Contractor Equipment used electric airless sprayers for painting the exterior walls of affordable housing units in China.
Backed by Government policy and an RMB 1,000 billion state investment, over 10 million units are being built in the affordable housing segment in China. Given the large state investment, standards have been set for regulating and controlling such a huge volume of houses being built around the country.
Graco was able to see the immense potential of the inspection and acceptance standards released in the summer of 2011, which clearly provide that wall surfaces and sunshades shall be protected with latex paint. Graco has a range of products that can easily handle emulsion paint, but in China most of the experience with decorative paint has come from spraying interior walls.
Contractor Equipment turned to South Korea for advice on ‘how to apply Graco airless spraying on exterior wall construction for affordable houses’. South Korea began building affordable houses for its citizens as early as 1998, and has put about a million units into use by 2011. Graco’s electric airless sprayers are used in spraying for both interior and exterior walls in the construction of affordable housing.
Though the process for spraying interior walls in South Korea is similar to that in China, safety harnesses are used to suspend workers for painting exterior walls. Workers wear harnesses and use ropes to descend bosun’s chairs to spray exterior walls from the top down. The bosun’s chair’s rope is attached to a fixture on the roof, allowing it to swing in pendulum style for spraying a larger area.
Exterior wall spraying is widely applied in South Korea using uniform colour paint or multiple-colour paint for both new and refitted buildings. The process has several advantages. Workers for instance, are able to control the spraying area and quality even without masking on refitted buildings. It only takes three workers three days to spray the exterior walls of a 30-floor residential building (12 units per floor) with one colour in good weather, and five days with three colours. Compared with roller operation, it’s much faster, with significantly improved quality.
Introducing this ground-breaking technology to China’s affordable housing projects would greatly facilitate the transition from roller operation to spraying for exterior walls.
A professional was sent down to China to give a demonstration. He brought all the necessary tools, including ropes, harness, bosun’s chair and personal protective equipment (gloves, shoes, glasses and protective clothing) along with him from South Korea. Graco China provided a new GH 833 hydraulic airless sprayer for the demonstration.
The demonstration began with the master starting work high up the building. Swinging freely in the air, he switched on the sprayer gun and brush easily to control every detail on the wall. After four hours he had completed spraying one fourth of the 13-floor residential building. Though only one colour was used, the speed and quality amazed everyone on the site.
Many in the audience were first line workers, who were greatly impressed by the performance of the Korean master. A few workers also got the opportunity to practise spraying with the protection of ropes and safety harnesses.
Similar demonstrations will help bring this advanced spraying technique to local contractors and local workers, and promote it in local markets.