Technical Talk: How to spray paint and specialist coatings
This month we talked to Tony Butterworth, our Application Consultant and is a specialist in how to spray paint including our Giromax coatings. Tony brings 40 years of expertise to our business and shares his knowledge gained through a long career in industrial paint spraying.
Tony has worked for Giromax since 2023, and he’s had a varied career over the past four decades. Tony had a brief spell in the Merchant Navy, followed by an apprenticeship with a painter and decorator. Their work focused on painting factories and steelwork, where Tony learned specialist skills in paint spraying.
After his apprenticeship, he went on to work with a high-end painting and decorating company. During this time in the 80s, Tony worked on industrial units, offices, shops and hotels, including the Savoy and the Dorchester.
At night-time, he would work on the supermarkets. When Key Markets were bought out by the Somerfield chain, Tony worked on the branding changeover. He also worked for the Berni Inn chain, when they added ensuites to all their rooms. His claim to fame is gold-leafing the mouldings around Big Ben.
Tony became well-known in the industry for his paint-spraying knowledge and high-end decorating expertise. In 1988, he started his own business working on dilapidations, including shops, offices and industrial units.
Tony and his two sons worked on industrial roof coatings and internal hygiene coatings. He sprayed a hygiene coating to the back of house kitchen walls of Gordon Ramsay’s Grill restaurant. Unfortunately, during this time, one of his sons fell through an asbestos roof. Consequently, Tony went on to develop a serious interest in coatings.
In 2001, Tony was introduced to Giromax coatings and became a preferred contractor, applying the Giromax Girosil range from 2018. He joined our team as a consultant on 1 March 2023. Three of Tony’s jobs using products from the Giromax range were featured in building magazines. Let’s hear what Tony has to say about best practice for paint spraying and health and safety.
Best practice for paint spraying
Tony works alongside our Technical Services Managers. As our Application Consultant, he attends onsite to ensure contractors complete the job to the required standard for our guarantees. If required, Tony will create a sample area as a reference to guide contractors and the site manager, so they can reflect this standard across the entire roof.
“Take your time. Be conscientious. Look at what you’re doing, and don’t worry about the metreage because you have to do it properly the first time. You won’t get a second time. Once you pull that trigger, whatever you’re spraying will be applied to the roof.”
Problems occur when contractors use people who either do not want to do the work or lack the skills to be able to spray the coatings to a high standard. Due to the vast size of industrial roofs, it’s too easy to become impatient. Good preparation is key. Contractors must prepare the substrate to the correct standards. Some contractors push the boundaries of a project to the point where the coverage isn’t adequate to obtain our Giromax guarantee.
Competency for paint sprayers
Tony’s qualifications, expertise and in-depth knowledge of the Giromax product range not only enhances our customer service but ensures the correct application of our coatings.Instead of offering a training centre, Tony delivers high-quality onsite training to contractors as required, which includes full assessment and the giving out of competency cards.
Tony has all the correct ancillaries and equipment available to provide expert paint–spray training. He can immediately spot issues before they occur, for example, when contractors mistakenly add extra thinners to coatings. Tony will advise on the correct application, preparation and equipment needed to achieve a high standard of coating. This includes checking the environment and temperatures are within range to apply our products.
Paint spraying health and safety
When it comes to paint spraying, safety is a subject close to Tony’s heart. When his son fell through an asbestos roof, he survived the fall. Since then, Tony has made health and safety a top priority in his practice. He has taken all available qualifications to manage a site, which is an added benefit for our contractors and surveyors.
Tony’s site manager qualifications include SMSTS (Site Manager’s Certificate), which involved a 5-day course, and he holds a black CSCS card. He also has IOSH qualifications covering lifting, moving at height and asbestos.
“The most important thing for me is to pass on my 40 years of knowledge to improve the application of coatings, but above all, to keep contractors safe.”
At Giromax, we’re very lucky to have Tony as our Application Consultant and to support our clients. Alongside our Technical Services Managers, Tony delivers expert training and advice to contractors. His onsite presence ensures your project is delivered without issues.
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