15th June 2007

Etching and primer prep

Hours: 3.0 | Posted in Horiz. Stabilizer

Bought parts for a priming table today: 5 sections of 3/4″ PVC and some elbows & tees, plus chicken wire (“poultry netting” in Menards-speak).  Also picked up the $40 HVLP primer gun from Menards; I was dubious of its quality after the leaky filter & regulator I bought there, but it looks similar to the Harbor Freight model that gets rave reviews, and the store people say you can return it for any reason, so I figured I’d give it a shot.

I’ll be priming with the AFS system, which is a non-self-etching water-based primer/sealer.  The benefits are that it has fewer environmental & health risks, and easy cleanup (pour leftovers back into the jar, cleanup with water; acetone or lacquer thinner for the dried up spots).  It does require more prep than the self-etching primers (I considered the GBP-988 rattle can stuff), requiring a separate clean/etch step.  I’ve read many good reviews on this product and traded emails with a couple users, and like what I have heard.

The etch process is simple: spray on the etch (cut 1:1 with water in a spray bottle), let it sit for a few minutes, then scrub with a scotchbrite pad.  I did the entire HS (including skins) in under three hours tonight.  I scrubbed just enough to turn the aluminum dull and remove any surface scratches.  Rinse the parts in water (be careful; the wife might not be happy when she finds you in the shower with an HS skin) and check that it films evenly across the surface.  All the parts are sitting in the shop drying; if the weather holds, I’ll prime tomorrow.

Priming table

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