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Old 03-05-2009, 01:34 AM
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Stripping an 89 Vette

I plan on stripping my 89 Vette myself and have someone else paint it. I have never done this before. Some say to use an SMC and Urethane safe stripper. Others say to use a DA. If I go with the DA, which one is better. The palm sander, or the hand held sander? Are the electric palm sanders any good?

What do you guys use to strip the paint in the areas you can't get the DA?

I plan on taking it down to the black factory sealer. Here is why:

Pic of upper half of driver door. Crows feet:





Nose area. Looks like the paint has millions of micro chips in it:





Though, it looks good driving around town:



I've been looking into using SPI products, and House of Kolor BC-25 black base.
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Old 03-05-2009, 02:20 AM
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My vote would be to hand block sand with a long board and 180 grit using the present paint for a guide.

One panel at a time until no defects show keeping it level the whole way.


If you want it straight and nice for paint don't machine sand it.
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Old 03-05-2009, 02:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milo
My vote would be to hand block sand with a long board and 180 grit using the present paint for a guide.

One panel at a time until no defects show keeping it level the whole way.


If you want it straight and nice for paint don't machine sand it.
Would'nt hand sanding it take a long time? I don't think I'd have enough energy to hand sand the entire car.

I did back into a brick wall and cause the paint to chip off the corner of the rear bumper. The paint cracked and I can just chip it off the factory sealer. I haven't taken much off, so I don't know if I'd be able to pick the paint off the rear bumper or not.
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Old 03-05-2009, 03:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshwilson
Would'nt hand sanding it take a long time?

.
go slow ... one panel at a time..

Start on a low panel not in the middle of the hood

It's therapy , a hobby , plenty of time ..make it last...
that's a nice car and you can do terrible damage to it's bodylines and edges with a machine.

Less is more..
http://www.a2zautoforums.com/showthr...7543#post37543
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Old 03-05-2009, 05:50 AM
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be very CAREFULL with a DA on your car. You can sand into the smc before you know it, leaving flat spots,or digs.
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Old 03-05-2009, 06:51 AM
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After re-reading that you are gonna have "someone else' paint it I have to strongly suggest that you get input with the painter before you do anything ...
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Old 03-05-2009, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milo
After re-reading that you are gonna have "someone else' paint it I have to strongly suggest that you get input with the painter before you do anything ...
I totally agree, and if they suggest using a DA run from them as fast as you can.

Vince
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Old 03-05-2009, 11:15 AM
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If you do cut into the SMC like I did on my 84' vette, how do you reseal it?

I just painted over it years ago and when it got hot outside there would be thumb to palm size bubbles popup, they would go away when things cooled down. BUT now it's time for a repaint. Any suggestions?
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Old 03-05-2009, 01:28 PM
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Everyone suggests using a DA. I did talk to the guy about how he would strip my Vette, he told me a DA. Corvette forum say use a DA and some say use a paint stripper that is SMC and Urethane safe. I talked over at SPI forum, they too say use a DA or palm sander. Though, some do that media blast, but I'm not gonna pay to have that done.

If I took it and dropped it off at any place to get painted, they would all say to use a DA. I can't run from every shop or it won't get painted. Even those who charge $7-12k for paint jobs have said DA.

I think I'm leaning towards using a palm sander. I don't have 100 hours available to sand on the car to strip it. I can pretty much only work on the weekends and I would like to have it painted by the end of the summer. And I probably won't start stripping it for another month or so as I need to do some other things first.

All I'm gonna do is take it down to the black factory sealer. So no SMC or Urethane bumpers should get exposed. What grit paper should I use? And would that be a wet or dry sand?

I may try some hand sanding at first to see what it is like. Though, I will have to hand sand the tight areas that a palm sander couldn't reach.
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Old 03-05-2009, 03:49 PM
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All right, let me digress. The use of a DA is acceptable, but only by someone who knows what they are doing with it. Just about every body shop I have ever seen has pimple faced kids using a DA to strip paint. This is somewhat OK on a steel body as not too much damage can be done. But on a Vette as has already been mentioned the sharp edges can be knocked down before the DA operator realizes it unless he is experienced with Vette's. Once the old paint is gone the body is going to need to be sealed with a quality epoxy sealer/primer. Then several wet coats of a quality 2K high build primer. This is followed by many, many hours of block sanding to get the surface flat and perfect. There is no run of the mill paint shop that is going to be willing to go through these steps to arrive at a nice base for paint....reasonably$$$$. Are you willing to take these steps? You have mentioned that you do not have the time, so I am afraid you will have to settle for an average paint job. Just be real clear about you willing to see imperfections on the body when it gets hot outside.

Not trying to sound harsh here, but Vette's require special procedure's and a lot of extra work. Is there perhaps a specialty shop in your area that does Vette's?

