Paint estimates?? - Pontiac GTO Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
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Paint estimates??

Hi All,

Posting this for my bro who's got a 68 GTO he looking to get painted. Some minor surface rust on the hood and trunk, quarters, fenders, trunk, frame and floorpans solid. Is it normal for a body shop to only quote time plus materials without a ballpark of cost?

Any help most appreciated. Thanks.
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 07:07 PM
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I don't know what's normal, but I can tell you as having painted my own car - that the vast majority of the cost involved is just sheer time/labor. Spraying the material is the quickest and easiest part of the whole job.


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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Bear. I get nervous as the guy chose will not provide any numbers or timeframe. I had an old car painted years ago and it was a 3300 quote and done for that price ( as I said, years ago ). Seems like a reputable shop but I'd hate to see my bro into this way over his head.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-29-2015, 08:31 PM
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A friend of mine had a `66 done, granted there was a lot of repair that needed to be done (floors, trunk pan, rear quarters), but he spent $30,000.00. And it looks like it too.
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-30-2015, 07:05 AM Thread Starter
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I would think that any good body shop can assess a car and provide a ballpark figure on what the cost would be to repair and paint, of course with the understanding that rust and metal work would increase the cost. We've talked to 4 restorations shops, none would provide an estimate.....time and material only. Which means 15k up to 30k? Not sure if this is common practice.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-30-2015, 11:43 AM
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I would say keep looking for another shop. I wouldn't do it if they are not going to commit in writing an estimate or cost and timeline. I know guys who's cars have been at the body shop for 3 years and they still aren't close to being done. If the shop does collision work too, all those jobs go in front of your project.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-30-2015, 11:58 AM
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15-30K is a reasonable ballpark assuming no major rust is found & you keep the same color. Check the BBB for any complaints on the shop, make sure they have been doing business as that name for several years (some switch names because of bad reps) and if possible, get a reference or 2 from others who used them.

Keep in mind other costs quickly creep in like door and trunk weather striping, re-chroming trim etc.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-30-2015, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Paint estimates??

That's exactly what I needed to know. We've already done the background work on the shop and they seem pretty solid. He already bought all trim, weatherstrip, bumper, etc so now he is just having the body done. They're going do disassemble down to the quarters, paint and reassemble. Hopefully comes in at 15K but until they blast, all bets are off. Thanks for the info, all. Much appreciated.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-03-2016, 09:41 AM
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I've been in the restoration biz for 43 years. In today's market with cars this old there's no way I'd quote a fixed price. If I did you can bet I'd cover my back side with a heavy (worst case) quote, and that way I make proper $$$$$ when it goes south. They usually do go bad once you're hip deep into it. These cars have been in the hands of owners and shops that might not have had the respect for the cars that they deserve. I don't do too many muscle car restorations as I'm quite busy with heavy American Classics like Packards and Duesenbergs. My clients also enjoy something approaching 150 significant and provenance making awards from their respective peers/clubs. The average quality refinish of a well restored and properly fitted muscle car body runs about 180-200 hrs alone. That's block, paint (as a complete assembly in some cases), and full cut and polish, ready for final assembly. If the client wants a truly exact OEM finish (it can be done) that can add another 25-40 hrs depending upon the color/finish. Sheet metal repairs (panel replacement, floors, braces, etc) can't go by any form of "book price" from the past. Most replacement body panels are so far off that clients that I'm used to serving wouldn't accept it at any price. That additional labor to make right isn't on the shop doing the work as it's not us that made those crummy panels, but it's on us to make it right.

At the end of the day you get what you pay for. Some of my work that's over 20 yrs old still scores perfect or nearly perfect (99.5 recently). It's that longevity of the work which is the big intangible value and can only be assured by reputation and, most important, mutual trust. Maybe this helps, maybe not, but going with a known and respected value up front is the best value there is. Value vs price. Which means the most?
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-05-2016, 05:31 AM
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Here is what I found in the California Bay Area

Media blast a car - about 800 to 1200. If you can find someone who will do it with glass.

Bodywork per hour is between 80 and 100 out here. That is a guy with 10 years experience.

A basketball size dent that is not wrinkled is about .7 hours.

A winkle on an edge upto 3cm is like 2 hours of work. That is welding pins in and pulling it then hammer and dolley.

9 square inches of rust repair that require welding is like 3 hours of work. Add .5 for each edge that needs to be folded.

Strip a car of external hardware. 6 hours.

Block sanding a car 12 to 15 hours

Wet sanding and buffing a car 5 hours to 7 hours

Paint and primer would not be much more than 500 dollars.

Each coat of a car about 1 hour. Usually 3 coats are done. 4 with a clear coat.

Now there are a few things I did differently. I actually liked a body shop that did insurance work because most of those companies are required to provide lifetime warrrante on the cars done under insurance repairs.
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