In this article let’s talk about High Volume Low Pressure Spray Guns, features and how they work for you and your automotive projects.
Traditional spray guns feature a paint cup that is mounted beneath the gun, and which uses air pressure to blow paint out of the cup and into the main air stream. This, in turn, blasts the paint onto the car’s surface at tremendous air pressure. Very high pressure is needed to suck enough paint out of the cup to produce a stroke with good coverage. Unfortunately, this leads to as much as 70% of the paint ricocheting off the surface and into the air.
This represents a tremendous amount of wastage – to put it in perspective, this means that out of every 10 gallons of auto paint shot in this manner, 7 entire gallons end up being dispersed into the air as an aerosol mist. This wastes car paint, which is very expensive (especially the specialty colors such as those used in candy paint schemes); puts a large amount of dangerous paint fumes into the air, making the workspace hazardous for the painter; and damages the environment, especially when solvent-based paints are being shot.
High Volume Low Pressure spray guns
The new High Volume Low Pressure (HVLP) guns, by contrast, use a lower air pressure at the gun’s tip to prevent as much ricocheting of paint from the car’s surface during painting. Pressure remains high at the inlet – up to 60 psi for typical painting jobs – but is only around 10 psi (pounds per square inch) at the nozzle. The HVLP spray gun shoots a huge amount of paint at low pressure, creating good, smooth coverage with far less paint rebounding from the sheet metal.
With HVLP, the amount of ricochet is halved to between 30% and 40%. In effect, HVLP reverses the old proportion. Seven out of ten gallons shot now end up on the car’s surface, rather than seven out of ten gallons blowing away on the breeze. This is a boon to nearly everyone except perhaps the car paint manufacturers. You are well advised to obtain an HVLP spray gun with a gravity feed paint cup.
One possible fringe benefit to using an HVLP spray gun is that you will raise less of a stink while painting as well. If you are a home painter, rather than the owner or employee of a commercial auto painting concern where fumes are handled by a sophisticated ventilation system, then offending your neighbors with a reek of wet paint is always a risk. HVLP makes less of a stench and thus is less likely to bring the wrath of the local populace down upon your head.
The gravity feed paint cup is another innovation which usually accompanies the HVLP spray gun – a paint cup mounted above the nozzle, rather than below it, so that gravity as well as air movement can suck paint down into the spray gun’s air stream. A special stand is needed to hold the spray gun while the paint cup is being filled.
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Introducing the new Atom Spray Guns. This new line of spray guns are gaining a lot of popularity in the automotive world with its combined Japanese and German-style craftsmanship. Tried and tested by the LearnAutoBodyAndPaint team at their headquarters, it was unanimously agreed that it is an excellent spray gun and at par on performance to the more popular spray guns out in the market. Visit Zoolaa and learn more about the Atom Spray Guns.