Fuji HVLP Turbine Systems

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by Logan Windram posted 11-14-2012 12:43 AM 9316 views 1 time favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Logan Windram's profile

Logan Windram

347 posts in 3914 days

11-14-2012 12:43 AM

Anybody have experience with these machines?? The reviews at a variety of sources on the Web are stellar…

My question… The have Mini Mite series machines that feature a 3 turbine model, and the upgraded 4 turbine… The implied difference is if you are going to spraying latex paint, you need the 4 to give atomization to give the off the gun result… By I have also heard the 3 is enough with the paint succifintly thinned…

I don’t mind spending the extra 150 if it presents a clear advantage. I don’t like to thin paint o much, it kind of negates using high quality paint…

Thank you for any advice!

20 replies so far

View live4ever's profile


983 posts in 4463 days

#1 posted 11-14-2012 02:20 AM

They’re fantastic machines. I have the Minimite 4. If you care how loud the turbine is, then I suggest stepping up to their Q4 Pro or Gold or whatever they are calling it now. The Minimite is priced nicely but the tradeoff is the loudness. I use both the #3 and #4 tips for water-based finishes.

I’d recommend picking up an extra 2 or 3 cups with lids so you’re not always washing out finish out of cups (and can switch to a cup with water for cleaning). Get the teflon-coated cups for a few bucks extra. Phelpsrefinishing is a good place to order all things Fuji HVLP.

I don’t use my HVLP much for latex (I use an airless for that), but whether you have the 3 stage or 4 stage you’ll need to thin with Floetrol. Floetrol wasn’t readily available in my area until recently (HD started selling it).

If you’re going to be spraying primarily latex (e.g. painting the house), get an airless sprayer for much less. If your primary use is finishes (poly, lacquer, varnish, stain) with very occasional latex use, then HVLP is right for you.

-- Optimists are usually disappointed. Pessimists are either right or pleasantly surprised. I tend to be a disappointed pessimist.

View Logan Windram's profile

Logan Windram

347 posts in 3914 days

#2 posted 11-14-2012 02:45 AM

Live4ever, thanks for the feedback.. I don’t latex much, but when it does come up, I HATE brush marks no matter how thinned of treated with Floetrol the paint is.. I am also tired or trying to get poly to lay down flat with a brush, and wipe on is tedious to build.. I think I will try the 4

View pintodeluxe's profile


6542 posts in 4266 days

#3 posted 11-14-2012 04:41 AM

I am getting great results with a gravity feed HVLP gun. Amazingly affordable now, and really lays down a great finish with lacquer, poly, and shellac. I even have a dedicated gun for spraying stain.
Woodcraft sells their woodriver gun for $40. Porter cable has a nice one for $100 that includes a regulator.
They spray well with 35 psi at the gun.
What used to take me three coats with lesser guns, I can now achieve with 2!

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View 404 - Not Found's profile

404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 4422 days

#4 posted 11-14-2012 12:08 PM

I have the MM3 with the XT gun and can’t fault it. I think for latex you can do it with the 2.0mm tip and needle set, even with the 3 stage turbine.

View Earlextech's profile


1164 posts in 4143 days

#5 posted 11-14-2012 02:11 PM

A couple of things I would like to clarify. Floetrol is not a thinner. Water is the only thinner for latex paint. Floetrol is an additive that chemically breaks the surface tension of the paint, allowing it to flow once it is on the surface of your project.

When spraying latex with HVLP the most important thing you can do is use a paddle mixer in a drill to shear the paint. The reason that airless systems spray latex so well is that they have a shearing blade in them that the paint passes through because the molecules in latex are spagetti and must be chopped up into smaller particles that will atomize better. Three minutes stirring with a paddle will do this for you.

With an average interior latex paint, thinned 10% with water, add two ounces of Floetrol, stir with a drill mixer, I have no problem spraying with a two stage HVLP. Also, if you are looking for a furniture quality finish, use a 1.5mm needle. And I feel I have to say this all too often…Latex is not a proper furniture finish.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View Logan Windram's profile

Logan Windram

347 posts in 3914 days

#6 posted 11-14-2012 06:36 PM

Earl, how is latex not an appropriate finish? After sealing, priming, painting and adding a clear coat, you don’t care for that, why??? Just curious

View Earlextech's profile


1164 posts in 4143 days

#7 posted 11-14-2012 10:03 PM

blarge – I said latex is not a proper furniture finish and you agree with me (by adding a clear coat). So what’s your question?

