Coating Interior Surface


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Q. Your series of articles have been a great help over the years. In your March 2006 Painting Clinic, “Coating Interior Surfaces”, you discuss how to coat the inside of a 1 inch diameter tube, and ask if readers have any additional suggestions. We use a miniature foam roller on a metal rod to coat the inside of a 3/4 inch ID tube. It does work, but the coating is uneven, and the work is very tedious. I am curious to know if you have received any ideas from other readers that may help further. B.W.


A. Thank you for writing to Painting Clinic. I admire your innovative solution. I haven’t gotten any other solutions to this problem yet. Since you shared yours with us, I’m sure others will follow. Certainly, there are other innovative ways to coat tube interior walls. The ability to solve manufacturing problems is one of the things that made our nation so great.

In an earlier Clinic, I described coating larger-diameter tubes using a home-made spray unit consisting of a 360-degree spray nozzle mounted on a dolly. The spray unit and hoses were inserted into the tube and withdrawn while spraying. This technique provided an even coating on the interior walls.

Both solutions reminded me of a “little guy” story. My mother’s family was originally from Philadelphia. When we visited the automat, I was told that her uncle was the “little guy” behind the unit, who reloaded the shelves with sandwiches and pies. I don’t suppose you have a “little guy” operating your roller. 

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