Fuji Semi Pro 2 vs Fuji Mini Mite 3 Sprayer: Is One Better?

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When it comes to painting, there are plenty of choices:  brush, natural brush, synthetic brush, pad brush, fingers, and sprayers.  It’s the last one we want to discuss in this article, specifically the offerings of Fuji in a showdown between the Fuji Semi-Pro 2 and the Fuji Mini-Mite 3.  

While each of them can do the job of spray painting, which one should you choose?  Is it a project-specific decision?  After all, you don’t need a sledge hammer when a fly swatter will kill that fly just as well.  And is that really the difference?

First, though, let’s talk about spray painters and work our way into the distinctions between these two models.

What is An HPLV Spray Gun?

What is An HPLV Spray Gun

High volume low pressure spray guns are the ones professionals use.  They are also called turbo-sprayers because they use turbines for power.  The more fans within the turbine determines the power – air pressure, measured in pounds per square inch (PSI).

Turbines with more fans speed the coverage of paint, and also make it easier to spray heavier coatings.  Latex paints are heavier coatings, and thus more fans make for easier latex paint spraying.

An HPLV spray gun makes sense for the woodworking enthusiast if your projects regularly include furniture pieces, window and door trim, baseboards, and kitchen/bathroom cabinets.  They use a Higher Volume of paint at a Lower air Pressure, and this gives you greater control for an even spread while at the same time minimizing over-spray and splatter.  Again, think sledge hammer vs fly swatter to kill that fly.

 Spray Gun turbines

The stages of a turbine spray system are identified by the number of fans in the system.  Generally speaking, here is the breakdown:

  • A 2-stage HVLP turbine will use 2 fans and generate up to 6 PSI.  While this will give you a modest and easily controllable spray for small pieces, it will take longer.  
  • A 3-stage HVLP turbine will use 3 fans and generate up to 6.5 PSI.  That might not sound like a big difference, it can reduce the time by as much as 40% when spraying the same size piece as compared with the 2-stage model.  The Mini Mite 3 is an award winner for performance and convenience of use.
  • A 4-stage HVLP turbine will use 4 fans and generate up to 9 PSI.  If you spray or intend to spray, a lot of latex, this is a good choice.  It will certainly be enough power for most users and reduces time by as much as 65%  when spraying the same size piece as compared with the 2-stage model.
  • A 5-stage HPLV turbine will use 5 fans and generate up to 9.5 PSI.  This is the upper limit for what is considered low-pressure spraying.  The Mini Mite 5 uses the most powerful turbine.

Size Matters in Spray Gun Use

Fuji Spray Fuji 2202 Semi-PRO 2 HVLP Spray System, Blue

Both the size of the turbine and the size of what you are spray painting will matter when making a choice among the Fuji Spray Systems.  It will depend on how fast you want to paint.  The difference in speed among the systems can vary greatly.  We found a study that involved painting an average size kitchen cabinet door with a latex paint thinned with 20% water that used each of the HPLV turbine models listed above, and the times for each were as follows:

  • The 5-stage HPLV turbine finished the job in about 9 seconds
  • The 4-stage HPLV turbine finished the job in about 13 seconds
  • The 3-stage HPLV turbine finished it in about 22 seconds
  • The 2-stage HPLV turbine finished in around 37 seconds

While 37 seconds is not a long time, just over half a minute, if you were painting 100 doors, the difference between the 2-stage and the 5-stage model would be 15 minutes of actual spraying vs 62 minutes of actual spraying.  Consider the difference if the workpiece being painted was at a boatyard or an auto repair shop.

If an economy of time for your spray painting is important, as it is for professionals, the 5-stage is the model to choose.  For the average woodworking enthusiast whose work is mostly for home use or application, the 37 seconds is probably not a big deal.  The difference in cost between the various models would be the deciding factor at that point, and price differences among them are substantial.

Advantages of an HPLV Spray Gun

Fuji Spray 2903-T70 Mini-Mite 3 Bottom Feed Platinum, Blue

An HPLV spray gun atomizes paint.  As the paint enters the feed line and comes in contact with the air stream of the gun, the paint is broken down into tiny particles as it is sprayed through the gun’s nozzle.  The high pressure keeps the paint moving, and the settings are adjustable to give you great control over the volume.  The result is efficient delivery of the paint, more than can be achieved with conventional and airless spray guns.

