Tips from a first time shooter

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    I posted a thread ‘What I learned about air’, figured now that I have done TWO attempts at painting I want to share the things I have learned, so those folks who are thinking about their first paint are better educated. Alot of this info is discussed in other threads but I found I was missing some things once I was done.

    I painted a 1965 Buick Riviera, the body is completely gutted and sanded down to a reasonable level removing alot of bad paint, smoothing out nicks and doing some small dent repair. All the items I use are from Eastwood. I am using a Concours HVLP gun, I have the 1.2, 1.4, 1.8 and 2.2 tips. I have a 60 Gallon Air compressor and put the ‘RapdiAir’ garage kit in my garage. I have the digital regulator on the gun and have a moisture filter inline as well as normal air filtration and regulator off the tank.

    I used the Contour Poly primer, I used the 2.2 tip as suggested. I mixed the primer as directed and had a HUGE amount of Orange peel. The material was very thick, so I cut it with .5% acetone and it made a world of difference but still was textured when I sprayed it. (more on my solution for this later)

    I sanded down the car to 600 grit since I am spraying the Blue Pearl paint (which has metallic not pearl). My first attempt I read everything twice….I still screwed up. I used a gun pressure of 23 PSI, I had 20-25 in my head and its 25-30. I used 27 PSI at the gun and found it works awesome. The low pressure led to the metallic not spraying right, I had bare spots because the air didnt push the metallics right. I also had alot of orange peel in the clear…again its slightly thicker than the paint much like the primer and it needs a reducer. Sadly I didnt think of this until after I did a second complete repaint to fix the striping, which I could have seen had I slowed down on the first attempt. So my second attempt with the higher pressure I got alot better color coverage. I waited an HOUR before I attempted the clear, thinking the ‘out gassing’ of the paint was adding to the clearcoat orange peel. I sprayed the clear and it still orange peeled, as soon as it hit the panel you could see it. I tried pressures, gun settings, distances and speeds and nothing corrected it. The product needs to be reduced, the thinner clear will atomize so much better and thinner material will flow out as it hits the panel. Now this orange peel ****ed me off and had my lose my mind and I forgot to allow for the clear to flash…since its stays wet looking its hard to tell too. I have now learned to WAIT, there is no rush. This is not a race. Because I applied the second coats of clear so quickly not following the proper route around the car, the first coat created air bubbles in the clear. Now that I sanded down the orange peel I have, I have popped these bubbles and I cant clear over them in fear they wont fill and the air pockets will only break down the clear as they expand and contract in the heat and I dont want to repaint the car in two years when the clear coat falls apart.

    So whats the lesson learned……slow the hell down. make sure your products are thin enough to spray. I was given a tip by a friend, mix your material. Stick your stir stick in and pull it straight out allowing the product to drip off. It should run in TWO lines, if its dribbling one strand of product its too thick. Add whatever is called out to thin the material until you get TWO dribbles off the stick….then its ready to be applied. But again the bigger thing I cant stress enough……slow down. None of the videos you will ever watch stress this enough. They dont show you them sitting on their butts as the paint/clear flash. This means just as much as the application of the paint and can save you a bunch of work and help you get that awesome finish.

    The attached pic is of the clearcoat with the bubbles I mentioned

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