all the CAS guns.

Other excellent guns are available from Accusprav, Binks, Croix. Lex-Aire. DeVilbiss, and Kremlin.—A.M.

knob at the front or back of the gun that lets you control the size of the spray pattern. On other systems, you adjust the spray pattern by rotating the air cap itself.

Finally, all units have another valve to control fluid flow. Again, you should experiment with different settings until you get the spray quality you want.

Evaluating HVLP Sprayers

In preparing this article. I evaluated 11 models designed for the small shop. With each system, I sprayed both a SO-SO mixture of lacquer and thinner and an uncut water-based finish. I checked the atomization by spraying water into the air in front of a light. I adjusted the system until I got the best possible pattern of fine and evenly dispersed droplets and then used the settings to spray horizontal flat paneLs.

All 11 systems produced good-quality finishes, but with some machines I had to thin the mixtures, or slow down as I moved the gun across the work-piece. to get the best results. Manufacturers offer several sets of nozzles and air-cap sizes for different finishes. (See sidebar. Customizing Your HVLP Sprayer.) Experience will quickly teach you when to change fluid sets (nozzles and needles) or air caps.

I found all the systems were well made, and I would not hesitate to purchase any one for home use. Also, every system, including the least expensive, gave me the ability to shoot a finish equal or superior to commercial-grade furniture finishes, although the smaller sprayers tended to be slower. Although I wouldn't relish the job, I could have sprayed a car with the lower-priced models and gotten a decent result. If 1 had to do several cars each day, though. I d upgrade my equipment.

In comparing the sprayers (see chart). I used a l-to-10 rating system with 10 being the best in the group. In addition to spray features. I rated noise levels. HVLP turbines sound like shop vacuums; the quieter systems rated higher marks because noise can be bothersome after a couple of hours.


So which machine should vou buy? Here are mv recommendations, but

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