Deciding what kind of spraying system to use for a finishing application can be complicated.
You essentially have four choices when it comes to conventional non-electrostatic spray painting: air atomizing, High volume, low pressure (HVLP), air-assisted airless and airless spray. All have reasons why people choose one over the other, but for this article, we will focus on airless application equipment.
In short, airless spraying offers acceptable transfer efficiency, minimal material waste if set up correctly, decent finish quality, good one-pass coverage, and cost effectiveness. Here, we’ll talk more about the advantages of airless spray systems.
Less Material Waste
One advantage airless spray systems have over conventional air spray is waste.
Conventional air spray uses high-pressure air jets to send particles of atomized paint toward a surface. This creates a “cloud” that disperses many of these particles into the air, creating overspray.
Overspray is highly wasteful. A lower percentage of paint is actually applied to the surface. The rest is wasted as it goes into the filter collection bank of the spray booth. Overspray only intensifies as more air pressure is applied, which is usually the case with viscous materials.
To remedy this, some operators use solvents, thinners, and retarders in an attempt to lower viscosity and aid with atomization. This only adds to costs, though, and creates even more potential to waste material. Airless spray systems hydraulically atomize the paint without the introduction of atomizing air, which not only minimizes overspray, but also means solvent usage can be reduced.
Superior Control and Efficiency
As mentioned above, instead of using pressurized air to atomize and deliver paint, airless spray systems use hydraulic pressure through a specially designed spray tip to create the fan pattern. These tips come in a variety of sizes to accommodate many different applications. Because of the absence of high velocity air atomizing the paint, there is generally less bounce-back and overspray.
Also, instead of using solvent, in-line fluid heaters can be used to lower paint viscosity. The physical properties of a coating remain intact allowing you to achieve more uniform mil-build and coverage using heat to lower viscosity. Using solvent to reduce paint viscosity directly affects coverage capability because the solids content of the material has been compromised.
Superior Finish at a Lower Cost
The quality of a finish is one of the most important factors people consider when choosing a spray method for their shop.
Airless spray systems are capable of providing satisfactory finish quality in the right application.
Overall, there’s less material waste, and no need for compressed air atomization when an airless spray system is in operation.
Purchasing Airless Spray Systems
There are advantages to using conventional air atomizing methods, depending on your needs. But airless spray systems have significant advantages in many applications.
Dudley C Jackson, LLC can help you make the right choice for your finishing needs.
Browse through our collection of spray guns and systems to find the right method for your shop.