Author Topic: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review  (Read 14945 times)

Offline STom

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Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« on: April 14, 2008, 12:40:18 PM »
Ok folks, we finally decided to purchase a SprayTech 1420 by Apex at our local Lowes - since of course they are improving home improvement and so are we...
Here's my review of this beast...

First impressions and research...

Just like any major purchase, I spent considerable time researching various makes and models.  The world is filled with airless sprayers, and the 1420 is just one in a sea of many.  A bit of research was very telling...The Titan 440i is the premier airless sprayer - however its price was just too much out of our range at this juncture.  The Magnum DX was our other consideration, followed by the SprayTech 1420.  I don't know how good or bad the Magnum DX is, but from the reading I've done, the Apex 1420 is a good, solid, and decent machine.  At that point, my decision was made, and I went to my local Lowes and purchased the 1420.  I would have bought it from Gleem Paint for about a $35.00 discount, however the job we were tasked with was coming up quick and Gleem's delivery time wouldn't accommodate our schedule.  That's life, moving on...

Assembly and Instructions

If you know your way around a wrench, putting together the 1420 is a piece of cake.  All that's required is two adjustable wrenches and a keen understanding of the English language.  Just tighten the high pressure hose to the engine, assemble the spray gun to the hose, and attach guard/atomizer the spray gun.  You're almost ready to rock and roll at this point, and if you're a big fan of machinery, the excitement is really starting to build at this point.

From here, you have to purge the system because the manufacturer uses a type of preserving oil in the engine while the sprayer is sitting around just waiting for you to purchase it.  The instructions Apex provide are very clear and concise on this procedure.  They are also VERY clear about safety.  It's absolutely important that you do not spray paint on bare skin.  The way I understand this device, it's basically a pressure washer that instead of water, shoots paint at over 2800 PSI.

After the system is purged, you're ready to start painting...

The painting process 

I have to admit one thing.  Before I purchased this rig, I came to understand that sprayers get paint EVERYWHERE.  It is absolutely important that you cover/tape/conceal everything that you do not want paint on.  Now, we've probably all had client like this, so let me give you a bit of background into the job we're doing:

The job we have requires us to prime/paint a newly finished basement.  There's 1 main room, 2 storage rooms, 1 bathroom, and a walled perimeter around the furnace.  Since this was new, the drop ceiling and molding wasn't installed when we first visited to come up with our estimate.  We asked our clients to hold off on installing the molding and drop ceiling, as it would make painting a whole lot easier.  "No problem," they told us.  So you can imagine our surprise when we arrive to the site and all the wood molding and drop ceiling was installed.  They even put the doors in for good measure...fun times awaited us...But at least they told us they installed the molding and ceiling BEFORE we gave them our estimate ;)

At this point, we were forced to tape off just about every surface we could find.  Additionally, since I anticipated some major over spray, we had to use strips of construction paper to extend the taping.  Mind you, this basement is about 1,000 square feet.  Add all the intricacies of the molding and ceiling, and you could imagine our disgust in taping and papering everything off.  There was definitely a point where we were cursing our very career choice.

In any case, like any job, we finally got past the mundane portion and were read to have fun.

Painting

All our bad taping memories were erased in an instant when we began painting.  Despite the rather large size of the basement, we had the entire place primed in less than an hour.  It was truly amazing.  The next day, we went and put the white  base coat on.  Again, it was at blazing speeds.  With the additional day's worth of experience, I probably covered the entire place with the white base coat in less time than it took to prime.

It takes a bit of practice to get the technique down pat.  Also, safety equipment is a must.  That includes using an adequate respirator, goggles, latex gloves, and a body suit.  There is no substitute for any of this.  If you're safe, your job will be that much more enjoyable.

There's one aspect of the machine that I haven't quite conquered just yet - and that's the occasional paint spatter.  It seems that if a drop of paint sits at the end of the gun, it will shoot off and splatter on the wall.  I have been able to fix this by lightly going over it with a brush, but I'm fairly certain it shouldn't be doing this.  I think it's happening for several reasons: 1) The pressure isn't set quite right, 2) I don't have a swivel connector (which seems to be a must), and 3) my technique isn't 100% just yet.

Another thing about the swivel connector.  The gun and hose becomes very stiff when pressurized, which makes control a bit difficult.  I am almost certain my technique will improve once I buy a swivel.  Unfortunately, the Lowes by me doesn't carry a swivel.  The Home Depot carries a swivel for the Magnums, but I don't know if they are interchangeable.  If anyone has input on that I'd appreciate it.

