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Thread: Gathering tools for a beginner

  1. #1
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    Mar 2020
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    Default Gathering tools for a beginner

    Hey guys, I'm about to start working as an apprentice in a bodyshop and have been doing some light painting and body work on the side as a hobby. I already have a devilbiss finishline for sealer and primer and plan to buy a basecoat gun, clear gun, 6 inch da, and a line sander to get a basic arsenal of tools to start me on my journey. I just wanted some thoughts over the tools I've picked so far, and if there are any better recommendations. I primarily spray HOK when I'm doing hobby work, and I'm unsure what type of paint I'll be spraying on the job as of now.
    Basecoat: Devilbiss Tekna Prolite
    Clearcoat: Sagola 4600 1.3m CLEAR cap
    DA: 6inch Air vantage self vacuum
    Line Sander: Snap On Blue Point

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flerpy View Post
    Hey guys, I'm about to start working as an apprentice in a bodyshop and have been doing some light painting and body work on the side as a hobby. I already have a devilbiss finishline for sealer and primer and plan to buy a basecoat gun, clear gun, 6 inch da, and a line sander to get a basic arsenal of tools to start me on my journey. I just wanted some thoughts over the tools I've picked so far, and if there are any better recommendations. I primarily spray HOK when I'm doing hobby work, and I'm unsure what type of paint I'll be spraying on the job as of now.
    Basecoat: Devilbiss Tekna Prolite
    Clearcoat: Sagola 4600 1.3m CLEAR cap
    DA: 6inch Air vantage self vacuum
    Line Sander: Snap On Blue Point
    To clarify -- you are starting out as an apprentice to a painter. No connection with the body work end of the business ? What type of shop are you getting hired in at ? Privately owned shop ? Dealership ? Restoration shop ? Collision shop ? Very large shop with many employess or a smaller shop with just a few employees ?

    Lot of questions but it narrows down what you should be providing for yourself. Some shops provide the tools until you can buy your own. That can also be dictated by what you're starting pay is. If they start you out near minimum wage then they can provide the tools.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flerpy View Post
    Hey guys, I'm about to start working as an apprentice in a bodyshop and have been doing some light painting and body work on the side as a hobby. I already have a devilbiss finishline for sealer and primer and plan to buy a basecoat gun, clear gun, 6 inch da, and a line sander to get a basic arsenal of tools to start me on my journey. I just wanted some thoughts over the tools I've picked so far, and if there are any better recommendations. I primarily spray HOK when I'm doing hobby work, and I'm unsure what type of paint I'll be spraying on the job as of now.
    Basecoat: Devilbiss Tekna Prolite
    Clearcoat: Sagola 4600 1.3m CLEAR cap
    DA: 6inch Air vantage self vacuum
    Line Sander: Snap On Blue Point
    They are all good tools, the only one I might change is the Snap On sander because it could be a little over-priced but I'm sure it's a high quality product.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil V View Post
    To clarify -- you are starting out as an apprentice to a painter. No connection with the body work end of the business ? What type of shop are you getting hired in at ? Privately owned shop ? Dealership ? Restoration shop ? Collision shop ? Very large shop with many employess or a smaller shop with just a few employees ?

    Lot of questions but it narrows down what you should be providing for yourself. Some shops provide the tools until you can buy your own. That can also be dictated by what you're starting pay is. If they start you out near minimum wage then they can provide the tools.
    I am going to be working in a privately owned collision shop, a small one just a few blocks from my house. Up until now I have been taking classes at the local community college, learning mig welding, panel repair, plastic repair, and painting. I love all of the craft, and hope to be doing my fair share of all of it while on the job. For shops here, base pay is a little above minimum wage but if you provide your own tools you get 1.5x the wages. I believe that since I'm going to be doing a lot of hobby work alongside the regular job, it would be worth it to invest in some good tools for both the benefit of my wages and the luxury of using nice tools for personal projects.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Len View Post
    They are all good tools, the only one I might change is the Snap On sander because it could be a little over-priced but I'm sure it's a high quality product.
    I'd be happy to look at an alternative for the line sander, the blue point is the one my autobody instructor recommended me. I am also a full time student so I get snap on tools for 50% of their MSRP.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flerpy View Post
    I'd be happy to look at an alternative for the line sander, the blue point is the one my autobody instructor recommended me. I am also a full time student so I get snap on tools for 50% of their MSRP.
    I've been using this Ingersol-Rand for several years with no problems.


