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  • Paint Question?

    Getting close to getting the old Bird painted. My contract is Matrix base with 5 coats of PPG clear. Now they are recommending a single stage paint job instead. Showed me a car with single stage and it looked good, but I don't want to be out there polishing and buffing to keep it up.
    Since I know there are a lot of white Birds out there, and mine will be Corinthian White, what are your guys thoughts?
    I spent a few hours on the internet comparing opinions and they are all over the place.
    Thought I would ask here also and see what your guys input is.
    Nyles

  • #2
    When I painted my '59 I used PPG single stage. It will probably give you a finish that's closer to the factory finish but it certainly won't pop like using multiple coats of clear.

    John
    John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

    Thunderbird Registry #36223
    jopizz@verizon.net 856-779-9695

    http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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    • #3
      Five coats of clear would be way to thick. Base coat clear coat is the way to go. With a clear coated car you still need to wax 4 times a year, but it takes about a 10th of the time as single stage.
      We paint about 500 cars a year from completes to spot paint, we don't have come backs or redo's.
      Five coats of clear would really be a problem on your door deck and hood edges.
      We really do high end and run of the mill cars to flat out award winners for paint. But really the way a paint job looks is all in the prep of the car before the paint.
      Charley

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      • #4
        Clear coat is the way to go. I just had mine done that way. I had my friend's Galaxie done with single stage ($2000 budget) and it looks good, but nothing like mine ($16,000 budget). It took 1.5 gallons color (Wimbledon White) @ $200/gal and 2 gallons of clear @ $363/gal, plus all the activators, reducers, etc.

        This was after several coats of two-part high build polyester primer on bare metal, block sand for weeks, additional primer as needed, sealer. Then 2 coats of color and 3 coats of clear. He laid it on thick. After a good month of cure, wet sand by hand with 2000 grit then polish with a dual action machine. Figure 400 hours labor.

        According to my paint guy who I trust, there are five grades of clear. After the hundreds of hours of block sanding he only goes with the finest quality clear. Cheaper grades will last five years, but the highest grade will outlast the car.

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        • #5
          Ford simply shoots a 'dusting' of base, which looks real bad. Then they shoot three clear coats over the base and bake at 250F.

          Look at a modern Ford. The paint has no orange peel and needs no wet sanding. My buddy who loves european brands was bragging about their quality. We happen to be riding together in a huge parking lot where a new Mustang was parked next to a new Mercedes. The sun was high and the weather was clear. It was a nice day.

          We both got out and looked at the paint on both cars, paying close attention to details and highlights. By far, the Mustang paint looked more beautiful and it probably cost less money.

          All my buddy could say was, 'Ford sure improved their paint.' Yes, the modern paint process across all Ford car and truck lines is top notch. Ford also uses a water-borne primer to save money (on thinners) and to help the environment. This process requires much tighter temp/humidity control. Remember, rain or shine, summer or winter, Ford is painting every day at a rate of 60 cars per hour on each assembly line and during two shifts. Ford must create and regulate their own painting environment, then they filter the overspray and incinerate the fumes before releasing into the atmosphere.

          I know that too much paint is far worse than not enough. This is one instance where more is not better.
          My latest project:
          CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

          "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
          --Lee Iacocca

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          • #6
            Thanks to those that replied. I think we are all on the same page here, but I value the experience and opinions of members on this site. I did go to the shop today and told them I want 2 stage (base coat and clear coat). I'll be watching them closely as they get ready to paint the car.
            Nyles

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            • #7
              I am planning a "Watson paint", and will do it in my garage. First base silver with white pearl on top and that a layer or two of clear as the base need clear withing 8 hours to be good. Than I will sand it down, mask and paint green base panels ( hence panel paint ... ) and on top of that 3-4 layers of clear so I can sand it down and buff it up. Canīt afford to give it to a paint shop. But hey, this is how they did it back in the days, so I call it "period correct kustom paint"
              Last edited by Anders; April 24th, 2015, 10:10 AM.
              sigpic..."Lil darling Ruth"
              http://www.tbirdregistry.com/#33158

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              • #8
                Anders - Please start a series of pictures for this!! Always a fan of Watson paint jobs and strongly support doing it yourself!! I've painted many cars in my home shop before retiring and the biggest advice I can give you is to take your time and not get in a hurry. Can't wait to see the progression.

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                • #9
                  I have a tread for my car. "Project Ruth" ( http://www.squarebirds.org/vbulletin...ad.php?t=14357 ) where everything will be posted. The problem is that Iīm not as fast and disciplined as I need to be... But on the other hand, my hobby project last longer Epoxiprimer is now on all parts that will have this and I am sanding the engine bay at the moment.
                  sigpic..."Lil darling Ruth"
                  http://www.tbirdregistry.com/#33158

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                  • #10
                    I believe Ford is also electrostaticly painting cars now. Not powder coat, but still positively charging the paint and negatively charging the surface of the part or vice-versa. I did the Piquette plant tour last time I was in Detroit with engineers and we were having a conversation about the quality of paint since it was rolled on the model T. LOL

                    I moon light at a paint shop that wins awards all the time down here and unless it is a kid wanting flat black, nothing is single stage. It just doesn't last and is a pain to keep looking good.

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                    • #11
                      Yes, for decades Ford has electrostatically charged the primer after electro coat. They may have also used it for base but not for clear.

                      None of Ford's paint is two-part. They recirculate each paint color's lines from the Paint Kitchen to the spray booth. Then, they bake the body at 250F for nearly an hour.

                      At the end of the Drive-away Garage there is a repair paint booth where they use electric heaters to cure the paint. 250 degrees is too much for plastic lenses, etc., so they cover all that.
                      My latest project:
                      CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

                      "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
                      --Lee Iacocca

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Anders I agree with Joe take lots of pictures so we can see the various stages of your Watson paint evolving
                        Dano Calgary,Alberta Canada
                        Thunderbird Registry
                        58HT #33317
                        60 HT (Sold )

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