The last several decades have revealed a myriad of colors used in the process of painting vehicles. In fact, with many, the very imagination has been stretched. In the not-too-distant past there were the basic colors, consisting of red, blue, green, yellow, white and black. If you bought a vehicle, these were the basic choices. The vehicle paint was lacquer-based and allowed little room for flexibility when making repairs.
In today’s fast-paced world of collision refinishing, almost anything is possible due to the introduction of the two-part refinishing system, also known as a two-stage or base clear coat. This painting technology allows for an entire economy of options, such as allowing for a high gloss with a surface resistant to scratching. It also permits a coat to be applied that is resistant to rain, tree sap, stone chipping or bird droppings.
Even though there are numerous options, it’s no mystery that manufacturers or car enthusiasts will often have to give up something to get something in return for the paint job they desire. As an example, if costs are a concern, there may be some give-and-take on the amount of primer or how the clear coat on the surface is applied. Primer can be chemically treated to soften the impacts of rocks. Another example is the amount of gloss to be applied as a result of the durability factor.
Here’s the process in a nutshell:
At the factory level, a vehicle is submerged in zinc-based anti-corrosion chemicals. It’s a process that allows the paint to access remote areas of the car in the painting stage that would be impossible otherwise. Next, the vehicle is treated with two-part sealers and epoxy primers. This process allows the paint to adhere permanently to a metal surface.
The next step is to apply a clear coat of paint that has a positive charge. This is usually done via a computer-controlled spray system and provides the base coat with respect to the application process. On the molecular level, positive ions within the clear coat draw those in the negative base coat to the surface.
This process makes it possible to see three paint variances for three vehicles of the exact same paint code. Professionals at facilities with the right collision repair training and experience are tasked with the responsibility of combining variant colors for perfect matches.
~Post courtesy of WyoTech. Click for more information on the WyoTech Collision Repair program.