Painting Info


New Member
Ok so a few have asked for this and since im painting a few things for a friend i figured i would shoot some pics and do a little write up to go along with it.

This is by no means a complete guide to painting as there are some things that a novice cant do so the information pertaining to those things was intentionally left out as trying them for a novice would surely end in failure and wasted money. If you find yourself in a situation needing info not covered here feel free to PM me and I will help the best i can without actually being able to put my eyes and hands on it. With that said lets get started,

First off lets talk about a little safety. First and foremost if your garage is attached to your house find somewhere else to spray paint because it will get into your house and your wife will kick you butt! Next if you have anything with an open flame in your garage do not spray untill it is out! remember you are atomising some pretty flamable stuff and you will go BOOM!

Now on to the safety gear you will need.

a tyvek suit which can be had at homedepot in the paint dept. (you need this because all the bad things in the paint you will be spraying can be absorbed thru the skin and will make you verry sick)

Nitrile gloves again you will get this stuff on your hands and again it will be absorbed thru the skin and latex will melt with the chemicals in the paint.

I personally use a spray sock over my head again to cover as much skin as possible.

Most importantly a respirator with cartridges rated for paint vapor/insectisides you DO NOT WANT TO BREATHE THIS STUFF!!!! I know more painters that didnt wear respritory protection that now have lung cancer or are dead than ones that are healthy! so protect yourself or dont do it.

here are some of the meterials you will need from right to left: Adhesion promoter needed when doing plastic parts, base coat,urethane reducer,wax and grease remover,clear coat and catalyst, and the epoxy primer and catalyst. You will also need various grits of sandpaper not in the picture. 220 for removing big sctatches or chipping paint 320 to remove the 220 scratches and 400 for final sanding before primer.

Now to prep your parts the steps will be determined by the condition of the part before you start. Now if you have a scratched up or chipped up piece you wil need to smooth the edges of the chips with the 220 then move on to the 320 and then to the 400. now if its not that deeply scratched you can take them out with just the 400 grit. sand untill defects are gone or if it is a new part untill all shine is gone. Remember to sand from multiple angles to ensure you dont make grooves that will show up in the final product and never hold the sandpaper with just your bare hand as you will leave finger tracks in your piece, at the verry least wrap the paper arround a sponge if it is a part with alot of contours or use a sanding block.

After you have the part completely sanded you will need to clean the part. First wash the part off with water then blow dry with compressed air. After you have ALL the water off the part (remember one drop of water can ruin your paint job) go over the part with the wax and grease remover. When you do this you will need 4 paper towels 2 for putting the remover on and 2 for wiping it off. DO NOT LET IT DRY ON THE PART.Wear gloves because this stuff will take all the oils out of your skin and that dosent feel too good!

Now if painting plastic like bumper covers,door handles, ect.. you will need this step if not you can skip this one. Spray your pieces with adhesion promoter it takes 2 light coats with about 10 min inbetween.

After you adhesiom promoter is dry you can move on to the next step which is priming.

Now this is an epoxy primer which is used over bare metal,body filler or bare plastics. when mixing follow the ratio on the can.This perticular product uses 2:1. Two parts primer one part catalyst. now when mixing this stuff its not just a mix and shoot you need to let it sit for 10-15 min after mixing in the catalyst to activate the primer. Now if you have a part that is already painted and the paint is in good condition you can skip this step if you know that it is a urethane paint if your unsure use the epoxy primer to ensure base coat compatibility. There are several different types primers and each has its own use. Now if you were doing an entire vehicle and looking for a show quality job you would be using a filler primer and then blocking the entire vehicle to ensure complete flatness. Ok now on to priming the part with epoxy primer. Apply 2 wet coats of the primer with 20 mn between the coats. Let the primer dry for approx 4-5 hrs before moving on to the next step of the process.

this is what your parts should look like after priming.

Ok now after your primer is cured about 4-6 hrs for an epoxy primer a little less for non catalized primer surfacers you need to sand the pieces again with at least 400 but the final result will be better if you use 600.The final sanding grit depends on the type of paint and what the manufacturer recomends, this info can be found on the manufacturers web site under product info. This info also contains mixing info, what additives if any can be used in the paint as well as if teh paint is bake dry compatible. After sanding it is time to mix your base coat. Here is what you will need

you will also need your ratio cup again to mix this properly do not mix by eye use either a ratio cut, ratio stick, or if you have one a viscosity spoon which is better left to the pros. Most all urethan base coats use a 1:1 mix ratio which is one part paint and one part reducer. The reducer shown in the pic is a medium reducer which refers to its evaporation rate. You must use the proper reducer for the temperature you will be spraying in. When it is hot above 80-85 degrees you need a slow reducer, anything under 80 but above 60 you need a medium reducer if it is below 60 use a fast reducer and finally if your area is under 40 dont spray. You can use different reducers than that listed for different effects but again this trick is better left to the pros so i wont elaborate on this as to not encourage anyone to mess up with expensive meterials. Now after mixing always strain the paint into your gun dont go straight from the cup to the gun as sometimes when the paint is mixed it gets larger pieces in it that wont go thru the gun. Now if you are spraying a metallic mix all that you think you will need at once, since this inst catalized dont worry about using it in a hurry and you can even store mixed paint in an airtight container DO NOT PUT BACK IN CAN WUTH UN REDUCED PAINT as you will throw off you mix ratios next time you go to use it. Thoroughly stir the paint in the cup before adding to gun, again if metallic make sure you you swish the paint in the gun as you spray to ensure the metallic particles are evenly suspended in the paint. Start your first coat you wil not get complete coverage on the first coat so dont even bother trying just make sure you spray an even coat overlapping the last pass by 1/2 with the next pass across the part. Always start the flow of paint before you reach the edge of the part and go all the way across the part and stop paint flow AFTER you have passed the end of the piece. If you painting a whole car you will get a work out doing this but most cars you can make it all the way down one side in 3 steps so it isnt that bad. This is done to ensure you dont have areas that get hit more than the rest from stopping and starting. this is what the first coat will look like:

