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    Thread: DIY Paint Job Questions - Single Stage or Multi-stage? (opinions-pros & cons)

    1. Member
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      03-07-2012 11:36 AM #1
      Hey guys...

      I'm looking for expert - semi-expert help and opinions. Please don't judge me cause I've never done this before...cause I'm going to do this with or without you. If I set my mind to something I always accomplish my goal one way or another and I'd love your help!

      I recently bought a 1999 MKIII Jetta and I'm trying to make it a presentable DD. It's tornado Red with some minor blemishes. The bumpers, door handles, and spoiler are all oxidized (as usual) and they look like crap. I want to paint the car red then top bumpers, door handles, and side moldings black.

      I was going to paint those parts only, but now I'm considering the whole sha-bang! I've never painted a car before, but I've done a lot of spraying with HVLP guns on houses, so I know how to use a gun well.


      1.) Please list the pros and cons of a single stage or multi-stage paint.
      2.) What type of paint should I used for the door handles, top bumpers, and side moldings (the side moldings are currently smooth)
      3.) How should I prep the oem painted (yet oxidized bumpers)?
      4.) What additives, if any should I use on the bumpers?

      Please add to this list if you care to.

      I look forward to your input.

      Thanks fellas!
      -B

    2. Member Wolfschnee's Avatar
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      03-07-2012 10:05 PM #2
      If you are going to respray the entire car, i would say if it still has the original paint leave it and just 80grit it and prime over. If it has more than one paint job strip it.

      3 coats of a high build primer makes it easier to get good results for first paint job(2k primers are good) this will help get a good smooth coat if you do a good job wet sanding

      Base coat i would use a ppg.

      Then do a clear coat. I do two passes so i can wet sand it, especially if your new and you don't have a good paint booth.

      If you aren't painting right away keep an eye out, in 2 or three weeks im doing a diy for begginer painters

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      03-08-2012 11:30 AM #3
      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfschnee View Post
      If you are going to respray the entire car, i would say if it still has the original paint leave it and just 80grit it and prime over. If it has more than one paint job strip it.
      Thank you for responding Wolfschnee...

      Yes..I'm going to respray the entire car over the original paint. However, the hood is dented and instead of trying to smooth it out with filler I might just buy a hood from the bone yard. I eyed one up, but its dark green in color. I assume I would have to strip that off. if I do then the hood would be striped and the rest of the car would be red. Will the difference in the pre-primed metal/base make a difference?

      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfschnee View Post
      3 coats of a high build primer makes it easier to get good results for first paint job(2k primers are good) this will help get a good smooth coat if you do a good job wet sanding
      3 coats of primer over the original paint and the green hood? Bare metal?

      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfschnee View Post
      Then do a clear coat. I do two passes so i can wet sand it, especially if your new and you don't have a good paint booth.
      So you wet sand after the first pass of clear...correct? Then another pass...let dry...then buff?

    4. Member Wolfschnee's Avatar
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      03-08-2012 12:05 PM #4
      You dont have to strip the green hood. Your priming so it wont make a difference. 3 coats of primer no matter what your painting over just makes it easier for begginers. It is more forgiving when you wet sand it so that you dont go down to the under coat and also helps fill in low spots. When you do the clear you will spray the entire thing. Give it a a few minutes so it can settle then paint it again before it dries. You want it to be still wet when you spray the second coat of clear. Then you wet sand after you give it time to completely dry. I would give it a day or two

    5. Member Wolfschnee's Avatar
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      03-08-2012 12:06 PM #5
      I really suggest trying to take a night class at a votech school. Its good to take and get a bases for painting.

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      03-08-2012 12:37 PM #6
      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfschnee View Post
      I really suggest trying to take a night class at a votech school. Its good to take and get a bases for painting.
      I'm looking for something like this for autobody on general so I could learn to weld also. I'm DYING to learn to weld the right way. I can do ugly industrial flux welding, but not mig.

