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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4797 Posts

Posted - 26 Mar 2011 :  07:51:07 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage  Reply with Quote
My '79 TA needs to be repainted. I'm in the process of visiting local paint shops--doing my research--on how they are equipped, the type of work they perform, products they use, and getting estimates for doing the work. So far I've visited two shops on a preliminary basis. Each has a different approach and both have been in business for decades. For discussion purposes, I will refer to them as Shop 1, Shop 2, etc.

Shop 1. I spoke with the owner and told him about my car. I don't drive it to the shop. I took photos of the TA showing what it looked like when in great physical shape and what it looks like today. I also described the paint system used last time and what was done to prep the car for paint. The shop owner said he needs to inspect the car. He also told me his shop does no custom paint; no show car work. His shop does full body and repair body matching to original factory level. I received no estimate.

Shop 2. This shop was recommended to me by a muscle car enthusiast. Again I spoke with one of the shop owners. In contrast, I could see a number of enthusiast car scattered around in the shop undergoing restoration and paint. Body repair was part of the job, but it was not accident repair like shop 1. There were several F-body cars (Camaros) being worked on. When I showed the owner my photos, he looked at them carefully asking me questions about my painting process ( I painted the car last time). He wanted to know about the surface preparation. In contrast, I had to tell shop owner 1. Then I was taken back when he asked if it was drivable and whether it would be easier for him to come to the house to see if or for me to drive it to the shop. As it turns out, he will come to inspect the car at the house, as it is more convenient for me. That was a surprise. This shop owner was interested in everything I had to say, and responded with great enthusiasm which sparked more questions about the state of the car. After looking at the pictures, he thought that it should be soda blasted to remove all the previous paint. I was also informed about the work his shop performs. There were dozens of pictures of cars exhibiting their work. I was also given a grand tour of the shop where I could see and talk about the various projects underway. What was so interesting to me was the exuberance displayed about what they were doing. While there I wound up talking with a Rolls Royce owner who was going to have his car redone for the car show circuit. He was complaining that he wasn't able to compete any longer because the paint wasn't up to the level expected of Rolls Royce and Bentley show car crowd and judges. He told me Jay Leno was killing him with his toys, crews of workmen, trailers of show cars etc. The little guy had no chance with that level of care and competition (and money). I thought, it's all relative. The lowly F-body guy competing against a trailer queen versus a Rolls Royce owner competing against a 60' tractor trailer show car Rolls Royce team-- but I digress.

Shop owner 2 was also interested in my engine. He asked what had been done to it. I told him of course. He was surprised to learn that 90 % of it was done by me. That doesn't happen very often these days he said. We talked for a long time. I like him very much.

Still no estimate from him as he needs to see and feel the car.
*******
What am I going to do for money? Well, whatever the estimate, it's going to be a shock to me and my wallet (not to mention my wife). I will have to save up and will probably do it by cutting back on dining out and selling some of my wood working tools (like my dad's old ShopSmith). This will be first time some one other than me will prep and paint one of my cars. I've painted 5 cars to date and only had to pay for supplies and equipment not labor. So labor will be the big ticket item this time.

*******
So there's a choice. What level of paint job do I want? What can I afford? Will my choice break the bank? Will my family have to resort to jar Spaghetti? Do I opt for a factory type paint job or something better?

"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

rad400
War Paint

USA
1251 Posts

Posted - 26 Mar 2011 :  3:58:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sound to me like shop two is the better shop, he sounds interested in your car. That you cars is not just another job, but another muscle car brought back to like again. I would go with shop 2. Good luck with which ever shop you choose Bill.

Conrad
79 Trans Am 400 auto Crower 60210 Torker II Holley 750 vac sec. #12 heads,3500 stall.
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76FormulaFiend
Buffalo

USA
81 Posts

Posted - 26 Mar 2011 :  4:29:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree the owner of shop 2 is passionate about what he does.... if it was me I would have an estimate done then have it soda blasted to see if there is extensive damage if there is spend a little less on the paintjob but if not then spend a little more and ask if the cut and buff is included.... Just remember that this car isn't a trailer queen its a driver and you don't want to be scared of driving it

A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life. Charles Darwin
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clintww
Cochise

USA
582 Posts

Posted - 26 Mar 2011 :  5:45:29 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Excellent driver quality job would run you 10 to 15G around here. That would mean you pulling the interior and reinstalling. It would also mean you removing as much as possible from the outside such as bumpers and handles. Consider a new windshield now if there are any problems. That way they can paint your dash also. That would be included in the price I gave. That price should also cover minor patch panel work if needed
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bnorris_74
Crazy Horse

USA
1442 Posts

Posted - 26 Mar 2011 :  7:10:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Excellent driver quality job would run you 10 to 15G around here.