As an added benefit, the high pressure keeps the paint moving quickly and prevents any buildup in the nozzle and line.  Thus, unlike other types of spray systems where nozzles and lines must be cleaned between each use, with an HPLV system, when you are finished painting, you are finished – no cleaning is required.

Paint Weights

If you are likely to be spraying latex paint, you might want to consider a 4- or 5-stage system, rather than a 2- or 3-stage system.  Latex paint is heavier than other finishes like varnish or other water-based non-latex paints, and you’ll want the extra power of the higher stage systems.  For those lighter weight finishes, a 3-stage system will do just fine – like the Mini Mite 3.

Fuji Semi Pro 2

On Sale
Fuji Spray 2203G Semi-PRO 2 - Gravity HVLP Spray System
  • Professional non-bleed Spray Gun with Adjustable Pattern Fan Control
  • 1.3mm Air cap set installed
  • 400cc Gravity Cup

Unlike the Mini Mite 3 with its 3-stage turbine system (3 fans, generating more power), and its award-winning performance for most users, the Fuji Semi Pro 2 uses a 2-stage turbine.  It generates less power than the Mini Mite 3, as you would expect, and thus impact on time to complete painting, and a need to thin latex paints.

The Fuji Semi Pro 2 is a good choice for the occasional DIY uses most of us woodworking enthusiasts face around our home shop – the occasional piece of furniture, or refinishing kitchen or bathroom cabinets, or replacing trim around windows or doors.  They can also be a good choice for a professional on a tight budget.

They are non-bleeding, meaning the paint flows only when the trigger is pulled.  They have a rear-mounted fan control that allows you to adjust the spray pattern in a range from small to wide, giving you great control over the spray.  This is helpful when you have multiple pieces of varying sizes to paint for a single project.

As compared with the Mini Mite 3, and its 3-stage turbine system, the Fuji Semi Pro 2:

  • Sprays more slowly
  • Is heavier and not as easy to move about
  • Makes a lot more noise and whines when operated 

If your spray gun needs are few, time is not a consideration, and your budget is tight, the Fuji Semi Pro 2 is a good buy and will do the job for you.

The Contest Between the Fuji Mini Mite 3 vs the Fuji Semi Pro 2

With all of that prologue about each model, and understanding of what an HPLV spray gun system is, here is the final detailed breakdown between these two models:

Fuji Mini Mite 3

Fuji Spray 2903-T70 Mini-Mite 3 Platinum - T70 HVLP Spray System
  • Professional Spray Gun features convenient side Pattern Control Knob to adjust size of fan pattern...
  • Non-bleed lightweight Spray Gun with Ergonomic Stay-Cool handle
  • PLATINUM Turbine featuring the Heat Dissipation Chamber (HDC)
  • 3-stage HPLV turbine system
  • Generates 6.5 PSI
  • Comes with 25ft hi flex hose
  • Multiple spray pattern ability
  • 1-qt cup for paint
  • Easy to clean
  • Fan pattern control
  • Non-bleed
  • Award-winning performance
  • Spray gun is heavier than the Semi Pro 2
  • Noisy
  • More expensive at around $750

For a detailed presentation of the Fuji Mini Mite 3, here’s a fellow who shows you everything;

Fuji Semi Pro 2

On Sale
Fuji Spray 2203G Semi-PRO 2 - Gravity HVLP Spray System
  • Professional non-bleed Spray Gun with Adjustable Pattern Fan Control
  • 1.3mm Air cap set installed
  • 400cc Gravity Cup
  • 2-stage HPLV turbine system
  • Generates 6 PSI
  • Lighter spray gun than the Mini Mite
  • Comes with 25ft hi flex hose
  • Multiple spray pattern ability
  • 1-qt cup for paint
  • Fan pattern control
  • Non-bleed
  • Ergonomic stay-cool handle
  • Easy to clean
  • Not as noisy as the Mini Mite
  • Less expensive at around $490

This video is a review of the Fuji Semi Pro 2, and this fellow shouts out the “bang for the buck” value of this model.

Determine what you really need an HPLV spray gun system for, the projects you’re likely to use it with, and the frequency of those projects in your shop.  For more frequent use on larger pieces, the extra power of the Mini Mite 3 might be your better choice, albeit at a much higher price.  For less frequent use on mostly smaller pieces, the Semi Pro 2 will serve you very well at a much lower price. 

Last update on 2024-04-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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