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  #46 (permalink)  
Old 12-23-2006, 07:42 AM
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" git what you pay for............ but pay for what you want "
believe me i've had customers who thought they deserved a show job for street prices. i no longer do those kind of jobs. it's too hard to decide when to stop or what to " let slide ". i have 3 jobs for next year and that will be it. one is the 57 vette which is painted now and will be built next year. if i put a car into a shop and paid top shelf i would not take delivery until it was right. the shops that hire painters are the ones who usually have the problems. owners spend their time patting themselves on the back instead of working ( boyd ) and just ship the stuff out. i've seen some crap on tv that would get you fired in my shop. the early vette they did was absolutely butchered.

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Old 12-23-2006, 07:51 AM
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Yes, Shine, I've got to agree, as well. And I'll add the production issue as well. There is a tough road to travel, having a shop now days. You must travel a narrow path between meeting a customers budget and still producing work you can be proud of. And also between Having enough work to keep a shop full and being able to complete the work you have in a timely manner, before customers start to complain about the lack of progress on their ride, because you been spending more time on another. Or customers not understanding why their 10K paint job doesn't look like the one with 30K+ siting next to it. Seems they kinda answer the question in the question. But, I can completely relate to giving it away just to have the chance to show off. I've cost myself many $$$, because of my pride. But, I do still have that!
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Old 12-23-2006, 08:04 AM
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i heard that! i have an ego the size of texas . my bull dog mouth has got me in trouble more than once. but i'm an old porchdog now and will leave it to you younger guys to compete. best advise i can give a young painter is to never back down. if they don't want to pay your price they will never be happy with the job. there use to be a couple of clowns around dfw that were acting as brokers. they would take a paint job in for 5k and then find some poor kid to do it for 2500 and work him to death. we caught one of them at this back in the 70's and enjoyed watching this young painter kick his butt all over the parking lot. karma's a ***** ain't it.
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Old 12-23-2006, 09:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shine
the most important reason for these cars to be less than perfect has been over looked here. very few people want to pony up the money to do them. these kind of jobs don't come out of body shops period. it takes the better part of a year to do one unless you have a sizable crew working on them. a good painter will do the best he can with what he has to work with. this is a business and must be run that way. if you have a 150 hr bid on paint you cant spend 300 hrs on it. i've been at this all my life and have had the privilege to know some damn good painters. when we were young we gave it away just to show our stuff but as time went on we had to get real and make a living. a top shelf body rehab cost a min of 25k today. most young guys fail because they try to do this kind of work for 5k and cant make any money to keep the doors open. an empty shop cost less to run than one full of cheap paint jobs. i'm kinda like ole barry. blow smoke up my butt and i'll blow smoke rings saying " show me "
This is the exact reason I don't bid any cars I work on that are not my own...I charge by the hour plus materials... period...or I won't do the job.

I get an agreement up front to the quality of the build, the hourly rate and a regular billing cycle. I take digital pictures of every step and therefore have documentation if there is an issue with the amount/quality of work. I'm also doing this from my home shop - so my overhead is low.

Trying to "crack the nut" on a huge shop, with employees and overhead pretty much pushes you into collision repairs to make enough money to keep the doors open. There's very few builders that can keep the doors open doing customs only.

Someone else dropped "boyds" name as an example... with the poor quality work BC puts out I doubt he'd still be in business if it wasn't for the TV show revenue and the selling of the wheel business last year!

If you want to compete for a Riddler award you're going to be looking at 6000-7000 hours. That's 3-4 years of solid work at the tune of 400k plus.

I'm man enough to do it, I got time and space - if the customer ponies up the cash!

But, I don't have any desire to take one of my own cars to this level - as I like to build functional cars that people drive on the road - not trailer queens!
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  #50 (permalink)  
Old 12-23-2006, 10:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryK
That is funny, One of those big boys and his wife spent the night with us
last night as they flew in to look at a car I found for sale.
He has two full time detailers and they spend an average of 7-10 days per car and that is there only job. The head detailer was a professional painter before so not cheap help.

A guy up in Mi is building a car and spent almost two weeks just detailing the axle and frame after he had shot three coats of clear on it and wet-sanded it with 600 and shot three more coats.
Plus between primer sandings and base sanding the owner spends about 30 minutes with a magnify glass before the painter can proceed.
I know this because he calls me a couple times a week.
No Brian you won't see this car at the Burgerking monthly drive-in show but it will be at the majors and first one is Cobo Hall.