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      03-08-2012 06:23 PM #7
      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfschnee View Post
      I really suggest trying to take a night class at a votech school. Its good to take and get a bases for painting.
      Can you suggest any in the area? I found one in Queens, but it's from 6-10:30pm 4 days a week and I work until 7p - it's looking like this isn't going to be easy to find something that would work around my full-time work schedule...I'd be looking to learn this as more of a hobby than a career, but then again who knows where it could lead.

      this thread is great and I look forward to your full DIY


      Chris

    8. Member spitfire481's Avatar
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      03-08-2012 06:40 PM #8
      so much bad info in this thread its ridiculous. read through some threads on hotrodders.com forums in the autobody section. there is A TON of good info there. also all of the material information is on the tech sheet for that product. every product has a tech sheet and i suggest you follow it exact if you have no experience.

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      03-09-2012 10:29 AM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by spitfire481 View Post
      so much bad info in this thread its ridiculous. read through some threads on hotrodders.com forums in the autobody section. there is A TON of good info there. also all of the material information is on the tech sheet for that product. every product has a tech sheet and i suggest you follow it exact if you have no experience.
      LOL...thanks man...I'll do that. The whole point of this thread is to get some solid instructional advice.

      Quote Originally Posted by spitfire481 View Post
      ... also all of the material information is on the tech sheet for that product. every product has a tech sheet and i suggest you follow it exact if you have no experience.
      Are you referring to a specific product or 'product(s)' in general?

    10. Member spitfire481's Avatar
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      03-09-2012 03:17 PM #10
      any product you use will have a tech sheet.

    11. Member CarSwapper's Avatar
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      03-10-2012 04:48 AM #11
      ok for oxidation it is hard to get rid off, and requires lots of sending, dont use 80 grit but something finer 180-220 also depends if you have a DA or using manual sanding. Area that are oxidized should be sanded till oxidation is removed than make sure there is no gauges or deep scratches (if you have them sand them smoother now) than spray 2k primer 2 medium coats or 3 coats if really necessary. You don't have to 2k complete car if you have good paint in the rest of the car. Spray a guide coat on primer before removing masking tape (mask everything well, as primer will go all over place at least a 5ft radius of anything that will not be painted dont forget wheels ) Let the 2k primer seat if you can a minimum of 24hrs but longer is better so the primer can sink in. Wet sand the primer using a guide coat as a guide and make sure its nice and smooth, at this point you can also wet sand the whole car with 600. Mask, clean w wax & grease remover and spray. If you will spray compete car dont bother getting expensive paint especially red is BIG $$$$ so just get the cheaper base coat than use the saved up money on expensive clear coat but considering its a DD medium priced one is good too. This is not a complete list but hopefully it will get you going. There are many ways of doing it, i just feel this is the right way for what you want to accomplish, you can use dupont or ppg knock off brand paints if you desire they are decent quality: Dupont has nason and ppg has shopline, they are both good. its up to you what you want to use i prefer PPG due to convenience mainly more than anything else....Good luck ask questions and show us the progress results

    12. Member MKVmyfast's Avatar
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      03-10-2012 05:01 AM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfschnee View Post
      If you are going to respray the entire car, i would say if it still has the original paint leave it and just 80grit it and prime over. If it has more than one paint job strip it.

      3 coats of a high build primer makes it easier to get good results for first paint job(2k primers are good) this will help get a good smooth coat if you do a good job wet sanding

      Base coat i would use a ppg.

      Then do a clear coat. I do two passes so i can wet sand it, especially if your new and you don't have a good paint booth.

