Welcome to the North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club Saturday April 30, 2016
Home Forums WikiNASIOC Products Store Modifications Upgrade Garage
NASIOC
Go Back   NASIOC > NASIOC General > Car Care & Detailing

Welcome to NASIOC - The world's largest online community for Subaru enthusiasts!
Welcome to the NASIOC.com Subaru forum.

You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, free of charge, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, so please join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads. 
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 05-26-2010, 11:18 AM   #1
cianuro
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 235475
Join Date: Jan 2010
Chapter/Region: PRSIC
Location: Puerto Rico
Vehicle:
2008 WRX
Silver

Default DIY: Getting a mirror finish using spray paint

I was tired of the chrome trim in the trunk door of my í08 WRX, so I decided to paint it to match the car as close as possible. My local auto paint shop asked me for $35+ for a spray paint can with the color code of my car. This didnít include the clear coat. So, since Iíve painted plastic trims before, I decided to do it on my own.

I had some leftover clear coat from previous parts I had painted, so all I needed was the closest matching color I could find to make it work. I used Platinum Silver from DupliColor which I found to be the closest. I also tried plain Silver, but it was a bit darker.

So, the point of this thread is showing what I did using spray paint to get that reflective finish the factory paint has. Now, we all know that spray paint tends to leave a porous surface finish. Iíll explain how to get the reflective finish without the need of paying a professional.

First of all, what youíll need:
1- Spray Primer
2- Spray Paint (your color of choice)
3- Clear Spray Paint
4- Microfiber towels
5- Polishing Compound (not Rubbing compound, I used Turtle Wax brand)
6- 3M Hand Glaze
7- 2000 Grit Sandpaper
8- Microfine Sanding Pads (look at the pics)
9- About 3 days (depending on weather conditions)
10- A whole lot of PATIENCEÖ



Sorry, I threw away the primer before I took the pic.

Here are the steps:

1- Take the part you want to paint, clean it well. Try to use those nurse gloves or something similar so that you donít get finger grease on the part. If the part is a bit porous, sand it a little with the 2000 grit, always using water to keep it wet while sanding it. This will elongate the life of the sanding paper.

2- After youíve cleaned the part completely, make sure it is as dry as possible. Now, you can apply the primer. In my case, I used Engine Enamel Primer because it holds on to plastic pretty well. The coats will depend on you, but I recommend 3 or more. Let the primer sit for 3 to 4 hours.



3- Once the primer is dry, go ahead and apply the color coat youíre going for. As for coats, I gave mine 7 thin coats of the color. If you apply several thin coats, youíll get a smooth enough finish without the risk of runs or sags on the paint. Now, let that color sit for about 24 hours. I know it is a bit too much, but at least youíll make sure the coats are cured and ready for the next step.



4- Grab that 2000 grit sandpaper and softly sand the color using water. Donít apply pressure to sandpaper, just glide it through the part as you hear it scraping the coat. Rmember, we just want to smooth out the color, not remove it. Keep the part wet. Youíll notice that as you continue sanding, the water sticks to the part. This is what you want. Dry it a bit and look at the part under some lighting. Youíll see that it kind of looks like a grain finish. This means that youíve removed most of the roughness of the part and as you slide your hand across the part, itíll feel smooth.



5- Dry the part completely. Make sure it is clean and that there is no sanding residue on its surface. Now, you can start applying the clear top coat. Same as the color, I gave it 7 thin coats. Youíll notice that the clear coat will start showing some whitish spots throughout the part. Donít worry. This is how the clear coats on spray behave. It just means some parts are more wet than others. After youíre done with your coats, let the clear sit for 24 hours. As the day goes by, youíll notice that the white spots start to fade during the cure process.



And here it is after fully drying:



6- Now itís time for using the Microfine sanding pad. Grab the sanding pad and start sanding the clear coat the same way the color was sanded. Yes, you need to sand it to get a smooth finish. Same as the color, youíll use water, and youíll see the same behavior of water sticking to it. Make sure you get the whole part smoothed out. Youíll see a white foam build up while doing this. Just keep the part wet and keep sanding until the whole part feels smooth. Remember, donít apply pressure. You just need to smooth the coat out, not remove it.

7- Starting with a small corner, use a microfiber towel to polish the part. Use a different microfiber towel to wipe any excess. Now, take a look at the corner you just polished. If it looks a bit grainy, then you need to use the sanding pad a bit more to get it as smooth as possible, without damaging the clear coat. If itís a mirror like finish, then youíre good to go with the whole part.



