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A Basic Guide To Selecting The Right Paint Brush

How To Select The Right Paint Brush

Too many brushes to choose from? These tips should help you choose the right brush for the right project. There are 4 main decisions to make when choosing a brush

  1. Type of filament
  2. Style of brush
  3. Size of brush
  4. Quality of brush

Types of filament

Filament are the long strands or hairs on a brush. There are three types of filament to choose from

Synthetic Filament: good for all paints, best with water based paints

100% Pure Bristle: best with oil based and industrial paints

Polybristle Blend: best with oil based paints

Style of brushes

PAINT/WALL BRUSHES: these are the most standard and common type of brush. With a short handle in comparison to the cutter bushes they come in various widths for various painting jobs.

CUTTER BRUSHES: These are popular brushes for cutting in before roller painting. Specially made for door and window frames and ceiling/wall/corner sections. They generally have less filament than wall brushes as paint holding capacity is not paramount while the long handle helps to control the stroke. There are several alternative shapes in these long handle brushes.

SASH CUTTER: is a full bodied cutting in brush ideally suited for the application of water based paints.

OVAL CUTTER: is a compromise between the two other styles because of its oval shape. It gives greater control and accuracy on the edges of the brush and holds more paint in the centre.

ANGLE CUTTER: is basically the same as the sash cutter however the top of the brush is made at an angle rather than straight across. The head of the brush and the ferrule are both made at an angle so that the tips of the filament or bristle are retained. This angle assists the user to be able to cut to a sharper more accurate area.

Size of brush

12mm / 25mm: For small jobs & touch-up work such as chairs & timber trim.

38mm: Suitable for furniture, small panels, window frames, trellis, mouldings, shutters and downpipes.

50mm: For small to medium size work such as doors, screens, table tops, railings and cabinets.

63mm: A handy size for outdoor furniture, cupboards, gutters, eaves and doors.

75mm: For medium to large areas such as fence posts and rails, floor boards, steps, skirtings and fascia.

88mm / 100mm: For all large areas. Most suitable for walls, floors, ceilings, roofs, blockwork, fences etc

Quality of brush

A good brush holds more paint, makes paint application smoother and reduces paint spattering. A quick way to check this is to feel the pack of filament. It should feel full and slightly resilient. Although cheaper brushes will not last as long as premium grade brushes they are quite suitable for the occasional job where finish, quality and brush life are not critical.

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