Preparation of your pride and joy. The Simple Guide to take a note of:
If you strip your panels totally on your vehicle, especially if they are aluminium, you must ‘Etch prime’ the bare metal before applying any undercoats. Don’t cut corners at this stage by applying any type of primer other than ‘Etch primer’… what is the difference; basically Etch is a lot stickier than normal primer so it stands a better chance of adhering – don’t do it this way and ‘it’ll cost you big time’ in the future, trust us!
So the process is:
- *Etch Prime,
- then *Filler Primer,
- then top coat. *Please note Etch Primer and Filler Primer use totally different thinners!
Spray methods are fast & very economical and gives the best results!
The Roller method is fast & simple and can give a very good finish when applied correctly.
The Brush finish is as good as the person who is doing the job (Buy a good brush!).
The products to complete this process are available for purchase from us, including:
Red Oxide, Grey or White Primer, Etching Primer, Thinners etc. Have a look at the range on our Secure Online Shop. If what you want is not there, then please get in touch, there is a lot more available than listed.
and… some additional and more involved information you may wish to be mindful of
This one may seem very obvious but please ensure the paint you have chosen is correct for your intended application. i.e.. appropriate colour and type before you begin.
If you are a novice; have a practice first! All of our products with the exception of the Etch Primer are primarily designed to be applied by brush. However, if you prefer, all Enamel finishes can be applied by spray with the addition of suitable thinners. If you are applying by brush please do make sure you have a good quality brush. If you can’t spray and don’t have the confidence to brush you can use a glossing roller, but have someone else on hand to ‘lay off’ the paint with a continuous vertical brush stroke to achieve that coach painted . We recommend you decant into a roller tray or similar so that you only use sufficient paint to complete the area to be coated. This will keep the remainder of the paint in it’s original tin clean and free from contamination.
Generally speaking, most primers are porous in nature. If your vehicle or component has been living outside or exposed to the weather for any length of time in damp conditions painted only in primer, moisture may have penetrated the primer and cause problems later. You are best to remove it or flat it back and start fresh to prevent any risk of moisture coming out when the top coat has been applied. This can lead to lead micro blistering of the paint work. This can also happen when painting in high temperatures unless you really have to, as it can cause solvent entrapment due to the surface of the paint drying too fast or if it is painted Damp conditions it can also cause blistering as the trapped liquid is drawn to the surface.
Always avoid painting in direct sunlight, breezy, or windy conditions.
Wherever possible work indoors if you can where you can control the air movement and ambient temperature. If the area you are working in is dusty, clean it thoroughly and wet the floors before starting to paint. This will minimise the risk of dust settling on your newly painted surface during the application or drying period. If painting in cold conditions where heat is required use dry heaters only, avoid paraffin heaters as they give out damp which could cause the paint to ‘bloom’. Keep the temperature as even as possible. Leaving any heating on until the paint is dry.
So, the key to good Coach Painting is do it on a pleasant still day or week if it is a big project. It is always best to plan your project to ensure you have sufficient time to see the entire paint process through.
The objective of good quality coach painting is to apply an even coverage of paint with relatively fast brush strokes at all angles covering a small area of about 30” square. Once the brush is empty immediately refill it and repeat the process, brushing into the area you’ve just covered. As soon as a section is covered lay the paint off top to bottom. Do this from start to finish very quickly and then keep on going in the same fashion until the area to be painted is complete – always brushing back into the section you’ve just covered.
If you find a run or sag when the paint is initially dry/drying don’t rub it down as it is likely to still be wet underneath. Instead slice the top off it with a sharp blade and leave it to dry again. The next day you will be able to rub it down successfully and re-coat either the immediate area or if required the whole panel. Always use the biggest brush you can handle for the job, a 2 inch or 3 inch if a very large panel is more than sufficient for most panel work. If you are using masking tape make sure you remove it as soon as you finish the panels associated with it.
Coach Enamels are not generally intended to be thinned unless you are spraying. If you find the paint is too thick or is difficult to work then add a small amount of the appropriate thinner. This lubricates the paint molecules making them flow easier. Start by adding 2-3% and work upwards to a maximum of 10%. Remember you can always add a little more but you can’t take any out!