Clean up

Like taping, cleaning the machine (for the first time) actually took longer than the actual paint job.  Whether you have a garden hose or not, cleaning the 1420 isn't too difficult.  Unfortunately we didn't have a hose at our disposal, just a large sink.  But even then, it's just a matter of cleaning the suction set, immersing it in warm water (perhaps in a bucket), and running the machine.  With the gun triggered, the 1420 will suck in the water and out comes whatever paint is left in the hoses, engine and gun.   After that, remove and disassemble the gun, clean all its parts, and reassemble.

Last Thoughts...

The Apex Spray Tech seems to be a well built and sturdy machine.  The safety lock on the gun is a cheap piece of plastic, but the rest seems solid.  I can pretty much say that my days of using a roller and brush are over, and we look forward to moving on with our painting endeavors with our new trusty friend.  The great thing is, that this machine will still make a great backup for the time when we eventually move on to the Titan 440i.  So if you're currently debating what sprayer to buy, give this one a shot.  If time is currently on your side, this machine can be purchased online for less than $300.

Lastly, like all things new in life, there's a touch of a learning curve.  Our first time setting up and cleaning the machine felt like an eternity, however after that, the time has markedly decreased.  Painting by its nature is not a simple procedure.  Time and patience are required to make a job come out right.  Patience and perfection are not removed from the equation with a power sprayer, but once you're rolling with it, it makes the whole job that much smoother.

I'll have some pics up later if ne1 is interested!
« Last Edit: April 14, 2008, 03:03:45 PM by STom »

Vin

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2008, 06:55:14 PM »
Very good write up thanks.

2 things I forgot to mention, that gun needs a swivel or a whip, swivel is cheaper this way the gun turns and twists in your hand a lot easier I got mine at Gleem has them and there cheaper then what i paid for mine.
http://www.gleempaint.com/airswivcongu.html

Secondly YES the tip guard is going to cause spattering, so what I do is cut them suckers off  with a heavy pair of wire cutters, for some thats a no no but I hate having to wipe off the tip guard every 5 minutes cut them off problem solved just be more careful when spraying

Offline tallpaul

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2008, 09:58:29 PM »
So what was your total amount of man hours and what do you think it would have been if you brush and rolled it?
I know it's always good to be able to increase effeciency.
I think you guys should have talked to the homeowners about raising your price since the ceiling was in and that messed up your bid. But it seems like this was a good learning experience in a lot of ways for you guys.

  I can pretty much say that my days of using a roller and brush are over, and we look forward to moving on with our painting endeavors with our new trusty friend. 

I'd like to hear if your thoughts are still the same after your first try spraying a darker color with an eggshell sheen on non-textured walls. 
I almost never spray walls anymore and am wondering if those who do could chime in on rather or not back-rolling is a good idea.

Offline STom

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2008, 10:56:27 PM »
So what was your total amount of man hours and what do you think it would have been if you brush and rolled it?
I know it's always good to be able to increase effeciency.

It was a lot of prep work - maybe 10-15 hours.  But that time would have bee spent taping off anyway, so there wasn't much time lost.  This is a very large basement with lots of corners, angles, etc.  So we would have spent considerable time cutting in with a brush and roller.  We probably saved about a day.  Additionally, we probably overcompensated with the tape and paper since we didn't quite know what to expect.  I can say now that I'm building experience, I could have cut down quite a bit on the taping.  No biggy tho.

I think you guys should have talked to the homeowners about raising your price since the ceiling was in and that messed up your bid. But it seems like this was a good learning experience in a lot of ways for you guys.

Even if we totally dropped the ball and ended up with more work, I would never ask for a higher price from a client.  If it's our mistake, then it's our loss and we have to suck it up and finish for what we quoted. I personally feel that it's a poor business practice to ask for more money after you've made a quote and/or started work.  But that wasn't the case since we KNEW that a world's worth of work was ahead of us.  They did give us more work by installing the ceiling, but they did it before we gave them a quote.  So we did factor in more when we delivered the quote to them.

I'd like to hear if your thoughts are still the same after your first try spraying a darker color with an eggshell sheen on non-textured walls. 
I almost never spray walls anymore and am wondering if those who do could chime in on rather or not back-rolling is a good idea.

Fair enough.  I admit this is our first time with a sprayer, so many new experiences await us.





