Making a home paint booth

Since I began this project I intended to paint the entire aircraft myself. I’m confident with all the experts around that I can do it successfully. To that end, I began setting up a paint shop in my father’s barn. Yes, I won’t be painting the airplane for quite some time. Perhaps another few years, but in the mean time I have lots of parts to prime, and the interior will need painting. Painting at the airport isn’t feasible, and painting at my uncle’s or at friends is only ok on rare occasions. This paint booth will be of sufficient size and quality for the final paint job.

The barn is full of dust, and a mess currently. Here’s the before shot. My dad is retired and no longer uses the barn for anything other than storage. We decided to use the center aisle. This gives me a space of 10′ high, by 12′ wide, and 25′ long. More than enough for the plane.   The first step after a basic cleanup was to affix the plastic to the ceiling. Quick work with the staple gun. Then the walls. And finally the floor! There is still a lot to do. The exhaust fan is only up temporarily, and I’ll need to duct that to the outside and seal it up. I have a few furnace filters that will be used for the air inlet, which also hasn’t been added. I plan to use the spare particle board laying in the hangar for some basic flooring which will help hold the plastic in place. Also the seems will need to be taped closed, and I plan to use some wood strips to hold the plastic in place in the more difficult spots. And finally, I will need to add some better lighting. I suspect critters and time will cause some damage to my shop, but plastic is cheap, and I have a ton left over. Repairs will be cheap and easy. Now I might have a year or two (or three) before final painting, but this is going to make priming a breeze.

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