The competition is so competitive at any of the major shows it is just impossible for most of us to compete anymore or I should say, we that do it as we have time after work and weekends.

If your so much better you should build a car to show and make them all look bad.
I'm man enough to say I can no longer compete.
Barry, I am glad to see you agree with me. As I said, DETAIL is what makes these jobs and not everyone does it, your buddy does.

And don't sell yourself short, you and I are perfect for the job of this detail work, we are anal misfits who could spend a week on a fender filing and fitting it to perfection.

The funny thing is, ask your buddy, he understands, this detailing is ENDLESS. That is the cool part. That rear end he did, you or I could pick it apart! I have done it, picked apart super high end cars. If you got that maginfying glass out you could to. All I have to do is find one screw that doesn't have the slot turned in the right direction. Detail is like that, you can keep going until the car was built like a Rolex.

For those reading this who may be missing the point, we are not talking "detailing" like the guy at the used car lot with the "multi dressing" and touch up brush. We are talking as Barry said, taking EVERY SINGLE PART on the car and "Perfecting it". I put that in qoutes because there is no such thing, NO SUCH THING as a "perfect" part or car. One man could get it "perfect" only to have someone more anal walk up and do something more to it.

That Rolex watch analogy, that is it. I can put it another way, could you imagine building a HOUSE with the detail you put into your car? I thought of that once while I was spreading spackle out on the wall. Even the nicest house isn't even remotely close to the level of perfection we get (the average guy) on our cars. I mean, come on, look at that edge of the wall as you walk into your kitchen, can you imagine the body line running down your car with those spackle lumps in it, all erregular and all! How about the trim that goes around the window that misses the seam by an 1/8"? How about the level of the floor, lay down and look across your hardwood or vinyl floor at the waves, can you imagine having a car that looked like that?

Now, pop the lid off your Rolex watch look in there, can you imagine if it were built like your car? It would be as big as large pizza at a minimum, probably bigger.

Ok, you have that, now look at that watch again, and picture your car with that level of perfection. First off, if you are working on a car like I am in my garage a mid sixties GM product, all you have to do is go look at a 2007 Lexus and you will see that it IS a Rolex "compared" to that 65 Skylark. HOWEVER, it could be better! Those 1/8" door and fender gaps COULD be closed up to a 1/16" if someone anal enough wanted it.

Are we on the same page?

Barry, that axle on your buddies car, someone who wants to take it to the next step would strip all that paint and clear off, chuck it in a lathe and spin it. They would shave all the welds off a the flanges, "true" the flanges to within a few thousands of an inch. Then they would bevel the edges of the flanges a few thousands. THEN they would paint it like they did, only better. THEN, someone else would take it and start all over by matching the caliper brackets to the rear to within a few thousands of an inch. THAT is what is so cool about detailing, it is FREE and most anyone has the skills to do, it just takes time.

Time that most shops just can't get paid for.

By the way, I found out what it would be like to see a house built like a car. My buddy who is an incredible builder, he rebuilt his house and it is as close to perfect as I have ever seen. He had to take me out back to look thru a vent at his plumbing!!! I am not kidding, the friggin two copper pipes were running side by side within an 1/8" (or so it looked that close) or so to perfect about four inches apart. They ran the whole length of the house again, within 1/8" or so from perfect horizontal, it was WILD. Those edges on the corners of the walls, you could open a friggin letter on them! The holes in the door framing where the hinges and strikers are inset, near flawless fit with no bare wood showing. They guy is a mental case, your buddy with the two weeks in the frame, my friend would have him in tears after HE was asked to look over that frame.

It is all about who can be the most anal, it is that simple.

Brian
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  #51 (permalink)  
Old 12-23-2006, 01:33 PM
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Good point Brian, I can relate.
Sometimes I think it's a matter of more time than talent.
that may be a little extreme but time is the issue.
The talent just gets it done more efficiently.(less time)
I tell people my perserverence makes up for my lack of talent
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  #52 (permalink)  
Old 12-23-2006, 05:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcclark
Good point Brian, I can relate.
Sometimes I think it's a matter of more time than talent.
that may be a little extreme but time is the issue.
The talent just gets it done more efficiently.(less time)
I tell people my perserverence makes up for my lack of talent
Yep Jim, no doubt about it an awful lot of detailing is low skill and free. But there is a lot skill needed, A LOT in many things like making those panels fit to near perfection. But cleaning up the pinch weld areas, "hard parts" like rad support, inner fenders, hinges, etc. are just time for the most part.

