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aronlove

Repainting tips

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Ok so not to sound TOO stupid but

I'm starting to fix up my '78 280z that I bought

for close to nothing, I might add--

and although the body is in halfway decent shape, there are a few little spots in the hood where the PO just painted over.

I'm not planning on going back to the stock color #510

which is like light blue i think... currently car is like teal or something

PO was on CRACK

so I'm looking at like a midnight blue or something

My question is this:

What is the best way to prep this car for repainting? Current paint is finished although not glossy - looks like PO kryloned it on. :rolleyes:

Do i need to get a sanding block/air sander and just go to town on the thing?

also, what would be the best way to smooth out the rough spots? Putty?

Any help would be appreciated. I'll try to post some pics later.

Aaron

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Wipe it down with wax/polish remover then block back (wet sand) the current paint, and undercoat it and see how it looks. Spray putty is good for fixing the rough patches. Work on getting it as perfect as you can in undercoat before attempting to spray the color coat.

If you are going all out for a top quality repaint, take it back to bare metal to find all the nasty surprises that might be lurking under the current paint job. Though if you do that you'll have to re-fix all the problems again. eg. if there's a bog filled dent under the paint, you'll have to re-fill it again.

The key to a good paint job is 99% preparation :)

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If you are serious here and wanting to repaint the Z. From your description, it sounds like the car needs to be taken down to at least the factory primer. First of all , if the finish on it now is rattle can. All of this must come off because the new finish will lift it. There is more to prep for paint than just doing a little sanding and applying ''putty''. When you sand off the old paint you then will find what the ''bumps'' really are . Most likely rust coming through from the back side of the panel. Putty or Bondo used to fill holes will only allow moisture to come though the hole and continue rusting the metal. Holes must be either leaded in or brazed or welded. There are others on this web site far more knowledgeable in painting but since no one else had responded , I thought I would pass on what I know from experience. Prep. is the most important part in painting the car. Another thing DARK colors will show the most flaws on your Z. So unless your Z is flawless I wouldn't paint it Black or Mid Night Blue. Gary

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I highly recommend the Paintucation DVDs showing the skills needed to do what you are looking at doing. There are 8,427 ways to do it wrong and only a few ways of doing it right. Check out www.paintucation.com for info on the DVDs covering most of the stages of a good paint job.

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It took me 2 summers to prep my car for painting! I started to just sand down one of the PO's previous paint jobs, then you start to find putty and flaws...so you sand a little more...then you see a bit of rust you must attend to. Then I media blasted it...then I took a drill and sanding disks to the whole car and before I knew it I was down to bare metal. Then I took care of ALL rust, and got the bodyshop to do the rest of the prep and paint.

It can be a long process if you do it correctly. And you can get in over your head so plan ahead as to what result you'll be happy with. Are you planning to leave in all the glass, interior, etc? Just want a quick repaint over whatever lies beneath? Are you going to paint the engine bay while your at it or settle for different colors in body and under the hood?

Plan ahead before you start and you'll miles ahead of the game. That way whatever you decide can be done right the first time. Just my opinion from my experience.

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What is the danger of taking this long to prep? I know that there some threads that said that prepping should be done immediately prior to painting or rust can start. Since 280z's have such a tendency to rust anyway, should I just wait until I can get the whole sanding/priming done in a weekend? Or is this even possible? :cross-eye

Thanks so much for the tips everyone! I will have to think this through some more. Perhaps I will have to stick to the factory 510 color after all. :devious:

Edited by aronlove
oops

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Having exposed bare metal was the biggest problem with taking a long time, but I wasn't down to bare metal until a year and a half into it. I completely stripped the car down to a rolling chassis and had to take off about 3 layers of paint and some bondo. Before I did that I got new frame rails, floors, rockers put in...so really it wasnt time all spent prepping for paint. Really it only took 2 months once I got down to it. And my neighbor and I worked on this after work and at least one day on the weekends.

Once I did get down to bare metal and there was no rust, I prepped the metal with Metal Ready then cleaned the area and shot rattle can primer on it to protect it while I finished the rest. For the engine bay I took it down to metal prepped the metal with Metal Ready, cleaned it and used POR-15 on it. Then I used a spray gun and shot their 'Tie Coat' primer over it (all products from the same company to ensure proper adhesion).

To be honest most of the work was getting under the wheel wells and inner fender area. There was 36 year old rubber-type coating that media blasting wouldnt touch. I had to use a heat gun/torch and heat it up and scrape it off, then wipe it down, repeat.

Next removing old body filler was a pain in the a$$. Again it was easiest to heat it up and scrape it off. Im glad I took it all off because I found out my drivers door was repaired POORLY and rusted through the repair so I got a newer door. And most importantly, those few little rusted spots got fixed so now I know my paint wont start bubbling up from rust spots.

