I wanted to show our steps when spraying a railing in lacquer. This is quite a process, especially in a lived in home. This project can be accompished with water based paint and will turn out great, however if you want the best finish possible lacquer is the go to material. The problem with lacquer is it is solvent based and extremely harmfull while spraying and will be very dusty. So we ask the homeowners to make arrangements to stay elsewhere during this time. Here is what we started with:
This railing has been stained and clear coated and we are going to put a solid colour finish over top.
This railing was very clean and in good shape so the we bypassed cleaning it with TSP but a lot of the times that will be the first step. We first gave it a good sand which cleans it up also and adds a little tooth for the subsequent coats.
Next we will caulk all the cracks on every spindle. We like to put the bead of caulking on not to thin that it will crack and not to thick that it will effect the profile. Only experience will help you with this one! Caulking is a very important step that if done incorrectly will leave a nasty appearance once painted.
Lots and lots of tape, plastic, dropsheets. The carpet has been covered with sticky plastic and all adjacent surfaces have been covered up. We were doing a few walls after so we spray directly onto them. That way we can tape the railing off after and make a nice straight line.
Once everything is completely prepped and ready we will prime our railing. We are using a product called PX primer from cloverdale. This product offers us three great components for our finish. It will stick great to the old lacquer leaving us a perfect base for our top coats. It has filling properties to will bridge the grain and make a more even finish. Finally it is easily sanded and leaves the surface super smooth.
FYI for this project we are using a conventional sprayer which atomizes the materials using compressed air. This is one reason why it will be extremely dusty in the home as the dry overspray gets blown around. This sprayer offers a superior finish to an airless and more customizable spray pattern to allow for better spraying on a railing.