If you have an older vehicle that may have seen better days, you may be thinking about giving it a makeover. If you need a new paint job, you may be wondering whether you can do this yourself. What do you need to know about the work and process involved before you can arrive at a decision?
Time and Patience
Assuming that you have no experience in this area, you need to realise that this will take some time and patience if you are to arrive at a palatable outcome. You will also need plenty of space and be able to seal the area off so that you protect other people from the toxic paint.
To begin, make sure that you have the right equipment. You need a protective mask, spray gun or airbrush, together with sandpaper, masking paper, newspapers tools and plenty of paint.
You should remove the trim around the windows, front and rear bumpers and other parts that do not need to be painted. This will help you avoid any overspray, which will certainly ruin the finished effect. You will then need to place newspaper over all the windows and tape around the edges. Cover the lights as well, and make sure that you do this with great precision.
Over the years, the vehicle's bodywork will have started to degrade, and it will probably have many bumps, scrapes and scratches. Therefore, you will have to spend a great deal of time preparing the surface properly before you even think about hooking up the spray gun. Use different kinds of sandpaper according to the imperfection in question. They come in different grades or "grits," and you can use them with or without water as you prepare the surface. The more time that you spend here, the easier the next part of the process will be.
It is best to apply several coats of paint, leaving the vehicle to dry in between each session. Do not be tempted to spray a great deal of paint onto the car in one go, as this may tend to run or build up in certain areas. Just make sure that you have a good technique so that you can apply the paint slowly and carefully with even strokes from one side to the other. You may also need to sand the vehicle down in certain areas between each application of paint.
The Better Approach
Do you have enough patience to do this job and, crucially, do you have the available space to do it safely and without issue? For most people, the answer is probably not, and this is why it is always best to bring in a professional instead. They will have a lot of experience and know-how to achieve a perfect outcome without hassle.
To learn more about vehicle spray painting, talk to a professional in your area.