Oct 30, 2009

Selective Product & Tools Determine Your Worth

Everyone who knows me knows I am big on selective products that save me time on the job or make my day easier.

I am a gadget snob when it comes to finding just the right tools for the job and I go to great lengths to make sure the tools or products work flawlessly – after all – my hourly rate, “my worth” depends on it.

Keeping things simple… using the $199 painted room example. If you have two identical rooms and one paint contractor takes six hours to paint the room and it takes me two hours, I make $100 bucks an hour and he makes $33. I would not be able to paint the room in two hours if you put me in his room using his materials and tools. But where the impact is greater is that in six hours I can paint three rooms or $600 for the day for example. The other contractor is tied to one room. 

Currently I’m working with one of our areas largest paint contractors and a great team of guys. It’s flattering when comments are made on the products I use after they get the chance to use them. Sometimes the impact a tool or product has on the job is unbelievable in the time it can save on labor.

A good example is the Full Circle International Flex Edge paired with an FX4 lightweight pole. The time that unit saves me is ridiculous and its easier to use and more effective. Sure the sander costs more up front and the replacement paper is a bit more expensive but it lasts much longer.

So, are you complaining you are not making enough? Rethink the products and tools you use and see if they can help you increase your rate.

Oct 23, 2009

Craftsman Clean N Carry® 4 gal. Wet-Dry Vac, 5.0 Peak hp

Craftsman Clean N Carry Powerful, Portable, Lightweight and Compact, the Craftsman Clean N Carry is a must have item. The Clean N Carry is great on touch-up day or cleaning up on repaints. Its light, balanced and easy to carry. You can attach your own shoulder strap.

Craftsman Clean N Carry Sits nicely on stairs and easy to maneuver. The Clean N Carry is very powerful for a compact vac. You might not notice a difference compared to your large 16 gal 5.0HP shop vac.

Craftsman Clean N Carry The hose on this unit is lousy. It’s too short and stiff. I used a piece of PVC plumbing and slipped it over the hose seen in this photo to prevent kinking which happens very easily without the PVC. Use tape to hold the PVC. I plan on shopping for a longer soft flexible hose.
recom_01 - sm

Oct 18, 2009

Werner MT-13 and Series Multiladder

Werner MT-13 ladder Found at Lowes for $69 compared to a Little Giant same size and 300lb. rating for $279. You will pay more than $70 bucks for a decent step ladder of same rating and not be able to work from either side or set it up on the stairs. Quickly convert the Werner MT-13 ladder into a wide range of different working heights or positions.

The 13’ has 13 working heights or positions, the 17’ has 20 working heights or positions, the 22’ has 28 working heights or positions and the 26’ has 37 different working heights or positions.

I retired my original Little Giant from 90-91 purchased at a home expo show for a Werner MT-13. My LG was used for about 18 years on a regular basis, almost daily.
Werner MT-13 ladder Placing the Little Giant next to the Werner MT-13 there are faint differences. The MT-13 is better in a few ways. The shoes are nicer, softer and provide nice grip on hardwood. The “J” Lock system is fatter – more solid locking pin but really side-by-side, there is such a faint difference that you would hardly notice. The MT-13 is rock solid like the Little Giant was.
Werner MT-13 ladder Mt-13 is slightly wider and also has wider flat rungs.
Werner MT-13 ladder MT-13 has a wider flare for better stability.
Werner MT-13 ladder The soft touch push knobs are the key to this versatile ladder. Use it as a twin stepladder, extension ladder, stairway stepladder or 2 scaffold bases. You’ll get the job done easier with this versatile ladder.
Werner MT-13 ladder Push knob locking hinge. If you never used a Multiladder like this one you will probably fight with it to get used to man handling it. But if you recall the Little Giant Ladder infomercials, this ladder can be flipped up and open all the way in seconds.
Werner MT-13 ladder Spring loaded “J” Locks. I really like the “J” lock on the Werner MT-13. It operated smoothly and feels solid. Take a moment and apply some Jig-A-Loo to moving parts for best overall experience.
Werner MT-13 ladder Flat wide tread for your standing pleasure.
Werner MT-13 ladder Extra wide flared bottom for firm support in comparison to the old model Little Giant.
recom_01 - sm

Oct 17, 2009

GLIDDEN™ Premium Interior Latex Paint - Eggshell

GLIDDEN Premium Eggshell If you like everything about SW Cashmere Low Lustre then you are going to feel right at home with 6011. GLIDDEN Premium Eggshell has all the qualities I look for in a paint.

Features a 30 min (to-touch) dry time and a recoat time of 4 hours. The paint dried in 30 minutes during the review process and was recoated in about 2 hours with no problems. You can cut solid and make long runs just like Cashmere and it rolls and rolls and lays down nice and consistent.

I painted 3 bedrooms with Cashmere Low Lustre and the next day a large foyer, hall and kitchen with 6011. If you pulled the labels off both products and turned me loose to paint, I would not be able to tell you which was which even when the product dried. 6011 is a strong contender in the repaint market when you look for all of Cashmeres qualities and characteristics in a less expensive can. GLIDDEN Premium Eggshell paint is very impressive. 

