Block-sanding the paint quickly reveals any imperfections in the sheetmetal. As stated earlier, the body was in good shape, with only a few small dents in the decklid and quarter-panel likely caused during the cuffing and stuffing of a few perps. I was able to straighten these out with a slapper hammer and dolly.Block-sanding the paint quickly reveals any imperfections in the sheetmetal. As stated ear The dolly is doing most of the work on the backside of the dent. Push hard on the dolly while lightly hitting around the crater with the slapper to shock the metal back into shape. A regular body hammer would work OK here, but I prefer the slapper because it spreads the impact force over a larger area.The dolly is doing most of the work on the backside of the dent. Push hard on the dolly wh Check your progress by running a long sanding block across the repair. The low spot has diminished, but I uncovered the high spot that was created when the dent was formed. By concentrating your hammer strikes on the high spot, while still pushing out with the dolly, you can move the metal from the high spot back to the low spot.Check your progress by running a long sanding block across the repair. The low spot has di The dent is fixed when the sanding marks are uniform across the repair area. This is a good way to visually check your work. While it's easy to feel high and low spots in sheetmetal, very small irregularities can be tough to read by touch. That's why guys spray a guidecoat over primer before block-sanding it. When the guidecoat sands off evenly, you know the panel is straight.The dent is fixed when the sanding marks are uniform across the repair area. This is a goo Newer cars have flush-mount glass but finished with a metal-backed rubber channel. I tried to peel this out, but the backing started to deform and I didn't want to have to replace it if it broke. However, you can't just mask this channel off, as it will leave a hard tape line at the transition between the channel and the roof. 3M sells the solution to this problem—trim tape. The exposed blue section is a semirigid plastic that you feed under the rubber trim.Newer cars have flush-mount glass but finished with a metal-backed rubber channel. I tried With the tape in place, peel off the backing to expose the adhesive and fold the tape over tightly, in this case, folding it forward onto the windshield.With the tape in place, peel off the backing to expose the adhesive and fold the tape over Folding the tape forward pulls the plastic edge up, pulling the rubber trim away from the panel, which opens just enough of a gap to spray paint behind it. When you pull the tape off, your new paintjob will extend past the trim and look factory correct.Folding the tape forward pulls the plastic edge up, pulling the rubber trim away from the Masking a car is a huge job. I decided to tape off the door openings so I could keep the doors opened and blend in the door jambs. Here is the car just before I began spraying. Again, thoroughly blow the car with compressed air and wipe it with a wax and grease remover. Tech tip: masking tape does not stick to tires. I tried to tape that painter's plastic to the tires, but the tape came undone several times throughout the job and once blew the plastic into my paint. Fortunately, it stuck to the inside of the wheel lip and didn't leave any external marks. It would have been better to cover the tires with something heavier like old towels (watch out for lint, though), moving blankets, or a set of canvas wheel masks to look like a real pro. Or you could just paint the car with crap wheels and tires on it.Masking a car is a huge job. I decided to tape off the door openings so I could keep the d This is Valspar's Direct To Metal 2000 series tintable primer. It's the same stuff we used to paint Editor Glad's El Guapo El Camino in the Dec. '08 issue. We had good luck with it then, so I bought another gallon from Top Guns in Gardena, asking them to tint it as dark as possible. The mix ratio is 4:1:1 (primer, reducer, activator), and I sprayed two coats with our DeVilbiss Starting Line gun using a 1.8mm tip. You can topcoat over this primer after 30 minutes of cure time, but if it sits longer than 24 hours, you need to sand it prior to topcoating.This is Valspar's Direct To Metal 2000 series tintable primer. It's the same stuff we used I painted the car a couple of days later with three coats of Nason Ful-Thane single-stage urethane, again using our DeVilbiss Starting Line spray gun with a 1.4mm tip. The paint was a generic black mixed by Meza Autobody supply, also in Gardena, and was mixed 8:2:1 with 441-21 medium- temperature reducer and 483-15 activator. Though I used only a gallon of primer on the car, it took almost two full gallons of paint to cover it. Another reason to spray a test panel—you can gauge how much material it will take to complete the job.I painted the car a couple of days later with three coats of Nason Ful-Thane single-stage I painted the bumpers separately from the car. Though you can mix flex additives into the paint before spraying flexible parts like these, modern paint is already pretty flexible, so I skipped it. They have held up fine since then. For extra fun, see the Apr. '09 issue on how to repair plastic bumpers.I painted the bumpers separately from the car. Though you can mix flex additives into the Tech tip: Support plastic bumper covers fully across their widest part to prevent them from bending. If the paint dries with a weird bend in it, it could crack when you put it back on the car. Also, check that the material you're coating them with is compatible with the type of plastic you're working with. Some bumpers need a specific primer, otherwise the two will react.Tech tip: Support plastic bumper covers fully across their widest part to prevent them fro « | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | » | View Full Article By John McGann Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!