"Paint Blending"

        Work continues on our '36 Coupe.  With the engine out and the parts rebuilt, painted and awaiting the return of the crank, the car has been touched up and upgraded completely...well, maybe "touched up" is the wrong expression.  It started with the front radiator shroud and front fenders that had some stone ships.  Then the cowl and running boards, then the rear fenders, and now about two-thirds of the car!  The good thing was no rust, and minimal bodywork.  On these 30's Senior Packards, the radio antenna is built into the roof pillar, but someone over the years had decided a regular mast antenna might be better, so they drilled a hole in the cowl.  This was filled, as were holes for two add-on emblems on the doors that were mentioned last issue.

        I used lacquer-based products, which is slow, but very controllable.  Building and blocking the primer can produce excellent results with no worry about compatibility if you're painting with lacquer or acrylic enamel.  Most body panels can be fully repainted to a line or edge, avoiding any areas where the old and new paint meet, leaving a paint line (dull spot).  This was the case with the '36 except in the roof area.  I used Ditzler's Del Star Acrylic Enamel with Mar-Hyde Overall Gloss Hardener (not wet look-too glossy!).

        After applying 6 wet coats, I let this sit for over 24 hours, and block-sanded the newly painted areas with wet 400 sandpaper, then used Acryli-clean, tack ragged it, and put on the finish paint coats, slightly thinner than the first color coats.  This I let sit for 3 days before power buffing it out.  For blending the old and new paint on the roof in my final coat, I added about 10% PPG DX-830 Blender to my mixed paint and hardener, then had another gun loaded with straight blender (not thinned), and shot it only over the area where the old and new met.  I let this cure for 48 hours, then rubbed it out.  I can't see a paint line.  The blender worked great!  It goes on thin and can run.  If this happens, leave it alone.  Most will evaporate and what doesn't can be rubbed out.

        The buffing was done with Meguiar's Mirror Finish Power Buffing Compound and a Meguiar's W-7000 cutting pad, then cleaner/polish and a W-1000 buffing pad, I finished up with swirl-free polish and a W-9000 finishing pad.

        Thanks to the expert color match by Auto Color in Chattanooga (423-265-5999).  I can't tell where the old finish starts and the new begins.  Now, if I only had my engine back!  2 weeks...2 weeks...2 weeks!  See you at the shows!  Keep 'em driving!