Restoring Antiques. part2

Ihave used compressor driven air guns for many years. I started out with a small low-cost diaphragm type air pump and a one pint bleeder type gun. The air pump has long since been traded off but the one pint gun is still my favorite for small to medium-size projects. It has been converted to a non-bleeder type gun to go with the larger compressor I now have. It still does a very creditable job. This type of gun is made by many manufacturers but an air brush would serve the same purposes. The larger one-quart size gun comes in a wide variety of types and models. However, a complete review of all of these guns isn’t the purpose of this article. Suffice it to say that if you are interested, the retailers of this equipment can furnish you with more literature than can be comfortably read in a week’s spare time. If you acquire one of these guns, be sure to thoroughly digest all of the descriptive and instructional material that comes with it. Pay particular attention to spray pattern adjustments and how to obtain the correct viscosity for the material to be sprayed.

Mastering the actual spray technique is a matter of patience and diligence. The first step is to make sure that your gun is clean and in good operating condition. Run a little lacquer thinner or mineral spirits through it to make sure all passages are open and operating. Follow the maker’s instructions describing the testing of spray patterns and cleaning techniques. Make sure that your workplace is well ventilated and has good lighting. Do not spray indoors unless you have an enclosed, specially ventilated paint booth. Even a small amount of vaporized finish, particularly lacquer-based material, can cause a terrific explosion. In fact, less than one-half a teacup of lacquer thinner, gasoline or almost any of the volatile hydrocarbons, when vaporized and mixed with the proper amount of air, is equivalent to a stick of dynamite.


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