My car being repaired before and a bit more rusty than it should have been, is probably an exception and I should have started with a cleaner car from the get-go. It was a lot of work to do properly, and quite a few times I wanted to just mask a problem or take a shortcut. But I took my time and did it right. I saved money doing it myself. I learned as I went (I think I learned quite a bit too!). I got to hang out in my garage and drink beer with friends while we 'worked on the car'. I got a whole new set of tools after those couple of years and I (mostly) enjoyed doing it.

Edited by Zak's Z

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Thanks, Zak.

Yep, sound's like I've got some work to do!

As I was already prepared to overhaul the engine, I guess the first step

would be to pull the dang thing out.

My wife isn't going to like not having a garage for her Lincoln but oh well ;)

I'll let you guys know how bad it is once I start sanding.

Thanks again.

-Aaron

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hey man if u really want to do a good job on your car, i would suggest to remove all of you paint, lessing the weight of the car. but what you could do is sand down the paint so that its more or a dull color. to prep for paint you would need a sanding block, with 120 grit sand paper. after you are down clean the area and then u are ready to do body work. then you would also have to wipe down the car with a grease and oil remover.

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Just something to add... I have never heard a bad thing about POR-15. It seems to do the job well. I would suggest getting some if you have not already done so. Good luck with her!

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If you want to go to bare metal, I recomend going to Napa or wherever and grabbing about 5-10 cans of aircraft stripper. Far better than normal paint stripper. Spray on. Wait an hour and scrape off with a putty knife like butter. Put a few drop cloths down b/c that stuff is nasty when it comes off. Then ball them up and dispose of properly.

I would not reccomend hand sanding as it will take you most of your life :) I use aircraft stripper first and foremost then a air powered D/A sander. Be careful not to use too course of gritt as sand marks are a bitch to get out. Bondo is best applied to bare metal. After all that, I hit the car with etching primer that bonds to the metal. Then an epoxy primer. I prefer PPG but you will need an compressor and a decent paint gun. I started with a cheap $100 kit with 2 HVLP guns and a detail gun but have since stepped it up to a $450 Devilbiss paint gun.

The key is prep work. Cutting corners will cost you in the long run. It just depends on how far you want to go. I pretty much taught myself with some advice from a few local pros.

I also agree with POR15. It's the best for rust prevention.

As far as to how long is acceptable for a car to sit before paint..... It can sit as long as you want if it is indoors. All you have to do is scuff up the old primer (i.e. the primer you may have sprayed from previous years work) and lay another coat of fresh primer after you pre-clean the scuffed surface. You may also want to grab some tack cloths which are pieces of fabric with light adhesive to remove dust and particles. If the car sits outdoors, that is different. Most primers are penetrable and will dmage the body if outside for too long. That is also why I use PPG epoxy primer as it is the most durable of primers from what I have been told.

Whenever you are going to shoot, you want to have laid down new primer within a few days prior to shooting. If you shoot over old primer you may have trouble with the new finish.

Hope this helps :)

Please PM me if you have more specific questions. I have painted a number of cars now in my garage.

Edited by Zero Z

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Wow Jim!!! That's a great site. I commend you for the amount of time that must have taken. Spot on with your information too. Well done.

Cheers,

Brandon

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Thanks, Zak.

Yep, sound's like I've got some work to do!

As I was already prepared to overhaul the engine, I guess the first step

would be to pull the dang thing out.

My wife isn't going to like not having a garage for her Lincoln but oh well ;)

I'll let you guys know how bad it is once I start sanding.

Thanks again.

-Aaron

Aaron, I did my complete job in my 2 car garage and my Wife's car was always able to be in the garage at night. Especially a good thing in Winter. I went to Harbor Fright and bought a set of dollies . with all four wheels on them I just pulled the car to the center of the garage to work on and pushed her back by the work bench after clean up . With these I could also rotate the Z end for end for better lighting on the area I was working on. Makes clean up easier also. With the engine out it is vary easy to roll the Z around, a little harder once the engine and tranny is installed but still a can do with no problem.

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Thanks so much for all the tips! This site ROCKS! :cool:

Well, I guess first step is prepping the garage for the mess the aircraft

stripper is going to make...

I'll post some pics so everyone can see

He he

-aaron

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Just be careful and do not get that stuff in your eyes. It burns like hell even when you get overspray on your skin. I love the drop cloth method b/c there really isn't any cleanup. Good luck on your project!! :)

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Regarding the aircraft paint stripper. Get some "good" chemical resistant gloves. I used it to strip a car to bare metal. I started with "industrial" thickness vinyl gloves and after 30 minutes could feel it burning my skin. That problem was solved when I ordered a pair of the proper gloves from McMaster-Carr.

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I just suck it up and pay careful attention to wind direction. The first time I got a cross wind and got blasted in the face by a miniscule amount of the overspray was the last :)

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Wow Jim!!! That's a great site. I commend you for the amount of time that must have taken. Spot on with your information too. Well done.

Cheers,

Brandon

Thanks. :) :)

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