      If you aren't painting right away keep an eye out, in 2 or three weeks im doing a diy for begginer painters
      Smfh ok first of all don't use 80 grit sand paper. That's meant for sanding body filler (not puddy or paint) it will shrink up like crazy and look like ****. I would say if your not going crazy fixing dents just wet sand 400 the whole car primer seal it, base it with your red and then clear it and just and your clear and stay away from your edges just because your new at this I know you will break they the edges and have to do that panel all over. Primer shouldn't be sprayed on anything coarser then 320 grit. Primers only meant to fill small sand scratches so you have a nice paintable area slot of people abuse primer and think its magic that can fill there terrible body work well it doesn't work that. In the morning when I wake up ill list what exactly you have to do step bye step. I would do it now but its 5 am and I'm not trying to spend a hour typing all of this down

      Sent from my HTC Sensation 4G using Tapatalk

    13. Member Wolfschnee's Avatar
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      03-10-2012 12:13 PM #13
      Sorry for the poor information. I tried to give you a quick idea. Carswapper did a better job explaining. i really should explained about sanding more. But realistically on a car that old you would be better off to start with 80 grit to strip it a little(not to metal unless you are getting crazzy), and really with a DA. Then use a finer sandpaper before you prime it with 2k. And he really should use a 2k on much of the exterior. What is the chance he has a car that is straight and wouldn't be helped with a high build primer.

      And once again, you should really take a course, i dont know of any by you. this gets you in a good atmosphere and will help you learn the basics quick. Sometimes learning by yourself or listening to people on the internet (especially me in this situation) doesn't help. Any of the information the others gave you quiet honestly isnt enough, its a good start but if you went and tried to do this project with the given information, i would bet there would be a lot of waisted time and money. In an auotbody class the variables are easier controlled and information is provided at each step, specific steps for your car because every project is different and the process is slightly different. Even if its a course once a week thats 3 hours and 10 weeks, you will learn a lot and then have a good grasp on painting. So check out local votech schools and see if they have adult classes.

      And once again im sorry for my crappy information, i should really try to help more and not throw out half as-sed information.
      Last edited by Wolfschnee; 03-10-2012 at 12:33 PM.

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      03-18-2012 12:47 PM #14
      I just want to answer a few of your original questions. Always buy the best materials that you can afford. Painting is 90% preparation labor and only 10% actually painting. Urethane paints are the best by far and do not require a flex additive to be used on bumpers and such. Most enamels will require a flex additive. PPg makes a budget brand called omni. Summit racing and eastwood both sell a urethane based painting system that is cheap and from experience works great. Base coat clear coat looks much better than a single stage paint job and lets you sand and buff the clear. Do not worry so much about the orange peel and junk that lands on the final coat. As long as you have sprayed enough clear coat, you can wet sand any imperfections away. Try practicing on your old hood before doing your whole car. Go for it.

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      03-18-2012 04:19 PM #15
      1.) Please list the pros and cons of a single stage or multi-stage paint.
      2.) What type of paint should I used for the door handles, top bumpers, and side moldings (the side moldings are currently smooth)
      3.) How should I prep the oem painted (yet oxidized bumpers)?
      4.) What additives, if any should I use on the bumpers?

      Please add to this list if you care to.

      I look forward to your input.

      Thanks fellas!
      -B
      At my shop we usually use single stage for race cars or cheap restoration jobs. It ends up not looking as good as a bc/cc job. I would avoid using single stage if you aren't experienced with it. It's much easier to fix screw ups with bc/cc. I find bc/cc much easier to buff too.

      I would do the whole car with bc/cc.
      Read the tech sheets of what ever products you purchase, it will tell you how to prep, apply and finish each product.
      You don't have to use any additive if you use a urethane bc/cc, its flexible by itself.

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      03-20-2012 12:12 PM #16
      Not entirely the advice you're looking for, but just as a wise word from someone who's done it:

      It's ALL in the prep work.

      Literally. I spraycanned my car (long story, don't judge ) and on the first tornado red fender, I went from 80 grit to 320, going for an even, clean sanding job on each grit. Then sprayed out several light coats of primer, followed by several light coats of paint. It looks fantastic (FYI I wanted a matte look). Then when the rest of the car was done, in the name of doing things more swiftly, proper sanding took the back burner, and it shows.

      No matter what you do, no matter how godawfully boring hand-sanding everything is (believe me, it gets REALLY boring), your results depend on your prep work. Good luck
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    17. Member johnnynumfiv's Avatar
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      03-20-2012 08:31 PM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by 2SlowHeart View Post
      Not entirely the advice you're looking for, but just as a wise word from someone who's done it:

      It's ALL in the prep
      I would call that body work, not prep work. Prep would be post body work, ie cleaning and masking.

