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When it comes to a paint job, there are as many methods of application as there are hues of swatches. This can make it difficult to determine what the right kind of tool or technology is best for applying paint, especially when there are so many options available. Airless paint sprayers have become increasingly common and are recommended by a fair percentage of general contractors, but knowing whether they’re a viable choice for your paint-spraying needs is a question that only you can answer.

In this article from American Spray Technologies, we compare the advantages and disadvantages of airless paint sprayers to several types of equipment that have been popular in the past or that remain a strong present-day competitor. And when you’re in the market for a reliable spray rig — whether it’s for applying paint, drywall, or another material — be sure to buy from a trusted manufacturer like American Spray Technologies.  


Airless Paint Sprayers: An Overview

Airless paint sprayers have risen in popularity since they were first introduced several decades ago. Not only are these spray rigs versatile enough to complete a variety of indoor and outdoor tasks, but they’re generally a reasonable size and weight, making them ideal for professionals and DIY enthusiasts who need a portable spraying tool. 

Paint sprayers with airless propulsion owe this quality to their internal piston, which replaces the need for an attached or external compressor — and greatly reduces the size of the rig itself. Given their versatility, portability, and ease of use, it makes sense that airless paint sprayers have come to dominate the industry. And yet, other methods and techniques still remain in considerable use, which we explore more in-depth below. 

HVLP (High Volume, Low Pressure) Sprayers

When it comes to precision painting, an HVLP sprayer is a commonly used piece of spray equipment. With a name meaning “high volume, low pressure,” the HVLP paint sprayer is true to its name, as it combines a targeted atomizer with a low speed of distribution, allowing you to expertly apply paint to furniture, narrow corners, crown molding, and cabinets. Keep in mind, however, that the HVLP sprayer is much slower than an airless spraying technique, and it does have a propensity for clogging, so patience ought to be a primary virtue of anyone who opts for this tool!

LVLP Sprayer

Low-volume/low-pressure sprayers, or LVLP sprayers, are often touted as the perfect paint application tool for the average person without industry expertise. That being said, many contractors can and do use this kind of machinery in their paint-spraying tasks, since regardless of profession, they’re lightweight and affordable. 

Like their HVLP sprayer counterparts, however, the LVLP design has its drawbacks: the low pressure of the atomizing chamber means that thicker paints can’t be applied, so you may have to switch tools as you progress from, say, fence painting to interior wall painting.

Gravity Feed Spray Guns

Named for the angled chamber that sits atop the mouth of the device, a gravity feed spray gun is an ideal option for applying paint to cars and for completing projects that demand both versatility of acceptable materials and fineness of finish. It’s a great option for professional car painters, but beyond that, its ability to complete larger-scale tasks is quite limited. Unless you have a serious professional need for a gravity feed spray gun, you probably won’t stumble across one in your day-to-day DIY endeavors.

Why Choose An Airless Paint Sprayer?

As we’ve seen so far, there are a number of options you’ll have when selecting a kind of paint sprayer, but not all of them are designed to handle a substantial range of application needs. Enter the airless paint sprayer, whose portability and adjustable-pressure gauges give it both the precision, volume of distribution, and user-friendliness that contractors and homeowners alike can appreciate. What’s more, airless paint sprayers tend to be affordable than tools with traditional compressor technology, even if they’re one of the higher-end commercial models.

An airless paint sprayer may be the perfect solution for your project needs, but you won’t know until you try one for yourself! Visit American Spray Technologies online today to contact us and to explore our full inventory of innovative spray equipment. 

Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

Whether you’re an avid DIYer or a professional contractor, having the right air compressor in tow is a vital part of ensuring that the job gets done right. If you’re just starting your buyer’s journey, it’s important to understand the differences between gas and electric air compressors. 

In this official guide from American Spray Technologies, we’ll walk you through the behaviors, benefits, and drawbacks of air compressor types, so you can make the right choice on your final purchase. 

For more information on spray rig equipment and its supplementary components, from air compressors to piston pumps and beyond, be sure to visit our blog for dozens more helpful resources, informative articles, and buyer’s guides. When you’re ready to purchase, simply go to our website to select from our standard inventory, or to build a customized spray rig of your own!


 

Air Compressor Basics

Air compressors are one of the most versatile and useful tools for personal and professional use. They supply either stationary or portable power for tasks like drywall texturing, paint spraying, and application of countless materials and solutions. The kind of air compressor you choose will depend on your intended use for the machine, as well as your personal preferences and labor requirements.


Gas versus Electric Air Compressors

Air compressors come in two main varieties of design and power source: gas and electric. Gas-powered air compressors work with natural fuels like diesel to offer a portable, cordless source of energy to the machine, whereas electric compressors are typically plugged into an outlet during operation and are better equipped for small-scale jobs that do not require extensive mobility.

For these reasons, you’ll typically find that gas-powered air compressors are used on professional and industrial sites. On the other hand, electric air compressors steal the show in independent contracting work and personal projects. Of course, individuals and companies commonly possess both kinds of air compressors to allow them the flexibility to accommodate a wider spectrum of tasks. 


Assessing Air Flow 

Beyond the power source of your air compressor, you’ll need to consider its air flow capabilities and whether these are suitable for your intended applications. Air compressor flow capacity is generally measured in terms of PSI (pounds per square inch) or CFM (cubic feet per minute). You want to consider choosing an air compressor with at least 1.25 to 1.5 times the airflow requirements of whatever air tool you’re using, whether it’s a drywall texture sprayer, a paint hose, a nail gun or a different specialized attachment. 

