Graffiti Abatement Paint Can

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This instructable my be slightly niche and I hope it is helpful to those that could use it! I live in a residential building in San Francisco on a very busy intersection in front of a bus stop and our building constantly gets tagged with graffiti. The DPW will cite us as a blight property and we have 30 days to abate the graffiti. Our building has formed a committee of volunteers to handle this task.

Personally I don't mind painting the building BUT I am extremely lazy when it comes to going to the garage, getting the paint cans, pouring into the tray, carrying the roller and tray to the wall, doing the task, pouring paint back into the can, washing all the rollers and cans and damn the building got hit up again 12 hours later.

I wanted to come up with a way to quickly abate the graf without all the prep and cleanup (which is my main enemy with getting this task done). Behold the GAP Can!!

Supplies:

  • Any can, jar, or tupperware you have around the house
  • A paintbrush that fits inside the container
  • duct tape

Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

Here you can see my simple setup of an old coffee can and paint brush from the dollar store.

You can use any container that is relatively air tight. Keep in mind that my use case is there is new graffiti to paint on a weekly basis so I am not super concerned about the paint drying out inside the can.

Step 2: Prep the Lid

Using an X-acto blade I cut an X into the lid large enough to slide over the handle of the paintbrush.

Step 3: Assemble

The lid should fit over the handle enough to allow you to put the brush inside the paint can. With the bristles dipped in paint they will not dry and will not need to be cleaned.

Step 4: Seal Everything Together

I considered using hot glue or epoxy here and in the end decided on duct tape. There is good flex and movement for the brush and the lid which feels like this will be a resilient setup. I added enough tape to keep the brush stable and restrict air from getting in or out of the can.

Step 5: Add Paint!

I really wanted the GAP can to be small enough to easily hold in my hand. Just add the paint from the gallon can about half way. Enough to get the job done and keep the bristles under paint so they do not dry out between jobs.

Step 6: Paint and Prosper!

Taggers hit up buildings quickly and move on. I take my inspiration from them- I also want to quickly hit up the wall, cover the graffiti and move on! It took about 5 minutes to cover this tag, put the lid on the can, and relax!

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    15 Discussions

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    jgreene777

    8 days ago

    I'd put up a few Nest cameras and a sign with a Nest logo that says "face recognition software in use". Depending on your situation, maybe use fake cameras from Harbor Freight instead. But then again, it sounds like there are some real jerks in your neighborhood to keep tagging your place.

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    drewscreenjgreene777

    Reply 4 days ago

    If they put up a sign that said they were using face recog cameras in San Francisco, it likely wouldn't stop the tagging but would instead enrage many law abiding residents.

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    Errol1951

    8 days ago

    Hi I have seen some recent studies and it shows that plain wall attract this sort of thing because the graffiti stands out and if the wall has a picture or pattern it blends in and no-one see's it or you could try a silicone spray that the paint doesn't adhere to so it just lets you wash it off

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    naught101Errol1951

    Reply 7 days ago

    If you really want to deal with a graffiti "problem", then paint a mural. It'll get hit FAR less often.

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    Errol1951naught101

    Reply 7 days ago

    the reason for this is that their graffiti does not stand out so no-one see's it and that's what they are after something that show's the world they have been there and not just one of t he millions

    Clever idea. Makes good reuse of a coffee can. I also like the idea of a camera or two. You could also try a sign that says, "Marine Snipers On Duty." OK, that may be a bit much.

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    Bverysharp

    8 days ago on Step 6

    Quick and simple solution to a pesky problem. Well done!

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    FlorinJ

    8 days ago

    Personally, I would have gone for a system with several cameras and a battery of tear gas sprays.

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    gcai_fwb

    8 days ago

    Excellent use for the empty Bustelo can after you've enjoyed the coffee (my fav) :)

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    ElectroFrank

    8 days ago

    Total Simplicity = Pure Genius

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    vseminara

    8 days ago

    Very resourceful and drip free! Perhaps next time the HOA meets you can decide to spring for one of the anti-graffiti coatings - supposed to wash off graffiti with only water.

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    whiskymonstervseminara

    Reply 8 days ago

    I use the anti graffiti stuff at work, and most of them are sacrificial.
    Once you clean the same spot a couple of times, its gone and need to be reapplied.

    And its really spendy. With such constant use its a close call as to whether the paint or the coating would take less time and money.

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    jessyratfink

    13 days ago

    So smart! This would have come in handy when I lived in Oakland :D