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Spraying In Cold Weather?

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I will spray my ongoing build soon, but i can't do it inside for the moment. I can leave the guitar to dry inside though. The thing is that it starts to get pretty cold up here (not freezing, but somewhere around 8C/46F), will that cause any problems (i'm usin automotive paint and a spray gun)? I have never sprayed in cold weather before so i have no idea how the paint will react. Any experience on this?

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As well, spraying outside and bringing it inside to dry has another whole set of problems involved that I wouldn't recommend unless you don't mind stripping it and starting all over again.

Bottom line...if the conditions aren't right for spraying a finish, then don't spray the finish, wait until the conditions are right or possible pay the price of stripping and re-prepping.

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This topic comes up about this time every year and what has been said so far is correct. You need everything to be at the correct temparute, the fluid in the gun, the wood, the air in the drying room. Minimum tempature is about 70F, some will go down to 65F depending on the brand, but I would not go below that. The finish may dry, but it will not cross-link properly.

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Heat the spray room and the guitar/paint-(have the guitar and paint indoors to keep comfortable room temperature)

Take the paint/guitar out to the spray area (cold) Spray the guitar- Let the mist settle for about 15 minutes- then turn on the heater inside the spray room.

I sprayed a 2k clear last night about 11PM it was raining and about 65 deg. No problem- had the doors wide open during spray and for the mist cloud to settle out. Closed it all up- turn the heat on.

Checked this AM- looks fantastic. Sure- 65 is pretty different from 45.... but I would expect the same results.

I'll give it a couple more days to cure fully before wetsanding due to the cool weather and himidity, but if the paint is warm, guitar is warm, room is warm except for 20 minutes of spraying and waiting for the gas cloud to clear.... is not a big deal.

I would even use a propane heater in the spray room if I needed to. Just let the solvents/cloud dissipate for 15-20 minutes first. How long depends on the ventilation of your particular spray area- some could fire up propane faster, some considerably longer. No cloud or solvents in the air, and you wont blow yourself up.

As suggested, I would NOT move wet guitars indoors to cure. you will screw them up. Just heat the spray area instead after painting.


Even if the heater you use is "sealed" like most "oil heaters"... the electronics controlling it are not.... I have a digitally controlled oil heater. It's FANTASTIC! (not the heating ability as my propane heater... but it really works quite well) Anytime the thermostat in the heater turns the unit on... I hear a noisy "click" from a relay.... I wouldnt trust it in an explosive environment. Let the solvents clear out!!!!!! Once the solvents/cloud has cleared, its no longer an explosive environment.... and even open flame from a propane heater would be safe....


I have a contact that makes electric infra red heaters. I would expect they're explosision proof. I can look into this if people are interested. He's in the US- dont know if he ships international, but I think he does.


I dont run as a business yet. However, even as a 'hobbyist'- I refuse to wait from Oct to April for the weather to decide to cooperate.... How in the world would a full time builder stay in business if they cant spray for 4+ months? ....and I live in warm sunny socal....

BTW- I'm a newb to 2k automotive- however, a friend of mine has done custom auto paint and airbrush graphics for years. He's helping me get my guitars painted- I was working in his shop last night. Cold and rain dont bother his business much. Personally, I would have thought doing this last night was a bad idea- He told me "no problem"... and he knows what he's doing.

Edited by postal
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