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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, I have been interested in a long time to learn how to do my own paint work. Nothing fancy, just would like to paint my handles on my truck, and any other items I can color match to the body paint. Where do I start? I have an air compressor, thats a start, but what equipment do I need? any recommendations?
 

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Hey guys, I have been interested in a long time to learn how to do my own paint work. Nothing fancy, just would like to paint my handles on my truck, and any other items I can color match to the body paint. Where do I start? I have an air compressor, thats a start, but what equipment do I need? any recommendations?
For automotive finishes, you want a relatively dust-free area. A paint booth is best, of course, but most of us can't afford to build one. Also, when it comes to paint guns, you get what you pay for in my opinion. Personally, I prefer Sata guns, but they are quite expensive if you're just doing a few parts for your own truck. If you're planning on doing a complete refinish job or two, definetely get the best gun you can afford.
Some other things you'll need:
at the bare minimum, a disposable water separator on your gun..paint and water don't mix but they will screw up your paint job....ask me how I know :rolleyes:
scuffing pads, misc. sand paper, sanding blocks, and grease/wax remover
a good air pressure regualtor AT THE GUN! 50 psi at the compressor does not equal 50 psi at your spray gun..it's amazing how much pressure you lose in a 50 foot hose.
Of course, you'll need to pick a paint supply source as well..I'm assuming you already have one in mind.
Be aware that if you're doing handles and such on an older truck, there may be alternate paint codes for your color. Taking your gas filler door to match to the supplier's paint chips might save you from repainting because you got the wrong color the first time... :)
 

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For small items (like the door handles) you might consider an airbrush. They also work well for pin-stripping and other forms of art work.

I wouldn't try to spray a fender or hood with one though....):h

Also, check out your local community college and see if they offer classes. You may get to practice on your own stuff using their equipment, if you are enrolled in class.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
painting

Thanks for the info. I have the Turbo Power cover that goes over the intake of the truck and I was planning on sanding the surface to a smooth finish and painting it white, the same color as the truck with black letters. I know the cover is pointless but I think if I made it look different it would be pretty cool. Also, I was planning on painting the air dam too. Is there a special chemical that would allow the paint to flex for the air dam?
 

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On the air dam you want to use what's called a flex additive. Depending on what paint system you go with will determine what additive you use, but typically they go in the primer & clear only - *not* the basecoat.
Be carefull with painting that air damn though, not only for release agents that still may be left in the plastic after all these years even, but also for *any* silicone based products you may have used to keep it shiny through the years. It does reak havoc with paint.
As far as a gun for doing smaller stuff goes, devilbiss makes a nice touch up gun for the price. lower compressor draw, smaller fan, etc. than a full sized gun will give you as well. It's called the SRiW and I actually do have that one and a Sata touch up, along with a slew of others, and for touchup work I really can't recommend the devilbiss enough, as you can get it for around 150 bucks if you shop around.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
painting

So Gary, Where would you go to get the stuff? Anywhere online sell the Sata you are talking about? Can I get the flex additive online as well?

Thanks alot for the help. I am learning slowly but I always wanted to try to paint something.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Paint gun difference.

What makes one gun different then the next? I see some for $30 to $40 and the Satas for as little as $150 to $550. What makes them different. What does one do better then the other? For a novice who has never painted before does it make sense to spend so much money when all I want to do is paint handles, and so other exterior parts?
 

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What makes one gun different then the next? I see some for $30 to $40 and the Satas for as little as $150 to $550. What makes them different. What does one do better then the other? For a novice who has never painted before does it make sense to spend so much money when all I want to do is paint handles, and so other exterior parts?
The cheap spray guns are usually non-rebuildable and aren't built to the tight tolerances that the "premium guns" are.
Difference in price has to do with what features the gun has. (The high-end sata has a built-in digital air meter...while this is an awesome gun, it's overkill for what you're doing in my opinion.)

If I were you, I would avoid buying any chemicals for paint online (this includes flex additive) there is usually a haz-mat charge on it to ship that makes it more expensive than just running to your local paint supply and buying it off their shelf.
Also, some of your newer paints have flexadditive in them already, making adding this product un-necessary.
 

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For small items (like the door handles) you might consider an airbrush. They also work well for pin-stripping and other forms of art work.
Can you run primer through an airbrush? I thought it might gum up the nozzle.
 

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Can you run primer through an airbrush? I thought it might gum up the nozzle.
You can do anything with an airbrush you can with a paint gun. You will have to thin what you're shooting in accordance to the nozzle size, of course. A general rule of thumb is to get to the consistancy of milk.

Modelers use a variety of primers in painting plastic or metal.
 

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Thanks. So, in an automotive application like we're talking about here, would you have to apply a couple more coats of primer in order to compensate for thinning it?
 

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Thanks. So, in an automotive application like we're talking about here, would you have to apply a couple more coats of primer in order to compensate for thinning it?
I'm not sure that you would have to apply more. In essance, you only need to cover the surface with the primer. Adding extra coats would only apply if you had to sand the previous coat to remove an imperfection. The paint is a different story - depending on what you are paining. The finnish on your truck is very thin, but there is a thick layer of clear coat over it. If you plan on clear coating what ever you are painting, you would want to:

1 Prime the surface

2 Wet sand with some very fine sand paper (unless as I said earlier you have to remove imperfections)

3 Spray the color coat. 2 coats may be necessary for coverage. If so, depending on the paint, you will either need to spray within a certain time frame or sand between coats.

4 Spray the clear coat.

I have seen clear coat sprayed in layers (my choice) or one thick coat. When spraying thick coats of paint, primer or clear coat - you risk runs and sags. Sometimes these can be fixed with careful sanding, but it's a lot easier if you avoid having them in the first place. Beginners are better off spraying multiple thin coats.

Sanding between coats assures each layer bonding to the previous one. Just make sure you use a very fine sand paper - #600 or higher (I've actually seen 12,000 at hobby shops - but that's for finishing) and be careful not to sand through the coat.

It is best if you can practice on something first so you can develop your spraying technique. Like maybe your neighbor's car when he isn't home...):h

Painting isn't hard - but you have to take your time and be patient. And like the old joke about getting to Carnagie Hall - practice, practice, practice!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
painting

This is good info. I just bought an airbrush kit with compressor and plan to start painting pieces of the truck. First, the turbo power cover, don't need it but if it turns out nice then I'm going to put it on. Any idea if I have to use a special paint foe the heat under the hood??
 

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This is good info. I just bought an airbrush kit with compressor and plan to start painting pieces of the truck. First, the turbo power cover, don't need it but if it turns out nice then I'm going to put it on. Any idea if I have to use a special paint foe the heat under the hood??
Sorry - can't help you out on that one!:confused:
 

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I got a Ingersoll Rand paint gun at TSC that I use as my utility gun. Mostly used when I don't want to load up my 2 qt. HVLP, and when I am not doing automotive grade finishes. Most of the things I am painting are trailers and things like that.

It would also work for these kind of things.
 
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