Why choose an air flow capacity above the required output? It’s better to have too much power than too little! Selecting an air compressor whose CFM or PSI only meets, but does not exceed, your air tool specifications increases the likelihood of the engine motor becoming overtaxed and experiencing a power failure. By working with a compressor whose air flow maxes out well above your task’s work requirements, you’ll ensure that you have sustained power throughout the job without risk (or hassle) of a frustrating malfunction.


Take Tank Size Into Consideration

So far we’ve covered the types of air compressors (electric and gas) and the importance of air flow specs, but the tank size of your machine is another important factor to take into account before purchasing your part. Whether you have a portable or a stationary air compressor usually determines the size options for your tank.

Portable compressors (these are usually the gas-powered models) understandably have smaller tank capacities, as they need to remain lightweight so as not to exhaust the person using them and to minimize the square footage they take up. Portable air compressor tanks are therefore ideal for personal or small-scale commercial use. 

Stationary compressors afford much more storage space than their portable counterparts, with some models accommodating as many as 120 gallons! If you’re preparing for a major project that requires industrial-grade strength, a stationary tank is likely the best option for you. 


Look At Location

Ultimately, the choice between a gas or electric air compressor, as well as the air flow and tank size specifications of each will boil down to the environment in which you plan to use it. If you know that the site you’ll be using your air compressor does not have easy access to a power source, then portable or gas-powered is obviously the best option. Stationary air compressors will conversely be best suited for long-term or large-scale tasks that can accommodate more strenuous power requirements and electricity consumption. 


Buy From A Trusted Manufacturer

When you’ve assessed all the criteria mentioned above, you’re ready to make the purchase and get the air compressor that’s optimized for your personal and professional needs. Make sure you buy only from a trusted manufacturer with industry expertise, like American Spray Technologies. For more than 50 years, we’ve been serving contractors and DIYers alike with top-of-the-line equipment for spray rigs, texture sprayers, air compressors, and so much more. We wouldn’t still be doing what we do today if our products weren’t reliable, so you can rest assured that when you partner with AST for your air compressor — or any of our machines or parts — you’re getting a quality model that will stand up to any and all tasks.

To explore all of our options for air compressors and to see how you can customize your own rig, please visit our website at SprayRig.com or contact us directly today!


Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

Whether or not you’re a neat freak, we can all agree that the application of disinfectant spray is an important part of protecting oneself and others from the spread of germs and infection. In industrial and commercial settings, however, there can be significant spaces of surface area to cover and nowhere near enough hands to get the job done manually. Fortunately, there is a solution for larger facilities and independent contractors alike: upgrading and converting your spray rig!  

In this article from American Spray Technologies, we’ll give you the information you need to turn your spray rig into a disinfectant sprayer. To test out the process, we used our Kodiak Portable Spray rig, but you can use any spray or texture machine from AST in the same way. For more information on spray rig customization and parts replacement, please visit our professional site at SprayRig.com

Why Disinfect? 

The COVID-19 virus has been shown to live for up to 72 hours on some surfaces; however, just a single application of disinfectant can resolve the issue, so there’s actually some good reasoning behind the hand sanitizer hype. Whether you use your spray rig primarily for drywall, elastomeric coatings, or another specialized material, there’s no reason it can’t be upgraded and optimized into a high-powered disinfectant distributor. It’s easy and effective — read on to see for yourself!

How To Convert Your Kodiak Texture Sprayer Into A Disinfectant Tool

Before beginning the steps which follow, be sure that your Kodiak Texture Sprayer is emptied of any previously held materials and has been rinsed thoroughly to remove any remaining debris. Once your hoses and hoppers are cleared out and wiped down, you’re ready to start the conversion process. 

Step 1: Prepare Your Parts

Inspect your texture sprayer or alternative AST spray rig to make sure that no parts are loose or partially detached. Secure all connection points between components, such as pole guns, hoses, hose clamps, ball valves, air-metering valves, and steel tips. Once these parts are nice and tight, double check that your spray rig seal is functioning properly by testing it with water. 

Step 2: Add Your Chosen Disinfectant

Drain the water you used to test your seal and wipe up any excess liquid that remains. Then, with a disinfectant of your choice — be sure it is classified as a virucide — pour the solution into your hopper until you’ve added the desired amount. 

Step 3: Set Up Your Pressure Settings

If you’re using a Kodiak spray rig, set the pressure to a range of 1000 to 1500 psi. If your AST rig should be able to support a similar psi level, but if for some reason it doesn’t have the horsepower or engine capacity to do so, simply set it as high as it will go.

Step 4: Attach The Right Tip

We recommend adding a low-pressure tip to your pole gun, as this will allow the spray to flow with wider distribution, covering more surface area in a shorter amount of time. If you don’t have such a tip attachment, you can find one from American Spray Technologies, or you can adjust your existing attachment accordingly to match the pre-established pressure settings. 

Step 5: Start Spraying!

In a slow and sweeping motion, spray your disinfectant over the targeted surface. Do not hold the sprayer in one position for longer than a second, as this will cause the coating of disinfectant to distribute unevenly and pool up on the surface. Constantly moving the pole gun with a steady arm reduces the likelihood of hose clogs, and the even distribution of disinfectant allows you to have a better idea of how long the solution has been in contact with the surface. 

Why does this matter? Cleaning solutions have varying specifications for exposure time, so check with your disinfectant manufacturer to make sure the product has adequate time to do its job before you start to wipe up or mop the area. 

