What Materials Do You Need To Paint A Car?

Every motorist who likes to mess around in his car at least once thought about painting his horse. In this post, I want to describe the minimum set of tools and materials that you will need to buy for a full car paint job with normal quality. I tell you right away, all this is based solely on personal experience and hitting the rake on the face. I am not a painter, I am a mechanic, but I already have three full paint jobs and a few partial, and before taking in the hands of a spray gun, I have, with great difficulty, pored over the information in bits and pieces, for professionals rarely write, they work. Now let’s paint a car!

Let me tell you right away that it will be more expensive to paint a car if you don’t have a tool than to give it to a professional for painting. Plus, a lot of time and effort will be spent. So if you do not plan to further engage in the painting – forget it.

So, in order of what we need.

1. Compressor.

You can’t go anywhere without it. We need it to be able to supply air to the sprayer. Contrary to popular opinion, we don’t need any huge three-phase monster. An ordinary direct-driven single-cylinder compressor is enough.

Below is a picture of the compressor that I chose at the time, NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor – 2 HP, 20-Gallon Vertical, 5.0 CFM . What attracted me to it? A large oil sump volume, better cooling, slower aging, and the drain plug is conveniently located. The handle is welded in two places, practice shows that when the handle is welded on one side, it falls off, often with a piece of the cylinder. Two outputs, one through the reducer, the other straight, you can connect at the same time the spray gun and blowgun and not poke back and forth. Copper tubes are more reliable and offer better cooling. Handy tap to drain condensate.

This is a brief list of places to look when selecting a compressor, and having a receiver with at least 50 liters is not desirable. It is better to change the oil in the compressor to normal, and you need to run a new compressor idle for a while. This compressor, for example, completely pulls the spray gun. The pressure is down to 4atm and stays at this level, the only thing is that it constantly rattles. For professional use, of course, it is not enough, but for amateur purposes, such a compressor is enough by the eye.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

2. Air hose.

Immediately forget about the spiral-shaped crap and buy a normal rubber hose with an inner diameter of 8mm. It is better and more convenient in everything. Cheap spirals will be constantly tangled and stretched, clinging to everything. If you take the spirals, then it the expensive, and better to hang on the wall coil with a hose, but we’re here about the budget.

This is what a crappy hose looks like:

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

This is what a healthy person’s spiral hose looks like:

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

This is what an ordinary hose looks like:

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

And this is what the best but most expensive solution looks like:

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

It’s best not to save money on pneumatic fittings, either. They can drink all the blood by jamming.

3. Moisture separator filter.

Obligatory. If your compressor is new and it is warm outside, you can get a small moisture separator screwed onto the gun, and it is cheap. If one of these conditions is not met, you need a normal filter. Otherwise, oil or condensate will pop, and the whole painting will go to hell because of the craters.

The most budget-friendly option for a paint sprayer:

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

A good option on the compressor or the wall

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

4. Paint sprayer.

This is what they say, whatever you have the money for. The system is not particularly important, most of what is sold – HVLP. Normally you can paint even the cheapest Chinese, it just takes more nerves. That’s why you should get a better one if possible. At least it should be adjusted the width of the jet and the flow of material. The tank is better than the top one. It should be washed at once and blown through abundantly.

Avoid aggressive solvents. Nozzle size is the most universal, 1.4 mm. For the primer, better a separate gun with 1.7-1.9, but it’s a luxury. In general, the painters usually have three separate spray guns. Pay attention to the pressure. Pressure should be measured at the trigger on the spray gun and directly at its inlet. The pressure gauge on the compressor will not tell the truth. From practice. The pressure at the 10-meter hose, the spray gun at 0.5atm lower than what shows the pressure gauge on the compressor. Therefore, a pressure gauge mounted directly on the sprayer is always preferable.

I work as such a monster.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

Such clones cost 2-3 thousand rubles, and I think this is the bare minimum for painting a car. The painters will say that only the pipes in the boiler room can be painted with this.

5. Grinder.

Very necessary, urgently necessary. Orbital, round or straight – makes no difference, but it very much facilitates the work and saves time, also the orbital risk is covered much easier straight. It is better to buy a pneumatic grinder, it is lighter, more powerful, and more convenient, and the work with it is a completely different level.
I have one of those.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

6. Planers.

Need different ones. A long stiff planer, a short one, a rubber one, a foam one, a semicircular one. The more different kinds of sanders you have, the more pleasant and easier it will be to work with. They are usually not expensive, except for the big planers.

