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Questions about paintwork

Discussion in '360/430' started by Husker, Jul 22, 2020.

  1. Husker

    Husker F1 Veteran
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    Dec 31, 2003
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    So I have a 2001 360 Spider. I'd like to get it to a 9.9. That will involve 20 year old film removal from the hood (it covers about a third), as well as some film that covers part of the fenders alongside the hood.

    This would probably get the car to a 9.0, assuming no paint comes off. But assuming I want a 9.9 and I want to refinish the hood area...

    1. Can a good body shop just paint the hood, or do they have to blend the fenders?
    2. If they have to blend the fenders...how much should a proper job cost to do that?
    3. How long should they have the car to do this? I have heard horror stories of body shops keeping Ferraris for months. I don't want that. Do you have an understanding with the shop upfront?
    4. Do headlights come out for this job if it involves the fenders? If so, I think I'd get mine refurbished.

    I figure I'm only a few $ thousand from having almost a "10" car, so why not spend the money and get it there? I just don't want to be held hostage by a body shop where I never see my car again.
     
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  3. Bob in Texas

    Bob in Texas Formula 3
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    What color is your car? Metallics are harder to match than solid colors. I would think only a body shop would be able to tell you if they can match or have to blend.
    Xpel removed the old yellowish PPF, took an hour, came right off with no paint removal. Lucky.
    I had the front end of my car (windshield forward) re-sprayed because of a lot of rock chips and a small ding along the leading edge of the hood area.
    They had it three weeks.
    They removed everything: headlights, fender shields, bumper, grills, everything.
    My car is a solid color and the paint was a perfect match. Looks like a new car
     
  4. KC360 FL

    KC360 FL Formula 3
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    #3 KC360 FL, Jul 23, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2020
    Reputation and referrals are everything. A shop that has been in business for less than 5 years in probably not a safe bet. I would find a very high end "body shop" or more preferable, a restoration shop. Most body shops are not interested in a picky customer with a high end car. They have lots of repair work that pays regular money for regular work for regular people with daily drivers.
    You can hardly find a body shop nowadays that wants to even take on a complete repaint of an "older" car. Too much time, too much trouble, too much work for the money in their mind.

    Any qualified shop will tell you that "panel painting" without blending is not going to happen-- if you have a good eye and are critical you will never get the perfect match. Even when dealing with what most think are simple colors to match -- red, white, and other non-metallics-- they are not going to spray out a perfect match to adjoining panels, as in your case, the front fenders. And if it's a metallic color, the layout and flake is almost impossible to match by panel. Today's metallics have pearls, flop adjusters, translucent color dyes and are all a pretty complicated mixes. A perfect match just aint gonna happen outside of dumb luck.

    Blending still requires a pretty perfect match with the base coat and it will need to be done by a really good painter. The stickler is that the base is just that; a blending of the color only and the entire hood and fenders will need to be clear coated. DO NOT let the shop tell you that this in not necessary that they can used blending agents in the clear. I have done this work for almost 30 years now and the blending agents will not hold up. Even after buffing you will see a slight hazy line where the old paint (clear coat) is and where the newly applied clear that was "blended" in begins. This is because the modern clear coats are a catalyzed (hardened) product. Unlike the old lacquer the newly sprayed clear will not completely emulsify the old catalyzed clear coat and "melt in".

    How long? That depends on the shop and it's schedule. Most good shops will not take the car until they are ready to actually start the work. Once they start I would think about 2 to 4 weeks. And yes the headlights should be removed as well as fender shields if you have them. If I did the job I would want to show no evidence that there was any paintwork done and not removing anything that will show a slight tape line would not fly in my shop. Also this makes the buffing of the paint so much more painless. And when all gets reinstalled, it looks factory. As you can see there's some time involved in this so don't think that even 4-5 weeks to too long. It's not. You want a shop to take their time and be careful not to rush anything.

    Price, well you may surprised at how much this kind of work and materials cost these days. A high quality red base coat will cost about $200 a pint. The clear coat about $300. Since these clear coats are catalyzed there's a waste factor on what you have not used and must be dumped out. And then there's the value shade sealers and any additional reducers and such. The labor costs are always contingent on where you live. Different areas have different labor rates. But off of the top of my head I would guess for the hood and the front fenders about $3500 to $5500 to get them done right. For perspective, a complete disassemble and show quality paint job in my shop runs upwards of $20K (in labor). And that is just a repaint. Not body work or materials.

    Of course, the best thing to do is pre-qualify the shops you think you want to do the work and then take the car to them for an estimate. Be sure you and the shop are on the same page and most importantly they understand and respect your expectations. If you get a bad vibe, move on. It's your car and your $$. Don't hire a shop that doesn't seem to respect that.

    I think it's important to select a shop that not only does great work but is professionally run (as in your words, not held hostage) and that means you may pay extra for that professionalism addition to the work itself. There are plenty of shops that will meet a customers finances. But truthfully, only the best ones do the job only one way, the right way, and that usually costs a bit more.

