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Thread: Spray painting a house.

  1. #1
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    Spray painting a house.

    It is time to repaint our house, garage, and barn. I guess it would actually be more correct to say re-staining.
    Our house, garage and barn are all barn board and batten sided. True B&B, not a faux finished product. The material is rough cut 1x12's with rough cut 2 1/2" battens. The highest peak is about 24' off the ground.
    Having just replaced the B&B siding on the dormer, and re-stained it with brushes and rollers, it is very tedious and time consuming to "cut in" the battens. Rolling the fronts of the battens, and the boards is pretty quick, but cutting in that edge is tiresome. I would like to find a quicker way.
    I've looked at sprayers online, the big box stores, and rentals. There are a many different types available. It's kind of mind boggling. I've seen the roller systems that pump the stain through the handle that look interesting, but they won't let you cut in the battens.
    I have the ability to use either an airless, or air sprayer. I have a suitable compressor, 17cfm@90psi, and enough hose to reach anywhere on the house, so if the sprayer relies on air that is not an issue. I don't mind buying a quality unit. Not professional I think, as those can cost $1000's, but not a piece of junk either.
    It's the cutting in of the battens I am primarily trying to resolve, but I'm not against using a system to do the whole thing as long as it leaves a nice, durable finish.
    Any tips or suggestions welcome.
    "The first thing you need to know, will likely be the last thing you learn." (Unknown)

  2. #2
    Airless followed by brush to spread the stain into the inside corners. Just set the sprayer to deliver a nice heavy coat to be spread with the brush. Otherwise the juncture between the board and batten will not get good spray coverage. Seems you can never the the spray angle perfect. Works best with two people, but one can do it.

  3. #3
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    Mike,

    My suggestion, contrary to my nature, is to hire out the job to professionals!

    I just had my shop exterior painted by some very good painters recommended by a builder/contractor friend. They used a compact airless paint sprayer, similar to the higher-end sprayers you can buy at Home Depot, etc, but more costly and according to them, longer lasting. A few years ago I bought a Graco for maybe $700 and they said it would have worked ok. Their pro model was smaller - no big frame to hold a bucket and no wheels.

    They caulked everything first - (be sure to use a "paintable" caulk - some will latex paint). They sprayed a high quality exterior paint from Sherwin Williams. They refuse to use cheap paint. Two guys worked together when spraying - one held up a thin plywood shield to prevent overspray. The airless sprayers apparently don't create a fine mist that drifts in the air so directing the paint is easier. They didn't use painter's tape to mask except around an electrical box at the outside HVAC unit. Touch up around windows, rollup doors, etc, was with a brush. I wanted everything one color, not a separate trim color, which simplified things a lot. They finished my one-story 24'x62' shop in a few hours.

    My Lovely Bride hired the same painters to paint our house, recently resided. It was far more complicated, much larger, multistory with some places probably 30' from the ground, some accessible only from a 12/12 pitch roof, lots of windows and doors, porches, sunroom, lots of trim detail. Some of if is board-and-batten and some is lap siding. The exterior has a separate trim color. Just as with the shop, they caulked everything, sprayed where they could, and brushed everything else. Three guys finished most of it the first day then came back the next day to paint the trim and touch up a few spots so the job took less than two days.

    She had these guys come back and paint several interior rooms, rollers and brush. They used a small amount of masking tape in a couple of places but mostly free-hand with brushes. The house is timber frame construction with some ares about 15' from the floor but that didn't slow them down. We also had them do the new sunroom with stain and with sealer on wooden windows and doors. All the interior work took them less than one day.

    This pro crew (two brothers and their dad) were a delight to work with and a very reasonable cost. My wife generally does all the painting, inside and out, but she hired these jobs out due to shoulder pain and surgery. Since neither of us are getting any younger, I suspect we'll call them again for the next big paint job. Maybe a red barn...

