Aug 3, 2007

Zibra grip-n-glide

NEW REVIEW Zibra grip-n-glide brushes. The focus of this review will be the 3" flat and 2 1/2" angular latex brushes. We have been using these brushes on the job for about a month painting walls, trim and doors with acrylics.

I am excited to see such a huge effort put into making these great paint brushes particularly the 2 ½” angled brush. The first day I used one of these brushes I must have had a permanent look of amazement on my face and somewhat disbelief of the things I was capable of doing with these brushes.

The Zibra brushes are anything but normal

Zibra is a little late to the brush market, but the company comes with a gift its competitors can’t match: Exclusive High Performance Filaments, the solid round tapered kind. The filaments provide unmatched control-of-cut and load capacity like no other brush - skips and misses are a thing of the past. Not only was the load capacity a huge benefit but also the brush has the ability to lay down a load with ease, exceptional release! The filaments did not bend after sitting over night in a bucket of paint or water, impressive to say the least. Almost every brush on the market today will bend after sitting just minutes in a bucket of paint. The brush always snaps back to position and is ready to reload.

The benefits of the 2 ½” brush seem endless while the 3” was difficult to use. While cutting a not-so-perfect ceiling line with plenty of lands and grooves, the 2 ½” brush laid paint in the grooves as if they weren’t there. You’ll find exceptional control of this brush cutting ceilings lines with the ability to straighten up a jagged edge or clean up over beading with ease.

So with all those good things to say there has to be some bad and there is, both brushes are difficult to clean. I found it took much longer to clean the brushes but if you separate the filaments and look into the ferrule, you’ll understand why. While you are looking between the filaments, you may also note the massive cavity that holds the paint for your cut, it’s like a storage compartment in there.

You know how there are products such as various cars that have a history of outlasting and performing unlike any other car? Well, this brush is like one of those high performance cars.

The photo on the left is an exploded view of the filaments on the Zibra 3" Wall Latex Brush. Much of my review was/is based on the 2 1/2" angled latex brush. Note the busted, twisted, frayed tips. I'm not sure if this is defective or by design. The 2 1/2" angle is nothing like this photo. Click photo to enlarge.

I had trouble cutting in ceiling lines and casings with the 3” brush. The 3" Zibra performs like most every other brush on the market, lousy. Note the middle portion of filaments, there are 3 filament clusters on this brush. The middle portions length is identical to the others. Big mistake! First of all, this design is a bit odd compared to most other brushes and you can see in the photo the large area between the 3 clusters of filaments. While the middle portion is minimal in thickness, its length needs to be shorter than the other two, it’s too bulky at the tip. The 3” brush won’t chisel to a point; it remains heavy at the tips mainly in the center. When the brush is loaded nicely, (after 10 mins of use) the outer filaments glide off the surface while the inner (middle) portion of filaments glide the brush in a pivoting manor. No matter how hard I tried, I could not get the outer portion of filaments (close to a casing) to cut the casing tight. The middle portion of filaments on this brush serves one purpose, to hold the paint in the center of the brush.

I would like to see the 3” brush with a shorter length of filaments in the center or remove the center portion and double up the outer filaments. Brushes with various filaments lengths just work well. Also I would like to see a hollow cut at the tips of this brush vs. the blunt cut.

1 comment:

Denero said...

I have also used and loved the 2 1/2 inch brush by Zibra. I haven't used the 3 inch brush yet but hopefully it was just a bad one that you got a hold of. I can't imagine they would make the two sizes very different.