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View ducky911's profile


237 posts in 4242 days

#8 posted 11-24-2012 06:03 PM

I have the minimite 4 and I have used it to paint 12 interior doors for my sons house. Latex paint thinned to 25 sec to 30 sec. It plan gets after it…it really moves the paint..per the manual put it down “wet like a lake”. doors look like factory finish….there seems to be alot of talk about thinning latex , what I have found is it best to thin even with a four stage..

I also have a earlex 5000 and well I have jump through some hoops and got very good results…it no where near as nice and it is much slower.

I was worryed about the noise as I wear muffs even when using my table saw . Noise does not seem that bad and I do not even wear my muffs…it must be the pitch and you can set the turbine a ways away. So for me I am galad I save the money for the less quite model…it no where near as load as a router.

View Logan Windram's profile

Logan Windram

347 posts in 3914 days

#9 posted 11-27-2012 07:36 PM

earlex, I assumed you meant latex with a few clear coats was not considered “finished”... but yes, Latex Paint alone is not enough

View CharlesNeil's profile


2501 posts in 5323 days

#10 posted 11-29-2012 01:25 PM

Latex paint used as a coloring agent then topcoated with a quality product works well, been doing it for years,

View NiteWalker's profile


2743 posts in 4029 days

#11 posted 11-29-2012 05:09 PM

I’ve been researching the same thing recently as I want to switch to a turbine from a compressor system (small compressor). I like how the turbine is an all in one unit and doesn’t require anything other than what comes in the box (except for needle sets in different sizes).

Noise isn’t an issue for me, so I’m going for the minimite 4 with gravity gun setup. Most of my work is small boxes, so I don’t need the quart cup, plus I’m used to spraying with a gravity gun. There’s an adapter to change the gravity feed to the quart bottom feed if the need comes along.

During my own research I came across videos comparing the noise level of the mm4, super 4 and q4 pro. To me, the super4 isn’t much quieter than the mm4 but the q4pro is. All 3 use the same 4 stage motor, so the only difference is the noise level. I’ve been very impressed with what I’ve found on the mm4.

I’ll be buying with it the 6’ whip hose, a #3 needle set, extra set of filers and the set of 5 lid gaskets and check valve tubes. My total on comes to $820.30. Not bad considering I paid $270 for my compressor and $281 for my current gun, and probably a well bit more on filters, air hose etc., so I don’t mind paying for quality.

In regards to 3 stage vs 4 stage; the more power the better. Heavier finishes will flow better with less thinning. Well worth the extra money up front. If I were spraying latex I’d get the #6 needle set.

This was all my own research; fuji’s site has a good amount of info there.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Logan Windram's profile

Logan Windram

347 posts in 3914 days

#12 posted 12-01-2012 03:55 PM


Great input… I am going to buy the MM4 as well…. I take so much time and care to put together projects that are tight and polished, I am tired of worrying about hw much my finish job is going to diminish that final product..

Noise isn’t much of an issue, I have robust hearing protection I wear in the shop anyway, and I intend to spray outside as much as possible…. Maybe my neighbors will be pissed… Lol

I will post again once I get… Can you as well?

View NiteWalker's profile


2743 posts in 4029 days

#13 posted 12-01-2012 09:34 PM

I definitely will.

I doubt it will affect the neighbors much; from the videos I watched it sounds like a shop vac.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Logan Windram's profile

Logan Windram

347 posts in 3914 days

#14 posted 12-02-2012 09:05 PM

Nite, not a it fan on my neighbors on the West…. Sorry to hear this!!!

Thanks man, happy spraying

View exelectrician's profile


2339 posts in 3880 days

#15 posted 12-02-2012 09:11 PM

I Use a 4 stage Sherwin Williams turbine. Sherwin-Williams recommended Floetrol thinning agent. I found 20 percent Floetrol 80 percent PVA paint was great for me, even as a newbie I got great results. Take a look at my medicine cabinet project. I was wanting a Fuji turbine but the one I got was at a pawn shop at a once in a lifetime price.

-- Love thy neighbour as thyself

showing 1 through 15 of 20 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics