co.uk/viewprod/d/DO-ALL_TRIM_EDGE_SCRAPER_SPRAY_SHIELD/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIn43c_tvC2AIVEJ4bCh1IOQB9EAQYAiABEgI0WPD_BwE though I DIYed mine cos I needed to get cracking on with the job

    The paint finish is incredibly smooth, no texture at all unlike a roller. If the surface you're painting is far away, this shouldn't be a problem if you're touching up with a roller but closer might be an issue. TBH, there are places where the paintwork needs another coat in my place, cos it wasn't a professional job (brother in law was between jobs, couldn't use a roller at the start, but was better by the end, sort of thing)

    As noted I didn't mask off, so I did end up with a light dusting in windows and frames. This cleaned off easily using a non stick pan scrubbing sponge (the white one) and even better, it wasn't my job - she wanted to help.

    In terms of speed, I reckoned I could put four coats on a room in around a third of the time that brother in law could do 2 with a roller, but setup and clean down is a faff. I'd do it again tho, if I had to paint a house. I do wonder whether wiping e.g windows down with very soapy water immediately prior to spraying would be a quick way to reduce the need to mask off.. never got to try it!
    Thanks all for the advice.

    Well I bought the Erdbauer sprayer for £55 from screwfix and sprayed the first coat of white emulsion paint on.

    It certainly is quick to put the paint on, but there is a lot of faffing to do. I decanted the paint into a clean pot, added a lot of water, stirred and measured the viscosity, repeat until it's runny enough. Tip it through a filter funnel into the sprayer and spray it on, only a few mins to cover a few m2, repeat.

    It was quick to learn the technique and I was happy with the finish. It is easy to spray on too much and get a run as the paint is very thin. With a roller you could just spread that about a bit, but cannot with a sprayer. So I put a very thin coat on which dried fast and was economic with the paint. The sprayer gets paint into corners and edges that a roller couldn't, so saves a lot of cutting-in.

    The air compressor is noisy enough for earmuffs and dissuaded the assistant from working in the same room. The hose slows down your movement. There is a blast of air, so you cannot just drape paper to protect surfaces, it must be taped down or blow away. Literally everything must be masked or get painted.

    I had to use a ladder to reach the ceiling with the sprayer, which I would normally have done with a roller on a 5' pole.

    There is much more faffing to disassemble and clean out all of the mixing gear and the sprayer.

    I reverted to a 12" roller and pole and put the next coat on in about the same time as the sprayer took, as the paint is the right viscosity straight from the pot and I don't clean or reuse the roller sleeve. It was a thicker coat so probably saved me needing a third coat.

    Overall the sprayer was worth a try but better suited to jobs where the paint comes ready diluted. I was happy with the cheap sprayer, don't think a better one would have saved any time.
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