Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

November, 2008

Possible Mislabeled HVLP Gun

Q. About a year ago, I bought a Zhipp H827W HVLP spray gun from the Tuulshed, an online/eBay store. No manual came with the gun, so I tried numerous times to get more information from Tuulshed, without success. I have recently started to do some painting as a hobby, with the idea of painting part time, so once again I tried to find information on the spray gun. My internet search uncovered a controversy, with some painters claiming that the gun was not HVLP. I did more investigating, and found that the Chinese manufacturers, WAR-wick Tool Industries, Inc., do not list the gun as HVLP on their site:

The gun is not marked HVLP, but the box is clearly marked.
I am sure I can get no redress from the Tuulshed, but I still am writing this email for two purposes; I would like to see an internet note that informs owners that this gun is not an HVLP gun, and I would like sales of this gun labeled as HVLP stopped.

Thank you

A. There is a method for determining if a gun is HVLP. To do this, drill a small hole through an air cap identical to the one you use in production. The hole must access to the atomizing air cavity behind the cap. Tap the hole with an appropriate screw thread and then attached a nipple to the cap. Attach a 0-15 psig pressure gauge to the nipple. Now set up the spray gun to atomize some paint and when you have achieved good atomization trigger the spray gun and read the atomizing pressure on the 0-15 psig gauge. If the atomizing pressure is <10 psig, by definition is it an HVLP gun.

All US spray gun companies sell special kits to test for HVLP; however each kit is specific not only to the gun manufacturer, but also to the air cap. If nothing else, you can get an idea of the design configuration of the test cap.

I looked at the photograph of the gravity fed gun on the link you sent me. It looks like it might well be HVLP.


Ron Joseph

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