Daily Archives: November 13, 2012

Getting the smooth on

In addition to painting an Altima bumper, today we also primed the Satellite with a high-solids primer to smooth any light blemishes before painting.

The first photo shows the left rear door with a few places where we welded up some minor rust holes. Nothing major, but it is a lot easier to fix the holes now than to fix them later.

The second photo shows the four doors and trunk lid in the booth. They will first be coated with a bare metal primer, then later the high-solids primer.

The bare metal primer is designed to stick to, oddly enough, bare metal. The primer really gets its teeth into and binds with the metal for a tough rust preventing coating and also to provide a surface that the primers that follow later can stick to.

The third and fourth photos show Chase laying on the high-solids primer. Where the bare metal primer is designed to provide a rust proofing base, the high-solids primer is like sprayable body filler and is used to fill and smooth tiny imperfections in the sheet metal.

We will spray on two or three heavy coatings of the high-solids primer, to give us some build up, then we will come back after it dries and sand most of it off, leaving behind only enough to smooth the body work. It isn’t fun work, and what it lacks in fun it makes up for in dust, but it something that has to be done for the paint job this car is receiving.

The last picture, number five, shows the five pieces primed but still wet. You can tell they are wet because they still have a bit of a shine. After the primer fully dries is will be as flat and dull as a chalkboard.

Ugh … that’s a lot of doors to be sanded. Where’s Chris?

Another one bites the dust

Sometimes, no matter how careful you are, things just happen.

Two years ago, give or take, the owner of this Honda brought his then three year old Hyundai to me. The owner turned left on a protected green when another drive blew through the light an hit him just about the right front wheel. The car was a complete mess and a total write-off.

The owner replaced that car with this 2010 Civic. Last week he bought this car to me, once again the victim of a car that failed to yield. This time the other driver didn’t blow a stop light, it was a stop sign, but once again the result is the same. A hard collision at the right front. I find it darkly humorous that the car was hit so hard that it nearly knocked the right front hubcap off.

The Honda took it a little better than the Hyundai did. The Hyundai was so badly damaged it couldn’t move under it’s own power, where the Honda can, but the end result is the same. The Honda, like the Hyundai before it, is a total write-off.

In the last picture we were digging around in the car to ascertain the extent of the damage. The car looks bad, but once you get inside, it gets even worse.

I really feel bad for the owner. Two write-off’s of two nearly new cars in two years … neither of which was his fault. I think owner deserves a prize for being the hardest luck driver I know.

How you remove an unsightly blemish

Yesterday the Altima that is to be attached to this bumper arrived at the shop with a nice donkey track in the bumper where someone backed into the car, cutting a crescent into bumper with a trailer hitch.

Today we removed that unsightly blemish. The first photo shows the new bumper on the paint stand ready to go to paint.

In the second photo Chase is laying down another layer of the base coat on the bumper. The base coat is the actual color of the car’s finish and is applied into two or three light coats to achieve complete coverage without runs, drips or errors.

The third and final picture shows the bumper after the application of the clear coat. Where the base coat provides the color, the clear coat provides the zip to the finish by supplying not only a tough protective layer for the base coat, but also the gloss.

We will let these parts dry overnight then we will put the bumper back on the car so it looks good as new. After all, nothing freshens up a car like new bodywork.

Round two

On May 15th this Toyota Tacoma was in the shop to have it’s rear bumper repaired … the victim of a rear-end collision. Today the truck is back, this time to have the left side bed panel repaired. Once again the owner is a victim of another collision, a pseudo-rear-end collision.

Before the truck suffered very little damage. Saved by the trailer hitch securely mounted to the frame, we were able to adjust the bumper into position and send the owner on his way.

But not this time. You can see in these two photos that a simple adjustment isn’t going to fix this.

At least they missed the bumper this time.

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