  7. #7
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    Atcoa Viking inline longboard sanders (air files) were the choice of most bodymen for many years but at some point they weren't as reliable as they were previously. My first inline sander was a Rodac (exact copy of an Atcoa Viking. I used that sander professionally for more than 20 years. A great sander. I have owned and used Ingersoll longboard air files and they were good sanders. I have several "mud hogs", one of them is an Ingersoll Rand and it works as well as the original National Detroit "mud hog" (8" geared orbital air sander) https://ndsander.com/900-series/ I still have several Viking long board inline air sanders, in fact I have one for 80 grit paper and another one for 40 grit paper. And I have Hutchins orbital (not inline) long board air sander that works great. It will work well with sanding bondo but I prefer it for guide coat block sanding primer. (I still finish of the repairs by hand with a Hutchins hand long board sander but the orbital air file speeds the process up quite a bit without sacrificing quality in the work.) I also like the Mini-Vike Atcoa Viking short inline air file, works great for smaller repairs where the regular inline sanders and too long.

    My experience working with new guys to this trade is they were never expected to bring a bunch of tools with them to the job. Especially if they are being paid close to minimum wage. Do you know your new boss ? Did he tell you that you needed to provide your own tools ?

    Len, I just googled National Detroit and now it says National Detroit Dynabrade. I wasn't aware that ND and Dynabrade merged.

    I agree with Len on the Snap On/Bluepoint tools. Snap On themselves are excellent tools, Waaay over priced but excellent tools. Unless Snap On has made changes then a lot of the blue point tools are made in China. Maybe a cut above Harbor Freight but still made in China. There is probably a good chance the Ingersoll inline sander is made in China also. Interesting distinction here --- Air tools made in Japan are excellent quality and I wouldn't hesitate to buy an air tool made in Japan(in fact I have several air tools made in Japan).

    I've been buying tools for 50 years and I'm STILL buying tools.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2007
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    Honestly, get the hell out of this trAde while you still can....

    It is getting tougher....

    As for tools...

    Milwaukee all cordless, 1/4 cordless rAtchet is a must..

    Air vantage or mirka sanders or Dynabeade

    If in long haul,get Mirka electric...

    Snap on body hammer set

    Gearwrench 120 XX ratchets

    Durablock set

    Inline sanders are rarely used these days..maybe for rockers...Rodco or IR, Hutchins too heavy

    Sorayguns.....tekna prolite or Sagolas, one gun, many air caps and choices,,,Sagola so easy for beginner...from here, build arsenal smartly...avoid Satas...get used Iwatas , lph400 or w400..

    Buy Chinese made dent puller spotter on eBay....it is a must...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    lower Michigan
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    Quote Originally Posted by baubau View Post
    Honestly, get the hell out of this trAde while you still can....

    It is getting tougher....

    As for tools...

    Milwaukee all cordless, 1/4 cordless rAtchet is a must..

    Air vantage or mirka sanders or Dynabeade

    If in long haul,get Mirka electric...

    Snap on body hammer set

    Gearwrench 120 XX ratchets

    Durablock set

    Inline sanders are rarely used these days..maybe for rockers...Rodco or IR, Hutchins too heavy

    Sorayguns.....tekna prolite or Sagolas, one gun, many air caps and choices,,,Sagola so easy for beginner...from here, build arsenal smartly...avoid Satas...get used Iwatas , lph400 or w400..



    Buy Chinese made dent puller spotter on eBay....it is a must...
    From my experience with Milwaukee cordless tools - Don't buy any milwaukee M12 or M18 tool unless it says FUEL. They use brushless electric motors that put out more power and use less battery power.

    Absolutely the Milwaukee 1/4" Fuel ratchet. Excellent tool. I bought a M12 non Fuel 3/8" ratchet and I believe the 1/4" ratchet has more power. The stubby 3/8" fuel impact is another must have tool. I have a bigger 3/8" M18 impact that is rated at 650 ft lbs. That's a lot of balls for a 3/8" impact.

  10. #10
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    Dec 2015
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flerpy View Post
    Hey guys, I'm about to start working as an apprentice in a bodyshop and have been doing some light painting and body work on the side as a hobby. I already have a devilbiss finishline for sealer and primer and plan to buy a basecoat gun, clear gun, 6 inch da, and a line sander to get a basic arsenal of tools to start me on my journey. I just wanted some thoughts over the tools I've picked so far, and if there are any better recommendations. I primarily spray HOK when I'm doing hobby work, and I'm unsure what type of paint I'll be spraying on the job as of now.
    Basecoat: Devilbiss Tekna Prolite
    Clearcoat: Sagola 4600 1.3m CLEAR cap
    DA: 6inch Air vantage self vacuum
    Line Sander: Snap On Blue Point
    On air inline sanders I use my mini Hutchins way more than my Ingersoll Rand full air board. I would be curious to see what others have to say on their use time with an 8" mini air board in comparison to the 16" board. I'm thinking the production shops use the longer board?

    I would also look into a good 8" Mud Hog. I have a 6" which is just too small.

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