5 Common Spray Painting Challenges And Ways To Overcome Them

If you’ve ever spray painted before, you’re probably familiar with this scenario: You’re eager to get started on your project, picturing the finished product in your head, but all of a sudden disaster strikes. Whether you are painting something as simple as a small cabinet or a much larger item such as an aeroplane, there are some common challenges you may come across, and it can be easy to get discouraged and not know where to turn.

In this article let’s go through 5 common spray painting challenges and how to overcome them, read on for more!

Challenge 1: Dry Spray

Dry spray is one of the most common problems in finishing. It appears as a fine, cloudy haze and can be caused when the paint is applied too heavy, too fast or at an insufficient distance.

What happens is when too much material is applied, the insufficient solvent evaporates before the paint begins to dry, which causes the paint particles to become too large and fall or run off the part. This leads to painting starvation and poor film formation, resulting in rough textures and an uneven finish.

Challenge 2: Sagging

Sagging is what happens when the paint starts drying before it hits the surface and then droops down like a spider web, leaving streaks on your object. A sagging finish is usually a result of applying the paint too thickly or using too high a pressure when spraying.

Challenge 3: Orange Peel Effect

The orange peel effect occurs when your spray paint dries with a bumpy texture that resembles the skin of an orange. The cause of this problem is often improper spraying technique; either you are spraying from too far away or at an angle that’s not perpendicular to the object you’re painting.

Solvent-based paints tend to create more orange peel than water-based ones, and factors like temperature, humidity, material being painted, paint type and even thickness of the coat can also play a role.

Challenge 4: Alligatoring

When you apply a wet coat of paint over an old, chalky paint film, the new layer of paint does not adhere well. As the paint dries, it contracts at a faster rate than the underlying layer. So, what happens is that the top layer of paint pulls away from the under layer, leading to blisters or cracks on the surface. This is called alligatoring.

It usually happens because you applied too much paint too quickly. It can also happen if you apply additional coats before the first one has dried.

Challenge 5: Bubbles

Bubbles are small blisters on the surface of a painted object. These are caused by air getting trapped under the paint film. Moisture may also be present in the surface and come to the surface like bubbles in the paint film.

This is common with wood that has not been properly prepared or dried out (kiln-dried) before spraying. Sometimes they happen because the paint wasn’t mixed well enough, but often it comes down to how you’re applying the paint.

How A VR Paint Dexterity Simulator Helps Overcome These Challenges?

Spray Painting – it’s hard. When you need to cover a large surface, you can never see exactly how the paint falls or where there are drips. You can hardly see what areas need more paint or where there is overspray because you’re often painting underneath precarious scaffolding, at eye height and away from the ground. To that end, a spray paint simulator can help address common spray painting challenges that might occur without any real mess.

A spray paint simulation software is a virtual reality-based training tool that helps solve these challenges. It enables users to create a virtual replica of the product and simulate different painting techniques — such as wet-on-wet, to achieve the desired paint quality. It also helps users experiment with different types of spray guns, nozzles, painting patterns, and more.

When you learn on a simulator, you’ll be able to practice in an environment where there is no mess and no risk of injury or property damage. You can make all kinds of mistakes during your training without any consequence, which will give you the confidence to know that when you do get out on the job site for real, you’ll be able to avoid making those same mistakes again.

The simulator will help you get used to the weight and feel of a spray gun so that by the time you’re putting one in your hands for the first time, it won’t feel foreign or awkward. You’ll get used to how much paint comes out at different pressure settings and how far away from the surface you need to hold the nozzle to get a good coat.

If you want to know more about AjnaLens’ state-of-the-art VR paint dexterity simulator, click here.


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