Our Product Recommendation For Spraying Disinfectant

Now that you know the process behind converting a spray rig into a disinfecting powerhouse, we’ll leave you with some final words on the best product for executing the task: The Kodiak Texture Sprayer. This is one of our most popular and highly rated rigs for spraying and texturing tasks of all kinds, and it’s also a great option if you regularly use a spray machine for jobs other than large-scale cleaning. It’s portable, electrically powered, and easy to personalize with a diversity of specialized parts and attachments. Get yours today and use it as a powerful cleaning tool tomorrow!


When it comes to disinfecting facilities in the COVID-19 era, you don’t want to use poor quality equipment. You can trust any of the spray and texture machines we offer at American Spray Technologies, and that’s why we’ve been the team of manufacturers that professional contractors depend on for more than 50 years. Contact us today to get a free catalog of our productivity and protection-enhancing products!

Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

Whether you specialize in foundations such as drywall or finishing touches such as interior painting, every contractor should have a good understanding of how their texture machines and spray rigs work. Not only does this knowledge help you to ensure that you’re using the right equipment for the job, but it enhances your credibility as a professional and boosts your marketability. 

From platforms to customizable parts and from hosesets to rig capacities, this resource article will give you the essential information necessary to truly set yourself apart as a competent and conscientious contractor. In this blog, we’ll review the three main types of spray rigs and their features to see which is best suited for your area of expertise and your primary project tasks. 

To learn more about airless sprayers and max-efficiency texture machines, or to explore more helpful blog resources for professional contractors, please visit American Spray Technologies online today!


Spray Rig Platforms

The foundation of any machine is a good place to start when learning about its qualities and how they compare to other models, and spray equipment is no exception. In general, there are three main building types, or platforms, of spray rigs: trailer, skid, and electric. We review each briefly below.


Electric — Electric spray machines, as the name suggests, are set apart by their power source. This rig platform is perfect for industrial jobs. Not only are they modular, easy to install, and intuitive to operate, but their capacity and capabilities come in a wide range of specifications. From 100 gallons to 350 gallons, there is a spray machine for every contractor and every sector of factory-based work.

Skid — Skid sprayers are a great option for covering lots of surface area in a small amount of time, which is why they’re often employed on agricultural properties and large-scale construction sites. Compared to a portable electric model, this configuration is a bit bulkier. Size demands that this platform uses diesel and gas rather than electric, but it also offers highly powerful engine options (starting around 20-25 HP). 

Trailer — You won’t find a rig configuration larger than a trailer, which boasts both heavy-duty durability and low-maintenance parts. At AST, our Big Rig Trailers have a 3200-lb.-burst-rated hose, a stainless steel texture strainer, easily serviceable wheels and axles, and even an optional butterfly valve to stop the flow of product to pump. 

You can find more information on electric, skid, and trailer rigs, as well as other spray and texture machines at www.SprayRig.com.


Spray Rig Size

The size of your spray machine rig will depend on the tasks for which you intend to use it, as well as your available options for transporting and assembling the unit. The smallest rig size we offer at American Spray Technologies is a portable and practical 150 gallons, while our largest piece of spray equipment has a hefty 350-gallon capacity. 


  • 150-250 gallons: Ideal for residential and high-rise construction tasks; easy to carry and doesn’t take up a lot of space; not optimized for extended use unless refilled

  • 200-300 gallons: Best for large residential plots or commercial facilities; covers more ground in less time; may be harder to transport on certain job sites 

  • 300-350+: Optimized for agricultural and industrial-scale jobs; commonly employed for pesticide and herbicide applications, high-acreage landscaping, and large-scale construction 


Spray Rig Engines and Compressors

Your engine power directly affects your rate of air compression and speed of performance. The higher your horsepower is, the stronger your spray will be. For non-industrial projects and residential jobs such as spray painting or liquid plaster applications, you don’t need more than 5 HP and certainly not more than 10. For industrial applications and large-scale construction, such as texture spraying and chemical treatments, you’ll want to be looking for engines in the 20-25 HP range and several hundred PSI. 


Hoseset Configuration

Unless you’re getting add-on features for your spray rig, the hoseset configuration will be the last component of your specialized machine to consider. Depending on your industry, you may need a specific gun type, switch type, and hose length for your configuration, so be sure to confirm these details prior to making any major decisions on your professional equipment and spray rig specs.


Consider A Customized Spray Rig

Now that you’ve taken the time to learn more about spray rigs and the parts that go into them, why not build your own? American Spray Technologies has an online rig builder for your convenience, so you can make sure your rig is constructed exactly as it should be from start to finish. Visit AST online or contact us directly today!


Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

Whether you’re building a home from the ground up or you’re renovating a single room, there’s no shortage of time, effort, and expertise that goes into a drywall installation. From finding the studs to applying that final layer of texturing, you need the right knowledge, materials, and equipment to successfully accomplish the task.

Although drywall texturing can be outsourced to industry professionals, there’s certainly a way to save some money by doing it yourself. Learn how to texture drywall like a pro with this guide from American Spray Technologies. Contact us for more helpful tips and tricks — as one of the nation’s top providers of spray rigs and texture machines for contractors, you can be confident we know how to get the job done right!

Wall Textures To Enhance Your Home's Aesthetic Infographic


 Basics on Drywall Texturing

Adding texture to drywall is an effective and aesthetically appealing way to enhance the value of your home. There are a few different techniques you may use to execute this task, and some require equipment like spray rigs while others may be applied by hand. Common methods of drywall texturing include popcorn, orange peel, and stucco varieties. You can maximize efficiency by using a texturing machine, but paintbrushes and rollers can be employed as well!