The thing is, the more anal you are and the more time spent making things better the easier it becomes.

I have said for years, "There is no difference between waxing your car and doing a restoration but time". I know that oversimplifies it. I don't mean to say that people who do this work aren't doing anything special, they are. There are some seriously talented people out there. But the home hobbiest can do a heck of a lot too. "Most" of us who do this for a living aren't doing any magic, we just get it done faster.

Back about a hundred years ago I was working at a full time restoration shop and the boss said something that I thought was kinda funny. I was sanding out a rim that was going to be the spare on a side mount 34 Ford. He told me it was "just a spare time" and don't spend a lot of time on it. ??? Let met get this straight, I have been cutting and buffing the darn door jambs on this thing but now you want me to cut corners because it is a "spare"? The darn thing bolted right on the side of the car! It should be at least as good as the hood sides or doors!

NO, I understood, DETAIL is making EVERY part look good.

Brian
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  #53 (permalink)  
Old 12-23-2006, 07:51 PM
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After reading most of the posts here I think some may be missing my inital point. I do understand the time involved in "DETAIL" whem customizing every square inch of a car. What I was mostly refering to was simply the "straightness" of a show quality job. Like a few have pointed out they want their cars to have that factory look as it was new, but the problem is besides corvettes most of these were "straight" from the factory. In all walks of life if you take an interest in something, you want to better yourself by learning from someone who knows more about it then you do. If you are taught by someone who cant do top notch work, then you will never be better than he is. There are not many out there that can do this type of outstanding work, and even less that are fortunate enough to be taught by such artists. Bottom line is most "resto" shops cant give you the type of quality that should be given, simply because they cant. That point was already proven to me by what I saw for myself. What bothers me the most is calling a wavy, ripply, loaded with orange peel paint job "show quality".
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Old 12-29-2006, 12:49 PM
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So called "show quality paint"????

( What bothers me the most is calling a wavy, ripply, loaded with orange peel paint job "show quality".)
It isn't! It is only show quality to those that can't do body work, thoses who can't afford quality and those who don't care. A perfectionest will always do perfection, a hacker will always hack. A hacker can't do perfection, niether can a pefectionest hack. I can understand that some in this group will produce some garbage results because of a money issues, a non paying high dollar customer, I can relate to that somewhat, but there are still many (like myself) that will see their work and say it's hacked, and for the sake of money don't lower yourself. As for factory cars, I really don't ever remember ripples? I remember orange peel, but never ripples! In fact I remember as a yougster looking down the hoods and sides of cars like a 60 Lincoln and wonder how in the world they stamped these out with perfection. Sure, maybe the door gaps and hood gaps were out of alignment, but ripples, no way! My opinion, if you can't do it right, leave it alone and find somebody who can, and to my original car lovers, well, if you own something that had factory straight Lacquer, and you used anything other, well then, you just destroyed your originality! If you left ripples, overspay or waves, again you have destroyed your originality. My suggestion too all is, pay the money, get a perfect job an say to the world, I got what I payed for and my knowledge has been revealed!
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Old 12-30-2006, 09:22 AM
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Rodder54.
Forget it, people that are knocking the Restoration cars have one never been involved in judging or building one or showing one or they would not speak.

Also there seems to be some real confusion as to a show at the local supermarket the third Saturday of every month and a true Restoration done by a professional.

The picture of the Goat restored, it had never been shown but from my experience it would have judged in the area of 97 out of a 100 points very easily, that is six coats of base clear instead of lacquer and of course you can see the orange peel and ripples and the bad gaps all down the side along with unsanded bodyfiller, well black hides good.

