CDPHE LogoCase Study


Wood Products & Furniture:
Switch to More Efficient Paint Spray Guns

Company Phelps-Tointon MillWork
1001 Buckingham Street
Fort Collins, CO 80524
Person to Contact Fred Galley, Operations Manager
Telephone: (303) 484-9668
Product or Service Custom Woodworking
Number of Employees 35
Waste Stream Targeted Paint-related Waste
Original System Low-Volume High-Pressure (Conventional) Spray (LVHP) Guns use a high velocity air stream to atomize the paint. Pressures typically range from 40 to 70 pounds per square inch (psi). The high air velocity causes paint droplets to dry before reaching the surface and increases paint bounce-back and over spray. This results in excessive over- spray fog and low transfer efficiency (25-30%).
New System
(with P2 Modifications)
Air-Assisted Airless Spray Guns combines compressed air with hydraulic pressure to atomize the coating material. This combination results in finer droplets of coating than produced by airless spray and also allows for a reduction in hydraulic pressure, providing better operator control and higher paint transfer efficiency (50-60%). About 150 to 800 psi of fluid pressure and 5 to 30 psi of air pressure are used to atomize the paint.
Cost Savings
Initial Equipment Costs $3,360 (includes spray gun, 55-gallon pump with lid and agitator).
Material Cost Savings Material costs are less because of the higher transfer efficiencies, but were not quantified.
Waste Disposal Cost Savings Waste disposal costs are similar to the original system.
Major Benefits Reduced over spray, reduced VOC emissions.
Material cost savings.
Positive business image.
The finish is as good or better than with conventional spray guns.
Allows higher production rates compared to HVLP or LVHP systems due to rapid fluid delivery and high transfer efficiency.
Obstacles Increased maintenance is required (more mechanical parts).
Capitol cost is higher; but in the long run, purchase of the air-assisted airless spray gun will pay off (fine finish, high efficiency rate).
Some additional operator training is required.
Air-assisted airless technology is not compatible with some high-solids coatings.
Time Since Implementation 3 years. (1/11/96)
Source/Supplier Fluid Air Systems
3020 North Highway 85
Castlerock, CO 80104
Telephone: (303) 814-0208
Main Reason Implemented Reduce material costs.
Need better equipment to handle high-volume custom woodworking.
Key to Success in Making this P2 Modification Equipment/material information from trade journals, suppliers.
Employee involvement and training - operator skill is a very important factor in spray efficiency.

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Edited for use on this site by Ronald Lee Still and posted with permission of CDPHE.