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Old 10-27-2008, 09:34 AM   #1
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Painting your car; The easy way out!

Please note that if you are a professional painter, or body man... you should stop reading NOW!

My methods Don't really follow professional form, but my cars turn out looking Decent.

If you're looking to make your daily driver, or track car look better this post is for you, if you're building a show car, call a professional.

I'll do this in steps, if you need any clarification feel free to pm me.

1: Gather all supplies.

I go to my local paint and body supply store, you'll have to look into where yours is.

Choose your color.
Choose your paint (I use U-tech... the "sam's choice" of auto paints)

They will help you out with what exactly you need, which will be activators, reducers etc..

You'll also need clear coat, this is usually only sold by the gallon so you may have leftovers.

While you're there, grab some sandpaper and a good rattle can filler primer, I like the red stuff.

I usually buy 6" DA stickyback paper, but it depends on the sander you're using.

I buy a range of papers 120,220,320... and get some 800,1000,2000 wet sander paper while you're at it.

You'll also need some red scotch brite pads

Buy a gallon of Thinner to clean your guns, and messes and some wax and grease remover to wipe the car down before paint.

Also, Ask them for a few one quart mixing cups, and mixing sticks.

And, if you're fixing dents, get some Body filler.


2. Gather your tools.

-1 black sharpie
-1 DA sander (round orbital sander)
-Filler Spreaders (the come in a three pack usually, that should be sufficient)
-Rags... a whole lot of rags that you'll be able to throw away
-Any hand tools you'll need for taking lights, bumpers etc. off
-1 paint gun, doesn't need to be the best quality, we rarely use our "good" gun
- Air compressor
-You may find that you need some other things, these are just the basics.

3. Walk around your car with the sharpie, circling any areas that need body work.

4. Remove all lights, mirrors, body panels etc. that you want out of the way.

5. Use the 320 paper on your DA and get the paint scuffed up where you need to apply filler.

6. Mix up your filler and spread it over the dents...


The smoother you spread, the easier the sanding will be. (the more hardener you add, the less time you have to work, I usually add just a few drops, enough to change the color of your filler, but not over power it. You'll figure out how much to mix as you go. It really depends on how bad your dents are.

7. While you wait for that to dry, get out your scotch brite pads

Start scuffing all of the rest of the paint with them...just get the shine away. Be careful of your window trim and such if you care about it.

8. By now you should be ready to sand your body work.

If you spread it terribly you'll want to start with a rougher paper, but just keep sanding until you get it smoother enough to your liking.

I usually finish it up with the 320 grit.

Some prefer to use a board sander, but I'm good with the DA, we're not going for perfection here.

9. If you need to reapply filler to areas, do it...


You can apply as many times as you need to to get it right.

10. Once the body work looks good enough to you, get all of your windows taped up.

this is common sense, tape up anything that shouldn't have paint on it.

You can use any kind of masking tape, but the blue stuff seems to work the best.

I'll use newspaper to cover large areas, but always use the tape to get your trim covered nicely.

Also, if you like your wheels and tires the color that they are cover them.

11. Get out your filler primer.

Spray over all of your body work, and any part of the body that you had to sand down. This stuff is thick so don't spray a ton too quickly.

That will show if your body work needs more attention...If it still looks decent in primer you're ready to move on.

12. once the primer dries, take the scotch brite over it to get it all smoothed out.

13. If everything is looking all nice and smooth we're ready for paint!

14. Cover anything in your garage that shouldn't get over spray on it

Make sure you've got some decent ventilation. The fumes are strong and you'll probably annoy your neighbors with this, but hey... you'll have a nice car in a few hours.

15. Take a few clean rags and your wax and grease remover and wipe the entire car down..


If a rag gets dirty get a new one. You want the car clean. Do a good job at this, it'll save you some hassle in the end.

16.You're ready to mix paint.

Most paints are different, but mine is always mixed 4:1:1... you'll find the ratio on the label.