Prep Your Surface & Materials

Before you start applying any layers of texture, be sure that all surfaces to be covered are smooth, wiped clean, and dry. If you notice any sections with serious protrusion or indentations, a drywall sponge is a great way to “sand” down the bumpy parts of your build while avoiding the dust from a traditional sander. Although drywall texture is a great way to cover up imperfections, you’ll save yourself a lot of time and hassle by minimizing the need to go back and redo sections that have been applied to an uneven or dirty surface.

Once all the drywall areas you plan to texture have been primed, it’s time to get your materials ready for action! The most common materials used for this DIY project are joint compound and drywall mud. You should be able to find both of these at your local improvement store. After applying your joint compound, get your drywall mud prepared by mixing it with a bit of water, just until it reaches the consistency of a thick batter. Mixing it too thick will be like spreading gravel on a vertical surface, whereas adding too much water will cause the mud to drip and dribble like watercolor paint. 

Now that your walls and materials are good to go, it’s time to start the actual texturing process! We’ll review the primary techniques below so you can determine which one is right for you.

The Roller Method

Many DIYers gravitate towards a texture application method that uses a sea-sponge roller. The slightly abrasive surface of this roller is great for producing stuccoed and slightly raised bumps (a.k.a. “Popcorn” style). Keep in mind, however, that unless you have a ladder, it will be difficult to achieve the same effect on ceilings and high sections of drywall. When you’ve finished the number of coats you want to apply, smooth the edges of the still-wet drywall mud with a knife.

The Stomp-Knockdown Method

For a more rugged and abstract look, the stomp-knockdown method is a perfect choice. Using a special brush, you’ll alternate between applying the drywall mud like paint and “stomping” the brush against the wall. With each smack and stroke, you’ll slightly alter the appearance and height of the mud. As you would with the roller method, be sure to smooth edges and higher areas of the textured surface with a knife once finished. 

The Texture Sprayer Method

For this technique, you’ll need a specialized tool called a drywall texture sprayer. These machines use compressed air to propel texturing materials through a hose and out of a handheld nozzle. You can explore some of the best options in the texture sprayer market by visiting our products page at American Spray Technologies. We recommend our airless portable sprayer, the Kodiak M2!

Although machines certainly make drywall texturing a heck of a lot easier, there are still a few factors you’ll need to consider as you undertake the project. The graininess of the textured paint you select will necessarily influence the type of nozzle size you need, and the air pressure power (i.e. the PSI) of your unit will affect both the rate at which you can spray and the materials you can administer. Lastly, textured paints come in a more limited variety of hues than traditional wall paints, so once your texture has been applied and has dried, you may want to go back over it with a few coats of color — but don’t use a brush! The ridges of your newly textured wall won’t take well to the fibrous hairs of a paintbrush. Instead, use a sponge, a roller, or your spray machine. This ensures even distribution of color and more efficient drying time.

Final Recommendation: Get Random!

When you’re texturing drywall, it can be easy to get caught up in the intricacies of technique and sticking to a certain pattern you may have envisioned. But as strange as it may sound, you’ll achieve a better and more artistic outcome from your project if you apply drywall mud in a randomized way. Getting too repetitive with your rolling, stomping, or spraying will leave the whole wall looking flatter than it did to begin with. So have fun and try not to focus on perfection — when it comes to drywall texture, it’s the irregularity that gives it true personality.

Ready to Get Started?

For a quick and easy start to your drywall texturing project, your best bet is a spray rig from American Spray Technologies. Our Kodiak M2 is one of the best portable airless sprayers on the market, and it can be used not only for textured paint, but traditional wall paints and spray paints too! For more information on specs, contact us or watch our video collection of AST Kodiaks in action on YouTube.

Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

In our previous post, we talked about getting started as a subcontractor. Our tips focused on people who are just getting started in the spray contracting industry. 

In this post, we’d like to look at the opposite end of the spectrum and outline important tips for spray contractors who are established enough that they need to hire employees for a crew. 

If you’ve worked primarily as a sole proprietor and spray subcontractor, the idea of having to hire and manage employees may seem daunting. It’s not easy to find the right people, and you’ll probably have to change the structure of your business. It also means you’ll have to manage people on the job site, which offers its own set of challenges. 

However, having a crew means you can take on bigger jobs, invest in more texture machine equipment, and generate more revenue. It may be an inevitable result of your own success, so it pays to be prepared. 

The first step when you get to this level will be to hire your crew. This is a critical step that will impact your quality of work and reputation. Let’s outline how to get the best people to build your business. 

#1. Plan Ahead 

One of the biggest mistakes spray contractors make with hiring is to wait until they are right in the middle of their busiest season and realize they need help immediately to complete jobs. 

This turns the hiring process into an emergency. You’ll have to hurry through the recruiting process and, in all likelihood, you’ll hire any warm body that shows up. 

This is not the way to get reliable employees that will stay with you. 

Instead, consider not just your work schedule, but your prospective work schedule for the year. Calculate when you may need help and plan ahead. Work through the hiring process during your slow period, such as during the winter months when more workers are seeking employment.

This will give you the time to conduct interviews and choose employees who are the best fit. Hiring in a hurry rarely results in getting the best people for your business. 

#2. Take Advantage of Hiring Resources 

Today there are many resources available to find employees. With the internet, you can list jobs in a variety of places, including Craig’s List, contractor job boards, and social media sites. 

You can also take advantage of local publications, job fairs, and referrals from general contractors. 

