FJ40 Paint and bodywork questions w/pics (1 Viewer)

Joined
Mar 21, 2010
Messages
15
Location
Denver CO
Hi All,

Attempting some bodywork and paint prep for the first time on my 1978 FJ40. Long story short, it was hit and now has two new rear quarter panels and a new piece under the drivers side door. While I am at it I am hoping to get the whole thing painted but I wanted to do the prep to learn and save a few bucks. I am not hoping for full show room quality but I want to to look better than a hack job ;p

First question: There is several layers of paint on the rest of the cruiser, would it be best to just scuff it up and primer/paint over it? or should I look into stripping it down to bare metal? I am hoping I can paint over the old stuff since most of it is in good shape. As for stripping it, does the Aircraft stripper chems work good? I feel sandblasting etc is out of the budget and I am hoping for DIY options.

After I have the body sanded/prepped what are my options for the order of painting it? I have noticed there are different types of primer (sandable, etching, sealing, ect). After talking to a local paint supply, I was hoping to roll on a primer (and sand it), buy the paint myself, and have a local body shop spray it.

Sorry if the questions are common sense, this is my first leap into body work and painting and I am learning as I go.

Now, since we are all picture whores, a picture ;):

 
Joined
Aug 31, 2007
Messages
83
Location
Georgia
IMO. Taking all of the old paint off is always "best". This is do to it can hide small pockets of rust that may not otherwise be noticable. I would say depending on what your intended outcome, budget and use would be should determine your method. If you are looking for a show quality daily driver and money is no object then let a pro do it all. If you plan on wheeling then I would suggest just do it all yourself. You need an etching primer to go back on any bare metal, high build or "sandable" over that, then color. You can get a cheap HVLP spray gun that most portable compressors will run and some single stage color. It really isn't that hard to do. Pick a panel (fenders are good practice pieces) to practice on until you get it down. If you screw it up just sand it back off and try again till you get it down. I have some good friends that do a lot of ato body work that kind of taught me, but I was pleasantly surprised at how well my first paint work turned out. Not professional work but looks decent and nothing that will upset me too much if it gets scratched up. The aircraft stripper is OK but has a hard time with some finishes. You would probably be better off with a paint removal wheel on a grinder or an electric sander (or pneumatic if you have a good compressor). Paiting can be a lot of work but really doesn't take a lot of skill to get a descent looking truck. Oh yeah, solid colors are much easier to spray than anything with a lot of flake if you go the DIY route.
 

landcruiserrich

Bench Wheeler
Joined
Feb 12, 2005
Messages
235
Location
Prince George, BC
 
Nice Cruiser! What color are you thinking?

I would talk to the paint shop you are going to use first to find out what paint/primer combo they recommend, then go from there. They can get paint a lot cheaper than you can buy it so they might give you a deal. It won't cost you much more to have them shoot primer and paint. The actual painting part only takes a few minutes, it's the hours of time in the prep work that makes paint jobs so expensive. It's not too hard to do yourself and saves a lot of money, just be prepared to put a LOT of time in! . As for stripping vs sanding : old paint is the best base for primer providing it's not too chipped or is peeling off, but you're gonna want to sand down to bare metal anyway to look for rust. Good paint stripper is nasty stuff and a real pain in the ass to use."less toxic environmentally friendly" paint stripper doesn't work as well and is still nasty stuff and a pain in the ass to use. I would sand it or get it media blasted. First make sure everything is very clean. Sand it with 120 grit, then do your filling and rust repair etc, then sand your filler smooth and sand everything with a 400 grit to get rid of scratches, when you think you're done, sand some more. Then spray a light coat of primer on to see where your high/low spots are and sand or fill some more. The more time you put into prep work, the better the paint job is going to look. I would suggest taking all the windows and seals out and any trim or badges off, it makes for a longer lasting and cleaner looking paint job. Pick up some wax and grease remover and cheesecloth from a paint supply store and use it to wipe everything off after you're done sanding. It's important to not have any wax, silicone, oil etc anywhere before they paint or it will screw up your paint job.


Good luck!
 
Last edited:
Joined
Nov 27, 2009
Messages
18
Location
NH
hi, i use aircraft stripper to remove all old dry paints. sometimes it takes two or three coats to remove the old paint to bare steel.after stripping i wash all stripped panels with a lacquer thinner to clean up all the stripper that left behind.now your panels are clean you sand them out with a 180 grit sand paper with a d/a dual action sander. always look for stripper in seams and cracks if over looked this will spoil any primer or paint that yuo put over it. after all is sanded if you have any rust you should medai blast to clean steel or all the time you put into this project will not last the rust will grow quickly. all bare steel should be etch primed so the panels do not start to rust.if you use any body filler do not spray etch primer over it etch primer is just for bare steel..use a 2k filler sandable primer to finsh your panels with.sand all primer with 320/400 grit sand paper by hand then your ready to mask off you cruiser and paint.
if you at any time need to ask a question on primers and paints go to coast2coastcruiser.com is my website im still working the site you can leave message there i will get back to you.
i use ppg paints, primer and sealer
etch prime #171 part A
172 part B

sanding primer #k36 primer
hardner # 201
reducer #DT 870

hardtop paint #DCC 883
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2011
Messages
24
Location
Brookline, MA
if you at any time need to ask a question on primers and paints go to coast2coastcruiser.com is my website im still working the site you can leave message there i will get back to you.
I bet this is coast2coastcruisers.com, with an "S" at the end. The one in your message doesn't bring up a page for me.
 
