LadderTalk Podcast 1: The OnFloor Machine Interview with Travis McCutchen

In this first episode of LadderTalk, we interview Travis McCutchen from OnFloor Technologies about their OnFloor Machines. If part of your business involves cleaning and staining decks, doing garage floors, warehouse floors, hardwood floors, you need to check out this interview. The OnFloor Machine is a floor preparation machine that is designed to quickly and easily prepare a wide variety of surfaces for paint and coatings!

Episode Outline

  • Introductions to Travis McCutchen and OnFloor Technologies (0:38)
  • What Is an OnFloor Machine? (2:24)
  • The OnFloor Machine Is Tremendously Easy to Control (4:24)
  • What Types of Surfaces or Applications are Ideal for an OnFloor Machine? (6:19)
  • What Makes OnFloor Different from Other Machines in the Marketplace? (8:33)
  • Is this Machine ONLY for Contractors or Professionals? (11:00)
  • Does That Make it Less Ideal for a Contractor to Use on a Daily Basis? (12:28)
  • The OnFloor Machine Gives You a Surface That is Ready to Coat Immediately! (14:07)
  • How Does the OnFloor Machine Handle Raised Nails/Screws or Uneven Boards on a Deck? (16:23)
  • How Does the OnFloor Machine Handle Hardwood Floors? (18:20)
  • How Does the OnFloor Machine Handle Dust and Mess? (20:37)
  • What about the Price? How Much Is It to Purchase? (22:48)
  • Why Is It Worth It? (24:06)
    • Muriatic Acid Prep on a Concrete Floor: Is It A Good Idea? (24:42)
  • RepcoLite Rentals (27:10)
  • Wrap Up  (27:42)

Rental Rates

Currently we have 1 OnFloor Machine (the 16″ model) for rent. It’s located at our 17th Street store in Holland, but we can make arrangements to get it to any of the Grand Rapids or Muskegon locations should the need arise. If you’re interested in scheduling a rental or asking for more information, you can reach us at 616-396-5213. Rental rates for the machine and vacuum are listed below. The various tools are rented as sets of 3 and are all available at different prices ranging from as low as $10 up to $40. It all depends on the tool you need. Call or stop in with your situation and we can more accurately recommend which tools are most suited for the work you need to do!

DESCRIPTIONRATE
OnFloor 16 Pro -- FULL DAY$175.00
OnFloor 16 Pro -- 1/2 DAY$100.00
OnFloor 16 Pro -- FULL WEEK$450.00
OnFloor Vacuum -- FULL DAY$25.00
OnFloor Vaccum -- WEEK$100.00
Trailer Rental$25.00
Assorted Tools (Prices Vary--Call with Questions)$10.00 - $40.00

 

Color Me Home Episode 14: The OnFloor Machine

In this episode, Betsy and Dan spend some time discussing one of the greatest time-saving tools available for decks right now: an OnFloor Machine. And while that may not sound exciting . . . you’re going to want to give this episode a listen. Once you understand what this machine is and what it will do, you’ll see how easy it is to shave DAYS off your next deck project…

Episode Outline

  • What is an OnFloor Machine Exactly? (1:00)
  • Benefit 1: Clean and Stain Your Deck in a Single Day! (6:06)
  • Benefit 2: End Results Will Be Better than Cleaning with Chemicals (3:33)
  • Benefit 3: Raised Nails? Uneven Boards? No Problem! (6:37)
  • Benefit 4: The OnFloor Machine is So Easy to Use! (16:00)
  • Benefit 5: When Used with the Vacuum System, There’s No Mess! (22:31)
  • RepcoLite Rental Information: (26:12)
  • Save Money Versus Using Chemical Cleaners (28:37)
  • Best of All, the Machine “Just Works!” (31:31)

Our LadderTalk Interview with Travis McCutchen from OnFloor Technologies!

