Painting a classic – how to do it so that it gains value?
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Painting a classic – how to do it so that it gains value?

Classic cars are distinguished by their timeless appearance. However, maintaining or increasing their value requires attention to every detail. What to pay attention to when painting such a vehicle?

Automotive classics as true works of art

Classic automobiles delight with their incredible style and history and their price can sometimes knock you off your feet. In order to make a classic car really valuable, you need to take good care of it. This involves a number of care procedures, which in the case of older vehicles should be performed with the utmost delicacy and one hundred percent precision. One wrong step is enough for our classic to lose its value. It is extremely important not to give such a car in the hands of inexperienced people – only real specialists should take care of it. Thanks to this, we will avoid disappointment and problems related to the wrong approach to the car.

Is painting a classic car difficult?

Bringing a classic to a collector’s condition is a long process, which requires a lot of knowledge from specialists. There are many aspects to be taken into account, which may have a great influence on the achieved effect. Among the many treatments that need to be performed, you must first of all take into account those related to the paint coating. The condition of the car body and paint is one of the key factors that affect the visual aspects of our vehicle. The amount of work that needs to be done during such a restoration can be really overwhelming. However, a job well done will definitely pay off – classic cars are simply worth it, as every owner of such a vehicle will surely confirm.

Thickness of paint and vehicle value

The value of a classic car is closely related to the thickness of the paint coating. It must be around 200 microns for the vehicle to be classified in a certain price range. In order to determine whether the car meets the requirements, the thickness is measured – most often using an electronic sensor. For comparison, the average modern vehicle has a coating thickness of 100-150 micrometers. This is important information for experts from paint companies, who, on its basis decide on the next steps to be taken to improve the condition of the car.

Surface preparation

In order for the process of painting a car to be successful, it is very important to prepare the surface properly. This includes the removal of rust; this is a tedious and quite laborious process. The next step should be a thorough smoothing of the car body. It is especially important if waterborne paints are used, because such preparations do not like dirt and unevenness. In case of improper smoothing, the effect may be fatal.

It is a good idea to thoroughly clean the room where the varnishing process is to take place. You can also douse the floor and the walls with water to reduce the amount of floating dust as much as possible.

Always pay attention to the manufacturer’s recommendations

When painting a car, it is important to follow the recommendations of the manufacturer of the products used. The whole process consists of a number of operations that must be carried out in the correct manner, taking into account the time of individual activities. The key to success is to comply with specific requirements – otherwise unexpected problems may occur. Sanding, degreasing or washing with various chemicals are activities that must be carried out with great care.

Car washing and sanding

Car washing is one of the first activities to be performed before painting. For this purpose, specialized agents are used that can perfectly cope with difficult dirt. After thorough washing comes time for drying with a high-pressure blower and degreasing. The next steps are sanding and taping.

When sanding, it is worth paying attention to the type of sandpaper that will be used. For rust removal, 60-120-grit paper will do the job, while 120-240-grit sandpaper is best for roughing and finishing. 320-grit is used when matting old paint and preparing components for primer application.

The choice of sanding paper is extremely important because it affects the degree of sanding of the surface. Remember to avoid any imperfections. Even imperfections that are not visible at first glance may cause problems later on. After the primer coat has been applied, it is usually wet-sanded with 800-grit paper using a sanding block wrapped in paper. When we are one hundred percent convinced of the perfect smoothness of the surface, we should apply a basecoat and then a clear coat.

Complicated painting technology

The painting process when restoring an older car is extremely complicated. It consists of many steps, and it is hard to discuss each of them in detail. Painting classics requires from experts a wide knowledge of both the technology itself and the properties of individual preparations. Thanks to the difficult work of specialists, the car will gain in value and will constantly delight with its beautiful appearance. In this case, every detail counts; even seemingly insignificant issues can affect the result of the procedure.

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