Joined
Mar 21, 2010
Messages
15
Location
Denver CO
Looks like using a paint stripper chemical might be the best option for better results. Anyone have any tips to make it work best? Is this something I can do in an afternoon or does the stripping take longer?

Thanks!
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2007
Messages
263
Location
Costa Mazing, CA
stripping the paint takes some time, only takes a few minutes for the chemicals to work and get the paint to a removable point. Pressure washer makes quick work of removing all the paint that is ready to come off. Like shampoo, rinse lather repeat.

Also it doesn't take long for the metal to begin to flash rust, so get ready for primer pretty rikki tik
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2007
Messages
263
Location
Costa Mazing, CA
ok, i had some more thoughts for your project.

1) don't be afraid of the HVLP gun, get a cheap one from pep boys, ebay wherever and spray the primer yourself - since your sanding most of it off yourself mistakes can happen and then be sanded off and resprayed. By the time your done with the primer coats, you might be ready to do the final painting yourself too and save some bucks.

2) Sandblasting isn't super expensive, I got a quote to have the whole tub and firewall of my troopy blasted for $250 from a local shop in Huntington Beach. Also - renting a blaster could work too ( I have fairly understanding neighbors who seem to enjoy my projects as long as I clean up after).

3) Talstrip is trully amazing stuff - I used that for the tub of the troopy and it went very well, burns like a mother when it gets on your skin but that just means it works. Another is Interlux, I used this as a sailboat rigger when getting the paint off of masts and booms of sailboats WOW is all I can say, but I think a bit more expensive than Talstrip.

again don't get scared off by a paint gun, just takes the right set up and air to paint to fan ratio
 
Joined
Mar 21, 2010
Messages
15
Location
Denver CO
ok, i had some more thoughts for your project.

1) don't be afraid of the HVLP gun, get a cheap one from pep boys, ebay wherever and spray the primer yourself - since your sanding most of it off yourself mistakes can happen and then be sanded off and resprayed. By the time your done with the primer coats, you might be ready to do the final painting yourself too and save some bucks.

2) Sandblasting isn't super expensive, I got a quote to have the whole tub and firewall of my troopy blasted for $250 from a local shop in Huntington Beach. Also - renting a blaster could work too ( I have fairly understanding neighbors who seem to enjoy my projects as long as I clean up after).

3) Talstrip is trully amazing stuff - I used that for the tub of the troopy and it went very well, burns like a mother when it gets on your skin but that just means it works. Another is Interlux, I used this as a sailboat rigger when getting the paint off of masts and booms of sailboats WOW is all I can say, but I think a bit more expensive than Talstrip.

again don't get scared off by a paint gun, just takes the right set up and air to paint to fan ratio
I would love to try it myself. I dont have a worthy air compressor but I have been looking on Craigslist. but have not been able to get a hold of one. If I cant get a compressor and find someone else to spray, does anyone have opinions of rolling on primer?

How does garage paint booths turn out? What have you guys done for heating and ventilation?
 
Joined
Jun 2, 2007
Messages
263
Location
Costa Mazing, CA
I only have a 3 gallon compressor.

If you go through the trouble may as well spray the primer, it will give you the practice and confidence needed for a good final paint job - especially if doing large panels or areas.

Ventilate ventilate ventilate. You need a good airflow - but not fast airflow, cover everything with plastic or tarps that you don't want over-spray on. Heating is a good question, I've painted gel-coat in 50 degrees F, but we had a large propane heater blasting the shop to get the temperature up. So I guess in Colorado you'll need a few of those heaters running with some fans to move the air.

If you're going to upset too many people - over-spray out of the garage, take the painting slowly to not build up a cloud of paint that will be pushed outside over everything. I don't use a fan in may garage for just that reason.
 
Joined
Mar 21, 2010
Messages
15
Location
Denver CO
So...bought a used compressor and now looking at spray guns! I want to try this myself in my garage :hmm:

Now, I am just working on sanding the old existing paint.
 
Joined
Oct 17, 2004
Messages
103
Location
SoCal
 
 
 
I know this is several years old but I'm really curious how the rest of it went. I'm currently researching exactly what you were doing for my own soon-to start 40 project.
Here's to hoping it went well!:beer:
 

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