Painting MDF Letters

A nail bed or a chicken-wire frame is good for supporting small pieces to be sprayed. October 1, 2010

Question
I have MDF letters to paint on a regular basis they are 1/2 x 8 inch letters and need to be painted both sides. I am using Matador in white and brown. Any suggestions on a method? I currently have them laid out on eight foot long boards with each letter raised up on two inch pieces of paint stick. Itís a real pain to do but itís for a good customer who brings a lot of other work my way.

Forum Responses
(Finishing Forum)
From contributor G:
Bottoms too? If you can't fix them upright to do both sides at the same time, maybe try a narrow nail board (to prevent spray bounce-back), or a tall, skinny stand (same reason).



From contributor R:
Can you hang them from a hook, spray both sides and then use a little wax stick or colored putty to fill the hole?


From contributor A:
When I worked for a sign shop we painted the "push through" letters all day every day. The frames were made out of 1 by 4's and heavy gauge chicken wire was pulled tight and stapled to the frame. Our Lazy Susan was custom made in our machine shop and supported the frame only, allowing overspray to fall straight though the chicken wire. The sides of the letters would not get "breaded" with dry spray using this method. Always shoot the backs first focusing mainly on the edges. Dial your fluid way down and your spray pattern should be round. After an hour or so they can be flipped and you spray the fronts. If there is any dry spray on the backs, it will be very minor and if needed, can usually be cleaned off with naphtha after the fronts dry. The most labor intensive part of spraying MDF letters was sanding the routed edges after priming. The edges will "fur up" less if you spray medium-light coats of your primer. Heavy, wet coats cause more severe grain raise.