Cast a wide net to tap into a decent pool of applicants. By taking the time to connect with more people, you’ll get a better sense of who will work for you, as well as who won’t. You’ll have a better chance of finding crew members with relevant experience. 

If you limit your search, you may end up having to hire people you don’t feel comfortable with. This results in getting unreliable people who don’t meet your criteria for quality work. 

#3.  Make Your Listings Clear 

Be detailed, clear, and descriptive when you post a job listing. Give detailed descriptions of the spraying work you do and be clear about the experience you require. Give details about the types of workers you seek and how you deal with issues like punctuality and work ethic. 

The more detail you include, the less likely it will be that you’ll have to interview unacceptable applicants. This is a big time saver and it results in getting better people when you hire. 

#4.  Learn How to Interview 

One thing that will pay major dividends for your texturing business is learning how to interview prospective employees. This is not easy, but the good news is that it’s a skill you can learn. 

Plan ahead when you interview by having the questions you want to ask ready. Go beyond experience so you can get a sense of the type of person you’re dealing with. 

Do some research into how to conduct interviews. There are many books and online resources that offer free interviewing/hiring training. 

Many contractors struggle with conducting interviews because they don’t prepare and don’t believe it’s something that they have a feel for. This can be a costly, ongoing problem. 

If you learn how to interview, it’s a skill you can use as long your spray contracting business has to hire people. It's a worthwhile skill for any business owner. 

#5. Ask For References 

When you think you have a good candidate, ask for and check references. You can learn a lot by calling just one former employer.

Preferably, your candidates will have some kind of spraying or drywalling experience. But even if their last job was working as a dishwasher you can learn about their work ethic, promptness, and reliability with a quick call. 

Remember our first tip. It takes a bit of time to check references, and if you’re rushed to hire you’ll skip this step. Just remember that getting the right people will save you time and headaches down the road. 

#6. Hire For Character 

Imagine two candidates for your job. One has experience as a drywall sprayer but when you check his references you find he has trouble getting along with others and occasionally shows up to work hungover. 

The second has no construction or drywalling experience, but he’s known as a great person to work with and has history that demonstrates a solid work ethic.

Who would you hire? 

At first you’d probably lean towards the guy with experience, but in truth you’d be better off to hire the guy with better character. 

You can train a person who’s enthusiastic about the work to operate a tool like the Kodiak portable drywall sprayer. In short order you can have him doing quality work. 

But you can’t train a person to have character. You can’t change a guy’s personality and it will be hard to alter after hours vices that impact daytime work. 

Look for experience but favor character if it comes down to it. You’re better off training the right person than allowing for the wrong one. 

#7. Provide A Career Path 

If you’ve gotten to the point where your business will use multiple big spraying rigs and always employee a crew, think long term. 

For employees, that means offering a career path. You may need guys who can work as managers or who can work independently at different job sites. You may need people who can help with administration and sales. You may need reliable drivers or people who provide mechanical/maintenance support. 

Pay the right people what they’re worth and provide benefits for long-term employees. Treat them like family and you’ll get treated that way in return. 

You’ll probably hire many seasonal workers, but you want core positions filled by people who will stay with you. Their career stability is your business stability.  

Match them with the most reliable texture sprayers and airless sprayers in the business, and you’ll have a winning combination for long-term success.  

Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

subcontractor

How Do I Get Started as a Subcontractor? 


Our clients at American Spray Technologies are primarily drywall spray contractors. In terms of a business model, that means most of them work as subcontractors. 


Working as a subcontractor has both advantages and drawbacks. You are, technically, your own boss, but on jobs you work under the direction of the general contractor. You can take on projects at your discretion, but it can be easy to take on too much. You can do very well financially, but you usually must incur costs initially then get reimbursed upon job completion. 


In this post, we’d like to offer tips for people who are new to subcontracting and looking to get started as a spray contractor. These are general tips that will help leverage the advantages of this business model and avoid some of the pitfalls that might get you in trouble. 


#1. Develop a Business Plan 


Most people starting as a subcontractor begin without even thinking about - much less formally writing out - a formal business plan. This is an oversight. 


A business plan is a document you develop and use internally to help guide you, particularly in the first year you’re in business. If you need to get loans to finance your business you may need to present a business plan to the bank. 


A good place to start is the Small Business Association, which has templates small business owners can use to create a plan of their own. This will provide you with an outline to structure your ideas. They have two main templates, one for a traditional business plan and one for a lean startup. 


Within these, here are some of the main points to consider. 


  • Company Description. Are you going to be a sole proprietor working alone or do you plan to hire a crew? What volume of work do you plan to take on? What locations will you work in? 

  • Market Analysis. What’s the market like for spray contractors in your area? What type of competition will you be up against? Will you be able to win a viable amount of work? 

  • Services. Are you going to exclusively be a texture sprayer, or do you want to offer other spraying or drywall services? Do you want to work primarily on commercial or residential projects? 

  • Organization and Management. What will the legal structure of your business be? Will you have management personnel or will you do that work yourself? 

  • Marketing and Sales. How will you market yourself and make valuable connections with general contractors? Can you handle sales calls in person and on the phone? What marketing assets do you need? 

  • Funding. How will you get the necessary capital to buy equipment, market your business, and pay yourself as you get started? 

  • Financial Projections. What are your revenue goals for your first 6, 12, and 18 month benchmarks? Does the plan you have in place make these goals seem realistic? 


You don’t need to spend weeks formalizing your business plan, but if you organize these points it will give you a competitive advantage. 


