The difference between kickass and Ford Pinto is in the details. Did you scratch the paint while you were wrestling the wiper blade off the cowl? Did you nick the fender when you were swinging the engine in? Did you catch yourself on fire and frighten the neighborhood kids? All of these face-plants can be avoided if you use the right tools and techniques. This story can help you make your good car project great. MixologistPaint mixing cups can look confusing, but they really are simple to use. Here's how to mix paint. Figure out what the mix ratio is. It will either be on the label or on the techsheet available from the paint supply store. In the case of this single-stage enamel, the ratio is 8:1, meaning one part of activator (also referred to as hardener) gets added to eight parts of paint. Figure out what the mix ratio is. It will either be on the label or on the techsheet avail Find the corresponding mix ratio scale on the mixing cup. It's printed forward and backward because some guys like to look through the outside of the cup as they pour the paint. Notice there are three columns. Some paint formulas have a third component, possibly a reducer or a custom effect like a candy or pearl, in addition to the paint base and activator. If that were the case, the mix ratio may read 8:1:1, that is eight parts paint, one part activator, and one part thinner. In our case, though, we only have to mix two components to an 8:1 ratio, so we can ignore the third column. Find the corresponding mix ratio scale on the mixing cup. It's printed forward and backwar Next, figure out how much paint you want to mix. Generally, you should mix as much as the paint cup on your gun will hold, unless you're spraying a small part. Place the mixing cup on a flat surface with the proper mixing ratio scale facing you and pour the paint. Next, figure out how much paint you want to mix. Generally, you should mix as much as the Note that the numbers are staggered, column to column, according to the ratio indicated at the top of the chart. So if you pour the paint to the line marked 1 in the first column of the 8:1:1 section, you only need to add enough of the second component (the activator, in our case) to bring the level up to the 1 mark in the second column in the 8:1:1 chart. If we had a third component to add, we'd just pour until it reached 1 in the third column. That's all there is to it-the cup has the ratios figured out, so you don't have to do any math. Note that the numbers are staggered, column to column, according to the ratio indicated at Our paint label suggests we reduce the mixture 10 to 15 percent prior to spraying. Reducer is just a fancy name for paint thinner. It makes the paint flow more freely through a spray gun. Some paints do need thinning, too. Paint that's too thick will come out in globs and won't level out on the surface. If we were real geeks, we'd have figured out the volume in our paint cup and taken 10 percent of that. We then would have added that amount of reducer to the mix. Honestly, though, we just guesstimated it. You can tell after a while what the best viscosity is by watching how the paint runs off the stir stick. Paint should be slightly thicker than the consistency of water. Our paint label suggests we reduce the mixture 10 to 15 percent prior to spraying. Reducer Battery Terminal StretcherSounds like a gag, but the battery terminal stretcher is way better than using a hammer to make the terminal end fit on the battery. It might be for the guy who has nearly every tool or someone who is concerned with scratching his battery post. We are not. Get one from the Matco guy using KD Tools PN KD204. Pass-Through SocketsWe've run into this problem with all thread and battery trays. When you get to a certain point, you need to switch from a socket to a standard wrench. Gear Wrench has a pass-through socket that you can use with a standard open end or a ratcheting open end for a little more speed. 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | » | View Full Article Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!