« Last Edit: April 15, 2008, 10:58:48 PM by STom »

Offline STom

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2008, 10:59:50 PM »
Very good write up thanks.

2 things I forgot to mention, that gun needs a swivel or a whip, swivel is cheaper this way the gun turns and twists in your hand a lot easier I got mine at Gleem has them and there cheaper then what i paid for mine.
http://www.gleempaint.com/airswivcongu.html

Secondly YES the tip guard is going to cause spattering, so what I do is cut them suckers off  with a heavy pair of wire cutters, for some thats a no no but I hate having to wipe off the tip guard every 5 minutes cut them off problem solved just be more careful when spraying

Cheers, thanks.  I have the swivel in hand, will use tomorrow.  I have a feeling it will make a world of difference.

Vin

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2008, 12:09:20 AM »
DEFINETLY huge difference with the swivel .

If you don't want to cut the tip guard up just keep a rag hanging out of your pocket and splotch the tip on there every so often, theres not a lot you can do about it otherwise maybe go with a narrower tip.

Vin

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2008, 10:52:57 AM »
The true test of just how durable this machine is will happen today.

I guess I forgot to put the tailgate up in my truck when I left a job yesterday, so i am going around a busy street corner headed home and hear banging and clanging in the back of the truck I look in the rear view mirror and see my spray rig hanging off the side of the truck guess the gun got hung up on something but as I am making the turn the rig cuts loose and goes tumbling over and over threw the intersection along with a full sealed 5 gallon bucket of paint.

I'm like yelling NOOOOOOOO NOOOOOOOO LOL so I pull over as soon as I can hoping no one runs the rig over or the bucket, more worried about the rig and people are swerving out of the way trying not to run over my rig which is now sitting in the center lane of the busy street, luckily no one ran it over or hit it nor did the 5 gallon bucket of paint crack open ( second time this has happened to me).

SO gonna fire it up today nothings rattling or even looks damaged HEH HEH

Offline BrushJockey

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2008, 04:59:49 PM »
Sounds like the paint gods were on your side Vin!   The 5er busting open is a nightmare to wake up in a sweat over! 

"It would be ludicrous to think I'm new to this, I know this, this is what I do"  ( Prince and Geo Clinton..)

Vin

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2008, 08:17:15 PM »
Sounds like the paint gods were on your side Vin!   The 5er busting open is a nightmare to wake up in a sweat over! 




Yeah no kidding got the Gods on my side 4shor

That rig fired right up and ran great but I feel some wearing she just doesn't have the same pressure anymore going to have the pump repacked or whatever they require. I've probably ran a good 200+ gallons out of that rig so far payed for itselkf many times over in the last year, sheesh its been like a year almost and not one break down(knock on my forehead here)...

Offline Lynjowoman

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2008, 10:29:30 PM »
Vin, you were really lucky. I have seen a lot of paint buckets spatter when they hit the road. Glad your rig is ok.

Lynjo
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Vin

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2008, 04:39:03 PM »
SW seals them pretty good both times it was one of there buckets, yeah I see the paint smeared on the road now and then some dumb painter left the tailgate open LOL

Offline Jake

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #11 on: June 08, 2008, 02:56:28 PM »
Hey guys.... Sorry to respond to a two month old thread,

But Vin, Ya learned the hard way buddy!  :D

I always keep my ladders chained to the rack and the sprayer chained through the ladders to the rack. That things not going ANYWHERE!  ;D

btw, I found this thread through a search on sprayers. I've never done this before and I hope it's ok. A buddy of mine told me that I could leave the stinger in the 5 (which I did and then wrapped, covered, and sealed the top with plastic because the stinger wont fit through the tint hole) and just float the gun and the tip (removed from the gun) in water overnight and that it'll be fine in the morning.

I don't see why this would be a problem. I'm shooting ceilings with flat right now and my buddy said that it was cool, but that flat's the worst to do it with.

Well, we'll see what happens.

I mean I figured since it was Sunday and all.......... ;D

EDIT* just so ya know.... The hose is still connected to the rig and the gun so the paint in the line is sealed :)
« Last Edit: June 08, 2008, 03:01:02 PM by Jake »
The only thing that separates Paint from Pain... Is a t.

Vin

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Re: Apex SprayTech 1420 Review
« Reply #12 on: June 08, 2008, 09:55:53 PM »
I've done dat  Jake not for more then a day though.