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  1. #1
    almost kosher
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    Paintbrush cleaning tips? ? ?

    I'm very particular about cleaning painting equipment after I'm through for the day. Anyone have good tips for cleaning paintbrushes to near-new condition each time? i dropped about $28US into a quality 1.5" trim brush and plan on keeping it around for a while.

    using acrylic latex satin finish right now. probably don't need any advice for oil-base paints right now.

    thanks a million!
    or at least 28 bucks, anyway.

  2. #2
    phony collective progress x136's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tappets
    i dropped about $28US into a quality 1.5" trim brush
    Purdy?

    I don't really have a method, aside from standing at the garage sink for a long time getting as much paint out as is possible, as soon as possible. Kind of a hassle for the attention-span deprived, but it works.

    Note: It may be tempting, but don't try to dry a paintbrush in the oven. You will forget about it. (Thankfully it was a cheap brush.)

  3. #3
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
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    1. don't mix use the brushes. Use these brushes for latex paint only. Nothing messier than trying to mix oil and water. Even if the brush is dry don't do it.

    Start at the base and work to the tip under running water, soap helps. Hang them or keep them flat, nothing ruins a brush faster than letting it stand on its tip for prolonged periods. Don't mash down on them when you are cleaning them. If you crease a bristle it's like creasing paper, you'll never get it out. Bending the bristles with your hand is ok, mashing it on the bottom of the sink is not.

  4. #4
    lunatic fringe Dogbait's Avatar
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    With running water and mild dish soap. Get an old toothbrush and cut the bristles back to about 1/4" to make them stiff. Use it to "comb" out the little bits of paint from the base to the tip under the running water. Don't have any clocks around while you do this.

  5. #5
    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ efrobert's Avatar
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    I clean my brushes about every 15 - 20 minutes, when I'm working, so cleaning them at the end of the day isn't a big deal. If they do start to get bad, I soak them overnight in some "Brush conditioner", which you can buy anywhere.

  6. #6
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Get a brush comb and use hot soapy water. Be sure to be neat when you actually paint and do your best to never get paint above the half-way mark on the bristles.
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  7. #7
    Senior Member iNewton's Avatar
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    Store the brushes upside down (bristles pointing up) so that any unfortunate reminding gunk drops toward the base rather than the tip.

    Edit:
    Quote Originally Posted by slowandsteady
    Be sure to be neat when you actually paint and do your best to never get paint above the half-way mark on the bristles.
    I found that to be rather impossible (even if I try) -- When I pre-load the brush and try to get a good amount of paint in there the paint seem to get pushed up toward the base (even if I try to only load the tip) Is there some other technique I'm not aware of?

  8. #8
    almost kosher
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    "Store the brushes upside down (bristles pointing up) so that any unfortunate reminding gunk drops toward the base rather than the tip."
    huh... i've always done the opposite, so old pigments don't seep out into your bristles while you paint.

    With running water and mild dish soap. Get an old toothbrush and cut the bristles back to about 1/4" to make them stiff. Use it to "comb" out the little bits of paint from the base to the tip under the running water.
    i likey this idea... ^^^^

    1. don't mix use the brushes. Use these brushes for latex paint only. Nothing messier than trying to mix oil and water. Even if the brush is dry don't do it.
    ooo ooohh never. i would never consider that!

    When I pre-load the brush and try to get a good amount of paint in there the paint seem to get pushed up toward the base (even if I try to only load the tip) Is there some other technique I'm not aware of?
    it sounds like you may be loading it too much. try a little less and work in smaller areas using the tip of the brush and not mashing down so that the sides of the bristles do the painting. i try to keep brush strokes as vertical as possible at all times. that way the paint tends to keep the tip loaded better rather than getting pushed up into the base, and it also makes bleniding with the roller a bit easier, IMHO.

    thanks for all the tips everybody!

    anymore?

  9. #9
    Senior Member
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    To keep the paint below the halfway point you have to shake or slap, but not wipe.

    Related to the paint brush, that means you dip in about a third to pick up the paint, shake back down in to the can once or twice, and move to the work surface, once your level of paint is about halfway or below, then it works faster if you flick your wrist to slap the loaded brush against the side of the can to knock off the overload before moving to the work surface.

    When people wipe the loaded brush on the rim of the can, it can only move the line of drying paint up towards the base of the brush. All those schemes of having a little plastic snap on rim to wipe against or driving a bunch of nail holes around the edge so the wiped paint flows back into the can are fantasy.

    Never wipe. Always shake or slap. But only with paint brushes, not babies or lovers or your naughty bits, those you want to wipe.
    Longbikes Slipstream

  10. #10
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iNewton
    Store the brushes upside down (bristles pointing up) so that any unfortunate reminding gunk drops toward the base rather than the tip.

    Edit:

    I found that to be rather impossible (even if I try) -- When I pre-load the brush and try to get a good amount of paint in there the paint seem to get pushed up toward the base (even if I try to only load the tip) Is there some other technique I'm not aware of?

    I never have a problem, but I am a neurotic nut. TAKE YOUR TIME. People rush and get sloppy. I also press hard at the upper part of the bristles and let the paint rest on the lower part. The other key is to use a separate pain pail. The gallon cans hold too much paint in the rim.

    I did notice that during a painting party last week the other "guests" had paint on all of the bristles, on the metal band and all the way up the handle.

    Using a high quality brush with long bristles helps also. If you have a cheap brush you can pretty much guarantee you will get paint everywhere, but on the wall.
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

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