    JKJ

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Cutler View Post
    It is time to repaint our house, garage, and barn. I guess it would actually be more correct to say re-staining.
    Our house, garage and barn are all barn board and batten sided. True B&B, not a faux finished product. The material is rough cut 1x12's with rough cut 2 1/2" battens. The highest peak is about 24' off the ground.
    Having just replaced the B&B siding on the dormer, and re-stained it with brushes and rollers, it is very tedious and time consuming to "cut in" the battens. Rolling the fronts of the battens, and the boards is pretty quick, but cutting in that edge is tiresome. I would like to find a quicker way.
    I've looked at sprayers online, the big box stores, and rentals. There are a many different types available. It's kind of mind boggling. I've seen the roller systems that pump the stain through the handle that look interesting, but they won't let you cut in the battens.
    I have the ability to use either an airless, or air sprayer. I have a suitable compressor, 17cfm@90psi, and enough hose to reach anywhere on the house, so if the sprayer relies on air that is not an issue. I don't mind buying a quality unit. Not professional I think, as those can cost $1000's, but not a piece of junk either.
    It's the cutting in of the battens I am primarily trying to resolve, but I'm not against using a system to do the whole thing as long as it leaves a nice, durable finish.
    Any tips or suggestions welcome.

  4. #4
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    You should be able to rent a good airless sprayer. Buy your own tip to use in it, after you find out what's available. The tips wear out sometimes in less than 50 gallons of paint, and they don't reliably replace the tips.

    Find the Idaho Painter on youtube, and you should be able to pick up what you need to do. I wouldn't paint the outside of a house any other way.

    If you use paint instead of stain, I'd do the first coat with Sherwin-Williams Duration, and the second with Emerald. I've never used a brush behind the airless. Pick the right tip fan width for the job. You probably need to go with a narrower tip than one that will do maximum coverage. It might even be best to use a really narrow fan tip to get the sides of the battens, and then follow with a wide one to cover everything with the next coat.

    The first number in a tip size is half the fan width. For example, a 315 is a 6" fan and .015 orifice. Orifice size depends on what you're spraying. He goes over all that in his videos, and will save me the time of typing it all out.

    Good luck, and be careful on a ladder. If you try to keep up with the speed that an airless can provide, you'll work yourself to death. Take your time, and it will still be 30 times faster than painting with a brush.

    Also, buy a tip extension, after watching the videos, and seeing what he uses.

  5. #5
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    I have the Graco X5, probably seen 50 gallons through it so far. Add another 25' of hose and get a tip extension. Easy to spray a fan 12" wide, overlap 50% and backbrush. Consider renting a lift. I second looking at the applicable Idaho Painter YouTube videos.
    NOW you tell me...

  6. #6
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    Sep 2016
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    Modesto, CA, USA
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    Use an airless but first buy an extension pipe maybe two. get 4' and 6', get an adjustable angle elbow. If you can not find an adjustable one get a 90 degree elbow. This will allow you to paint from the ground for most of the job. Those rollers on a pipe are too heavy when the pipe is full of paint. Use the gun and a regular roller on a lightweight aluminum pole.
    Buy the extra bits and pieces from the bay after comparing prices from local stores. You may want to buy a extra long hose or two. Make sure the extension cord is 12 guage. Harbor freight has a good price on decent drop cloths to throw over plants etc. make sure all fitting are high pressure not water pipe stuff.
    When cleaning the machine I spray the paint in the hose back into the big bucket for about 20 seconds until the flushing water is thinning the paint. After that it all goes into a slop bucket.
    Buy paint in 5 gallon buckets but check the cap. Some are too small for the dip tube and have to be pried out. the best have a large screw on cap like a pickle jar. The pull spout types are hard to use. Buy a drill mixer but get the small one that fits into the screw cap.
    At break time throw the gun, with hose attached, into a bucket of water so it does not dry out and need cleaning.
    Bill D.

  7. #7
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    Sprayers are good for transferring the paint to the wall, but you still need to brush or roll it after it's there to get good coverage. For me it takes longer to do all the masking required than to just apply with a brush in the first place. As to cutting in, as with many other things, getting to be both good and fast requires practice. Unfortunately there's not much of a shortcut. I painted pretty much all summer through my youth (family property with 22 buildings) and eventually got to be pretty good if not very fast.

    I have to admit to a bit of relief that DW has gotten stern about keeping me off of high ladders. Watching from the ground as a pro does a better job can be OK.

  8. #8
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    Griswold Connecticut
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    To All
    Thank you for the advice. I'll look into some of the info, especially on tips and extensions. I already looked at the Idaho Painter videos. Nice info he has also.
    My intent was to use the sprayer to get in on the wall, and either back brush it, or back roll it. I saw the "Deck Brush" on the Idaho Painter video, and that may be just the ticket.