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      03-21-2012 02:53 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by strokeracevermont View Post
      I just want to answer a few of your original questions. Always buy the best materials that you can afford. Painting is 90% preparation labor and only 10% actually painting. Urethane paints are the best by far and do not require a flex additive to be used on bumpers and such. Most enamels will require a flex additive. PPg makes a budget brand called omni. Summit racing and eastwood both sell a urethane based painting system that is cheap and from experience works great. Base coat clear coat looks much better than a single stage paint job and lets you sand and buff the clear. Do not worry so much about the orange peel and junk that lands on the final coat. As long as you have sprayed enough clear coat, you can wet sand any imperfections away. Try practicing on your old hood before doing your whole car. Go for it.


      Quote Originally Posted by johnnynumfiv View Post
      At my shop we usually use single stage for race cars or cheap restoration jobs. It ends up not looking as good as a bc/cc job. I would avoid using single stage if you aren't experienced with it. It's much easier to fix screw ups with bc/cc. I find bc/cc much easier to buff too.

      I would do the whole car with bc/cc.
      Read the tech sheets of what ever products you purchase, it will tell you how to prep, apply and finish each product.
      You don't have to use any additive if you use a urethane bc/cc, its flexible by itself.
      Quote Originally Posted by 2SlowHeart View Post
      Not entirely the advice you're looking for, but just as a wise word from someone who's done it:

      It's ALL in the prep work.

      Literally. I spraycanned my car (long story, don't judge ) and on the first tornado red fender, I went from 80 grit to 320, going for an even, clean sanding job on each grit. Then sprayed out several light coats of primer, followed by several light coats of paint. It looks fantastic (FYI I wanted a matte look). Then when the rest of the car was done, in the name of doing things more swiftly, proper sanding took the back burner, and it shows.

      No matter what you do, no matter how godawfully boring hand-sanding everything is (believe me, it gets REALLY boring), your results depend on your prep work. Good luck

      Soooo ...what you're saying is...it's all in the prep work? LOL Seriously tho...thank you guys...I hope more of you post in here with opinions and best practices, not only for me, but for other members who might be interested in the same advice. It's going to be a few months before I begin 'Project Repaint' because I first have recondition my ride mechanically. Once it's sound, then I'll work on the 'look', but since I haven't done this before all of your input is very helpful and give me something to think about and research.

      I've done A LOT of household/commercial painting my whole life and it's 90% prep work...I'm used to that. I'm no stranger to a HVLP gun either. That being said...I'm still a little intimidated about painting my first car. I'm glad I only paid $600 for it Time will tell what happens.

      Thanks again for all of your posts.

      Please keep posting if you have more info you would like to share.
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      03-21-2012 07:26 PM #19
      I would try spraying the automotive paint on some scrap parts or sheet metal, horizontally and vertically to get used to the products before painting the complete. I painted for years before attempting a complete.

    20. 03-25-2012 11:06 AM #20
      Since your going to do a complete why don't you experiment first. Try wet sanding and power buffing the roof and hood avoiding edges. See how much oxidation you can get rid of. Spraying the old hood is a great idea. As you already know prepaint work no matter if you call it prep or body is the key. Find a locally owned and operated paint shop that is DIY friendly. Your buying hundreds do dollars worth of product you might as well get some knowledge with your supplies. Base/clear is definitely the way to go, same for a complete. Trying to match old reds will never happen. I've painted about 12 cars over the past 30 years and have just had my first experience with base/clear. I used DuPont products with a urethane clear coat. I was painting a rear spoiler and bumper parts atlas grey. I couldn't believe how even the color coats were. And the match was perfect. The first time I painted silver was a horror show, streaks everywhere. It will be nothing but base/clear from now on.
      You know how to use a gun, follow the spec sheets to the letter and go for it. Worsed case is you do it over. Then consider the first time schooling.
      Good luck and have fun

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