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I’ve heard stories that began with the words, ” It was a dark, stormy night…”
But a dark, stormy morning? Yep.
Back in September, I was embarking on day two of the fall Junk Bonanza Minneapolis show. It had been pouring measurable amounts throughout the night. I was at a Walmart in the very wee hours of the morning. A pitbull had lunged at me from a parked car’s open window and an unruly customer was winning a verbal shouting match with a very tired graveyard shift worker. There, I stood, with my rain-logged shoes, with an armful of pumpkins and other last-minute needs for action-packed day that awaited at Canterbury Park. Admittedly, I was a bit spooked with the strange start to my day.
As my fear grew, I found complete comfort in an immediate brush with a stranger. From behind me in the Walmart check out line, that seems to be growing in hostility, a welcoming voice greeted with me with, “Hey, you must be a Junk Bonanza vendor.” This encounter with a complete stranger, amidst the thunderstorm, pit bull, and irate customer scenario brought me instant relief. In fact, I remember a slight embrace with this chipper gal. As we did the usual small-talk that occurs when you meet someone new, I quickly learned my new-found acquaintance was also at the Junk Bonanza event in the Wagner SprayTech booth. She invited to stop by to visit and try out some of their products.
Upon arriving at Canterbury Park for the day, following my dicey morning, I made it a point to visit Kara at the Wagner SprayTech booth. Within minutes, she had an interior paint sprayer in my hand and I had nearly painted an entire vintage wooden chair a beautiful melon color. The finish was smooth and free of drips and bubbles. I remember looking at Kara, thinking….that just happened? I just painted nearly an entire chair in minutes, what previously took me hours? She went onto describe some of the paint sprayer’s features. I was hooked. How do I get one of these? Kara and I went about the remainder of the Junk Bonanza weekend without visiting again.
Later that evening (it finally did quit raining, by the way), I was replaying my day with my sister-in-law Jessica. I showed her the Wagner Spray-Tech look-books. We both paged through the inspiring projects and read the stories of the fascinating DIY projects done with the Wagner Sprayers. We decided I needed to get one, with a project already in mind. My lovely little neice, Vivian was graduating to a “big girl” room. In her big girl room were going to include family heirloom pieces from her namesake, “Great Grandma Vivian.”
A few weeks following Junk Bonanza, I began an email conversation with Kara from Wagner SprayTech. Within no time, an interior Wagner Paint Sprayer had arrived on my doorstep. I did a few projects to become assimilated with my new toy. It was love, instantly. It was time to get Vivian’s heirloom furniture to begin modernizing the pieces.
I wanted a professional finish for my niece’s furniture, I sanded the pieces. This took a lot of time, patience, and elbow grease. I think it was simply because I was so giddy about the new paint sprayer.
We were blessed with a lovely fall in Minnesota, but I knew my outdoor painting days were fading. I also knew I many winter months ahead of me when I would want to be painting with my new paint sprayer. For less than $50, my junk hunks built me my own paint booth. Love, love, love them.
I should point out Mother Nature sent her first blizzard of the season during the construction of the paint booth. It appears to be less than desirable conditions for outdoor painting.
It was go-time. I quickly learned the importance of diluting the paint for a smooth finish. The company does an excellent job including literature with the paint sprayer. For example, is your paint too thick, too thin, clogging, etc? Every potential problem outlines a set of solutions. I tried a variety of diluting liquids, including water and mineral spirits. I found the Wagner brand conditioner to the best.
In addition to the paint sprayer, Kara from Wagner also sent additional cups and covers, which was ultra handy for pre-mixing solutions. The yellow stick, as shown above, doubles as a mixing stick and measuring tool. The manual also includes a poster to practice with. The nozzle is adjustable, to accommodate vertical, horizontal, or angled spraying.
The overspray is really quite minimal and truly is more based on the operator. As you can tell from the paint booth side walls, the newbie paint sprayer that I am is still working refining that. The unit is very lightweight and easy to handle during the painting process. I learned quickly my shiny new paint sprayer would acquire a layer of over spray on it also.
Like anything, the cleanup is never fun. Wagner includes a handy little wire brush to aid in the process. I actually would fill the cups with warm water and run that through the sprayer. Within seconds, a clear stream of water was spraying through. When I was between coats, I sealed the nozzle with a sandwich bag.
In our heated garage, the paint cured beautifully. Within no time, the pieces came together nicely. I contimplated running the clear polycoat through the paint sprayer. However, I didn’t want to the test run to be on heirloom furniture. So, I opted to sponge-brush that on. I definitely plan to perfect that on future projects.
So, there you have it. From what began on a dark, stormy morning. I am thankful for a brush with a stranger turned into a professional opportunity. I am certain I won’t paint the same again. My Wagner Paint Sprayer and I are sure to have a long life together, full of many fantastic projects. It certainly was a labor of love with the special project I was able to complete for my niece, Vivian.
Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are my own.
Wagner SprayTech Corp.