#2. Have Clear Contracts In Place


The main disputes that happen between contractors and subcontractors occur around what was “agreed on” when the project began. The best way to avoid this is to have contracts in place with unambiguous details about the work being done. 


If the general contractor has a contract in place you’re comfortable with, you can use it. If not, you may need a document of your own to use. 


It’s likely you’ll meet contractors you get to know and trust. You may consider them friends and feel you can trust them to pay you when your work is done. 


But professionals get the details in writing. Construction projects often veer off course in terms of budget, timeframes, and scope of work. Make sure you have recourse if you suddenly find yourself doing something very different than what you initially agreed to do. 


Additionally, never go around the general contractor by talking directly to the project owner about any issues with the job. The first step is always to speak to the general contractor. 


#3. Don’t Over-Commit 


If you enter a strong market and make the right connections with general contractors, you may find yourself with an abundance of work. That’s great, but it can be problematic. 


New spray contractors are usually anxious to take on work, but don’t take on so much that the quality of your work starts to suffer. 


Reputation is a big factor in how your business will grow, and early on it’s critical that you earn a reputation for being reliable, professional, and efficient. Deliver impeccable work and finish jobs on time. That will get word of mouth working for you.


Your business plan will help here. Consider how many hours you can work and how far you’re willing to travel for jobs. Make sure you can sustain the workload physically and mentally. 


Also, make sure the equipment you’re using is reliable and built to help you complete jobs faster. The texture machines sold by American Spray Technologies are well-known for their bullet-proof reliability, low-maintenance requirements, and easy clean up. All this saves you time and allows you complete jobs efficiently. 


#4. Market Your Business


A lot of subcontractors don’t think they really need to market, but that’s rarely true, particularly in the digital economy we now work in. 


Having some marketing tactics in place is always a good idea, including:


  • A business website. Today, you can set up a website on a template for a minimal cost. Use it as your online “business card”. 

  • A brand logo. Create a logo and maybe a tagline you can use on your website, business cards, clothes/hats, and vehicle wraps. 

  • Social media. If you use Facebook or Instagram personally, create a business presence. Use LinkedIn to develop B2B relationships. You don’t have to spend a lot of time on social media, but it’s free and can drive you some leads. 

  • Network. Make sure all the contractors, property managers, home builders and other relevant people you need to work with know who you are. Connect with them on LinkedIn. Go to local networking events or maybe even hit a bar you know a contractor goes to and introduce yourself. A little assertive but friendly networking can go a long way. 


In busy times, it’s easy to think you don’t need to market yourself. But it’s the subcontractors who do market who survive the lean times when construction nosedives and work isn’t so easy to come by. 


#5. Estimate and Budget Accurately 


As a subcontractor you will have to estimate project costs then incur those costs until after the project is complete, when you’ll be reimbursed. 


Make sure your estimates are accurate and that you have the budget to cover costs until the job is complete. This includes materials, travel, and labor. 


If you’re an indepent spray contractor, project estimates will be fairly straightforward. If you’re doing additional work and employ a crew, you may want to use some type of project management software to plan and track all your expenses. 


#6.  Get the Right Texture Machine


This last tip is where American Spray Technologies becomes your invaluable ally. We’ll equip you with the right texture machine so you can effectively complete the work you have outlined in your business plan and become consistently profitable.. 


For example, our Kodiak M2 portable texture sprayer is hands-down the best machine on the market for new spray contractors just building their business with commercial and residential jobs. It’s inexpensive enough to fit into a new business’ budget but has the reliability and capacity to let you take substantial jobs. 


kodiak M2


The Kodiak is small enough that you don’t have to invest in an additional vehicle to transport it and portable enough for one man to handle on the job site. It’s high capacity hopper and powerful output results in superb work. Its low-maintenance, easy to clean features save you time so you can take on more work without overextending yourself.   


As you grow, we have the big rig trailers and skids you’ll need to take on higher volume jobs. Keep planning, growing, and investing in the right texture sprayers, and you’ll earn the reputation that will keep you busy and profitable. 


Always keep American Spray Technologies in mind as a resource. We’re happy to answer your questions and use our experience to help you turn your texture spraying subcontractor work into an excellent career.


Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

portable electric air compressor

The Tools Spray Contractors Need 


One of the core tenets of how American Spray Technologies develops, distributes and supports our product lines is that high-quality, efficient, reliable equipment makes spray contractors more profitable. The less time you spend maintaining, cleaning, and organizing your rigs, the more time you have to actually work. 


Our texture machines are a case in point.  From the largest capacity big rig skids to the versatile and portable Kodiak Texture Sprayer, our texture rigs are designed to maximize profitable work time by minimizing cleaning and maintenance.


The bottom line is that you can count on American Spray Technologies to provide you with equipment that is efficient on the job site, which in turn gives you a competitive edge. 


We’ve carried this approach over to the line of compressors and airless sprayers we offer, where we currently feature products from Mi-T-M and Titan. Here’s an overview of these fine products. Be sure to contact us for more information or to order by phone.   


Compressors/Generators 


Spray contractors need compressors to run air for their texture machines and other equipment on the job site. We carry everything from small portable compressors that are the perfect companion for the Kodiak portable air sprayer to larger compressor/generator combos that can power a multitude of tools on remote job sites. 


Here’s a quick look at the compressors we carry from Mi-T-M. 


Mi-T-M 8-gallon Single Stage Electric Air Compressor AM1-PE02-08M


This is a small capacity generator that is ideal for running air to the Kodiak M2 portable texture sprayer. A great choice when portability is a priority.  Buy the Mi-T-M 8-gallon compressor and get free shipping from American Spray Technologies. 