Seems pretty excessive to me for "driver quality". But I'm from the rural areas with smaller populations.

I think it was 2002 I had my car painted. I think it cost $2500.00. Can't remember for sure. It was lacquer. That price included repairing a small ding at the bottom of the passenger door and replacing the filler strip between the grill and front bumper. It's no show car but I would rate it better than driver quality.

My issue was it took forever to get it done since the guy was like Bill's #1 example. He did mostly collision repairs but he does own race cars too and both of his cars are very nice. I think his bread and butter is collision so my car kept getting pushed to the back of the line. Something to consider Bill. #2 sound like he does little or no collision so he might turn out work on a more timely manner.
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Kiwi Mal
Cochise

New Zealand
690 Posts

Posted - 26 Mar 2011 :  9:09:57 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
My issue was it took forever to get it done since the guy was like Bill's #1 example. He did mostly collision repairs but he does own race cars too and both of his cars are very nice. I think his bread and butter is collision so my car kept getting pushed to the back of the line. Something to consider Bill. #2 sound like he does little or no collision so he might turn out work on a more timely manner.


Thats what happens if you take a classic car to a run of the mill panel-paint shop. They work on it during quieter times. If they are busy it gets shoved in the corner.

Bill has not said shop 1 does panel work though, so they could be only a paint shop. If they are the car could be completed in their normal turn around time.

Shop 2 sounds like they do the high end work, and may not wish to do something to a lesser standard. They may feel it would compromise their reputation of quality. Bill will need to ask, if he wants a nice driver quality paint job over one he is to scared to drive or take anywhere.

It's always nice to go somwhere to have work done and the owner is interested in what you are doing or have done with the car. You know they are going to take care of it.
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mike mcarthur
Pony that Jumps

USA
2475 Posts

Posted - 27 Mar 2011 :  7:35:54 PM  Show Profile  Visit mike mcarthur's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Two types of shops, production, and specialty. The production shops are the ones all over town that mostly do insurance work. Nothing against them, but they aren't going to go the extra mile for you. A specialty shop is going to cost more but will do a better job. It all comes down to what the budget is. I agree with both shops, no way you can do an estimate without seeing the car.

It's the stuff you learn after you know it all that's important
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BearGFR
Bear

USA
580 Posts

Posted - 27 Mar 2011 :  9:07:33 PM  Show Profile  Visit BearGFR's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I'm planning to paint mine myself. I've already done all the body work, block sanding, and wet sanding - first time for me to do all of that too but the thing is straight and I know every square inch of it from the metal up. There's a ton of labor and time involved in getting it right. Someone told me that's why restoration shops are so expensive: you're basically paying them to care as much about your car as you do.

Rob
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Bill Boyle
Horse Feathers (Charter Member)

USA
4797 Posts

Posted - 30 Mar 2011 :  07:54:33 AM  Show Profile  Visit Bill Boyle's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Wow, I'm slipping. I've painted at least one car in each decade starting in 1967, and just realized, I broke that string between 2000 and 2010.

Paints have come a long way since 1967. The finishes are far superior to acrylic lacquers and enamels used back then. The chemicals are also more lethal. The vapors can kill you from breathing them in and can do the same thing from blowing the place up.

Safety first. Never use halogen lighting. Must have good ventilation. Be sure to wear chemical-protective nitrile or butyl rubber gloves whenever you handle paint and solvents. This helps prevent toxic chemicals from entering your body through the pores of your skin. Also wear goggles, respirators, paint suits and head socks when cleaning your paint guns, spraying or mixing paint.


"Dedicated to keeping the classic Pontiac engine alive."

----
400 bored +.030, forged TRW pistons, ported 62 heads, Hedman headers, 2.5 SS dual exhaust X Pypes, Comp 276AH10 cam, Scorpion 1.65 RR, 850 Q-jet, stock intake & tuned HEI; original owner.

Edited by - Bill Boyle on 30 Mar 2011 07:54:55 AM
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