I'm sure you have all heard of the $50 Rustoleum paint jobs. I just finished one on my winter beater/storm chasing car..
This is Safety Red, all supplies bought at Lowes and Wal Mart
Synopsis of the car before work started:
There were no rockers, lower doors, left fender flare or right quarter left. Rather than replace it with metal, I build skis, so I thought I'd use some of that technology on the car.
The left flare was molded from the intact right one, and the right quarter was molded from the left. From the molds I used triax glass and epoxy to recreate the parts, which were installed with regular glass. The triax and epoxy will be strong enough to take the snow blobs that build up and break off regular fiberglass/bondo.
total cost for this was $141.69 - and I have many new supplies left over. That includes the bodywork stuff too - lots of expensive triax fiberglass, and I used the epoxy I use for building ski's, which is much more expensive than fiberglass resin. But it releases from molds easily, and its super strong - needed that since the lower quarter panels and one fender flare are solid glass now - don't want snow accumulating and breaking things off!
That also includes the plaster of paris and other things to create molds from the good side for the bad side - most people wont need that.
Actual paint supplies was $46.41
If anyone tries this, here's what I learned (the hard way).
1. Spraying is much easier, but requires more taping
2. If you do roll it on, roll it very thin and wet sand after every 2 coats
3. Change the tape every 2 coats. I'm spending more time removing paint hardened tape than I did actually painting!
4. Contrary to the internet lore, I found 6" rollers easier to keep the paint even with
5. THIN!! I can't say it enough! The thinner a coat you apply, the smaller the orange peel, and the less sanding you'll have to do
6. Make sure to wait at least a couple weeks of hot weather before final sanding and buffing. Oil based enamels take longer to harden than acrylic enamels do
7. This is the biggie - make sure your surfaces are as perfect as you want your paint to be. If you don't mind dings and dents showing after your done, go for it. A light sanding and cleaning, and rustoleum will stick fine. If you want it to look like a mirror (and this paint will shine up that good), you need a perfectly smooth surface. Trust me - any little flaw looks 100x worse after its got shiny paint on it!
And if you are changing colors, get a can of spray paint in the same color for the door jambs, under the hood and trunk, and any places you cant reach easily (like under door handles). Spray those first, then the rest of the paint will blend in perfectly
Fun factor for this project = 5 stars
this is the missing wheel lip - 2 inches are 'glass
quarter panel - when I knocked that rust out the hole was about 8 x 8"!
the usual clear coat failure with resulting surface rust over the entire car
4 coats of paint into it. If you do this, don't worry about the orange peel - it sands out nicely
all done, except for the final wet sanding and rubbing out!
now for the important part - how good does it really look?
before wet sanding
notice before you cant even see the lines of the siding - and after you can count them! Putting a dollar bill up to the paint you can read the serial number in the reflection!!
btw.. the bottom part is semi-gloss black to match the ugly bumpers. It also makes future rust repairs easy - after all it is a winter beater!!!
Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.