Mi-T-M 8-gallon Single Stage Gasoline Air Compressor AM1-PH65-08M

This is a portable gas compressor that has plenty of power to run your Kodiak M2 and other tools on job sites where electricity isn’t available. The wheelbarrow style construction makes it easy to move around the job site so you’re never without the power you need.  Buy the Mi-T-M 8 gallon single stage gas compressor and get free shipping from American Spray Technologies.  


Mi-T-M 8-Gallon Two Stage Gasoline Air Compressor AM2-PK95-08M

This 8-gallon two stage gas air compressor provides higher CFM for contractors who need more robust air pressure. This is a perfect choice for contractors who are using a variety of tools on the job site, including air hammers and impact wrenches. Buy the Mi-T-M 8 gallon two stage gas compressor and get free shipping from American Spray Technologies.  


Mi-T-M 8-gallon Two Stage Combination Compressor Generator AG2-PK14-08M1


This a portable gas compressor/generator combo that increases productivity by merging your compressor and generator into one versatile machine. If you are on jobs that need both air and electricity, this machine will cover your needs while saving you time and money. Buy the Mi-T-M 8 gallon two stage combo compressor/generator and get free shipping from American Spray Technologies.


 

Airless Sprayers 


From paint to protective coatings, many spray contractors spray more on jobs than just drywall texture. Hydraulic powered airless sprayers from Titan are unsurpassed when it comes to spraying a variety of heavy and light-bodied coatings. Expand your skills and offerings with Titan airless sprayers. 


American Spray Technologies currently features the products listed below, but if you’re looking for a different model call us at 877-833-4342. We carry the full line of Titan airless sprayers.


Titan PowrBeast 4700T

This is one of the most reliable direct immersion sprayers on the market, featuring Titan’s Hydrastroke Technology™. It has the versatility to spray heavy and light-bodied coatings without the worry of burning out clutches, and is optimized with one moving part to reduce heat and extend the life of your investment. This rig is field serviceable with an easy to remove/replace fluid section.


Buy the Titan PowrBeast 4700T from American Spray Technologies and get free shipping. 


  

Titan Impact 1140 High Rider


The Titan Impact 1140 High Rider is built to handle long days and big projects with superior functionality and convenience. Perfect for contractors spraying 300-400 gallons a week. The cylinder design never needs replacement, and the removable fluid section requires no tools, so it’s easy to replace on the job site. This is another portable, easy to use spray machine that will pay for itself many times with years of reliable use. 


Buy the Titan Impact 1140 High Rider from American Spray Technologies and get free shipping.



Titan Hydra M4000

The Titan Hydra M4000 is built to spray ultra-heavy coatings with maximum power and dependability. This sprayer is built to handle spray jobs on bridges, water tanks, and roofing; it can spray ultra heavy materials, including mastics, waterproofing, and roof coatings as well as all architectural coatings including epoxies. 


Buy the Titan Hydra M4000 from American Spray Technologies and get free shipping.



Titan PowrTwin 6900 Plus DI


This workhorse is designed to convert to gas or electric power as needed. The submersed foot valve creates a highly effective siphon system that allows for the spraying of very heavy coatings. This rig is designed to spray up to 400 gallons a week and can power up to 3 guns. 


Buy the Titan PowrTwin 6900 DI from American Spray Technologies and get free shipping.



Titan PowrTwin 8900 Plus

The 8900 Plus is another airless sprayer that can quickly convert to gas or electric power. It’s designed for contractors doing large scale projects spraying low viscosity primers to heavy-bodied finish paint stains, including lacquers, epoxies, enamels, elastomeric, latex, dry fall, and block filler. Designed to spray 400-500 gallons a week. 

Buy the Titan PowrTwin 8900 Plus from American Spray Technologies and get free shipping.



Titan PowrTwin 12000 Plus

The 12000 Plus is designed for work on the largest scale painting projects that are spraying 500+ gallons per week. It has accurate pressure control ranges from 400 to 3300 PSI and can power up to 6 guns. Spray anything from low viscosity primers to heavy-bodied finish paints. This airless sprayer offers the ultimate in power, output, and durability. 


Buy the Titan PowrTwin 12000 Plus from American Spray Technologies and get free shipping.


You know you can rely on American Spray Technologies to provide you with spraying equipment that maximizes job site efficiency so you can increase output and drive profitability. You know you can also rely on us to curate spraying products that are the best fit for spraying contractors who use and love our texture machines.  


These compressors and airless sprayers are industry-leading tools that will expand the services you can provide while maintaining your reputation for reliability, speed, and superior results. 


As always, if you have questions about generators, sprayers, or any other type of equipment spray contractors can take advantage of, contact us today. At American Spray Technologies, we pride ourselves on providing quality products with unmatched industry knowledge and service. If there’s something you need to power or spray, we’ll get the perfect equipment for your budget and needs. 

Posted in American Spray Technologies By marketing 360

skid mount texture machine

What’s the Difference Between a Split Skid and Trailer Mounted Texture Machine? 


There is a major - and pretty obvious - difference between a split skid and trailer mounted texture machine, but let’s make sure we’re clear on what we’re considering here. 


A trailer mounted texture machine is built onto a trailer that you can tow with any standard hitch.  It’s completely integrated as both a texture machine and trailer. This is a single unit built to be compact and easy to tow. 


With a split skid (or a single skid configuration for that matter), the unit doesn’t come built onto a trailer. It’s just the texture machine mounted on skids. The wheels you’ll use to get it to jobs will be part of a different rig. 