    Hope this helps, good luck,
    Ken
     
  5. Husker

    Husker F1 Veteran
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    Red
     
  6. rudkinjc

    rudkinjc Rookie

    Apr 27, 2019
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    FYI I was just curious so I went to MAACO online estimator. LoL
    Premium paint service
    Whole vehicle
    Match current color

    Preliminary Total$1,210 - 2,040
     
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  8. fatbillybob

    fatbillybob F1 World Champ
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    ken,

    you are saying the whole panel needs clear? You can’t blend out clear with more reducer in the blend out zone to melt the old clear to “melt in” preventing the haze line?
     
  9. OrmondStar

    OrmondStar Rookie
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    Hey Ken, what’s your contacts? I will need to reach out, I’m in Orlando. Richard
     
  10. KC360 FL

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    #8 KC360 FL, Jul 27, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2020
    Yes. For all the promises made by all of the newest blending agents (DuPont (now Axalta), PPG, etc) none I have found will effectively blend out the reduced cleat coat when sprayed over the old clear coat. I still remember the last time I used it. The hazy blend line, while very faint, could still be seen. Sometimes not until you cut and buff but it always appeared.

    And the kicker is by the time I had blended the color on the trunk lid, sprayed the clear, reduced the clear, sprayed it, then used the blending agent, I was looking at only about 1/4 of the trunk lid that was not sprayed. I remember thinking what am I doing here. It would have been easier to clear the entire trunk lid and be secure in the fact that it will always look perfect with no faint haze line.

    Remember, the Auto paint industry is based on production. And to be sure, the idea that the cars that are repaired in body shops are not usually "special' cars but rather DDs that need to be fixed quickly and returned to their owners. Most folks would not even notice a haze line, or maybe even care.
     
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  11. Dean Palmer

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    I'm at the point of trying to find a place here in the Tampa Bay Florida area to remove the PPF and touch up some small paint chips, and replace the PPF with new. I still haven't found any place that makes me feel that they will do the job the way I want. I went to the place suggested by the Ferrari dealer and still didn't make me feel great after they told me they will have to paint a whole panel for a chip that every true restoration or hot rod shop would do with an airbrush and blend. I even have a friend that has a great shop, but like previous posts above, they survive on higher volume insurance work and seem to need to move things through more than being one for specialty work, even though they previously did all the work for a Ferrari dealer. I'd take the car almost anywhere in the state if there was some proven history of this work, and not having to repaint entire panels all the time. Maybe I'm expecting too much :)
     
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  13. CoreyNJ

    CoreyNJ Formula Junior
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    When you do find a place for the PPF that will touch up the paint, take some before and after pics on the paint chips. I still have the OEM PPF on my 09 430 and would love to redo the PPF with a full fender and hood/bumper but I have a few chips that I touched up myself using Dr. Color Chip. They are only visible in the right light, but I'm not a professional and I'd love to see what a pro could do.
     
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  14. KC360 FL

    KC360 FL Formula 3
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    Yes a tiny chip, or a a few tiny chips, might be addressed successfully with an airbursh. It all depends on how picky you are. I have done airbrush work for years and I have successfully done away with a minor scratch or chip here or there. But to be sure it is a dying art. Not many guys are good at it and not many are even interested in the technique for touch ups these days.
     
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  15. SpencerMarks

    SpencerMarks Karting

    Jan 15, 2017
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    I can't remember the title of the video, but theres one out there of a guy who sanded, primed, painted and applied a clear coat (then buffed the paint touch ups) all with a small paint brush, it was pretty cool to watch
     
  16. Dean Palmer

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    I think I've seen the video, and that kind of work is what I'd be willing to pay someone with that expertise. I'm not bad at it using the Dr. ColorChip product for the little stuff, but it is not as good as someone who takes the time to do that entire proper process and can finish it properly, even when there may be dime size areas to address that need a talented airbrush guy :)
     
  17. EastMemphis

    EastMemphis Formula Junior
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    What you're looking for is artistry. You won't find that in a production body shop. I have a guy who is quite excellent at color correction. He's a professional piano tuner, so has an actual day job. He wouldn't stand a chance in a production shop. He's too slow and careful to actually make money doing this.

    I suggest calling around to high end detail shops with expertise in color correction. A body shop won't have the patience for you.
     
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  18. docf

    docf Formula 3

    Sep 14, 2008
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    Dean I have been a high end collector for many,many years-Ferrari, Porsche,Lotus etc. My painter is an independant who I've used since the early 90's. One project was the total restoration of my 356C 1965. He paints for local high end shops also also-Ferrari, Porsche etc. His name is Mirek Przbyl. The Name of the shop is Mirek's European Auto, Inc. Ph- 813 891-9118. Tell him Dr.F sent you ( White 458 15 sent you! Gary) Location is in Oldsmar,Fl which is slightly above Tampa.
     
  19. CoreyNJ

    CoreyNJ Formula Junior
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    I'd be willing to pay top dollar to do a proper chip repair and keep the factory paint mostly intact. I can't find anyone in NJ which is why I asked so I get an idea what I really should be looking for in a repair person. About 18 years ago I had one of the "chip" repair guys come to the house to fix a chip in my boxster front hood. Did such a crapy job, I decided to practice doing touch up myself for my last few cars, but as I mentioned you can see my repair in the right light. I tried every consumer chip repair product over the years and Dr Color chip is the best, but still not as good as I would like.
     
  20. albkid

    albkid Formula Junior

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    Thanks Ken for your invaluable write-up. I have bookmarked your post.
     
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