Glidden Premium Eggshell Sherwin Williams Cashmere
I think Glidden (on left) has a bit less of a sheen vs. Cashmere (on the right).
GLIDDEN Premium Eggshell

Ideal for living rooms and foyers because of the subtle, velvet-like sheen and excellent coverage. It provides a highly washable, stain-resistant finish that is easily cleaned with common non-abrasive, mild household detergents. This durable product provides a mildew-resistant coating and features easy soap-and-water cleanup.

We used a white woven 1/2” cover. The coverage was excellent. I used a Benjamin Moore nylon/poly brush. We did 2 coats but the job could have been done in one coat doing wet-on-wet. The only thing the second coat will give you is a more true sheen. I did an entire wall wet-on-wet which dried down to a nice uniform finish.

One of the guys had spitting but I could not tell if it was his technique or his brush. I really didn't pay much attention because I was not getting any spitting from my brush. The spatter (what little there was) is the same as Sherwin Williams Cashmere. A few tiny specs on the frame.

recom_01 - sm

Oct 15, 2009

Premium XL Pocket Roller

Premium XL Pocket Roller Found at Sherwin Williams, this pocket roller can drastically reduce the time it takes to paint window returns. The width of the returns I see most often are slightly smaller than the width of the roller.

Toss the cheap plastic tray and use a 7” or something more comfortable in size to hold in one hand while you have the pocket roller in the other.

The end cap is rounded allowing you to roll directly against the vinyl track. Take scissors and snip a nice bevel on the end so when the cover is loaded and you apply pressure – the nap wont spin on your vinyl tracks. Reshape it. I can do 20 window returns in 15 minutes.
It helps to pre-wet these rollers then spin them out on a hard surface before loading with paint.
Premium XL Pocket Roller Here's a TIP:

After you load the roller you might have paint on the rounded end-cap. Keep a damp cotton rag wrapped around your other hands thumb and simply wipe the end clean.

Cleaning out the trunk

Click the photo, and hover over parts of the photo for a description.

I also have a Little Giant Ladder in the trunk too.

Everything packed back in the trunk. I like to pack lightly.

Originally uploaded by JackPauhl

 ALSO SEE: What's in Jack’s Bag?


Paint Tray Liner TIP

IMG_0213 Until some decent plastic 9” trays hit our market - I still use tray liners for the 9” deep-well metal pans for easier loading of the roller. The plastic liners provide a more aggressive ramp design vs. faint stamping on the metal pans.

Fix the tray liner to the pan with a few pieces of tape.


Sherwin-Williams Cashmere Low Lustre

Sherwin Williams Cashmere Sherwin Williams Cashmere
Sherwin-Williams Low Lustre Cashmere is a favorite choice for paint contractors doing repaints. The reason is the ease of use, low odor, fast silky smooth cutting and rolling, excellent coverage and the low lustre does a nice job at holding sheen over builder flats but 2 coats is recommended for the true sheen even though you can easily one coat most anything. The cut and roll goes far even over many builder flats.

Re-cutting and rolling over Cashmere goes further. For example: A room that required 1 full gallon to cut and roll used a bit less than 3/4 gallon to 2nd coat.

The photo above/right is a dried down sample of the low lustre sheen.

Sherwin Williams Cashmere I cut and rolled this blue over a light off white builder flat. I recommend using a quality white woven cover.

Photo of wet paint.

recom_01 - sm

Jig-A-Loo Invisible Lubricant


Jig-A-Loo is a revolutionary new product that combines the power of a lubricant with the properties of a water-repellent.

It's a dry silicone-based lubricant that, unlike any other lubricant, contains no oil, grease, wax, petroleum distillates or detergent, so it doesn't stain or stink. It stops squeaks, un-sticks just about anything, protects against rust, and is an exceptional water repellent.

Jig-A-Loo is ideal for wood, metal, glass, rubber, leather, fabrics, most plastics and a number of other surfaces, helping just about anything operate and slide better. With thousands of uses around the house, garden, workshop, boat, campground and more, it's The Can of All Trades™.

Take a closer look at Jig-A-Loo molecular activity.

Purdy Cageless Maintain your roller frames with Jig-A-Loo. I spray the nylon bearings on the cageless frames. You will find all sorts of uses for it.

It’s awesome stuff!

recom_01 - sm

NR4000 Siliconized Acrylic Latex Bright White Caulk

NR4000 Caulk Ripped from Sher-Link. Sherwin-Williams NR4000 Siliconized Acrylic Latex Caulk is a flexible acrylic caulking compound specially formulated with silicone utilizing the latest developments in waterborne technology. These advancements offer improved paintability, durability and adhesion in all applications. NR4000 is also treated with a mildewcide to protect the caulk from mildew growth.

NR4000 is easy to work with, has no objectionable solvent odor and cleans up easily with soapy water before the caulk has dried.