4 parts paint, 1 part activator 1 part reducer (or whatever your mix ratio is)

Your mixing cups should have a designated area for 4:1:1 (or whatever your mix ratio is)

Decide how much paint you want, if you're painting a whole car, mix the whole quart

the cups are set up so that below your ratio area, there are numbers, follow common sense here

there will be three staggered numbers across your ratio area starting with 1's at the bottom and going to 6's at the top.

pick your amount, start by adding your paint.

say you pick 4's... add the paint to the 4 line in your ratio area first, then the next largest increment, my next two are 1's so it doesn't matter I'll add the activator to the next 4, then the reducer to the next 4.

make sense?

Stir it well.

17. Time to spray

Pour your paint into you gun. Make sure the vent on the top of the gun is open when you put the lid on.

Use a piece of cardboard of something and get your gun setup... spray it and adjust the settings on the gun until you've got a nice fan of spray going.

Start with the roof...your don't want to lean in fresh paint on the doors to get to it later.

You'll figure out what works for you with spraying... I can't really explain how to do it, you've just gotta get a feel for it. Go lightly first and then go back and get it covered.

Don't go too heavy or you'll get runs, and runs are death.
You'll run of of paint a few times, Have someone on hand to mix as you're getting low.

Just pop the lid off of the gun occasionally to check your status.

Once the car is covered to your liking you're good with this step.


18. CLEAN YOUR GUN

I always dump thinner into the cup, and wipe it out. Repeat this until you're good.

Then, I'll pour more into the cup and spray it through the gun until it's spraying clean.

If you want to get really technical you can tear the gun apart and clean the insides. If you care about your gun you'll do this.

Mine is old and dying so I cheat.

19. Now, You need to make a decision; How good do you want this too look?


You should wait until the paint dries, I like to let it go over night and wetsand it before clear.

You can simply clear it, but it won't be quite as nice.

And, you'll probably have some flaws that you'll want to wetsand and fix up first anyway.

If things look good just go over the car with 1000 grit, don't sad through or you'll be mixing more paint.

Do this by hand, just get it nice and smooth.

If you've got imperfections you may need to use more of a grit, for runs and such.

If you're smart enough to get this far, you'll figure it out.

Once you're all sanded, you're ready for a wipe down.

take a very lightly dampen rag with wax and grease remover and wipe the car down again.

Do a test spot first to make sure you're not taking paint away with this.

If you are, tun and buy a tack cloth (walmart has them) and wipe the car over with that.

Again, just make sure it's clean before you spray

20. You're ready for clear.

Follow the mixing instructions above for paint.

Clear is usually only two parts, so this should be simple.

Spray the car, again not too thick or it'll run.

Let it tack up and re-coat it as many times as you'd like.

21. CLEAN YOUR GUN!!!

22.. Either let it dry and put it back together, or let it dry, wetsand and buff, then put it together.

That's all personal preference, I always put the car together and wetsand and buff a week or so later.

23. ENJOY!!!!!

I'm sure I was vague in areas, I forget that you guys have never done this.

If you have any questions feel free to contact me.

Again, I am not a professional...Just a car guy that happens to be too cheap to pay someone to do something I'm capable of doing.

View this photo album to see some in progress pics of this process;
http://viewmorepics.myspace.com/inde...lbumId=2292310

good luck-
Jason.
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Last edited by FazdaGt; 10-27-2008 at 10:22 AM.
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:40 AM   #2
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My Eclipse daily driver does need a repaint...
What is the best way of creating a dust free environment so that **** doesn't get under the paint?
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:40 AM   #3
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sounds good. ill be calling you, haha.
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:44 AM   #4
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excellent write up. how long would you say to wait before primer than paint? this might have been one of those vague parts you mentioned
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:47 AM   #5
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nice
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:48 AM   #6
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haha, sounds good pete.

