Question (WOODWEB Member) :
I need to be able to stain over 20,000 10' 4x4 (untreated) and 13,000 10' 1x8ís. I will be using a water-based stain. I have looked at moulding sprayers but that will require two passes through. It looks to me like it would be just as simple to lay them out and spray by hand with an airless sprayer to save all the extra handling. I know we would still have to flip them but that wouldnít be as bad as stacking and re-stacking, would it? Iím also open for other suggestions.
From contributor R:
I'd think about dipping.
If your wood is S4S and you're going semi trans or a stain that would be top coated later I would go with the pressure pot and gun as chances are you'll get away with minimal or no wiping. If you have resawn material, chances are you'll be back brushing or rolling to work the finish into the nooks and crannies be your finish semi-trans or solid color. If your finish is a solid color exterior stain I'd use the airless.
I've done a lot of this kind of work and the builders I worked for had a great rack design that was inexpensive to build, strong and could hold quite a bit of wood and allow five sides to dry without screwing them up while they did. Basically it was a 4x4 attached to a plywood base with 1 and 1/4" holes drilled through it at 4 or 6" intervals where I would place a 1"x 5' steel pipe, leaving me over 2' on either side where I would stack my wood - just place your boards on both sides of the 4x4 and when it fills up add a another pipe working from the bottom. Of course you have to have a pair for it to work and in your case four or five or more pairs will be the way to go. At 4" intervals you'll get 18 runs (bottom couple of feet of the 4x4 post will need to be well supported to the base) with only (six) 1x8's per run that's only 108 per pair of racks, but 540 if you have five pairs!
Simply set your pair of racks at whatever distance apart that works, load the finished wood onto the pipe ends and when that run is loaded add another pipe to both racks for more wood, adding runs from the bottom up works best. I used these racks for back priming and pre-finishing exterior siding and trim and interior trim. One project was over 100 upscale condos where every piece of exterior siding and trim had to be primed all six sides (miles and miles of western red cedar) and pre-finishing the interior trim packs; casing, window surrounds, base, and closet packs, using the same four racks for the two years it took to finish the project.