Are Oil Base Paints Going Out With a Limp?

As the aroma of paint filled the work area and surrounding areas, you could identify whether the applicator was applying water base paint or oil base paint. You may have pinched your nose and your eyes may have watered, yet, that was the willing sacrifice to achieve a hard, glass like finish. This finish was once believed to be a coating of high quality. Some may have a hard time accepting this fact, yet others know there was no choice. Are oil base paints going out with a limp?

Due to some state regulations, in lowering the VOC’s (volatile organic compounds) limits to help reduce air pollution. It is becoming less likely that you will experience the unique smell of an oil base paint. If you are from California, as I am, you may know that in most counties the new 2007 regulations lowered the limit of VOC’s. Some coatings, as little as 50 grams per liter. This new regulation took 1 and 5 gallon oil base paint products off the shelves, leaving behind the availability limited to only quarts. Which also gave the entire paint industry a new learning curve. Manufactures began developing new and improved waterborne paint products. Some painters had no choice but to learn and accept new products and application methods.

Professionals questioned the quality of the new water based paints, swearing they could never achieve a quality finish, as an oil base paint could so beautifully display. As a result, manufactures such as Vista Paint and Benjamin Moore  developed some unique products, like Vista Paint 9700 Protec Exterior Alkyd Emulsion, and Benjamin Moore Advance Waterborne Interior Alkyd. They also improved some existing products like Vista Paint 8700 Carefree and Benjamin Moore Regal Select line.

Some of the new products are more difficult to maintain a wet edge, as the open time had been drastically reduced, compared to that of the slow drying oil based products. The leveling requires more skill to achieve the glass like finish, yet the superiority of the waterborne products are way more advanced then the oil based products. Unlike oil base products, the new waterborne products do not chalk up on exterior surfaces, they have better color retention, they have no yellowing and through time they maintain their hard shell without becoming brittle.

The quality and longevity of the new advanced waterborne coatings, have given oil base coatings it’s limp. With the technology we had available at the time, oil based paint, had its characteristic qualities. As paint manufactures have advanced with new technology, applicators are faced with a learning curve and a choice, that of the old or advance to that of the new.

Gabe Ewing with Ewing Painting Inc.

After returning from a missionary international volunteer program in 1992, I was invited to work for a local painting contractor. At the time I had no idea I would be starting a life long career in the painting industry. As I learned how to prepare a door jamb or cabinetry for either a painting system or for staining, then seeing the finished product, I was amazed at the transformation. This is when my passion for painting began to build.
This being  the early 90′s, the construction industry was experiencing a mild recession. Throughout this period, I worked for many painting contractors. Learning many methods and applying a wide range of coatings. I had the opportunity to learn from some of the paint legends within my demographic area. We worked on some of the most elite homes, including Bob Hope’s House in the Palm Springs area. I found my self intrigued with the wide range of coatings I was applying, how they flowed, adhered and why I could not get some off my hands and others I could. I would take every opportunity I could to pick the brains of my coworkers, employers and paint manufacturer representatives.
I then got an opportunity to work for one of the largest painting contractors in the Coachella Valley, as he was bouncing back from the mild recession. He invited me to work in Reno Nevada, as a spray-man. I eagerly accepted and gave notice to my employer at the time. I believed this would give me more of an opportunity to build myself a carrier in the painting  industry. This was the beginning of a 13 year relationship with this employer, growing in all aspects of the painting industry, while creating many relationships in the construction industry.
I rapidly moved from a spray-man, to a foreman, to Vice President of Operations. We managed painting projects for some of the largest General Contractors in the construction industry. Some of my responsibilities were, safety manager, quality control, purchasing, human resource, public relations, estimating and job costing. The housing bubble took us to levels I never thought  possible with the economy we were experiencing.  This time gave me the opportunity to learn how to manage the field and official operations.
In 2006 we began to see the affects of the recession, as the housing bubble began to collapse. All construction was coming to a stop, sales were declining. It became obvious that my 13 year relationship with this employer had come to an end. In mid 2007, I applied for my California State Contractor License. This is when my wife Monica and I formed Ewing Painting Inc..  We focused on a different demographic area, as we did not want to compete with my previous employer. We worked on building new relationships, networking through the Chamber of Commerce and other networking groups. We have built and maintained many solid relationships within our community and surrounding areas. I am currently on the Board of Directors with the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce.
Ewing Painting currently performs work for general contractors and residential homeowners. We have applied various coatings for retail, commercial, and residential clients. We look forward to continued growth in our community, serving our residential customers.

Welcome to Ewing Paintings official blog and reviews by Gabe Ewing

Hello and thank you for visiting our blog.

Let’s begin with a simple introductory. Here we will review products and procedures to do with painting. We will have  updates about Ewing Painting and about what is going on within the painting industry. I feel confident that through this blog, you will find the information that you are looking for. Whether it is to research products, to help with projects you are undertaking yourself or help you in finding a professional painting contractor.

It is important to me, that you choose the right contractor for your painting projects. If not with Ewing Painting,  my hope is that you will find your painting project to not only be an enjoyable experience, but an educational experience as well. If you have had a bad experience with a contractor (as I have had) of any trade, you will know how invaluable it can be in choosing the right contractor, the first time, for your needs. This investment  is worth your time and research, so in hopes, you will have a rewarding professional experience. Using  products that has longevity and quality, as the end result.

In addition, I hope this blog will become a resource for painting contractors to  research products or familiarize themselves with updates, so they can give their clientele the best he or she can offer.

Together we can help make the painting industry a professional industry.