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I am trying to decide if I want to paint my car myself like you did. I know I can do it, just don't know if I want the hassle. What kind of paint did you use, and gun? The garage where you painted it, is it attached to your house? If so, how bad were the fumes in the house? In the garage?
 

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first things first 69, whats the body like? a good paint job is 80-90% body prep, you should not even think about putting it in a booth (or garage) for paint until the body is high build primed and is sanded to 600 wet and when sponged shows a perfect reflection over every inch.
As for paints there are plenty out there in different price ranges...PPG...Sherwyn Williams...House of Colors....I used Matrix because they are a local company and i like keeping my money in my community i was very happy with the product and service. Any all the manufacturers also have different levels of their paints. a mid grade BC/CC system with the primers and reducers will run you around 1200.00 for the package.
As for guns you can use a cheap Harbor freight HVLP gum for primer work as it will get sanded down but for color and clear you will want a good gun...I used a quick load Iwata which was able to spray upside down made wheel wells and rockers easier to hit but its a 600.00 gun. If you ahve a local HS with an auto paint shop and booth they may reant it to you for a day (thats what i did 200.00 and they let me use the good gun and all masking materials. and was able to spray in a full downdraft booth with baking capabilities), so in all i have 1400.00 into the materials and 2-300 hrs in labor on a solid original panel car with zero metal work (add HRS and dollars if you need patches) that really only needed "straightening". That is where you will get a nice paint job is getting the panels **** straight and flat.

heres some pics of the whole process....its a long process to get right especially for a first timer like myself but it can be done with patients and a thing most us guys don't like doing....reading instructions and following them to a T. It is also a amazing feeling to see something you have pumped your blood sweat and tears into take shape in front of your eyes and and the saving 12-15000 dollars ain't bad either. (if you don't count the cost of your time)

ooops!....almost forgot another complete wetsand after clear cures out with 1200 and 2000 grit and wheel with 2500 compound and again with chemical cutting final polish





















http://s1098.photobucket.com/albums/g372/instg8ter/1966 Tempest/

Brian
 

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Well, I am starting the bodywork this fall and winter. I have a few hours in several other cars and trucks, some mine, some of my buddies. I was always the guy that did the bodywork, because no one else wanted to. I have never painted a car myself, only helped a little. I'm trying to get my ducks in a row, for my budget and timeline. Thanks for the info, always better to hear from someone who has done it.
 

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sounds from your past posts that you got a good idea what your in for and are prepared to put in the time on it. I did mine over the whoel winter and sprayed it in spring also. Worked on it nearly nightly, every night before i went in i would walk around the car and mark any imperfections with a chalk pencil. heres what i did as far as prep.
1)grind any major body work areas down to bare metal and do metal work, degrease and apply coat of epoxy primer for base

2) major body work filled rage gold filler and cut down with DA sander at 80 grit

3) major areas skimmed with Body Icing or similar 2 part polyester filler (sands better than bondo with no air bubbles) block down with 120

4) skim the rest of the car with the icing (dings, chips, deep scratches)block to 120 used up to 4' block when it feels straight and smooth (it's not) apply contrasting color of 2K primer 2 full wet coats

5) mist on a guide coat of contrasting color from rattle can, block whole car again with 200 until most of the guide coat is gone lows will be where guide coat remains, highs will be where you kiss through to the epoxy.

6) skim coat with icing again where low and block back down with 200

7) apply two more coats of 2K primer and wet sand whole car with 400 and then 600 this is where you get picky any thing you see when wiped with degreaser will be in your paint so repeat steps and spot prime until you are happy.

8) Paint that sucka...i did 3 coats color and 4 coats premium clear if you'd like a booth procedure checklist i have one a painter friend from another forum sent me that i would be happy to pass along was very helpful.

best advice i can give is try and find a booth to rent, well worth the money, i think Bear will attest to that. I am sure it cost more than a few hundred to prep the garage and a decent gun will set you back another couple hundred. not to mention a air system that will handle the nearly constant spraying and a good moisture trap system. when you start spraying depending on the speed of your reducer it will be ready for another coat by the time you mix the next batch of paint whole process took around 7 hrs for 7 coats but i was masked and ready when i walked in that day and already had the jambs painted.
 

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Very comprehensive and well done explanation, Inst. I especially like the part about "when it feels straight and smooth, it's not". It takes a lot of time and patience to get those panels straight, but what an end result!
 

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Working with a rust free car that doesnt need metal work is a HUGE bonus. I usually have so much time invested in fixing the metal that I just get fed up and tired of it and leave some bumps and waves in it when I paint. 1500 hours is a long time to work on one car, not have it running, and only in paint. I have more time in blocking the primer than he has in the entire job, and it still isnt as straight as that Tempest. Dont underestimate the time you will spend getting it right.

Attached garage painting is not something I would recommend, unless nobody lives in the attached house. The fumes on my clothes are enough to make the wife sick and my shop is across the yard from the house. You dont want to breathe that stuff at all, believe me.

I have a Devilbiss HVLP, tried using the cheaper guns, and fixing the runs, orange peel and getting the tiger stripes in metallic paint was more time and money than buying a good gun.
 