erik, the primer is sandable in about fifteen minutes.
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:58 AM   #7
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how much to paint my car
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Old 10-27-2008, 11:12 AM   #8
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how much to paint my car
If you do repaint go black!
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Old 10-27-2008, 10:45 AM   #9
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Great write-up Jason, I'm gonna sticky this in the tech section for you!
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Old 10-27-2008, 10:54 AM   #10
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Thats a great write up. Only thing i previewed before was that after the prep work some folks with big enough space, even in a garage have built an enclosed environment via plastic curtains to stop the dust while painting. I believe dust under paint and clear coat is the killer of a paintjob. Right?
Iv always wanted to do this to my beater truck one day to refresh the paint. Hell, maybe even the hood and front of my STI on day.
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Old 10-27-2008, 11:06 AM   #11
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are you using a gravity feed (top feed) or siphon (bottom feed)? Im asking because i already own a bottom feed and i want to try this i just dont know if my bottom feed will work well for this job.
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Old 10-27-2008, 11:31 AM   #12
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thanks doug... this project is why its taking me so long to respond with your answers...

i use a top feed gun, i have no experience with the bottom feeds.

as for dust, yes its simple to build a makeshift booth... i'm just lazy and have had no major issues.

right now, i'm not interested in painting anyone else's car. i'll be happy to help you guys out with tips and info...but this is fun for me. Making it a job will ruin it.
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Old 10-27-2008, 05:10 PM   #13
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thanks doug... this project is why its taking me so long to respond with your answers...

i use a top feed gun, i have no experience with the bottom feeds.

as for dust, yes its simple to build a makeshift booth... i'm just lazy and have had no major issues.

right now, i'm not interested in painting anyone else's car. i'll be happy to help you guys out with tips and info...but this is fun for me. Making it a job will ruin it.
Gotcha.. no big.. just when you have time I need them :P

Ballin' on a budget.. keep up the good work and let's see some pics of my old truck already!
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Old 10-27-2008, 12:34 PM   #14
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I should repait the scooby black and white CUSTOM STYLE LoL
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Old 10-27-2008, 04:46 PM   #15
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you're right... being a professional really messes up the reading. lol. those are the basics that just "git 'er dunn!!" haha.
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Old 10-27-2008, 05:32 PM   #16
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you're right... being a professional really messes up the reading. lol. those are the basics that just "git 'er dunn!!" haha.
exactly...

I mean I have the know how to do it "right" but it's not worth the time when the car is more than likely gonna wind up in a wall a time or two or three...

and doug, kyle and i lack motivation to work on the truck... it looks sweet as is we just need to do a little more welding and install our big flares..
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Old 10-28-2008, 09:29 AM   #17
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did you notice a big difference on which colors are harder to get to turn out nice? ive always heard black is hard to do, but i was just wondering your opinion
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Old 10-28-2008, 11:34 AM   #18
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did you notice a big difference on which colors are harder to get to turn out nice? ive always heard black is hard to do, but i was just wondering your opinion
every color has its nightmare scenario as far as trying to get it to turn out nicely and having things go wrong. black is very easy to spray, but is very difficult to finish off. white is actually a bit tough to spray because its tough to see coverage, and dirt nibs can show up as black dots and cant be sanded out of the clear... but generally white is very easy to finish sand and buff. reds and blues and greens can go either way (there are sooo many different ones).

silver metaillics can be extremely difficult to spray and prep for. you see everything. sand scratches, DA marks, wavy body work, etc. you'll see everything because of how the metallics flop. every inperfection turns out looking darker silver, so it shows up easily. it's also very easy to stripe metallics. if you get a heavy hand on a few passes, you'll see stripes. if your gun isn't set up properly, you'll see stripes. lol. it's tough. but then again, sanding/buffing silver is easy.

like i said, every color has its issue.
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Old 10-28-2008, 09:38 AM   #19
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idk if this was mentioned but how did you remove the moldings cleanly?
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Old 10-28-2008, 11:40 AM   #20
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So sand the whole car to ~320 before primer?
then rub with scotch brite? wuts that?
then paint
then wet sand at 1000?
then clear, then we sand again at (1000?) and buff?
AWESOME write up
This is exactly what I was looking for
Thank you so much
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