Vince
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Old 03-05-2009, 04:40 PM
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I realize your "confusion" with what is called a "da".
Generally,most are refering to a palm sanding random orbit da like a Dynabrade.
Some are refering to a "handle" style which has a random orbit as well as being locked into direct sand,in other words,a grinder.Little if any "controll".
LAST thing you want on glass.
Been there,screwed it up and paid the price to straighten it up.
You can use a palm sander with good results for the majority of the vehicle,just stay awy from edges and body lines and get a block and hand sand them. Glass is a biotch and it takes time anyway you go at it.
Stripper is a gamble as you can destroy the gel coat or the seam sealer at joints if left on too long.
I pondered this myself and ended up with a palm sander for the most part and hand sanding the edges and body lines.
Media blasting IS the best and fastest but IF you don't have that option, sanding is the only other way to be assured of NOT totally trashing the glass resin.
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Old 03-05-2009, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joshwilson
Everyone suggests using a DA. If I took it and dropped it off at any place to get painted, they would all say to use a DA. I can't run from every shop or it won't get painted. Even those who charge $7-12k for paint jobs have said DA.

.
They are wrong,,the best painters in the world are here and trying to stop you...

Wait I got a toothache..I also have a drill with a tiny bit..How deep should I go before I pack the hole with lead?
Every one says to use a drill to fix a toothache right?
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Old 03-05-2009, 09:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milo
They are wrong,,the best painters in the world are here and trying to stop you...

Wait I got a toothache..I also have a drill with a tiny bit..How deep should I go before I pack the hole with lead?
Every one says to use a drill to fix a toothache right?
I like the analogy milo. Bee4 me has a good point too in that a DA sander is hard to use on a steel body, I figure I nearly destroyed one panel on my Monte (thank goodness I do have a spare fender..). From my own somewhat feeble efforts, if I were to try this, I'd first try a DA sander on a very near similar type panel so as to not risk wrecking an essential car panel. Practice makes perfect.....


In a while, Chet.
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Old 03-06-2009, 12:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bee4Me
I realize your "confusion" with what is called a "da".
Generally,most are refering to a palm sanding random orbit da like a Dynabrade.
Some are refering to a "handle" style which has a random orbit as well as being locked into direct sand,in other words,a grinder.Little if any "controll".
LAST thing you want on glass.
Been there,screwed it up and paid the price to straighten it up.
You can use a palm sander with good results for the majority of the vehicle,just stay awy from edges and body lines and get a block and hand sand them. Glass is a biotch and it takes time anyway you go at it.
Stripper is a gamble as you can destroy the gel coat or the seam sealer at joints if left on too long.
I pondered this myself and ended up with a palm sander for the most part and hand sanding the edges and body lines.
Media blasting IS the best and fastest but IF you don't have that option, sanding is the only other way to be assured of NOT totally trashing the glass resin.
Yeah, I'm gonna stay away from a DA. I'm thinking palm sander as recommended by some on the SPI forum. Someone told me they have been using this palm sander: www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?itemnumber=98895&Submit=Go

I'm not gonna go to town on it, but will be careful and watch what is coming off so I don't go too deep.

Do you have a link where you can recommend some sanding blocks for the edges and body lines? And something I can use to sand the tail light area? I think they make flexible sanding blocks so they conform to the curves of the body while you sand.



Oh, and there shouldn't be any gel coat as that was used on the old Vettes, mine is an 89. And I'm not sure if it has any seam sealer on it as I've never seen it mentioned with regards to a C4. I know they used it on the older Vettes.

Last edited by Joshwilson; 03-06-2009 at 01:11 AM.
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Old 03-06-2009, 12:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 302 Z28
All right, let me digress. The use of a DA is acceptable, but only by someone who knows what they are doing with it. Just about every body shop I have ever seen has pimple faced kids using a DA to strip paint. This is somewhat OK on a steel body as not too much damage can be done. But on a Vette as has already been mentioned the sharp edges can be knocked down before the DA operator realizes it unless he is experienced with Vette's. Once the old paint is gone the body is going to need to be sealed with a quality epoxy sealer/primer. Then several wet coats of a quality 2K high build primer. This is followed by many, many hours of block sanding to get the surface flat and perfect. There is no run of the mill paint shop that is going to be willing to go through these steps to arrive at a nice base for paint....reasonably$$$$. Are you willing to take these steps? You have mentioned that you do not have the time, so I am afraid you will have to settle for an average paint job. Just be real clear about you willing to see imperfections on the body when it gets hot outside.

Not trying to sound harsh here, but Vette's require special procedure's and a lot of extra work. Is there perhaps a specialty shop in your area that does Vette's?

Vince
I'm not gonna be painting it. Just stripping it down to the factory sealer, and sanding that with whatever grit is recommended. Then I'll let someone do the primer and paint. And yes, I'm looking at having it sealed with SPI Epoxy. I don't know yet if I will need 2k primer, as I know of a few guys who are painting Vettes and are just shooting Epoxy, then base/clear.

And I'm getting this painted as I've got plans to sell it. I'm sure the average joe wouldn't pick up on some imperfections. Look at production vehicles with their orange peel.

Why would the imperfections on the body show up when it gets hot outside?

I've been recommended someone to paint my Vette. He is a younger guy, but has painted muscle cars and older Vettes. I'm gonna bring it by his shop sometime to let him look at it. I've been told about how good his paint jobs are.
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