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Thank you GeeTee the praise of someone who has owned these cars all of their life in original condition means a hell of a lot to me. When i started it was destined to be a clone but as i talked with you and others i realized the value of keeping an intact car (body and trim at least) Preserved shall we say. Value was never an issue but it was by all accounts a "budget" build, as much as one can be, and Thumpin is the resident master of that, to see the cars he keeps on the road and the others he has not got a chance to get at makes his collection a must see the next time i get Upstate.

And OP "have at it", when you pay for a paint job, you are paying exponentially for them to care about your car and the results, no one will ever care more than you will about that car so take your time, make it straight as you like and squirt it.

and like thumpin said fumes and polymers are not good for family, pets or anyone without a GOOD resperator. look around and try to find a booth to rent or at least detatched space, (mitch has a dome cover for boat he uses, great idea) . The school i used runs a full repair shop and the extra funds help offset shortages to the budget and pay for the auto club. Good to see my money at use, win/win in my book.....:cheers
 

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Thanks a ton!! I have the room and a good compressor in my attached garage, but I probably wouldn't hear the end of it from the wife. So, I better start making phone calls. There is an Air Force base with a hobby shop for working on cars here, and they have a real nice paint booth. I was in the Army, but my T/A card expired. A guy I work with is retired A/F, and can get me on. He said he wouldn't mind going with me, but that would be a long day for him. Thanks again for the input, always better to hear from someone who has done it than read about how to do it in a magazine.
 

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I am trying to decide if I want to paint my car myself like you did. I know I can do it, just don't know if I want the hassle. What kind of paint did you use, and gun? The garage where you painted it, is it attached to your house? If so, how bad were the fumes in the house? In the garage?
I didn't see your post until now - sorry about that!

The materials I used were:
Southern Polyurethanes Gray Epoxy primer (reduced and used as a sealer) 1 coat
PPG DBC 9700 black - with DX57 activator - 3 coats
Southern Polyurethanes Universal Clear - Extra slow activator - 4 coats

Gun was an Eastwood Concours, using whichever tip was recommended by the tech sheet for the material I was shooting.

My compressor is an Ingersoll Rand SS5L5 --- 220v/60 gallon/ 5hp - rated at 18.1 cfm @ 90 psi

My garage is attached to the house. I built some fan contraptions using 4 el-cheapo box fans in wooden frames with a/c filters. 3 of them blowing "out", 1 blowing "in". That helped keep the fumes and stuff out of the house.

In the garage, it got pretty bad. I was using a good respirator and full body tyvek coverall paint suit, head sock, etc. to protect myself. I didn't use an "air supplied" respirator as a personal choice. I researched the topic a lot and from what I read, the problem with iso's is that they're odorless. A regular respirator like the one I used will protect you for a period of time, but since you can't smell them you have no reliable way to know when it's time to change the cartridges - hence the recommendation for an air supplied respirator. After my research I decided to just buy several sets of cartridges and to change them VERY frequently as I worked. Note again though that's a choice I made for me - the safest option is still to use a respirator that supplies a known good source of good "external" breathable air.

The clear was the worst in terms of creating a mist in the room and making it hard to see my work clearly at times. Larger fans that moved more air would have helped that I think. I had decent lighthing but could have used even more. I'll attach some photos.

I shot the first coat of sealer about noon on Saturday, worked all through the night and shot the last coat of clear about 9am the next morning. The good folks at SPI (Southern Polyurethanes) advised me that black is the slowest color to dry/flash so it would be a good idea for me to make sure to give it plenty of time between coats - which I did - working towards the long side of the recommended times instead of the short times, so that's probably why it took me so many hours to get all the material on it.

I got what would be considered a "lot" of trash/dust in the clear. Now that I've got the car wet sanded and buffed, I'm happy with the result. If you choose to go this route be aware you're letting yourself in for a significant amount of work. It took me not quite 24 hours to apply all the coatings once the car was masked and ready. The wet sanding and buffing afterwards took me abouth a month - and I used an air sander for "most" of it - and it's not completely finished yet. I still have some areas that need more buffing, some other areas close to edges that I need to sand and buff by hand, and some spots where I can see sanding 'pigtails' that I need to work out. Once I get the car out into the sunlight I'm sure I'll find more spots that need some additional attention --- but for the most part it's "done".

(EDIT: Now that I've read the other posts - duh... Yes, if you can find a booth to rent/use by all means do it. It will save you a lot of work dealing with trash in the paint later, you'll be able to see better, etc. My contraption did a good job of keeping the fumes out of the house, but you could still notice them if you tried - and I've got a terrific understanding and supportive wife :) She wants this thing done too.)

(Another edit: So why do it? For me it was two reasons mostly. One was cost. Even with the additional prep and equipment my expense was nowhere near what it would have cost me for even a medium "show quality" job. I talked to a few restoration shops in the area and the cheapest quote I got, even with me presenting the car to them 'ready to shoot' was over $10,000. The other reason was related to that. I just didn't think that anyone else would take the time and care to do "their best" on it, regardless of how much I paid them.)

Bear
 

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