I agree, for a small (doorknob) hole it's not worth using even a hand pump (bugsprayer) type. I just use a tile sponge for smaller knockdown type textures under a few inches around. I can usually "cheat" those in to look just like the texture around it just fine.
That video, the guy had obviously done that whole wall with that same texture pattern (very large.)
You can also do orange peel in a small area with the proper tile cleaning sponge. Dip it in very thin mud, and use a tossing action to splatter the stuff off the sponge, rather than dabbing. Dabbing for small knockdown works fine. If you have a combination of very small splatters then larger ones, use a combination of both methods.
I've even used just a rag for even smaller patches (2X2 inches or less.) Yes, it takes some time fiddling with it to get it right, but it's just not worth using equipment for something that small once you figure in the time to clean the equipment out.
Anything over a foot square, I'll bring in my hopper. I won't use the spray cans at $12 a can to cover each square foot, plus they never seem to give the correct effect for me.
For very small patches, take a bucket brush, similar to this one and dip it in really watered down AP, run your fingers through the bristles and flick texture on your patch. It takes some practice but it works pretty good.
Mike's got the ticket there. I've been able to match small patches with a brush as well. I know a guy that uses this method for a lot of patches and he does nothing but patches for a s/r company. He showed me on knockdown to use a piece of one of the old a/c filters blue mesh type, and I could not beleive it. I had to raise a knee wall about a foot higher and did this after a little practice and you could not tell. Just tear/cut a piece off dip it in thinned down mud and dob it on. He really studies surronding texture when he does this. Angle, thickness etc. Best I've seen. For hand held, I was doing a handrail in a huge home and this young patch guy came in. He did a patch about 6x4 and a few others caused by water damage. He was using a redtail bug sprayer type. Again I was really impressed. We both spooled it up and got to talking. He showed me this (redtail) after he cleaned it up. High quality billet aluminum and brass and this thing had a lot of pressure for what it was. I googled it and they have a couple models. Been thinking seriously about this. Maybe Paul or Blacktop has some input on this as I'm looking myself. Again this kid matched patches perfect .
I had issues matching texture on a few very large jobs. Instead of spraying with a normal handheld sprayer, the texturemen were fogging the places out, they would arrive with a 5 ton truck with the texture mixing in a big hopper in the back, they would shoot it on using a wand with the nozzle that looked like a shower head, and it was being shot up at 150 psi so matching it with a handheld hopper just wasn't going to happen. I made a unit I called the gizmo by cutting the back off of one of the bug sprayer units and then gluing on plumbing fixtures so that I ended up with a spray trigger, (an air gun trigger) at the end of it which I could then hook up to a small compressor, Jack the pressure up, and by cutting the top off of the little one cup sized hopper on the bug sprayer I could pour in my texture, this way I was able to match the very very very light orange peel that was going on in these homes the texture is getting lighter and lighter every year so you have to finish your ceilings as if they were being painted. This gizmo works great! The bug sprayer or bicycle pump style sprayers come in two kits, one with a red tip for finer sprays and a blue tip for popcorn style so by using different tips and setting the sprayer for different amounts of product coming out plus different air pressures there really isn't a pattern that you can't duplicate!
Only time I've seen a truck mounted sprayer was for stucco, which is pretty common here in Arizona. They're spraying it on so thin, you think it's just paint. The stuff doesn't last, obviously, but they can spray stucco on a home in no time. Never seen it used for drywall but I won't hold my breath.
Lots of good ideas just came to life here, good reason to open a "dead" thread!
This is all for knockdown style texture, which takes a lot of practice no matter what method you use. Then there's the skip trowel method, that's a whole 'nother set of skills. I think everyone learns that one a little differently. I see a lot of it, I like it because I can usually do a patch with just a base coat of hot mud, smooth it a little, then make up another tray of the same, and finish.
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