I shot two 12X18" or so test sheet metal panels yesterday - one of the Kustom Shops Orange crush and the of HOK's Tangelo. For the "procedure" I just cleaned them with SPI waterborne wax/grease remover, DA sanded with 100 grit, recleaned with wax/grease remover, shot one coat of SPI white epoxy (slighty reduced - didn't have any white base), followed by three coats of color on each panel, and 2 coats of SPI universal clear. I got all kinds of trash in my epoxy but didn't care as these are just test panels for color.
I was disappointed in the HOK Tangelo pearl. The pearl isn't even visible under most viewing angles and really only shows up at certain angles. I know this is a characteristic of pearl, but if the average person was standing right by it they might not notice it w/o closer inspection. The Kustom Shop's Orange crush on the ohter hand is MUCH more noticeable. However, it probably leans more toward being a metallic than a pearl. It does (and this is KEY) go better with my parchment seat covers/interior on my Firebird though. For those not familiar with it, parchment is not white. It is more like a very light cream color with a translucent gold sheen on top of it. The Orange Crush is more of a burnt orange and the stronger gold pearl/metallic blends better with the seat covers. Unfortunately, under some angles it muddies up a bit (I think because there is so much pearl in it).
I'm not sure if a true white base would have made the HOK tangelo pop more or not...frankly it just seemed to have a lot less pearl in it than I expected (and was less translucent than I expected).
Beyond that I'm wondering if my poor gun technique "buried" the pearl somehow (i.e. maybe too wet a coat?).
Any tips are greatly appreciated.