Tips for Using Spray Guns on Your Models

Spray painting your models and giving them a new look is an exciting process. To the untrained, the process can be slightly daunting and nervous. However, it does not have to be. Although using spray guns requires some skills, it doesn’t take long to develop. 

You simply need to follow basic standards and protocols to ensure that you achieve the perfect result. Irrespective of your skillset, you can elevate your skills from zero to hero with these helpful painting tips. Let’s begin.

Best Tips for Spray Painting

Have a Designated Painting Space

When it comes to using craft spray guns, you can either make or break your model. In simple words, if you use it the right way, you can come up with a thing of beauty. However, if the case is otherwise, then you might have to put in multiple attempts before you can achieve the desired result. 

While painting your models, you would want to make sure that the speckles of paint do not ruin your electrical equipment, furniture, or flooring. A coating mishap is the last thing you would want. This is why you need a designated painting space first. 

A designated painting space is an isolated area where you can experiment and paint your models without having to worry about the paint damaging items and objects in the surroundings. You can install plastic curtains or simply work a safe distance from the surfaces you do not want to spoil.

Use a Drop Cloth

Ideally, you should paint your model trains in a spray booth but if you do not have that luxury, you can work in your designated area. And once you have decided on the place, it is time to protect the ground as well as the surroundings. Some people tend to waste a lot of time using newspapers that fall in the middle of the job.

You should avoid wasting so much time and effort and use large drop cloths as mentioned earlier to protect your expensive items from overspray. Not only will a drop cloth protect the surroundings from overspray but also keep dust away from the finish coat to achieve the best possible result. 

Always Think Safety

Apart from using a drop cloth and choosing a designated area, considering safety is amongst the most important tips for using a paint spray gun. Even though spray painting is not in itself dangerous. However, you should not ignore the potentially dangerous chemicals that you and your family might be exposing themselves to. 

This is particularly the case with airless machines that typically work at 3000 psi leading to serious skin injuries if not used correctly. Before using a spray gun, you should only opt for liquids or materials that feature safety standards. Always follow the manufacturer recommendations mentioned usually at the back.

If the paint job will take a few hours to complete, you should wear proper protective gear covering your eyes, nose, and ears, etc. At the same time, check for flammable materials and maintain your sprayer. Above all, never buy cheap products. Although spray painting items are not deadly but you cannot underestimate their effects either.

Make Life Easy for Yourself

Using a paint sprayer makes the overall process much easier and quick since you are not using a brush or roller. However, that does not mean that you choose to paint in awkward positions. Although paint craft spray guns are designed to spread the paint evenly but some users still make it difficult for themselves.

There is no one-size-fits-all or uniform approach when it comes to spray painting your models. If the item is small to medium size, do not place it on the floor unless you have a strong back. Instead, place it in a higher position.

Always make sure that you are comfortable while spray-painting. This allows you to focus on the task at hand instead of trying to finish the job quickly with multiple flaws and shortcomings. Furthermore, do not be afraid to take apart or remove the item from its original location if it makes the process easier. 

The final result will only be as good as how comfortable you are while painting your models. Such tips for spray gun painting play a huge role in determining the type of result you achieve at the end of the day. 

Prepare Your Base Material

When discussing tips for spray guns, preparing your base material holds immense importance. Inadequate surface preparation leads to an unprepared and uneven rough coat that will easily peel afterward. Before you proceed with spray painting your model, you should check the model for any cracks or damages. 

In addition to that, remove any dirt, dust, and debris, ensuring that the surface is free of contaminants. And, always dry the model thoroughly before commencing spraying. 

Prepare Your Paint

Spray painting your models does not mean that you simply fill your sprayer and get on with the work. This is an immediate recipe for disaster. There is a lot that goes behind the scenes you need to consider. First of all, you need to choose between different thin and thick coatings.

Even though all paint sprayers will easily knock down low-density paints, the higher viscosity mediums are the real deal. Hence, always check the manufacturer’s instructions to make sure that your unit can cope with the chosen paint format. 

Use the Correct Nozzle

The nozzle can make all the difference when spray painting your models. If you were to choose incorrectly, you will achieve an imperfect paint finish. As a rule of thumb, the thicker the paint, the wider the diameter nozzle you will require.

At the same time, work on your paint flow as well. It needs to be constant and interrupted. Using the correct nozzle combined with slow-medium constant movement will prevent dripping, pooling, and overly thick coats. 

Operate Your Gun Like a Pro

Spray painting is all about technique. Although you might be using expensive equipment but that won’t make a huge difference if you do not know how to use it. While painting, always maintain a distance of 8-12 inches from the target material. Perform side-to-side passes for wide surfaces and up-and-down long and continuous strokes for narrow areas.

Additionally, choose the correct fan pattern and avoid changing your movements. The key to achieving the perfect finish lies in consistency and hand movement.

Final Word

Considering these important tricks and tips will help you on your way. To achieve perfect results each time, you need a reliable paint sprayer and correct techniques. Spray painting is all about how you prepare the materials leading to the actual job. And once you are done, do not forget to clean and maintain your equipment. Such tiny details go a long way in producing extremely fine finishes.