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Old 05-21-2015, 04:10 PM
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seeking automotive paint/bodyshop beginner advice!!

I have Industrial paint and sandblast experience from past employments in refineries down here in Houston
Tx.Being a helper I am now seeking to use what i was able to learn to my advantage and make some more $$ on side projects doing automotive painting and all else related to these trades ,of course after I have come close to mastering the craft.I just need a good EXPERIENCED advisor in picking an air compressor,gun (undecided whether to go with HVLP or traditional),hoses and all else needed being that I was only experienced in industrial.I do have a budget for under 1000 and will not place myself in a position to purchase something that i cannot afford if this motive falls in the gutter.Any advice is highly appreciated.

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Old 05-21-2015, 04:42 PM
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$1000 is a down payment on what you will need. Just try and accumulate tools as you can afford it if you are serious.. A decent compressor for a body shop will run about 1500 or so for one thing. Using undersize or makeshift tools will only result in frustration for you and us as well..

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Old 05-21-2015, 05:16 PM
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I have an uncle who is experienced but lives out of state.He advised me to start somewhere and practice.This is where i am at now,wanting to begin with what i can afford now,invest for the bigger and better in the future.This would be my side works in progress being that I am a fully licensed Plumber.A good starting point for upgrades later is specifically what I was trying to find out as well as the specifications for such as CFMs ,hp ,psi,requirements and recommendations for pursuing this.
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Old 05-21-2015, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dval View Post
I have an uncle who is experienced but lives out of state.He advised me to start somewhere and practice.This is where i am at now,wanting to begin with what i can afford now,invest for the bigger and better in the future.This would be my side works in progress being that I am a fully licensed Plumber.A good starting point for upgrades later is specifically what I was trying to find out as well as the specifications for such as CFMs ,hp ,psi,requirements and recommendations for pursuing this.
Shine is a Texas guy and one of our most knowledgeable guys. I would listen to anything and everything he told me. Shine, not trying to throw you under the bus, but maybe you know someone or need a grunt? Dan
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Old 05-22-2015, 05:23 AM
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My advise, DON'T DO IT !!
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Old 05-22-2015, 05:39 AM
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go too a few body / resto shops and get yourself a job stay 6mo and get another job at another shop. keep doing it, all shops are different and they all have at least one guy you can really learn from. save some mony and accumulate equipment along with knowlage. it takes time. You may find out your a natural painter and change your mind. the nice thing about this work is you NEVER learn it all,so when you master one part like body work and you get bored you can try painting and when you master that theres structural frame and sheetmetal. after that theres metal shaping (making your own patches and panels) I've been in this trade for 35 years and not only do I look forward to getting to the shop every day but I love being there and doing the work....every once in a while I realize theres nothing else I want to do, I just love the stuff. theres always a challenge and something new to do. I'm fortunate to be doing a job I love doing back when I was just painting it was only fun and enjoyable when I was learning ,once I mastered it it started getting boring and became work. same with body work. its nice to have options.mostly I do frames and structural now along with custom structural ( like body drops ,C notching frames. and fabrications theres always a challenge at the shop
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Old 05-22-2015, 07:34 AM
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get a job in the trade first to get you up to speed. This will help you more than anything. book knowledge is great cause it helps you pin point what's good and bad but can also be a bunch of bs at the same time. You really should get a job and get your feet wet. This would also help you to keep employees honest. I worked for a guy that didn't have a clue and so many guys would come in and sense it and they were sharks. Had the owner known a thing or two other employees wouldn't have had to bring to his attention. You'll make much more money getting up to speed using someone else's materials rather than using your own. I plan on doing my own thing at some point at right now I'd make a lot of money on jobs if I had the clientele cause work made me efficient. If I just started a business with no experience I don't think I'd stand a chance unless I just had a bunch of money to throw at other employees.
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Old 05-22-2015, 08:51 AM
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buy a hood and some inexpensive tools and start practicing. no decent shop is going to hire someone with no experience and if they do you will not be putting your hands on any car. buy paint from a suppler that is a wrong mix or order that cheap crap online .
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Old 05-22-2015, 06:43 PM
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this is very true. I had problems keeping a job when I couldn't do anything so I advertised on Craigslist and gave deals that were unheard of. I was totally honest with it and they understood. On a couple jobs I had to stay up all night to get things right. I focused on what I needed to work on and when I was decent enough I just lied on my resume. The first couple jobs didn't last too long as they figured out I sucked but at each job I learned something and before long I didn't have to lie. If I didn't lie I'd be detailing or sweeping for far too long. I didn't want that. It worked out great. Just stay hungry and use the internet and sites like this to answer little day to day hang ups. You'll go as far as your hunger. Then you'll reach a point where you decide where you want to go and can lay out certain conditions during job interviews. One thing to look out for is when you're ready, and make sure you are ready, you then want to make sure it's a job where you'll have room to grow. Some guys are very territorial and this means you'll do the crap work. There's many different environments though and they are not all set up the same way. It's a tough nut to crack but if you want it be prepared for hell for the first 2 years.
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Old 05-23-2015, 05:50 AM
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try small shops when looking for work ,the bigger ones full of insurance work wont hire you they don't have time to train anyone. What you want is an owner /operator type with 1-3 employees. I just hired a guy with no experience and hes working out very well. I'd rather hire the right guy that really has an interest in doing this work and wants to do it but no experience ,only the right attitude and good work ethics....someone that'll start cleaning up the shop all on his own when hes finished what hes was supposed to do instead of sitting around waiting for me to tell him what to do next. my shop has never been cleaner and all the bull work is being done right. That's what we're looking for. Good luck.
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Old 05-26-2015, 03:59 PM
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thanks for all the responses!i am full time worker so Shines advise is quite helpful and what i had in mind.I guess to even narrow my questions to what i needed answers to is....
What is a good air compressor to begin with?(brands,electric or pneumatic,or gas?)
what is a good spray gun to begin with?(is a hvlp better than a conventional?)
what are good specs to look for in choosing the best of the two ^ regarding hp,cdm...??
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:41 PM
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Save up and get a good air compressor..Like this one.

Quincy 2V41C60VC 5-HP 60-Gallon Two-Stage QT Pro Air Compressor

Little more than you may want to spend but that one will do you a solid for a long time..

On guns you can use the Harbor freight and or the astros which will do you until you feel the need for an Iwata or Sata or any of the high priced types..

Southern Polyuerthanes, Inc.

Learn to adjust your guns and how to clean them and take care of them..

Most shops now require HVLP as that is a EPA deal..Learn to use an HVLP gun..

Sam
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Old 06-02-2015, 08:36 PM
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Thanks Sam!!!!
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