Mixing paints is a vital skill when it comes to spray painting. Spray guns can only eject paint at a certain level of consistency, so the use of thinning agents for rich paints is a must. In theory, the paint has to be thin enough to come out of the sprayer’s nozzle yet thick enough for adequate coverage and adhesion. Furthermore, mixing paints also has to be done in order to arrive at a secondary or tertiary color. Here are some steps to follow when mixing spray paints:
Determine the type of paint first
When applying thinners, it is very important to determine if the paint is either water-based or oil based. Latex paint, for example, can be thinned with water while oil-based paints need mineral spirits to get the same effect. Look through the manufacturer’s notes at the back of the can to know recommended mixing ratios. If this is not possible, ask a paint expert at a home improvement store.
Strain the mixed paint
Since spray guns can easily get clogged, it is one rule to strain the paint before allowing it to run through the system. Thus, you need to pour the mixed paint through a paint strainer first in order to catch all clumps and impurities that can block the nozzle of the gun. If you think that there’s a need to re-strain one batch of paint, do so at your own discretion.
Spray on a test board
With the right consistency, the spray gun will give off a fine mist when the trigger is pulled. Well-mixed paints also lead to accurate fan patterns. If the said conditions are achieved, you may now proceed with the actual paint job. If the flow gets interrupted or if the paint is too thin, you will have to add more thinners or paints, respectively.