It's been a while....Nice New Site Format!
Hi Len and everyone else.
Well, its been over 2 years since I had to rush paint my MGA and ship it to Japan. It sits outside (covered) but still looks great. I STILL need to go back and do some touch ups and now I have a cracked fended to deal with. Any advice on how to best preserve the area when I weld it up? Due to the odd color, I really don't want to paint the whole fender for fear of a poor color match and I don't know how to blend at all. I have all the paint materials except a blending agent and getting it here will be a problem.
Anyway, got kind of sidetracked. What I really wanted to say was how good Len's Painting 101 video is and how well it stands the test of time. Can't wait for Painting 102 and to get my hands on a DA and some 3M Finish Film.
What type and color paint is on the car?
Is it painted with bc/cc or is it single stage paint? Is the paint you have from the original batch that was used to paint the car?
It's impossible to repair the fender and not hurt the paint so it's usually best to plan on a paint strategy before you start.
The paint is PPG DCC single stage. Since I am in Japan, PPG is not available. However, I was able to order up some PPG paint/hardener/reducer (not blending agent) from the Paint Store by sending them one of the panels to them for matching (shipping was more that the materials). It looks spot on but of course with wear and fading on my paint it may not quite be right.
I have had the paint for 1 year and don't even know if it is still good. It has been stored in a cool, dry closet in a plastic bag. None of the materials have been opened since I got them.
Fortunately, the crack is on the bottom edge of the rear fender kind of out of view but I will have to put a tiny spot weld on it to hold. You can see the car here:
By the way, in lieu of welding, if I could somehow bond it that would be great. In fact, my hood and trunk lids have cracks as well. They are aluminum over a steel frame and 50 years of vibration has created some cracks on the edges. I tried to use fiberglass resin to fix it in my haste and you can guess the results.
If I was 100% sure the re-paint would be indetectable I would paint the whole fender. I would prefer to blend it and have a few small flaws than one panel a completely different shade than the rest of the car.
Tommy, a couple of things...
It is extremely difficult if not impossible to do a decent blend using a single stage paint regardless of brand or type...except lacquer. If I were you, I would plan on refinishing the entire fender.
I can't see the license plate on your car well enough to tell what Prefecture it's registered in, but I'll assume it's not on Hokkaido. During the years I spent in Japan I learned to speak and read the language a little bit. I was able to get to know the owner of a paint store and with his help, I was able to do some fantastic(if I do say so) custom work using Japanese paint.
You might want to check around the area. I saw some outstanding painters in Japan and still have and use frequently an Iwata gun that I bought there...before Iwata was being imported into the states. It is the very best paint gun I've ever owned but it's just barely large enough to do overall jobs, so I use it for jambing, trim and small panels.
While using the products that you are comfortable with is a good thing, there is nothing wrong with using something other than PPG to do the repairs. I have little doubt that a paint store in your area can match your paint quite well with products equivilent to PPG.
Last edited by Pot; 12-29-2005 at 08:40 AM.
Different urethanes will blend differently. I use mostly Glasurit which, when done properly, can produce good blends however if the paint doesn't get real hard the blend can break back making it more visible. I believe PPG paint remains softer than Glasurit so it may not make a good blend but I'd definitely give blending a try before I sprayed the entire panel. If the repair is in a low spot or located where the blend won't be too noticeable AND you have a decent "spot repair" gun, you can probably get away with a good blend. I wouldn't try it with a big gun because you'll end up spraying most of the panel.
Blending 101Blending single stage and clear is done about the same... you want to sand well beyond the area to be sprayed with some 1500 paper then apply your paint over the repair are then apply a second coat over the same area but extend the second coat a couple inches then do this a third time but over reduce the paint about 50% THEN immediately after the over-reduced coat you want to dump the paint from the gun and put in a little straight SLOW reducer and dust the dry edge of your last coat. CAUTION: When I say dust the edge I don't mean spray the straight reducer until it causes the dry edge to melt into a smooth finish. Just dust the reducer onto the edge and don't worry about how it looks, if you try to make it smooth the reducer will cause the paint to break loose and you'll have more problems to deal with.
One of the big tricks to getting a blend to disappear is to have the new paint bond well with the old paint. Several factors effect this bond... 1. The quality of the paint is critical when blending and many low end products will not get hard enough to buff so that the edge of the blend will disappear. A soft paint will break back and you'll see the repair. 2. If you don't allow the new paint to FULLY CURE it will break back when buffed and you'll see the repair. You need to give the blend any time it needs to full cure so that the blend will bond well with the surface. Depending on the chemicals used and the temperature during the cure cycle you could end up waiting anywhere from a week to a month or more before the new paint is fully cured so that you can buff. A decent heat lamp is great for speeding the curing of spot repairs.
In order to get the repair to match the surrounding material you need to polish the surface. From your prep work you should have 1500 scratches extending beyond the new paint and after the paint has cured you want to lightly sand the new paint with some 1500 in order to help make the texture of the new the same as the old then polish as needed.
You have a good color for blending and panel painting could be a nightmare if it doesn't match perfectly. I'd recommend blending first then panel paint if the blend doesn't give you satisfactory results.
No, not in Hokkaido （北海度） but Sagami （相模）. From what I know, there was a master paint man at a local shop. He recently died and his daughter is having a tough time running the place. I can find a full line of 3M products (at a price) and Rock (a Japanese brand which sells the BEST body filler I have ever tried) products. About 15 years ago when I lived in Japan the first time, I restored my MGB using 100% Japanese products with fantastic results (I hired a painter that time), so I am totally open to using anything that works. I just thought that PPG might be a bit easier. If I was sure I had to re-paint the entire panel I would have just bought everything here.
I found a shop that restores old Ferraris and assorted other European cars and am trying to get introduced as their work is beautiful. They recently repaired a Lamborghini Diablo in Purple Metallic and it looks fantastic. Actually, one of the guys here at work claims he was a pro painter years ago and has volunteered to introduce me around to a couple of local places. Anyway, I enjoy Japan and having a classic car here is a plus.
Len, Thank you for the Blending 101 info. Big, big help as usual. IIs there anything I can add to my standard reducer to slow it down or do I need to find some locally and take a chance? guess it's time to invest in a touch up gun other that the Harbor Frieght one I used to paint the corners and such under the hood, huh? Of course, as Pot mentioned, I can get Iwata and Sata here but it may be cheaper to order the exact same thing from the States even with shipping. Any suggestions?