I have a planer like this

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

It is very convenient to level large planes. The grinds come in so many varieties, and the more you have, the better.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

7. Sanding paper.

You need a lot of different ones. Choose the appropriate one for your tool. It is better to take specialized automotive. High-quality abrasives cost more but last up to three times longer. Therefore it is better to take normal materials from normal companies, such as Mirka, Asia, 3M, etc. Size – 80 for rough sanding putty and ripping out the rust.

120 for primary matting and puttying, 180-240 for removing deep risks from 120, 320 for primer and removal of risks from 180, 500-800 for primer grinding, and 1000 for removal of stains and other rough work with lacquer. 1500 for shagging, 2000 for matting before polishing. You can and should also take 3000 or trizac to remove risks from 2000. The amount of paper should be calculated depending on the planned amount of bodywork. Well, for example, to mat the hood, will take a circle and a half 120i on the grinder. Finishing sizes of sanding materials are consumed most slowly if they are used as intended.

8. Flexible abrasives.

You can’t get under everywhere with sandpaper, for that there are abrasive sponges and scotchbrite. Scotch bright is a must, red, 3M, or Myrlon – no difference. A piece of 20cm for the whole car is enough.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

9. Knife.

Good, sharp, clerical. And several blades come in handy everywhere.

10. Spatulas.

no plastic crap, take a set of car metal spatulas and one wide if it will be a deduction of large planes. Clean spatulas are very handy with a knife blade from a stationery knife.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

11. the Bulgarian.

Anyone with speed control, needs a grinding wheel, cord brush, and coral wheel. The last one I strongly recommend taking, allows you to peel off the paintwork very effectively without touching the metal.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

12. Painter’s tape.

Right away we forget about the construction stores and go to the paint shop. There take a normal tape normal manufacturer. 3M, Jeta pro, etc. Do not even know how much blood can drink crappy construction tape. Tape takes different widths.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

13. Masking film and paper.

Also, get it at the paint shop, it costs pennies, and there is no difference. It is better to have both. Paper does not fall off, but it is much harder to wrap a car without experience.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

14. Epoxy primer.

Very good stuff. Creates a dense, non-permeable coating for water and oxygen. Ideal for covering edges, the front of the car, and places with traces of corrosion. In principle, you can also paint over it. It is better to cover the whole car if you can afford it. Some primers without solvent can be used as a filler. But it is worth noting that after the epoxy hardens completely (24 hours), sanding it will be hell. Otherwise, epoxy is the best way to protect the metal from adversity.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

15. Acid Primer.

Custom Shop Premium Gray Self Etching Primer. Designed for priming on rust marks. Often does not go well with epoxy. I replaced it with a rust converter, which I used to treat the stripped surface, then stripped it again and put epoxy on top. Be careful with the converter, don’t spill it on any paint you’re not going to peel off, you’ll have problems later. I wish I had known that before. Generally speaking, acid is usually used on the bottom. I do not like it and do not use it.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

16. Primer filler.

And a primer on plastic. Needed for priming before painting. It fills the risk from sanding and allows you to finish smoothing the surface before painting. It is better to sand it dry as it is hygroscopic. If you sand it wet, it is best to dry it thoroughly. In general, water is our worst enemy. It is better to sand only the varnish on the wet.
Primer on plastic has plasticity and high adhesion to plastic.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

17. Filter funnels.

Disposable, usually cost 4-5 rubles. Take a bigger one, through them we pour the material into the spray gun. For the primer 180 microns, for the rest 120.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

19. Base.

In the case of metallics and other mother-of-pearl, or acrylic if without varnish. There are palettes to help you. It is better to take a ready-made color. I think it’s clear why. The manufacturer is not very important, who likes what. You have to mix it carefully, so as not to make a lot of bubbles. In hot weather, apply a dry layer first, otherwise, craters will occur.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

20. Thinner for base and varnish.

Now we take and forget such names as 646, 650, R-12, etc. Take the thinner recommended by the manufacturer of the paint. Believe me, that’s all. More expenses will come out of such savings. Crawl craters everywhere and you’ll be tearing your hair out. Just like me.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

There are three kinds of thinners: Fast, normal, and slow. Depending on the temperature in the room, the higher the temperature, the slower the diluent must be, otherwise, the layer may boil.

