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Paint mask on drywall

Discussion in 'Installation Equipment & Techniques' started by VinylSlayer, May 16, 2018.

  1. VinylSlayer

    VinylSlayer New Member

    Aug 5, 2017
    Hampton Roads
    Hi guys! It's not too often I don't do a great job, so when something horrible happens, I feel it's my duty to investigate.

    I was sent to a new job location with a big roll of thick low tac paint mask and a quart of 1 shot metallic gold. I decided to go with the small foam rollers so I could minimize the amount of paint I was using. I applied all of the paint mask, removed the application tape and went over the mask again with a stiff squeegee. Then I rolled out the cut out design using a minimal amount of paint. After doing 4 walls and letting things dry up a bit I decided to pull up a bit of the mask to reveal a nightmare. The paint bled a bit around the edges giving it a blotchy look and whats worse......I decided to let it dry more before removing all the mask as there where a lot of people toiling about. It was the end of the day so we left. When a crew arrived to finish up the next day and they went to remove the paint mask, the paint from the wall stuck to the mask, peeling it all the way down to the dry wall.

    #1. I don't believe the original paint job on the drywall was cured completely.
    #2. I believe the paint mask was too thick and not adhering properly to the painted drywall which looked to be done with a thick nap.

    Those are the only ideas I can come up with. A new set of paint mask arrived today and it's the same stuff. They are looking for me to give it another go. I just don't want to end up with the same results. Does anyone have an opinion on any of this?
  2. studio 440

    studio 440 Member

    Jul 19, 2010
    you cant allow the paint to dry and create a bridge between the wall and the mask or you see what happens .why would you use low tack mask for paint rolling in the first place
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. TimToad

    TimToad Very Active Member

    Jun 13, 2013
    Central Coast California
    We use Oracal 811 mask and its only about 3mil and just about the right tack for most of our needs. We mostly use it on surfaces we paint the background on though, so its hard to tell what happened in your case except that leaving it on overnight is an issue. I don't care how low tack something, if you leave it on even cured paint, it starts working on trying to bond to it.

    What sheen was the paint?

    Can you send a couple of photos of the wall texture and the failure?
  4. Jester1167

    Jester1167 Very Active Member

    I've had this happen before. If you want guaranteed crisp paint lines you have to use a light coat of the wall paint first. That will seal the edges of the paint mask and stop any paint bleed.

    My experience with the paint mask pulling paint is that the painters don't dust the wall before painting. 90% of the failures were paint over dusty drywall mud. Inside corners are the worst areas for failure. Also if they don't let the primer coat cure properly before the finish coat it will cause failures.

    I don't paint anymore because of the lack of control and liabilities.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. VinylSlayer

    VinylSlayer New Member

    Aug 5, 2017
    Hampton Roads
    Thanks for the replies. I don't have pics but it was high gloss paint. This company doesn't normally do this type of work. It was originally supposed to be wall graphics. It is script lettering so I figured a few even rolls would do the trick. I think Jesters post is spot on and an excellent tip to try in the future. I have used paint mask on other substrates without issue so i figured I was good here. What do you guys think is the max amount of time to leave the mask on. Peel right after painting? Wait until tacky...say 15- 20 min.? I waited about an hour or so, I ended up helping other installers. I think I'll just stick to my vinyl and digital prints where I reign supreme.
    Last edited: May 16, 2018
  6. unclebun

    unclebun Member

    Dec 7, 2011
    Osage Beach, MO
    You want to remove paint mask as soon as you can but not if the paint is runny. Even if it's just tacky you can ruin the job with paint sticking to the mask.

    The problem with paint getting under the mask is because of an uneven surface and the mask not adhering correctly. Nothing you can really do to fix that short of sanding the surface smooth and applying a smooth coat of paint that is as good as a car's paint job.
  7. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

    Aug 4, 2010
    montgomery, alabama
    first off take that one shot and throw it in the trash and get some metallica latex. We always brush paint on the seam of the masking first and make sure you brush away from seam. One Shot is too thin to try and do this type of application
    • Like Like x 1

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