Now to the important part. Considering what type of texture machine is right for you. 


Consider Your Rig


A major consideration with this decision is the type of rig/truck you have or what you intend to invest in. 


If you have a box truck or enclosed trailer, then you can consider getting your texture machine on skids.  


If you don’t have some type of box truck or enclosed trailer but instead only have a rig capable of towing your texture machine, then the compact, easy to tow design of the big rig trailer is the option to consider. 

texture sprayer



Consider Your Climate 


A big factor guiding your decision between a big rig trailer and texture machine on skids is the climate you work in. 


Let’s put it this way.  If you’re doing a lot of winter work in Alaska, there are advantages to having to your texture machine in an enclosed truck or trailer. Mixing your drywall texture mud while being exposed to the harshest winter weather will slow you down and may affect the consistency of your mud mix. 


If you work in a warmer climate, having an enclosed rig is not as big a factor. 


Another note, with gas rigs on two skids you can get the power pack with a deck lid if you’re using it in an enclosed truck. Be sure you have proper ventilation. 


You can also get a clam shell enclosure if your gas power pack is mounted outside your trailer enclosure. This keeps it protected from the elements. 


Split Skid Maintenance


There is one really serious advantage with the split skid configuration which has to do with keeping your maintenance costs low. 


The split skid configuration allows you to separate the power pack from the mixing tank so you can locate them on opposite sides of a bulkhead or separating wall.  


This separation keeps the engine and compressor away from the dust of the mixing compartment. A clean engine means less maintenance, lower operational costs, and longer life for your texture machine.  


Conclusions 


At American Spray Technologies, the 150 and 200 gas big rig trailers are our most popular models. They are compact, easy to service, low maintenance, and have a proven design with a capacity that’s more than enough for most spray jobs. 


The compact, easy to tow design of these models make them a practical, economic choice for most contractors. 


However, consider the points we’ve outlined in this post. If you already have a large, enclosed truck or trailer where you can seperate the power pack from the mixing tank, there are maintenance advantages. Also, being able to keep your unit (and yourself) out of harsh weather elements can make all the difference if you find yourself working in the middle of a winter blizzard. 


Either way, you can’t really go wrong with American Spray Technologies’ texture machines. The quality, durability, and top-notch performance features of all our products deliver excellent return on your investment. 


Posted in American Spray Technologies By AST

kodiak M2

How Technology Helps Drywall Spray Contractors Increase Revenue 


Professional drywall spray contractors know that the key to a profitable spray business is volume. The math is pretty simple. The more work you do, the more revenue you earn. The key is efficiency. 


Everything that causes hang-ups and delays work decreases revenue. The most obvious problem is when your texture machine breaks down. If you’re on a job site trying to fix a serious mechanical issue, you’re not making money. 


Obviously you need a reliable texture sprayer. However, complete breakdowns are not the most common drain on spray contractor revenues. Contractors aren’t losing money because they’re not working. They’re losing it because the work is going too slow. 


When spray contractors come to us looking for an efficient, reliable texture sprayer, they’re usually experiencing one or more of these problems:

 

  1. Cumbersome equipment that makes accessing all areas of the job site difficult.

  2. Low volume output that slows applications.

  3. Inadequate pressure for spraying thicker materials. 

  4. Difficult, time-consuming equipment maintenance and clean-up. 

These are not minor issues. They’re problems that can double the time spent on a job. Double, the time, half the revenue. That’s not an equation for success in this business. 



The Kodiak M2 is a portable texture sprayer that is perfect for high-volume spray contractors who are spraying out entire houses or apartments. The Kodiak directly addresses the issues we listed:

 

  1. It’s portable, making it easy to transport to job sites and move around as needed.    

  2. High volume output allows you to finish applications in a fraction of the time. 

  3. The high-pressure pump has the power to spray thicker materials quickly and evenly. 

  4. It’s flexible enough to allow any air source.

  5. There is no easier texture machine to clean and maintain. 

The Kodiak M2 isn’t just a slight improvement over other portable texture machines on the market. It’s in a different class altogether. 

kodiak portable texture sprayer

The Kodiak portable texture sprayer from American Spray Technologies solves the equation. More volume of work equals more revenue. 


If your equipment is slow, you have to make up the difference in time and labor on every job you do. If your texture sprayer is unreliable, it will eat away at your revenue as well as damage your professional reputation. 


We’ve had spray contractors tell us that they’ve doubled their monthly revenue after switching to the Kodiak. This is because they finish jobs in a third to a quarter of the time it used to take them. That time saving frees them up to do other work or take on additional jobs. 


You know the feeling. You’re standing there with your spray gun in your hand. Your texture machine is wheezing and struggling because it’s underpowered. The texture material is spitting out on the drywall in uneven wads that look like the spitballs you used to throw at friends in middle school. 


It’s just plain aggravating because the job is taking longer than it should and the quality of your work is being degraded by inferior equipment. Add to that maintenance issues and time-consuming cleanup, and you’re pretty much flushing revenue down the toilet. 


The Kodiak M2 is the definition of an investment for spray contractors; it’s not just an equipment expense. It pays you back with the time it saves you and with the superior level of work it delivers. Double your revenue? That’s serious ROI. 


Time is money for spray contractors, and the Kodiak M2 is a proven time-saver for contractors spraying entire houses and apartments. 


Ready to double your revenue as a spray contractor? Contact us today to learn how you can take advantage of this awesome piece of texture machine technology. 


Posted in American Spray Technologies By AST
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