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Thread: Fuji Mini-mite 5 system?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Norfolk, UK
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    94

    Fuji Mini-mite 5 system?

    I pretty much exclusively spray oil based polyurethane on pieces sized around 1" square and 12-40" long, which I spray and hang vertically. I'm setting up in a new shop and the sales rep recommended trying the Fuji spray system with the gravity feed gun, rather than using cheap HVLP guns on compressed air as I've always done in the past. I'm getting better at spraying, but with my cheap $25 spray gun with 0.8mm air cap I'd still struggle to get consistent wet out/coverage without runs.. the atomisation pattern wasn't the best, nor am I the most experienced with spraying (having only been at it for about a year using HVLP.)

    The sales rep suggested emailing Fuji to get the specific air cap size that would be correct for my application.

    Any thoughts on buying the Fuji system vs a higher capacity compressor and a good quality (SATA?) spray gun?

    I'm looking to achieve a glass finish with gloss urethane with less coats, currently it takes me up to 8 coats, minimum 6 coats to get full soak in and coverage on european beech which has been first treated with danish oil. The first 2 coats are usually just there to build the finish to full coverage, with the 3rd being the first I sand with 400 grit paper.

    The rep said the mini-mite is the same as the much more expensive Q5 Platinum system, just without as much sound damping - so much louder. This isn't an issues at all for me.

    With compressed air I'd be looking at an air dryer (just a big tube of desiccant) inline as I've had issues with water content in the spray previously, and that was in a location with far far lower humidity. Would I need the same for the Fuji system?

    Cost isn't really an issue on this one, it's more about getting a perfect finish with less labour. The amount of sanding I do because I get a defect in my "last" coat is annoying.

    I know much of this is attributable to the user, but I figure if I can rule out the equipment it will help haha. One of the reasons for varying finish with my last gun for example was the pattern adjustment knob was right where my thumb sits, and i'd inadvertently shift it a tiny bit with my thumb as I spray haha.

  2. #2
    Hi Mark,
    I have the Fuji Q4 Gold HVLP system and I've logged lots of hours with it spraying a good variety of finishes including oil based polyurethane. I think it would perform superbly and give you excellent atomization. I only use two air caps for most of what I do, the #4 (1.4mm) and the #3 (1.0mm). I would expect the 5 stage systems to be even better, and the ability to handle greater viscosity. For oil based poly I would be using the #4 and expecting a glass finish 2-3 coats. You didn't ask this, but if it were me, I'd be inserting a coat of dewaxed shellac over the danish oil to both seal it in and create a film barrier that will allow the poly to start building faster. In this way, I think you might cut a few coats out of the schedule you are now using and still get the built up glass finish you're seeking.

    Technique is important. Switching to Fuji HVLP will save you labor and improve the results over what you are now doing.

    Hope this helps,
    Edwin,

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Norfolk, UK
    Posts
    94
    Thanks Edwin, it does help - an I'll definitely try the tip on the dewaxed shellac - does it do anything to the colour of the wood? My clients really like the rich warm tone combination of the danish oil and oil based urethane. If it either enhances or doesn't affect this it seems like a good way to go.

    The beech is like a sponge for finish so reducing that volume would be excellent.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Regina, SK Canada
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    97
    I have the Fuji HVLP mini mite 4 and love it. I added the 3M PPS system and will never go back to gravity or syphon fed again.

    I've been thinking of selling my Fuji HVLP system and getting one of these: http://www.fujispray.com/compressor-spray-guns/

    I have a decent compressor and the filtering system needed to spray.

    Here is a review from someone on another forum. https://forum.canadianwoodworking.co...un-non-turbine
    Last edited by Peter Froh; 02-03-2018 at 8:43 PM.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Canada View Post
    Thanks Edwin, it does help - an I'll definitely try the tip on the dewaxed shellac - does it do anything to the colour of the wood? My clients really like the rich warm tone combination of the danish oil and oil based urethane. If it either enhances or doesn't affect this it seems like a good way to go.

    The beech is like a sponge for finish so reducing that volume would be excellent.
    Mark,
    The dewaxed shellac will add a slight bit of warmth depending on the brand you get. The one I use is a premixed brand called Sealcoat made by Zinsser readily available at Home Depot. I'm not sure if it would be available or not where you are. Either way, DW shellac of a blonde or super blonde variety would probably enhance the look you're currently achieving by creating an additional albeit subtle level of depth. I also believe it would reduce the number of poly coats needed for a glass finish considerably. It would be interesting to compare one piece done your current way to one with the DW shellac introduced, both in terms of the final look and whether the shellac saves you time and poly coats.

    I should have mentioned that my Fuji gun is the Gxpc gun. The #3 (1mm) aircap is the one I use when spraying shellac because I tend to thin it down to a dilute solution and the finer cap works better. If you got a different Fuji gun, it may be a different cap number. For reasons I don't know, Fuji uses different numbers and cap colors for the Gxpc gun versus the other Fuji guns.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Norfolk, UK
    Posts
    94
    Thankyou, that's very helpful! The rep recommended the G-XPC gun, so I'll add the #3 aircap and ask fuji about one to spray the urethane with.

