Painting a car at home | Spraying the topcoats

Carl
By Carl Heideman
Mar 23, 2024 | BMW, Paint | Posted in Restoration & Renovation | From the May 2019 issue | Never miss an article

Since you never miss an issue of GRM, we know you’ve already read the previous two installments of our “Paint at Home” series. If not, here is part 1, and here is part 2. The first showed us stripping our BMW’s paint and fixing its imperfections with hammers and body filler. The second covered the iterative process …

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Comments
wae
wae SuperDork
6/6/19 12:10 p.m.

Very pretty.

(the real reason for my post is that it is staying at the top of the Latest Topics page with a last post time of 0 minutes ago and I'm hoping that another post will put it back in its place :) )

CJ
CJ GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/6/19 12:10 p.m.

In reply to Carl Heideman :

Edit: Issue fixed.  Move along.  Nothing to see here.

Jordan Rimpela
Jordan Rimpela Digital Editor
6/6/19 2:05 p.m.

Sometimes when I time things to post they'll hang for a hot second. It's a weird glitch we're looking into. 

BimmerMaven
BimmerMaven New Reader
6/11/19 9:39 a.m.

Nice job. Good tips. 

I worked part-time in a body shop during college, about 1200 hrs.  Enough that I've done nearly all of my own bodywork since then. 

 

One picture shows a common mistake... During cleaning the right rear quarter panel, all attention focused on gloved right hand, towel, solvent.... While ungloved oily-skinned left hand is making a nice palm print on the trunk lid. 

 

I would also consider hanging blankets or tarps around the car, as the overspray gets everywhere in your nice clean shop... Much less work to hang than to clean. 

 

Of course, if weather is good, consider spraying outside. 

stan_d
stan_d SuperDork
6/12/19 8:18 a.m.

Plus on tarps. Still finding things with red over spray on . Blue and White colors didn't have the hang time of the red.

iwannarace
iwannarace New Reader
1/7/20 12:52 a.m.

Where was the prime, base coat, and clear sourced? Online or a local store? What brand was it?

Rushcanuck
Rushcanuck Reader
1/8/20 11:43 a.m.

what colour is that? looks amazing

Carl Heideman
Carl Heideman
1/8/20 8:59 p.m.
Rushcanuck said:

what colour is that? looks amazing

It's the correct factory blue for the 1985 325e.  As I undersand, it's a fairly rare color.

Carl Heideman
Carl Heideman
1/8/20 9:02 p.m.
iwannarace said:

Where was the prime, base coat, and clear sourced? Online or a local store? What brand was it?

We got it all at a local store.  We didn't get too much into those details for the story because state/local regulations seem to really affect availability of materials. We used a private label (lower priced) brand from our store called Montana.  We prefer local stores to the internet because we get great advice from them and want to keep them in business.  We had around $1000 in sandpaper, paint, primer, etc. in this job.  It's as nice in person as in the pictures and should last 20+ years.

Carl Heideman
Carl Heideman
1/8/20 9:06 p.m.
BimmerMaven said:

Nice job. Good tips. 

I worked part-time in a body shop during college, about 1200 hrs.  Enough that I've done nearly all of my own bodywork since then. 

 

One picture shows a common mistake... During cleaning the right rear quarter panel, all attention focused on gloved right hand, towel, solvent.... While ungloved oily-skinned left hand is making a nice palm print on the trunk lid. 

 

I would also consider hanging blankets or tarps around the car, as the overspray gets everywhere in your nice clean shop... Much less work to hang than to clean. 

 

Of course, if weather is good, consider spraying outside. 

Good catch on the bare hand.  The behind the scene comment I'll give you about these stories is that I usually do the work, then bring in a "hand model" to take the pictures and we missed that detail.  Sloppy me.  Hint:  You'll find another sloppy detail in the first story.  Look at the color of the body filler we're mixing up and then look at the color of the body filler we're sanding off.  Sometimes I forget to take a picture and have to re-enact it.  Unlike movie producers, we don't have continuity checkers...

I've painted a lot of cars in my garages over the years and I do throw blankets or plastic over anything that I care about.  The floors stay body color for about a month, or until the next paint project, whichever comes first.  

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