In the episode we mentioned LadderTalk, a new podcast we started that’s geared specifically towards professional painting contractors. Our first episode involved an interview with Travis McCutchen from OnFloor Technologies and it was so interesting and informative, we figured we’d make it available to anyone looking for more information about this machine and why it’s so valuable. Check it out!

 

Color Me Home Episode 13: 3 Surefire Decorating Fails

In this episode, Betsy and Dan discuss 3 Surefire Decorating Fails (and, of course, how to avoid them!). In every decorating project there are certain things that can trip us up, wreak havoc with our plans, or just complicate everything we’re trying to accomplish. These are common pitfalls. But the good news is that they’re remarkably easy to avoid!

Check out all the projects we discussed on this episode!

Episode Outline

  • Mistake 1: Choose Your Paint First! (0:50)
  • Mistake 2: Go All “Matchy-Matchy” With Your Colors (6:06)
  • Mistake 3: Keep Something That Doesn’t Fit With Your Style! (13:40)
    • Fix 1: Paint It! (16:03)
    • Fix 2: Strip It! (19:54)
      • Tip: Use a Heat Gun (23:33)
      • Tip: Strip Painted Hardware in a Crock Pot! (23:58)
    • Fix 3: Repurpose It! (27:16)

Choose Your Paint Last!

We were pretty clear about the importance of choosing your paint last. Still, we have a number of resources on our blog that speak to this point. And here they are for your reading pleasure!

The Crockpot Solution!

At one point, Betsy referenced a Crockpot solution for removing paint from painted hardware. And, of course, there was a bit of a discussion as to the right methods to use: is it plain water brought to a boil? Or do you add vinegar. Dan thought vinegar made sense. Betsy thought just water. Turns out, Betsy was more right (which, by contract, Dan is forced to admit).

Anyway, the process is simple:

  • Get an OLD Crockpot that you intend NEVER to use again for food!!!
  • Put water and a little liquid laundry detergent in along with the hardware and set the Crockpot to medium.
  • Let it “cook” overnight.
  • In the morning, you should be able to peel the layers of paint off with your fingers.

 

Color Me Home Episode 11: Brighten Your Basement Walls!

On today’s episode, Betsy and Dan discuss a question that comes up at RepcoLite Paints all the time: how do I paint my basement walls? Basement walls often present homeowners with a number of unusual obstacles when it comes time to paint them. In this episode, you’ll discover everything you need to know to confidently brighten up what can often be one of the darkest, dreariest places in your home!

Episode Outline

  • Check for Moisture and Determine the Cause! (2:28)
  • What is Efflorescence? (6:50)
  • Fixing Moisture Issues Inside! (8:27)
  • Fixing Moisture Issues Outside! (12:16)
  • Getting the Walls Ready for Paint (16:17)
    • Dealing With Efflorescence (16:40)
    • Remove Flaking Paint (18:36)
    • Remove Dirt and Grease (19:48)
    • Kill Mold and/or Mildew (21:30)
    • Dry the Walls (22:22)
  • Painting a Bare Wall with No Moisture (23:03)
    • Betsy’s Easy Test for Moisture (23:45)
  • Painting Bare Walls that Have Moisture Issues (26:58)
    • WaterBlock (27:10)
    • Applying WaterBlock (30:24)
  • Painting Previously Painted Walls (33:16)

WaterBlock by Insul-X

As we mentioned in the episode, WaterBlock is a masonry waterproofer that needs to be applied over bare concrete in order to be effective. In the episode, we debated whether or not it was tintable. Turns out, it is! You’ll be limited to lighter colors, but it definitely can be tinted. If you’d like more information, check out the podcast. Or, you can click the button below and download the Technical Data Sheet!

