Phase 1 was about original War Time colors. That thread can be found in category 1942-45 Military and Commercial Vehicles. I am now confidant enough about colors to start painting.
I have purchased from Jim Carter Truck Parts, a quart of Turret Gray, Grill & Bumper Paint, 43-45 Chevy. PT100. More specifically it is Commercial Performance Coatings, ALK-200, by PPG. It is an Acrylic Modified Alkyd Enamel with Xylene which can be used as a thinner or clean up. It comes pre-mixed for compressed air conventional spray equipment, 40-50 psi at gun with 1.3-1.7 fluid tip.
However, as a retired wood furniture maker, I have a 10 year old HVLP sprayer. I want to use it to apply this paint to my dash. In other words, a highly visible area, so must come out Factory! (For info on why I’m using Grill & Bumper paint on the dash, see previous thread.)
In the paint literature, it specifies this pre-mixed paint can be used in an HVLP sprayer rated at 10 psi with same size spray tip as for conventional gun. Problem is, my sprayer only produces 4 psi. Any comments?
On paint viscosity, the sprayer literature describes using their “viscosity stick”, paint should come off stick in drops one second apart. It comes off a little quicker than that, so I’ll use their needle and nozzle for “Thinner” material. It definitely does not need to be thinned, as all of my wood finishes did.
So before I get going, does anyone have any advice? I know about sanding down to bare metal with a grit that will leave some “tooth”, having everything clean, address dust & temp, those type of basics. Paint instructions call for 2 coats, but I think I want 4, 10-15 minutes between coats. Instructions don’t mention primer. With all rust having been sanded off, is there any benefit in “pickling” with say, POR15 Metal Prep?
I have used the ALK-200 with hardener (ALK-201) on many projects. I believe the general rule on metal is to use primer to block moisture and therefore rust. You should not have a problem with rust if you use PPG epoxy primer against the metal. You can then use the ALK as a color as well as a protective coating. I even dip coat small parts with it. I stick to one family when I paint. Scratch with 80 grit, PPG epoxy coating, PPG surfacer for scratches and blemishes, then the PPG ALK with hardener.
Much of the previous color research was of limited value. Here in Boise, we have a Wesco Paint and Equipment store. They cater to the hobbyist, but offer professional grade materials. Once I had enough academic info about colors to proceed, I went to Wesco.
I was lucky to get the most experienced associate behind the counter, Andy. It universally came to be true, the best way to match original vintage colors is to match actual panels taken into the store.
I took 4 panels in, representing 4 different colors. For varying reasons, their “electric eye” did not work on my panels. So over a 1 week period, Andy mixed by eye, my 4 colors. His results are very good.
Therefore I conclude, to match vintage colors, it is best to thoroughly clean patches of color on actual panels of the vehicle and take them in to the paint store to be matched. Andy said the old factory names and numbers are obsolete and were for different types of paint. He said they are useless to him, even the Chevy name “Brewster Green”!
Also, on the Jim Carter Turret Gray that I initially purchased, I took Andy a panel representing that color. He mixed a closer match. Also, the line of paints he mixed for me include a hardener, which the Carter paint does not. Andy could tell from the “feel” of a well-cured sample, it did not have a hardener in it and it was therefore, far less durable. If you are going to the trouble of matching and repainting, using a hardener is essential.
Initially I thought I wanted to have my restoration be a “Patina Driver” grade of job. Then the question arose, should the interior be different from the exterior? As the interior phase of the project progressed, it became obvious that there were going to be so many new parts, that I have settled on “The 3 Year-Old Truck" look. By that I mean, on the parts that I am painting, I’ll do the best paint job I can, without much sheetmetal straightening. You can see this philosophy illustrated in my attached photos.
Andy sold me all my colors in Omni MAE Acrylic Enamel. There are 3 parts to this paint; color, hardener and reducer. He also provided a mixing cup, used to get the ratios of the 3 parts correct. I mixed for the same viscocity as used for conventional high pressure spray units. I found using the mixing cup a bit confusing and needed to call him to explain it another time.
On the economy Campbell/Hausfeld HVLP Turbo spray unit I already own, given the info on the spec sheet of the paint, I was pessimistic it would work. I cleaned and manicured it to the max to improve my chances. IT WORKS!! The unit came with 2 needles. I installed the one for thin paint. It only provides 4 PSI and 54 CFM.
FYI, because of environmental concerns, HVLP systems are becoming far more popular, even in professional shops. They have much less “over-spray” to get into the atmosphere.
I took my resulting painted panels in to Andy to get a critique and find out if he thought I could squeeze out any more quality from my spray unit and technique. He exclaimed, “That looks really good”! He felt I was maximizing everything.