21. Solvent.

For washing paint guns and stuff. Here it is better R12, it is compatible with acrylics. Take more, than 8 liters at least. But from experience, this grease is not much.

If you try to clean the spray gun with unidentified liquid, you risk killing the seals, plus the coagulated paint becomes like pastel, and it clogs everything and anything.

22. Lacquer.

Here, too, everything depends on the budget. There are different varnishes – MS – classic, and increased hardness HS and UHS, so-called with a high dry residue. This means that the final coat of varnish will be larger and there will be less sagging in the risk, you will get a smoother surface. There are many different types, preferences are also different, take it according to your wallet. And the varnish is extremely dependent on the result of painting, gloss, and color depth – it’s all the merit of paint, and if it will be cloudy, it will look bad.

23. Polishing pads and polisher.

Each paste has its polisher, the coarser the paste, the harder the wheel. And vice versa. Paste better to take or 3M or Farella. In the case of Farekla, we take G5-G6 for polishing after matting with 2000 sandpaper and G10 for finishing polishing. Don’t forget to wet the polishing pad. Although experienced people say that dry polishing with 3M pastes is much cooler.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro



24. Material in cans.

Epoxy primer (in cans), filler primer. It often happens that it is necessary to dust or cover a small place, but it does not take half an hour to dilute 20 grams of primer.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

25. Measuring cups.

Mast Haven. They usually have marks on them for mixing paints in different proportions. They are cheap, but you can get five, but you can do with one. Take 300g and 500g.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

26. Wipes for degreasing.

Essential for getting rid of grease stains — most kinds will do just fine.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

27. Sticky wipe.

For wiping the base before the varnish, the primer before the base, etc. One is enough.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

28. Paint Sticks.

These will be better, but you can get by with a suitable knife or metal ruler.

29. PPE.

Painting overalls, nitrile gloves, respirator. A respirator is a must unless you ate glue packs as a child. I took the Kalibr, the filters are enough just for painting. But 3M is not too expensive. Filters for the caliber are available and inexpensive.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

30. Putty.

The volume depends on the squareness of the car. There are different kinds of putty:

  • With fiberglass or carbon fiber, respectively green or black. Designed for filling large irregularities, holes, and piling. Very durable, not sandable.
  • With aluminum powder. It has good thermal conductivity, is used on the hood and places with uneven heating, and allows it not to crack from temperature deformations.
  • With filling. The most common. It comes from different companies. In general, in the putty, I try to bypass the body, and Novol, well, somehow, it turned out so. Filling putty designed for finishing and pre-finish processing. If you have not let the bubbles, you can topcoat.
  • With plasticity
  • Finish, for finishing, is very fine-grained. You need the least of these. Suitable for putting small things like chips.

Curing agent in putty, all the same, so do not throw away. The curing agent is put 2-3 percent by weight. To start easier to calculate the portion so – take the desired amount of putty, divided by spatula in half, we get 50%, we divided half more in half, we get 25%, once again, 12.5%, once again, 6.25%, and once again in half and we get the amount equal to the amount of hardener. The hardener is better than less because if less, it will not harden to the end and will clog the sandpaper. Do not mix a lot at once, depending on the proportion and temperature, the life of the putty is from one to five minutes.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

31. Degreaser, of course.

Better yet, an anti silicone was specifically designed for this purpose.

How to Paint A Car Like A Pro

32. Of course, red 3M scotch tape to stick everything back on

And I didn’t write about the volume of materials to paint a car. I will write the minimum for the treatment of the whole car. Car the size of a mid-sized hatch – primer (4 to 1), 3 sets, base 3 liters, varnish (2k1) 3 sets. That’s the minimum; redoing a screwed-up element probably won’t work. Well, to know the final volume, always take into account the hardener. For example, the above amount in the finished material means a primer of 3.75 liters, a base of 6 liters of varnish 4.5 liters. Lacquer is the most economical to use. Primer better 4 sets, as well as paint, for the first time, to stock up on redo. Then it is clear that everyone has their standards.

Painting is an interesting and entertaining process. As soon as it starts to work — it’s a delight. But if you’re not going to do it in the future, do not even start.

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