Download WaterBlock Info

Paint Your Kitchen Cabinets in 6 Steps!

bigstock-Cabinet-detail-13573895_webDid you know that the average cost of remodeling your kitchen is right around $20,000? Yes, $20,000. That’s a significant amount of money. So significant, in fact, that it means I won’t be doing any kitchen remodeling anytime soon. Sure, I’d like new cabinets or a new backsplash or a new floor, but we’re just too attached to having things like groceries and running water. And I don’t think we’re alone. A lot of people like groceries and running water. And yet, many of those same people also wish they had a better kitchen.

And that brings me to the good news: there are many things you can do that will help you update your kitchen without forcing you to give up those little luxuries we all like to have. Like food in the refrigerator. And one of those projects is painting your kitchen cupboards. If the doors and drawers are structurally sound, why rip them out and replace them? With a little elbow grease, some time, and the right products (I’m looking at you RepcoLite and Benjamin Moore), you can brighten them up and, in so doing, completely change the look and feel of your kitchen. And all for very little money!

If you think this project could be perfect for your kitchen, here’s what you need to do:

STEP ONE: Remove the hardware and hinges and label the doors with their location. Removing the hardware and taking the doors down requires no explanation. However, let me stress the importance of labeling the pieces. You definitely want to make sure you do this!  Find a system that will work for you and make sure to mark each door and drawer as well as the place they go in the cabinet. Safe-release (Delicate Surface) painter’s tape works well. Just make 2 tags with a “1” and put one on the back of the door, and the other on the frame of the cabinet where the door goes. It’s a simple step, but will help you when it comes time to put things back together!

STEP TWO:  Closely examine the surface of the cabinets and drawers and be sure to remove any peeling paint by sanding and scraping. Whatever paint remains on the surface of your cabinets must be sound! New paint brushed over a peeling surface won’t make that old layer stick. The old layer will continue to fail and will take the new one with it. So make sure that whatever paint you leave on the doors is adhering well. Also, if you have to scrape or sand off some of the paint, make sure that you spend some time feathering the bare spots into the spots where the paint remains.

LISTEN to the “How To” Information in this excerpt from our COLOR ME HOME Podcast!

STEP THREE: Clean the surfaces thoroughly. After taking care of loose, flaking, or peeling paint, you need to clean the surfaces with a mixture of 1 part TSP to 4 parts water. Kitchens are sources of many different surface contaminants and you need to make sure that the surface you’re painting is clean and free of grease, dirt, and so on. Use a Scotchbrite (“scrubby”) pad with the TSP to thoroughly clean the surfaces.

STEP FOUR:  Scuff-sand the surfaces you’re going to paint. You can use an orbital sander for this, or you can do the sanding by hand. Either way, use either 180 – 220 grit sandpaper. And when you’re done, remove all the dust from the cabinets. You can blow them off with an air compressor, vacuum the dust off, or wipe it off with a solvent like Denatured Alcohol or Xylene. However you remove the dust make sure that it’s all removed before moving on to the priming step!

STEP FIVE:  Prime the cabinets with a good bonding primer. We recommend STIX Waterborne Primer. It will bond to the previous coating on your cabinets and will provide an excellent base for your topcoat!

STEP SIX:  Topcoat with a good finish paint in either a satin sheen or a semi-gloss (for washability). If you’re brushing, we recommend giving Benjamin Moore’s Advance a try. It’s a waterborne alkyd which means you’ll get the performance of an oil-based product without the drawbacks. It will flow out remarkably well, providing you with a smooth finish even when you brush or roll the paint on. And, best of all, it cleans up with soap and water. Another great option is RepcoLite’s own Hallmark Ceramic. It rolls and brushes well and can also be sprayed.

And that’s basically what you need to know. Yes, there is some work involved. Yes, it will take some time. You’ll have to do the sanding and the cleaning, the priming and the painting. But, when you’re done, you’ll be amazed at the difference in your home. And all for as little as $200 – $300 (or less!)

If you’re interested in this project, please email us with your questions or type your questions in the comment boxes on this post! And be sure to check out our full podcast on Inexpensive Kitchen Updates for more information and project suggestions!