You will notice the primer still showing thru in places this is normal dont worry. After your first coat is sprayed take a break get out of the fumes as the piece needs to "flash" for 15min before the next coat. After your flash time put you r respirator back on and hook the air to the gun again and give it a second coat using the method listed above you will notice alot more coverage this time just keep the coats even. The part will look like this after coat number 2

A little tip for metallics and painting multiple pieces dont change any gun settings between parts because even the slightest air pressure change will affect how the metallic particles "lay" and will change the look. With that being said if you have small light pieces that want to blow away when you shoot them hold them with your gloved hand in an inconspicous place that will be hidden when the part is installed to keep control of it instead of lowering the air pressure as this wil affect paint atomisation and metallic dispersement if shooting a metallic. You will want to spray at least 3 coats depending on the color and color of primer used you may need 4 or more. The way to determine complete coverage is with a "trouble light" all this is, is a bright hand held light you go over the pieces with. Hold the light cloce to the piece and any areas not "hiding" all the way will show up. To get a feel for this you may want to do this every coat even after the firs one so you will know what a thin area looks like. I didnt take pics of the 3rd and 4th coats as there wasnt enough of a difference for the camera to pick up.

Once you have your base coat done you need to let the parts "flash" for 1hr to give the solvents time to evaporat out of the base coat> If you dont do this you will trap solvent under the clear and you will end up with a condition known as "solvent pop" which looks like white spots under the clear and there is no repair for it but sanding it and starting over which you dont want to do just for the fact you just put a lot of effort into this so let if dry the hour. Now is the time to remove any defects from the base such as runs,bugs, or dust nibs. To do this you will need at least 800grit sandpaper sand the defect untill smooth and if you havent created a light spot there is no need to recoat with the base unles you can see it is noticably lighter with your trouble light. The ares sanded will be lighter when dry so when you look at ti under the light wet the area so it has the same sheen as the rest of the part re coat if needed.

Now on to the part that really matters the clear. you will need these:

this is an economy clear that only requires a catalyst if you want to splurge or are doing a whole repaint on a car you may want to use this

this is a higher end clear that requires a catalyst and a reducer it runs about 225 for the gallon of clear alone plus the reduced and catalyst where as the first one runs about $100 for the clear and catalyst. The higher end clear is a bit softer and when buffed looks like a mirror but it is harder to work with since it has a multiple part mix.

Again the catalyst will depend on temp. but just like wiht the reducer you cna mix up the catalyst for different effects but that is beyond the scope of this beginners how to so i will leave those tricks out since it would be verry easy for a novice to mess up using them.

Just like the epoxy primer once you mix the clear and the catalyst let it sit for about 10 min. to ensure full activation then stir again and strain into your gun. Spray even wet coats of clear but not too wet since the clear has more solids than the base and will sag and run easier. If you spray too dry you will have massive ammounts of orangepeel you will have to sand off and buff out. I suggest practicing a few passes on something before you go after your parts. Again use the same spray technique as before but you wil want to make just a bit thicker coats with the clear. Here is what your parts should look like after the first coat:

Let your parts "flash" for 20 min this time before the next coat. You will need 2-3 good wet coats of the economy clear but only 2 of the high end since its solids content is higher and builds a thicker film with each coat which is why it is harder to work with. Now high use parts like door handles need at least 3 coats just for wear resistance. After your clear coats this is what your parts should look like

The pics dont do the gloss justice at all trust me these things are mirrored. Now you need to let your parts dry for 12-16 hrs unless you have a booth with bake capability then your stuff can be ready in as little as 30 min. Now after it has cured for the recomended time you can either install your parts or if you have orange peel or runs you can sand them out and buff. I'm sorry but i didnt have these problems so i wont have any pics of the fixes but i will still explain them for you. First off you will want to sand the affected area with 1500grit paper i know this is time consuming but dont cheat. after you have removed the desired defect you will want to remove the 1500gr scratches with 2000 once you have those scratches out the part needs to be buffed. You will want to use 3M perfect it polish as it isnt too harsh and still leaves a brilliant shine. you will need a buffer for this or good strong arms as it will take a while by hand. With a buffer you will want to use a foam pad and no more than 2000 rpm on the machine. Do not bear down on the machine let it do the work or you will burn the paint and have to re clear the parts. After your done install your parts and sit back and enjoy that since of acomplishment and pride of your work (that is if they look good lol). Now remember NO WAX for at least 30 days on freshly painted parts. you dont even wnat to use soap on them for the first 2 weeks if you can help it at all. The reason behind this is the wax will pervent any remaining solvents from getting out of the paint. After the 30 day period treat like any other painted surface on your vehicle.

as always if you need to know anything else just pm me and ill be glad to help and if you dont feel comfortable doint this on your own i can take care of it for you verry reasonably as you may never know what kind of deal that can be worked out.

up next will be body repair when i get arround to removing the few dings in my truck. that writeup will be much much longer in comparison to this one as there are lots of steps to body repair. Since i dont have any major dents in my truck alot of the body info will be left out unless paul wants me to do his since he has some deeper dents in his


New Member

Nice WriteUp. I expected someone to say something smart arsed ....Like use a "Small brush"...LOL