    John Jordan
    I would hire it out, but the quotes I've gotten are uhmmm,pretty significant. I can buy all of the equipment, and materials, including staging, and ladders, mess the job up completely and do it all over, and still be well under the quotes. This will also be the last time I paint the buildings while I live here. I can still do the work and I kind of enjoy it, so I'm going to give it a go.
    "The first thing you need to know, will likely be the last thing you learn." (Unknown)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by roger wiegand View Post
    Sprayers are good for transferring the paint to the wall, but you still need to brush or roll it after it's there to get good coverage. For me it takes longer to do all the masking required than to just apply with a brush in the first place. As to cutting in, as with many other things, getting to be both good and fast requires practice. Unfortunately there's not much of a shortcut. I painted pretty much all summer through my youth (family property with 22 buildings) and eventually got to be pretty good if not very fast.

    I have to admit to a bit of relief that DW has gotten stern about keeping me off of high ladders. Watching from the ground as a pro does a better job can be OK.
    In the 70s I worked for a home builder and sprayed interior of his houses about 200 of them and never had to back roll

  10. #10
    Years ago I painted my house with a hand held airless sprayer. THe results were good, the process was tedious as the paint container was not large and I made a lot of extra trips up and down the ladder due to lack of paint. My neighbor painted his house a few years later, but he rented an airless unit with a ground based pumping system and a long hose. He completed his house in less than half the time it took me to paint the same sized house. The quality of the finish was the same.

    Also be aware of over spray with any paint spraying system. You can end up with painted windows, roofing and even neighbors cars if the conditions are right. There was a bat that lived under one of the fascia boards on the ends of our house that had one painted wing.
    Lee Schierer
    USNA- '71
    Captain USN(Ret)

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  11. #11
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    I used to be a painter.

    I always back brushed everything. It works the paint into the wood. For instance the butts of a clad board or shingle really need to be back brushed to get good coverage imop.

    Each to his own though as I know most don’t back brush. I’m not saying I never just sprayed a house and ran away but that’s exactly what I was doing was running away before the the paint failed. Not my problem just doing as my boss told me.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom M King View Post
    If you use paint instead of stain, I'd do the first coat with Sherwin-Williams Duration, and the second with Emerald. I've never used a brush behind the airless. Pick the right tip fan width for the job. You probably need to go with a narrower tip than one that will
    I'm curious why Duration and then Emerald? Is it because Duration is slightly cheaper for the first coat and Emerald is a slightly better paint?

    I resided my garage a few years ago with Smartside. I pre-painted all the siding with Duration before it was installed. I am pretty sure I did two coats on everything, but don't recall for sure.

  13. #13
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    Duration is a little thinner, and bonds to bare wood better. Emerald has a more durable surface finish, but there is little difference. I use both only if it works out in the planning of number of gallons needed. I've sprayed a number of houses with Duration only, back when that was their top of the line paint. I like Emerald better for final finish, but Duration is good too.

    This is a house I sprayed with Duration in 2007. It's been pressure washed every Spring since then, and still looks like we just put it on. We did prime the replacement Cypress siding before putting it up, but the finish coats were just sprayed. Ends of all boards were painted as they were put up. I don't like to use caulking on the outside of a house. 27' to the fascia, and chimneys are 43 feet tall.
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    Last edited by Tom M King; 06-20-2019 at 4:26 PM.

  14. #14
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    All of the trim on our house is Duration and it very nicely compliments the Hardy cement siding. At that time it went on in 2008 when we added our addition and completely resided the house where it wasn't stone, I believe it was the top level exterior product and we chose it because of longevity.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  15. #15
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    For sash that need to be painted with a brush, I use Emerald Gloss. It makes the whole window shine, and difference in paint gloss with whatever is painted next to it isn't noticeable. When we pressure wash these old houses, the windows are not pressure washed, but after everything else is washed, the windows are just done with Windex hose end sprayers.

    I've used three different sheens on the same house, and Semi-gloss cleans easier than Satin, and Gloss cleans easier than Semi-Gloss. This is another advantage to using gloss on the sash. The hose end sprayers clean them right up nicely.

    These shutters were done with flat, and I'm already seeing that they will probably need to be repainted after maybe 12 years, but that was the look this 1850 house needed.
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