There is a lot of work that goes into painting a car. However, with all of the television shows, such as Overhaulin’, West Coast Customs, and Powerblock, it appears to be much easier than it is. In this article, I will give you a few tips for painting a car that will make it easier for you, but it still requires effort on your part. Nanoshine.com.au also strongly suggest don’t skip with rust-proofing for your new car paint protection altogether, as most cars come with this from the factory.
First, you must realize that this type of work is not for everyone. In fact, I have students that enroll in my auto body class that are surprised to learn the amount of effort it takes to repair and paint a car. I have watched several YouTube videos where someone is demonstrating how produce results using Rustoleum and a paint brush. Well, maybe that method will work for a farm truck or tractor… that is not going to cut it in the real world. It does take effort and time to do this correctly more than 1 or 2 hours for sure.
With that said, for the other gear heads out there, like me, the effort is not painful. If you love this type of work, the effort is fun and gets into your blood. So if this is not a hobby you enjoy doing, you may want to find something else that is.
Painting A Car
The first thing you want to keep in mind when painting a car is to clean the vehicle. Over time, the car collects contamination from the environment and waxing. These contaminates can cause a lot of problems for us in the refinish world. Contaminates such as silicone and oil is on the top of the painter’s bad list. Many times the problem can be eliminated by an old fashion hand wash will do the trick. Remember, since wax and silicone are our enemies, don’t use a car soap with wax in it. We want to strip the wax, not protect and add to it. Dish soap will also work if it does not have added ingredients for keeping your hand soft. Once washed, wipe the car down with wax and grease remover to assure all traces of contamination are off the paint surface.
What Condition Is The Paint In
If you are lucky you can sand and paint the painted surface. However, there are a few reasons that will cause you additional work. If the surface is peeling, you will need to strip the paint off and start over. If it is just the clear coat peeling, you may get by with just sanding all of the clear coat off and starting the paint process from there. Another thing to keep in mind is how thick the paint is. If the coatings are over 12 mils thick, you will need to strip some of the coatings off, so you do not keep building up the mil thickness. Ask the paint store where you buy your paint to check it for you. They should have a mil thickness gauge. If the car is a factory paint job, or if it does not have any paint problems, you are safe to prep and paint.
Sand and Paint
To paint a car, I am going to give you a wet sanding method, as you are probably a DIY car enthusiast without every tool under the sun. To do this all you need is some 400 grit wet or dry sandpaper, a squirt bottle of water and some elbow action. Sand the entire surface you are painting with 400 grit sandpaper. Be certain to sand edges extremely well, as this is where paint will peel if not sanded properly. Once the entire car is sanded, wash the car again to assure it is completely clean. Allow to air dry or use compressed air to speed up the process, and now you are ready for paint.
Spraying Primer Sealer, Base Coat and Clear Coat
If you did not do any body work and there is no bare metal, you do not have to use primer sealer. However, if there are spots where you sanded through leaving the car surface different colors, I would use a coat of primer sealer to get a uniform color before spraying base coat. If you can any bare metal, I would hit it with self-etch primer in a rattle can before painting as well. Oh, and of course, don’t forget to mask before spraying! Now you are ready to spray base coat and clear coat.
Each brand uses slightly different methods and flash times. The best thing to do is to ask for technical data sheets from the place you buy the paint. They will be able to provide these for you, and it will tell you exactly how to spray their specific products.
That is it; now it’s time to go out to the garage and get started painting a car yourself.
I have been doing body and paint repair for over 20 years. The past eight years I’ve been teaching this to students, and now I am ready to teach you too.
I hope you give me the opportunity to teach you more about auto body and paint repair. I will be delighted to teach you what I know to help you complete your car project or to gain the knowledge.
For more information visit How To Prep a Car or The Garage Butler
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