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How to learn how to paint?

Old 03-21-2019, 12:19 PM
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Default How to learn how to paint?

I have tried spray painting and own a couple of spray guns but I just suck at it. You guys that have learned di you just practice a lot, have someone that took the time to teach you, attended a class, etc?

I actually want to possibly paint my Yukon Denali. It doesn't have any rust but has a lot of places where the paint has come off. I know there is an art to masking and all kinds of little tips and short cuts to masking along with painting. It's black and I know black is hard to paint because it shows every flaw.

We have a local vocational school that has a body shop so I am going to check out what they may be able to offer as far as training. I'm thinking they probably want you to take a full blown semester or more but I won't know until I check it out.
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:11 PM
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See what kind of arrangement it takes to get the vocational school to use it as a project
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:17 PM
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It's nice to see you posting again.
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:21 PM
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you tube is your best friend! paint and body is all about the prep work. shooting the paint is the easy part!
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:22 PM
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I painted a car many years ago (way before youtube). It was a heck of a lot of work, but turned out pretty good. By far the most work is in prep.

I remember thinking at the time that I wouldn't do it again tomorrow, but maybe someday. Someday hasn't come yet...
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:25 PM
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Watch Short Dog. He'll show you.
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:26 PM
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GREAT to see you back, Russ! Haven't seen you since last week in Walmart ...
Did they charge you for the chips?



And I don't know NUTHIN' 'bout paintin' a car. Are you painting the CAMARO to look like a MUSTANG?

Regards,
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:32 PM
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I’m a house painter but I have done a ton of spray work too. Car painting is a completely different world than painting most anything else. Reducers, clear coats, solvents, cleaning your equipment etc. like most anything else I guess, there is a learning curve. It is not as easy as someone that knows what they are doing will make it look. I got very good with a cup gun and even with an HVLP, but it doesn’t just happen.It comes with Practice, trial and error ( plenty of error)

My advive would be to try and get someone that knows how to, do it for you. Unless you intend to make a full time hobby or career out if it. It will take some doing to get good at it.
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:37 PM
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I have sprayed an old car that was worth about $500 with auto paint, and an old boat with Interlux perfection epoxy paint, and some kitchen cabinet doors with a very high grade furniture quality lacquer. All turned out ok by my standards but no way I would consider doing it on any customer's items.

Best I can suggest is to buy extra of the product you are using and find some old car parts to prep and try out you skills on. I am friends with a very good body shop owner. He only allows two guys to paint, but they are looking at "perfect" being almost good enough.
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Old 03-21-2019, 02:45 PM
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Russ, I applaud your enthusiasm but automotive paints are not cheap, not quality matetials anyways.

I would find an experienced bodyman/painter that is willing to spend some time teaching you before attempting what your going to do.

What’s the FMV of the subject vehicle?
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Old 03-21-2019, 03:02 PM
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When I first started spraying in the cabinet biz almost 40 years ago, I thought I'd never get it. Lots of runs and "holidays", but I eventually got better. Practice, practice, practice!

A pressure pot will probably be easier to use than a cup gun.
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Old 03-21-2019, 03:05 PM
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Take the class!!! Good way to meet new friends too!
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Old 03-21-2019, 03:50 PM
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Maaco. One and done
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Old 03-21-2019, 04:05 PM
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Any plastic on the vehicle will have to have flex added to the paint or you run the risk of spider webbing should the plastic be "flexed."
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Old 03-21-2019, 04:13 PM
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I don't know from Shinola about painting but a good friend of mine is an unbelievable car builder. He restored and matched the paint job on a vintage motorcycle to go in the Barbers Museum (largest Motorcycle Museum in the world) and just got through painting a 1956 Chevy resto-rod ($200K+). Just from listening to him I would give the following observations (real car painters chime in):
1) Surface preparation is more important than the finish painting. If the prep is bad the best paint will still be crap
2) Environment is just as important as finish painting. Dust, Too Hot, Too Cold, Too much Moisture.....etcetera can all screw up the paint.
3) Make sure all the components of your paint system are compatible. Preferably use all products from one manufacturer or recommended compatible products. Metal prep, Primer, Color. and Clear all chemically react to each other and while it may not matter much for a real cheap paint job you can get issues for a top tier job like hazing.
4) As you sand the coats, be patient. Make sure you have even and complete coverage (sand and spray) and with the correct grit, Too coarse and you get scratches. Too fine or bad coverage and it doesn't adhere properly.
5) Mixing the paint Is where a lot of the talent is. It is almost like a black art. Study, talent and experience is the only thing that will work here,
My buddy would tell you he could go to the local trade school and find a hand full of kids who can wave a paint gun better than he can but none of them can paint a car for anything.
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Old 03-21-2019, 04:25 PM
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IMG 0203

IMG 0720

You can only get good results if you have equipment capable of producing good results. AIR, AIR, AIR. You need a compressor that will supply the correct pressure at the tip and the volume required.

It also helps to be a drunk. I painted this Z-28 a few yrs ago (twice). I got world class orange peel the 1st time and sanded it down and tried again. The 2nd try was about as good as factory but that's not saying much. If you look at cars at the light when you are sitting there (provided the sun is hitting it right), you'll see all factory jobs have a good amount of orange peel.

I sold this car and am working on a '80 vette now. I'm doing all the body work and priming/prep but I'm going to get a drunk down the street to spray it. He has a nice booth at his house. He also knows what he's doing which is mainly looking at how the paint is going on and knowing how to adjust the gun if something is not right.
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Old 03-21-2019, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Riptied View Post
Russ, I applaud your enthusiasm but automotive paints are not cheap, not quality matetials anyways.

I would find an experienced bodyman/painter that is willing to spend some time teaching you before attempting what your going to do.

What’s the FMV of the subject vehicle?
I don't know the value, it's more important to me the cost to replace the vehicle. I checked out a new one at a GMC dealer and it was over $70K!!! It's a 2003 Yukon XL Denali AWD, 6.0L, 2nd row buckets, TV/DVD loaded with everything. The interior is


almost perfect but paint is peeling off on the roof and hood. It has about 135K miles. It's in right now having the entire brake system replaced including stainless brake lines, rotors, calipers, etc probably going to be around $2K of repairs.

The comments about learning how to paint is pretty discouraging but I'm not surprised. I know there is a lot of stuff to know and I'm sure there is even more than I think there is.
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Old 03-21-2019, 05:51 PM
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Given the overall condition of your truck and mileage, pay to have it done. Good auto paint is $300+ per gallon. And not easy to learn. Seems like the perfect vehicle to throw 3-5k (total, not just paint) at and run another 4-5 years in an effort to avoid spending that same $ (or more) annually on payments. Assuming you like it.
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Old 03-21-2019, 06:09 PM
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I'll bet it's the clear coat cooking off, not the base color....you can carefully sand and reclear it with acceptable results....
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Old 03-21-2019, 06:38 PM
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You will never be able to feather in the peeing clear edges without burning through the base. Sand, prime, sand, paint. Takes a lot of practice to get a nice job straight outta the gun. Being familiar with materials being used makes a huge difference. Good luck.
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