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Repainting and stripping


32Pontiac6
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I am in the process of re-restoring my 1932 Pontiac Sport Coupe. Back in the late 70's I painted it with lacquer in my garage. Not a bad job but over 30 years has taken its toll and it now time to repaint with the proper original colors. I don't plan to do the painting myself this time. I am not shooting for Pebble Beach quality but do want a car that will show well in AACA events and local shows. For the most part the car will be a tourer and I also want something that is durable.

I do have some questions of those of you who have been down this road lately. So here it is:

1) I have been told by some who value quality work that you can get a good job by taking the car to the commercial places like Maaco, Miracle, etc. if you do the prep and provide the paint. They are supposedly good at applying color but not great at prep. Anybody take this route before? Happy with it?

2) What was the paint system you used?

3) My plan was to strip the item, have them prime, I prepare the surface, they prime again(?), I do final surface prep, and then have them spray color. Does this sound like a good plan?

4) What did you use to strip the old paint? Chemical stripping or some type of abrasive blasting?

Any help and feedback would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Rob

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Hi Rob

Im workin go a 28 dodge victory 6 - 4 dr I have used chemical , sanding, and sand blasting . I even built a tumbler that I put small parts in like a rock polisher and use sand blasting sand and turn it on and 6 hrs later clean parts. I was thinking along the same lines as you . do all the prep and have a body shop paint in there booth. I hope to be there in the near future. Good luck with your restoration. Kevin

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  • 3 weeks later...

Look for a good locally owned body shop that has been around a few years. Go talk to them, most shops will let you do what you are asking. They will tell you what to do and what products they like to use. Most painting systems recommend primers sealers and body fillers. If you do not use the correct products in the correct order you stand the chance of all kinds of problems in your finish coat. It is getting harder and harder to do a cheap paint job. You will have hundreds just in materials. On the good side almost every body person I have ever met loves cars, get to be friends, spend the time and money you will be happy with the results.

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I am in the process of re-restoring my 1932 Pontiac Sport Coupe. Back in the late 70's I painted it with lacquer in my garage. Not a bad job but over 30 years has taken its toll and it now time to repaint with the proper original colors. I don't plan to do the painting myself this time. I am not shooting for Pebble Beach quality but do want a car that will show well in AACA events and local shows. For the most part the car will be a tourer and I also want something that is durable.

I do have some questions of those of you who have been down this road lately. So here it is:

1) I have been told by some who value quality work that you can get a good job by taking the car to the commercial places like Maaco, Miracle, etc. if you do the prep and provide the paint. They are supposedly good at applying color but not great at prep. Anybody take this route before? Happy with it?

2) What was the paint system you used?

3) My plan was to strip the item, have them prime, I prepare the surface, they prime again(?), I do final surface prep, and then have them spray color. Does this sound like a good plan?

4) What did you use to strip the old paint? Chemical stripping or some type of abrasive blasting?

Any help and feedback would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Rob

Rob soda blasting is the best way to remove old paint. It's main disadvantages are it won't remove rust and all the soda residue must be washed off or air blasted off followed by a tack cloth wipe down. Main advantages are; soda won't hurt bright meal, rubber window gaskets, or glass. Also soda won't warp flat surfaces from heat build up common with some media if the guy with the gun stays in one place or area too long. Takes a pretty healthy compressor to soda blast as it needs to be rated at minimum 10 cfm @ 90 psi; so if you don't have pretty much a moose of a compressor running on 208/230 single or three phase current you probably won't be doing soda blasting in the garage. (your wife will be much happier if you don't blast in the garage anyway as soda dust can migrate everywhere into places you never knew existed.)

As for the right paint for your car, GM used nothing but acrylic lacquer paints from around 1928 through the 1970s, maybe into the 1980's. Acrylic Lacquer paint has become more expensive than other systems but is still within reason when compared, single stage urethane, or BC/CC. The most economical paint system is acrylic enamel.

My personal opinion is if you want the finish on any vintage car to look period correct you have to use the paint system used when the car was produced.

Jim

Edited by Jim_Edwards (see edit history)
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Rob: I have been down this road a number of times in the past 7 years. A porsche, a mustang, a truck and now my 57 Roadmaster.

Here is what I have learned one way or the other:

1) Chemically strip the panels. Why? Well sand blasting beats on the surface of sheet metal too much and tends to warp it unless you are an angel at blasting. Soda Blasting leaves a tough residue to neutralize properly and impossible to neutralize in tight spots, recesses and joints. Common take on this today is if your gonna soda blast only blast large flat surface areas and protect the other tight areas then chemical strip them. The other problem is a lot of the paint makers will not give you a guarantee if you soda due the residue the resulting problems they have had to deal with in the recent past dealing with soda.

2) Prep your own vehicle but be prudent. A lot of shops will charge you almost the same amount to just spray the car as doing all the work just because

they want the whole project or whatever. I have run into this "attitude" very often. So be wise to it.

3) You can get acrylic lacquer at TCP: Acrylic Lacquer Product Line

The formulation is now different than back when because they have taken the lead out of the toners and use something more friendly but the colors are good. This is the product I am going to spay so give it a look.

4) If you do use lacquer and you should if you want true OEM look, then don't strip it at all and just break coat sand it, prime and shoot with your new TCP lacquer. If you strip all the way down I would then take advantage of a catalyzed single stage acrylic urethane product. These look just like lacquer jobs as per lacquers depth and tone or pretty darn close compared to your other options out there. Use House of Color KD-2000 primer. This is the best I have used for flow, build-up and lasting durability. Just before you have it sprayed either by yourself or others have a can of House of Color's Sealer and spray it before putting down the 1st coat of urethane.

Finally, get a good spray man to do it who knows how to finesse and control his medium, not Maaco, Earl Shrive or some other slam dunk outfit. They most likely do not have the spray experience working with acrylic lacquers and better urethane systems even as forgiving as they are. They spray a lot of quick mix and set paint systems at these outfits and don't really have the custom craftsmanship thing down to accomplish your bidding to be happy. Their techniques are production line orientated.

Hope this helps you.

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