DIY powder paint fluid bed

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DIY powder paint fluid bed

Postby Jubs » Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:20 am

This is my scaled down fluid bed version. If you don't know what these are used for they are for painting jigs with powder paint, the way it works is it suspends the powder paint in a "cloud" of air and keeps it from packing down which in turn helps to keep from getting a coat that is too thick and bulking up the jig head and causing runs when curing the paint in the oven. I personally use it with mostly white paint since I have problems with it being dense and heavy causing thick coats but some people use it for every color.

This version uses 1 1/2" ABS plastic fittings no need to cut or purchase piping to make. Standard fluid beds use 3" PVC but I find I don't need that much area to work with but you can apply the same methods with larger pipe/pipe fitting as well, this is just my version to fit my personal needs. Another point is it takes less paint and storing and making extra cups is easy and requires no cutting. When storing if you're worried about damaging membrane thread into a cheap female coupling to lift/protect membrane.

Parts list top to bottom:

The cup:
Slip flat cap
Slip x male adapter (the male side screws into the base)
Membrane brown lunch sack super glued on then sealed with silicone on the inside

Base:
Female x slip adapter
Slip flat cap
Craft foam (I used sticky back craft foam), felt or whatever you choose to put on the bottom to reduce noise and level out flat cap raised writing/casting nubs
1/4" to 1/8" fitting with 1/8 NPT threads
Standard aquarium airline tubing

Tools:
Drill
9/32" drill bit if you're planning on using a threaded fitting for airline
1/8 NPT tap to thread hole
Teflon plumbers tape to seal off fitting
Razor blade/Exacto knife

Air source:
I personally use a dual outlet aquarium pump, Aqua Culture 20-60 gallon dual outlet aquarium air pump to be exact from Walmart. This is more than enough to run 2 cups and having a bleed off valve might be needed depending on air pump you're using and for fine tuning. (See for details) http://www.bluegilltalk.com/viewtopic.php?t=4444


Parts for base cutoff to the right is cup parts
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Parts not pressed or screwed together.
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"Cup" sitting on top of membrane material (brown lunch sack) without slip flat cap.
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Coat bottom rim of "cup" with brush on super glue and press onto membrane material, let it set, trim with Exacto knife around outside base then seal with silicone and let cure.
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Base female x slip adapter mated to slip flat cap as far down as it goes. Craft foam attached and trimmed to level and deaden any vibration noise.
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Drill hole into base and tap the hole to thread fitting.
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Wrap fitting threads with Teflon tape and screw into base.
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Screw cup into base. Finished/assembled just add paint and air pump
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Postby Ghost » Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:17 am

Looks real good Jubs!!

Thank You for posting and doing all the hard work.

Working to make time to do some jigs.
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Postby bamagillslayer » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:16 pm

Looks good Jubs. Does it work good?
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Postby outdoorman » Thu Feb 18, 2010 2:36 pm

looks good thanks for sharing
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Postby Jubs » Thu Feb 18, 2010 5:11 pm

bamagillslayer wrote:Looks good Jubs. Does it work good?
I don't know I haven't used it yet :rofl: The only difference in this design from my double one is I glued in the membranes so I don't see why I wouldn't work just as the other did and they are not connected with a "U" joint adapter.

I am letting the silicone cure before trying it out so it will be a couple of days before I make a test run with them as I had my drill and bits out last night for my dubbing dispenser project and found my bag of ABS parts and figured I might as well get it going since I told everyone I would.
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Postby Joe » Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:03 pm

Thanks for the ''how-to'' I was wondering what was involved.
I have been rolling an idea in my head to solve the volcanoe problem. Build a plenum of about 1pt volume; attach the cup on top and the inlet on the side of the larger container. This should work as an accumulater to even out the pressure. Just a thought, don't know if it will work.
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Postby Jubs » Thu Feb 18, 2010 8:22 pm

That just might work. I have found a happy medium with my dual one, like I said I haven't hooked this one up yet, and just blew off the extra pressure I think I have too strong of a pump and I need to look through my stuff and see if I kept some of my smaller air pumps from my aquarium days. I think with one of the smaller pumps from Walmart I could likely get away with running two small cups off of a single outlet pump.

The biggest thing like I stated in the first thread about these is making sure you don't restrict your air pump and bleed off the extra pressure instead of just restricting it or you will cause premature air pump failure.
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Re: DIY powder paint fluid bed

Postby Doc Crappie » Sun Apr 04, 2010 5:46 pm

Jubs

Does it work, would like to give that a try if it actually works.
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Re: DIY powder paint fluid bed

Postby Jubs » Mon Apr 05, 2010 6:29 am

Doc Crappie wrote:Jubs

Does it work, would like to give that a try if it actually works.

Yes it works great! I thought I had updated after using it but I guess I hadn't. I have learned a bit with this setup after more research into how to set the airflow. The main thing being that it doesn't take much to get the powder to a "fluid" like state and that when it is set right it doesn't look like anything is really happening with the paint but is actually suspended correctly. I good test is to just tip the cup a bit and the powder should slush around with the tilt of the cup like a fluid would. One last thing I have come to start doing is starting off the airflow completely bled off then slowly closing the bleed off valve to avoid a puff of powder and I usually have one hand on the valve and another stirring the powder with the handle of a hobby paint brush to get the air circulating evenly through the powder.
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