    I've seen Sealcoat when we were in Canada, but I haven't seen it anywhere here. I'm still trying to find a good quality OBPU supplier here.

  7. Hey, Mark,

    I've extensively used Fuji's turbines and HVLP guns and feel I'm knowledgeable enough to add to this thread.

    First of all, Fuji produces an excellent turbine. I've had two of their turbines over the years (an older 4-stage unit and, more recently, their Q5 Platinum model). The only reason I didn't hold onto the 4-stage turbine was because I had to stand down my small business for a few years and sold it along with a lot of my other equipment. When I got back into business, I purchased the newer 5-stage turbine. I have all of the Fuji HVLP guns (T-series with the below-gun pressurized cup, 9600-G-XPC and their Touch-up gun. All of them work well.

    When they recently decided to get into compressor-driven guns, I purchased their MPX-30 gravity feed model and have found it absolutely excellent in every way. Unlike their other guns which are all HVLP, this one falls into the RP (reduced pressure) family of spray guns. If you have a large compressor capable of delivering 13.8 cfm (cubic feet per minute, which is far beyond the capabilities of most small shop compressors), you'll fall in love with this gun. The atomization is equal to that of the dramatically more expensive family of spray finishing systems known as air-assisted airless (such as the Kremlin and Graco). In other words, it's amazing.

    With the (overly long... sorry...) background out of the way, if you either don't have a really large compressor or aren't likely ever to be getting one, then I'd recommend you go with either the Fuji 4 or 5 stage turbines. You'v stated that you don't need the extra quietness of the Q-series, so go with their Mini-mite units. Their Mini-Mite 4 is certainly excellent at spraying urethane.

    Then there's the question of the right gun for the turbine you choose. Based on my experience with both their T-series and G-XPC guns, I would lean more towards their T-series gun because I feel it atomizes lacquer and urethane better. How much better, you ask? Not that much... but enough so that I prefer it for my general spray finishing. Where the G-XPC excels is in getting into smaller areas and doing the top inside faces of cabinets because the cup swivels. That's a fair advantage in those situations.

    Regarding the aircap issue, with my T-series gun I use their 1.3 mm set when spraying urethane, and with my G-XPG gun I use their 1.4mm set.

    Hope this all helps with your decisions.

  8. Peter,

    Glad to hear that you're considering Fuji's new MPX-30 gun. You may wish to see what I had to say about mine, in post #7 of this thread. It's a terrific performer!

    If you have any questions please give PM me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Froh View Post
    I have the Fuji HVLP mini mite 4 and love it. I added the 3M PPS system and will never go back to gravity or syphon fed again.

    I've been thinking of selling my Fuji HVLP system and getting one of these: http://www.fujispray.com/compressor-spray-guns/

    I have a decent compressor and the filtering system needed to spray.

    Here is a review from someone on another forum. https://forum.canadianwoodworking.co...un-non-turbine

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Marty R Schlosser View Post
    Hey, Mark,

    I've extensively used Fuji's turbines and HVLP guns and feel I'm knowledgeable enough to add to this thread.

    First of all, Fuji produces an excellent turbine. I've had two of their turbines over the years (an older 4-stage unit and, more recently, their Q5 Platinum model). The only reason I didn't hold onto the 4-stage turbine was because I had to stand down my small business for a few years and sold it along with a lot of my other equipment. When I got back into business, I purchased the newer 5-stage turbine. I have all of the Fuji HVLP guns (T-series with the below-gun pressurized cup, 9600-G-XPC and their Touch-up gun.
    Marty,
    Would you mind sharing your experience having used both the Q4 and Q5 systems? Specifically, what would a Q4 owner gain if he upgraded to the Q5 model? Thanks

  10. Hey, Edwin,

    The issue of selecting a 5-stage turbine over a 4-stage turbine is a question best answered by looking at what one is wanting to spray.

    Fuji's 4-stage turbine developes enough CFM and air pressure (9 psi) to successfully atomize just about any waterborne finish without thinning - except latex paint. The same goes for their 5-stage turbines, which develop 9.5 psi; thinning will be necessary for latex paint, but not as much as with the 4-stage turbine. So, the difference between these two excellent turbines isn't very significant ... that is, unless you're planning to use a pressure pot with them. (Here's the link to their pressure pot:http://www.fujispray.com/parts-accessories/ ). The reason for this is that the pressure pot draws away some of the air to maintain pressure in their 2 quart pot, and although it's not a lot, the difference is enough to tip the scales in favour of the 5-stage turbine.

    In summary, if your spray finishing requirements primarily fall into the low to mid-range viscosity finishes (lacquers, vanishes and polyurethanes) and you aren't planning to use of a pressure pot that takes its pressure from the turbine, the 4-stage turbines will work extremely well.

    Hope this helps.

    Quote Originally Posted by Edwin Santos View Post
    Marty,
    Would you mind sharing your experience having used both the Q4 and Q5 systems? Specifically, what would a Q4 owner gain if he upgraded to the Q5 model? Thanks
    Last edited by Marty R Schlosser; 02-23-2018 at 5:47 PM. Reason: clarification on one point

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