What to do when you run out of Base / Color Coat in the middle of a Job

Tags: Enamel · Paint Defects · Urethane

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http://www.howtopaintcars.com/wp-content/gallery/paint-materials/paint-mixing-cup.jpg?i=742296216One of the worst problems you may find yourself in is when you run out of color when you are in the middle of a job.You are looking down at your can and seeing it run out and you know that the last cup of paint just isn’t going to leave you with a nice job.

If you work at a shop with a paint mixer then you can simply recall your formula and hope you get your mixing right then continue on with your work. If you are a home Hobbyist and find that the extra half gallon of paint you had left over from painting your last car 2 years ago ran out on you then you might find yourself in some trouble.

Whenever you order paint you do not want to rely on the chip code as your formula. Every reputable supply shop should write the formula that was used on the can so they can rematch the paint. Even if they do write it on the can you should ask them to write it on the receipt that way you don’t forget to tare off the label, copy it before you open the can or if you ruin the label by getting paint on it.

If you are ordering factory pack colors that are mass produced sets of colors from a small paint manufacturer then you want to keep track of the offering and company for a few years. Unfortunately mass produced colors are never exactly the same from batch to batch. I have received paint that is a good 20% off in value from its chip color.

How to recover from not enough paint

The first thing you want to do when you are running out of color is to not alter your painting method. If you are doing a clip or an overall then you want to continue adding paint evenly.

Once you get your extra paint to complete the job you will have to worry about cure times.

Most paints have a cure time that requires you to continue painting within a specific window then stop and wait then after the paint has cured enough you can scuff it and continue. This window of time after initial cure has started and until it has completed should not see any additional painting unless you force dry the paint at manufacturer’s recommended temperatures which will mean you need a heater in your booth.

In other words if you run out of paint and it takes you an hour to get more you can probably continue painting after you tack rag the surface for any dust. If it takes you a half a day and you want to paint within a 24 hr window I would check with the manufacturer’s data sheet and you will probably find you need to wait 48 or more hrs. All paints are different so follow directions.

Continuing on with the Paint Job

http://www.howtopaintcars.com/wp-content/gallery/shop-materials/thumbs/thumbs_scotch-brite-green.jpg?1364823665Once you have the paint and tack rag or scuff the surface with a gray scotch brite and begin painting you want to look for any changes in color and metallics. If you notice any changes you want to make sure that you inspect the whole vehicle for any areas that may need additional paint.

This is definitely a situation where you could end up with rockers or bumpers that don’t match especially if they were removed from the vehicle. You may also end up with metallic flops that don’t look right.

Final Note

Running out of paint is not the end of the world even if you do so mid job.

The most important thing is to keep your cool and remember that everything can be fixed.



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