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Old 03-05-2013, 03:58 PM
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Assemble car to paint it? My first paint job!

This is the first car I am attempting to paint, and am not sure what order to do the various parts. I am working on a 1959 Plymouth 2dr sedan that I have already installed a Viper motor and worked out all of the mechanical issues before starting on the body. This is the last year Plymouth had a full frame and no unibody. The frame and drive train are completely done. I have the body off the frame on a rotisserie and had it completely media blasted. I have finished welding the rust repair and am painting the entire inside and bottom of the body, doors, etc. satin black, so that all that will be left is the external color painting. I am going to do the exterior with a solid color and clear coat. To get everything straight I think I will need to first mount the body back on the frame. I was thinking of wrapping the entire chassis and engine in plastic wrap before I mount the body so it won't get any overspray. Should I mount the doors and trunk and get everything straight and then take the doors and trunk off for painting so I can get the jams and edges better? Or can it all be painted with the trunk and doors hung? Should I install the front fenders for painting? I was thinking of painting the front fenders, inner fenders, and hood separately and then installing them at the end.
Sorry for all the questions, but I have never done this before and really need some advice from the experienced people here on what to paint separately and what to paint all assembled. Since this is my hobby that keeps me sane, I want to do the best job I can, but this is going to be a driver, not a trailer queen.

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Old 03-05-2013, 05:11 PM
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For a real nice job you should block out all your panels mounted on the car to acheive consistant gaps everywhere, that way there are no"surprises" anywhere. That means mounting the body and all the panels back on the chassis, then masking the whole bottom off so nothing happens to all your hard work. It is a lot more time and work to do it this way but no one ever said this was going to be easy, right? Well for sure you will get a much better "wetter" look in all the hard to spray areas when you paint it all apart. Since your not shooting a metallic base, there should not be any problems with color change through out your panels. It does however take up more space when painting apart and usually means spraying at different times for lack of room. I always prefer to paint apart for a much better flowing job whenever I can. When reassemble time comes make SURE you have plenty of hands on deck to hang the panels back on the car, and use plenty of fresh blankets and or tape on edges, take NO CHANCES. Another thing I always like to do is cut and buff all apart as well, makes the door bottoms and fender bottoms very easy that way and come out much better. Painting assembled has its advantages as well, where you don't have to worry about chipping edges on assemble and you can paint all at one time. But it is much tougher to get in all the hard to reach (spray) areas and getting all that clear to flow in one session with no dry spray any where. The choice is your and here are the pros and cons, good luck.

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Old 03-05-2013, 06:33 PM
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Mr4speed said it very well. If you are shooting a solid colormyou have the choice to do it either way. Once the fit and finish is there I also like to take it apart and paint it in pieces.

John L
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Old 03-06-2013, 07:08 AM
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Thank you for the help. It sounds like the best way for me will be to put it back together to make sure everything fits and block it, then take it apart to paint. I will post some pictures of my progress. It will be great to get the body back on the frame after a year of my part time patching the rust spots.
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Jimbo View Post
Thank you for the help. It sounds like the best way for me will be to put it back together to make sure everything fits and block it, then take it apart to paint. I will post some pictures of my progress. It will be great to get the body back on the frame after a year of my part time patching the rust spots.
I don't think there is anything we enjoy more than seeing a member's project "coming together". Hopefully you will post lots of pictures as you go. Not only will the rest of us enjoy them but other members will learn from them as well as being encouraged to tackle their own projects. Good luck.

John L
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Jimbo View Post
This is the first car I am attempting to paint, and am not sure what order to do the various parts. I am working on a 1959 Plymouth 2dr sedan that I have already installed a Viper motor and worked out all of the mechanical issues before starting on the body. This is the last year Plymouth had a full frame and no unibody. The frame and drive train are completely done. I have the body off the frame on a rotisserie and had it completely media blasted. I have finished welding the rust repair and am painting the entire inside and bottom of the body, doors, etc. satin black, so that all that will be left is the external color painting. I am going to do the exterior with a solid color and clear coat. To get everything straight I think I will need to first mount the body back on the frame. I was thinking of wrapping the entire chassis and engine in plastic wrap before I mount the body so it won't get any overspray. Should I mount the doors and trunk and get everything straight and then take the doors and trunk off for painting so I can get the jams and edges better? Or can it all be painted with the trunk and doors hung? Should I install the front fenders for painting? I was thinking of painting the front fenders, inner fenders, and hood separately and then installing them at the end.
Sorry for all the questions, but I have never done this before and really need some advice from the experienced people here on what to paint separately and what to paint all assembled. Since this is my hobby that keeps me sane, I want to do the best job I can, but this is going to be a driver, not a trailer queen.
Here is a "Basics of Basics" on the subject, (Click here) a quick read and it may give you a few more ideas.

Brian
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR View Post
Here is a "Basics of Basics" on the subject, (Click here) a quick read and it may give you a few more ideas.

Brian
This is a must read BigJimbo. Very good indeed.

Also "The Perfect Paint Job" in the Southern Polyurethane Inc web site is very good. You will enjoy reading them both.

John L
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Old 03-08-2013, 02:46 PM
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These web sites are an absolute gold mine for the rookies like me! The Basics of Basics site answered most of my questions and many I have not yet encountered. Thank you for the great suggestions.
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Old 03-08-2013, 05:29 PM
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I worked in a shoddy shop where owner shot aftermarket fender (silver metallic) right on the car and then tried to adjust gaps and put on turn signal etc. He got bunch of fingerprints in fresh clear, it looked like crap.
For metallic colors I prefer shooting all panels on the car, that way there's no difference way metallic lays on panels.
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Old 03-08-2013, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Jimbo View Post
These web sites are an absolute gold mine for the rookies like me! The Basics of Basics site answered most of my questions and many I have not yet encountered. Thank you for the great suggestions.
There are a bunch more "Basics of Basics" if you didn't see them.
Basics Of Basics - Autobodystore

I feel the same way, when I think of the stuff I have been able to do because of people willing to help me on the net it blows me away. I have repaired my computer, my son built one for himself and a few months ago we repaired our tv pulling it apart and soldering in some new capacitors! I put the convertible top on my car with the help of the interior forum here on Hotrodders, it is amazing the info we have access too!

Brian
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:57 AM
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line up your parts before you paint you get familiar with how it's going to fit like..."oh this fender is probably gonna need to be pushed back to fit and there's going to be one shim here and one here." It also allows you to do more with the line up so you don't have to worry about paint or filler cracking and what not.

Since you are going solid you can paint the parts off the car and do the jambs and outer side in one go but there's an easier and safer way. You prep your jambs, do your bodywork on top and prime it however many times it takes and then leave it in the last application of primer in guide coat and not sanded. Then you can flip your door/hood/deck over and paint the jambs. Once it's FULLY cured and not tacky you can flip them over and put them on a blanket and do your final sanding on the outer skins. Then assemble the parts and seal and paint. You can get away with painting solid color parts on different planes then which they are on the car but you don't want to do that with metalics but again, painting the parts off the car brings another challenge of putting them back on without scratching.
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Old 03-10-2013, 10:29 AM
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Painting cars

Im NOT an expert,but,working by myself,I prime all pieces off the car,sand primer using a guide coat,after finished sanding,then I assemble all the parts back on the car,but,since I dont have any helpers,it works better for me,because if I finished painting the parts off the car,then tried to assemble the parts on the car,I would definately ding up the new paint.
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