Daily Archives: February 13, 2013

Optima-izing efficiency

2013.02.13 - Kia (1) 2013.02.13 - Kia (2)This week  has been full of quick turn around vehicles for us. The white Altima, this Kia and hopefully the brown Altima will go just as smoothly. Yesterday we repaired the used door and installed it. We had enough time left in the day to get it sanded so we could paint it today. And we did. First thing this morning we taped it up and was putting color on it very early. Chase cleared it and a short time later we pulled it out of the booth to finish drying. This afternoon we put it back together. A little wash tomorrow morning and it will be ready to go. Two cars with 2 day turn arounds and one to go. That doesn’t happen often, but we’ll take it when I can get it.

It’s a cat-tastrophy

2013.02.13 - Nissan (1) 2013.02.13 - Nissan (2) 2013.02.13 - Nissan (3) 2013.02.13 - Nissan (4) 2013.02.13 - Nissan (5) 2013.02.13 - Nissan (6) 2013.02.13 - Nissan (7)Now here’s something you don’t see just every day. You can see in the first picture a new, 2013, Nissan Altma. A good looking car … except for that little chunk missing from the bottom of the bumper. You can see better what the damage looks like in the second photo.

So what you say? Looks like the owner hit some road debris or maybe a large animal you say? Try a cat. From the amount of damage the car took it must have been some cat. The animal took out the front bumper and the air conditioning condenser.

Now I’m not making fun of the fact the owner hit, and almost certainly killed, the animal, though the owner said the cat ran off after being hit. But holy cow, I would have never guessed such a small animal could have done so much damage.

In the third photo we have pulled the bumper from the car. The bumper was a total write-off and will be replaced with a new unit.

The fourth picture is where we are drawing off the refrigerant so that when we replace the condenser, which as luck would have it, was located just behind the animal strike, we won’t be spilling the gas into the air. When we put the car back together, hopefully tomorrow, we will pump this refrigerant back into the car, along with any extra required to top off the system.

The fifth photo shows Chase wiping down the bumper with a strong cleaner to remove any dust, wax or oil on the the panel. This will ensure a good bond between the sealer and the surface of the bumper.

After cleaning the bumper is sprayed with a urethane sealer to seal the surface of the bumper and to provide good adhesion for the top coat that follows. You can see the bumper after the application of the sealer in picture number six.

The last picture, number seven, shows the bumper painted. The bumper needs to dry overnight since we painted it late in the day and today was a cold damp day, to ensure the paint is fully cured before we install in back on the car.

This is a quick turn-around job for us, in and out in two days. We can’t do this every time, but it sure feels good when we can.

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