Oh, you will never see this car at a burger king show,
Lots of sour grapes from people that can't, never have and could not.

http://www.southernpolyurethanes.com/Photos/goat2.jpg
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  #56 (permalink)  
Old 12-30-2006, 09:46 AM
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i don't remember any of these laser straight factory cars. of any kind built here in the usa. stamped metal ain't all that straight. i started painting in the 60's so i learned on these cars you speak of and they were not laser straight and slick. restorations are better left to the pros that know what they are doing. hotrods are just that. they do not have to be show quality , they only need to please the owner. i have done many over the years that were " drivers " and i'm not ashamed of them one bit. i'm not about to put 1k hrs into a daily driver nor would the customer want to pay for that. and the overspray and imperfections on restored cars is required if you want to show. how about the early tri5's ? red oxide underside with some color on the rockers oversprayed. or the vettes with raw glass bottoms. how about the early mustangs with non-painted fender bolts and a rusty spot behind the fender where it got no paint. the restoration field is way harder than custom jobs ever were.
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Old 12-30-2006, 10:39 AM
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Sorry just have to disagree here. I think the problem is that when most guys do repaints and the need to replace quarters for example, the parts used are restamped after market replacements. Most will not spend the big money in NOS panels, so the goodmark (most stamped in taiwan) is what is being used 99% of the time, thats were the problem begins. Now the it takes a very "skilled" bodyman to make these things fit properly to begin with. Then comes the finish bodywork to make them straight. If you look down the side of these after market panels a good bodyman would just get naustios. When you deal with any NOS panels that have not been thrown around and neglected you do not see any ripples in these. Many have to wonder why, do you really think these aftermarket repops can even come close to competing with billion dollar stamping resources as that of big companys such as GM, Ford or Chrysler. It just is not going to happen, PERIOD. So the majority of cars out there are receiving just that, repops. Thats were all those ripples are starting from, and of course poor blocking techniques. You start with a low milage original car that has never been painted, hit, or any type of bodywork done what so ever (which in itself is a rarity) it is laser straight, guarenteed. That IS the way they were from the factory.
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Old 12-30-2006, 11:18 AM
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Wow, do I have to agree with that! The aftermarket parts are just as a rule, JUNK. When ever I think of the hours and hours I have spent fitting some repop fenders with my almost 30 years of experiance and then see a guy on a forum who is bolting on some Taiwan fenders for the first time in his life.......good luck.

But on the same regard, some people are just plain talented and can do the damnest stuff. My brother had a 39 Ford standard years ago so I am drawn to them (very, rare to see these days) when I see them at shows. This past Goodguys there was one that was just a stunning example of craftsmenship. It was detailed beautifully, I mean very nice. The body was straight, cut and buffed to near perfection. I started talking with the guy and he had built it, he and his brother had built the two cars I was looking at. They did not do this for a living (forgot what they did but it wasn't body and paint) and they had done these cars in their respective garages.

That buddy of mine with the "perfect" house, he has built a number of wildly detailed cars. His latest is a 65 Chevy short bed fleetside that is just beautiful. I found my self looking deep into the corners of hidden places for flaws, I could be there all day, it was beautiful. He is a commerical airline pilot! He has never worked in paint and body in his life! When I met him he was a mufflerman (he was 17) and he went straight to being paid to fly planes. In his off time he builds HIS cars. He even took a Bullseye of mine in his baggage along with the "tubs" from the truck to work so he could work on them in the hotel in Texas in between flights!

I don't ever underestimate what the home hobbiest can do. Honestly, I have seen them do MUCH, MUCH better work than a lot of "pros" who puff out there chest acting like they do something special.

Brian
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Old 12-30-2006, 12:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTINSR



I don't ever underestimate what the home hobbiest can do. Honestly, I have seen them do MUCH, MUCH better work than a lot of "pros" who puff out there chest acting like they do something special.

Brian
Brian, I totally agree.............the best work I've seen is what comes out of the back garages of some of these guys, and without all the high-tech spraybooths and guns.............most do it for a hobby and have other jobs in different fields.
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Old 12-30-2006, 12:56 PM
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I am not saying the "Best" work is done by the home hobbiest. All I am saying is they CAN do some of the best work. The artists who do this for a living are providing a service to those who can't do it, or havn't got the time. Just like every job on earth, there are good and there are bad.

Not everyone needs their service, period. There are a lot of these guys who do it for a living who frankly think they are walking on water. Don't get me wrong, some almost do. They are gifted artists who do some magical things. But most, a huge majority are just guys doing body and paint who think they are Gods gift to the auto world.

These guys are doing nothing that a home hobbiest couldn't do the very first time he tried. And like I say, I have seen some amazing work done by young kids, people on very limited budgets, working with minumum tools and space.

Preserverance is a much more valuable trait than a big head when it comes to quality work.

Brian
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