NR4000 guns fast and fingers smooth. This is one of those slightly (on the wet side) caulks but very nice to lay down. Wet caulk can be laid as is without fingering but I don't recommend it. Paintable in 30 minutes.

NR4000 Caulk

recom_01 - sm

Oct 7, 2009

DEVOE DEVFLEX QD Semi-Gloss Interior/Exterior

Unlike other ONLINE REVIEW SITES for PAINTS based solely on someone's written experiences, we show you what to expect with photos and videos of the wet paint applied and dry appearance of the paints so you have a better idea of what to expect rather than someone's “word” on it. We apply hundreds of gallons of product across various jobs, surfaces etc. before we review it – not just a couple gallons in a lab.


The DEVOE DEVFLEX QD SEMI-GLOSS Acrylic Enamel 4206 provides a rapid drying and recoat rate for both high production work or fine finishing. DEVFLEX QD provides flexible acrylic adhesion in an Interior/Exterior paint.

This product is prone to running and sagging in both spray and brush applications over non-absorbent smooth surfaces including recoating itself. Use caution when spraying door jambs in the upper corners of the jamb.

DEVFLEX QD levels very nice and leaves a nice dry semi-glossy finish in one coat over pre-primed MDF trim and masonite doors. I have experience spraying this product with a Graco Ultra Max II 695 with a Rac X FFT209, FFT210, FFT310 and a Rac V 311 with excellent results. QD paints and primers require quick clean up. This product can be difficult to remove off surfaces not intended to have paint including your hands.

I recommend using a softer brush but not a 100% nylon brush. Extra firm brushes are no good for spreading DEVFLEX QD semi-gloss.

DEVOE DEVFLEX semi-gloss Decent gloss retention over pre-primed trim with one coat. That's the reflection off the door-stop on top of a jamb.

DEVOE DEVFLEX semi-gloss One coat of Devoe Devflex QD semi-gloss over pre-primed masonite doors. It retains more gloss over pre-primed MDF than Sherwin Williams Super Paint or PROMAR 200, coat-for-coat.

DEVOE DEVFLEX semi-glossQD has a float added to the paint to prevent skinning. You can see it in the photo. Its important to shake or stir Devflex QD before you use and during use, if you don't, your dried paint may not be the intended gloss.

PROS: Good coverage, levels nicely, easy to apply, workable, ample open-time, superior gloss retention

CONS: prone to run, not always so quick to dry

CONCLUSION: The focus of this review was interior use only however the paint will perform the same outside with the same characteristics. I DO RECOMMEND this product however it is more tricky to apply than most paints and EXTREMELY dependant of its environment, temperatures, humidity etc.


Ironclad GRIPWORX BGW Gloves

Ironclad Gripworx With an MSRP: of $27.99 you should expect your money will be well spent with these performance work gloves. This glove lets nothing slip through your fingers. A silicon-fused palm provides a super tacky grip on any smooth surface such as paint brushes, 5-in-1 tools, extension poles, paint cans etc. Its nice to wear just one glove on your brush hand cutting ceilings or anything for that matter. The grip provides nice control of the brush.

When I first put these gloves on I noticed the fit was amazing and snug around the fingers. I wear a MED, my hand measures 7 3/4” from the top of my middle finger to the bottom of my palm. I’m guessing I am at the max size hand for a Medium size glove.

Ironclad Gripworx Features:
Super tacky diamond clad palm and finger tips
Low profile airprene knuckle protection
One piece synthetic palm
Terry cloth sweat wipe
Snug fit for dexterity
Ironclad Gripworx
Ironclad Gripworx
Ironclad Performance WearIronclad Toughness rating. Visit ironclad Performance Workwear for more information. These can be found at Ace Hardware.
recom_01 - sm

Oct 2, 2009

DieHard SureTrack 6 in. Boot, Brown

067B0015000 The DieHard SureTrack 6 in. Boot features full grain leather and pigskin lining for durability and comfort. Double layer cushioned insole and dual density polyurethane outsole adds to the sturdiness without stealing any of quality. Sturdy Goodyear Welt construction. Steel shank.

I’m back into these boots after seeing them on sale for $49.99 I wore these boots a few years back-to-back then tried other more expensive brands of similar style. Great boots to stand in all day. Working off a ladder is comfortable. These boots are poor in the snow so be careful carrying 5 gallon bucks.

How to break them in:
I use a product called Sno-Seal. Its a waterproofing bees wax. Take the laces out and using a rag apply Sno-Seal fairly heavy around the eyelets and tongue. Just get it on there and lace them back up. Apply Sno-Seal to the entire front of the boot making sure you get into the thread areas. Now put them on your feet (do one boot at a time) and using a hairdryer, melt the bees wax into the leather. Squat in and out of the working position. The boot should feel fairly warm from the heat. Continue around the boot getting in and out of working positions. Keep it warm. The back of the boot is likely to give you a bit of soreness the first few days. 

Kevlar Laces Upgrade your laces with Kevlar Boot laces. The 6” DieHard boots take 54” laces.

recom_01 - sm