Notice that the right side reflects better than the left. I've polished only half of the part so that you can see the difference.

8- Once you finish polishing the part, use the hand glaze to seal it. Apply it the same way you were applying the polishing compound. The polishing compound will leave the clear coat bare, so this is a necessary step to protect it.

9- All thatís left is installing the part where it goes. Here's my finished product:




I would recommend that you practice this process before doing it where you want it. I had some small dash trims spare from my previous car, so I used these to check on colors and check which one looked better.

As for weather conditions, if you donít have a well ventilated area with no humidity and good temperature for painting, donít try this. Spray paint behaves awful under humid conditions. Itíll start to peel off, or graining during the paint process.

As per the can instructions, I gave each coat 10 minutes. This is enough time for the paint to get tacky, but not dry, allowing the other coats to blend in while you apply them.

The clear coat I used stays a bit yellowish on top of the silver during the cure process. Since I practiced on some parts before using what I wanted to paint, I noticed the yellowish look fading off as the days went by. I hope the same happens when I look at my part a week from now.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
cianuro is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
Old 05-26-2010, 11:36 AM   #2
ADAS1223
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 159853
Join Date: Sep 2007
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: tri-state
Vehicle:
2005 Impreza
wrb

Default

that looks really nice. gj
ADAS1223 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-26-2010, 01:04 PM   #3
Amnizu
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 178854
Join Date: Apr 2008
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Seattle
Vehicle:
2008 WRX, '11 BMW 1M
Red, AW

Default

Process is really good, great work here. Only comment I have is you can see a color difference between the factory paint and the painted trim piece. I imagine that this would happen even if you were to have used the $35 dollar exact paint match from the paint shop due to the adjacent panels not being blended.

I am interested in doing a similar process but to a flat black finish on this trim piece. Something to match the color of the rear diffuser, other than using a flat black paint (obvious), how would you change the process? I am assuming I would still want to put a clear coat over this.
Amnizu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-26-2010, 01:53 PM   #4
JLAG
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 211800
Join Date: May 2009
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Silicon Valley, CA
Vehicle:
2010 WRX 5dr
WRB

Default

Wow nice write up. this is going to help in painting in general.
JLAG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-26-2010, 05:55 PM   #5
cianuro
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 235475
Join Date: Jan 2010
Chapter/Region: PRSIC
Location: Puerto Rico
Vehicle:
2008 WRX
Silver

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Amnizu View Post
Process is really good, great work here. Only comment I have is you can see a color difference between the factory paint and the painted trim piece. I imagine that this would happen even if you were to have used the $35 dollar exact paint match from the paint shop due to the adjacent panels not being blended.

I am interested in doing a similar process but to a flat black finish on this trim piece. Something to match the color of the rear diffuser, other than using a flat black paint (obvious), how would you change the process? I am assuming I would still want to put a clear coat over this.
About blending, I know it's not an exact match. I practiced with some parts before actually doing this and noticed that the clear sets in about a week or two. I did this on a white part before and got the same results. It was a bit yellowish when I finished it, but after a couple of weeks of exposing it to the weather, the yellowish tone faded away. That's why I said at the end that I hope that this part behaves the same.

As for your flat black idea, I think that what you'll need is a "Satin Clear Coat" over the flat black. I've used flat black alone on inside trims and it behaves pretty good. I don't know how it'll behave when exposed to rain. I know I've seen satin clear coats in spray, but I don't remember a brand or a place because it is a bit uncommon.

I believe the process would be the same, except sanding and polishing the satin clear. If you do find it, practice on a plastic part (straight enough surface) so that you can have an idea of what the end product will be.
cianuro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2010, 07:24 PM   #6
NitroTrike
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 62408
Join Date: May 2004
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: GWR, Florida
Vehicle:
2002 wrx w/ STi guts
174k miles on Mobil 1

Default

Did you also wet sand the primer, or did I miss that somewhere?
NitroTrike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2010, 07:50 PM   #7
NCORWRX
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 238919
Join Date: Feb 2010
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Back in the Rogue Valley baby!
Vehicle:
007 LGT LTD
DGM stg1

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Amnizu View Post
I am interested in doing a similar process but to a flat black finish on this trim piece. Something to match the color of the rear diffuser.
For a closer match to the diffuser I would think a satin black would work best. imo.

OP, looks great!
NCORWRX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2010, 08:04 PM   #8
cianuro
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 235475
Join Date: Jan 2010
Chapter/Region: PRSIC
Location: Puerto Rico
Vehicle:
2008 WRX
Silver

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by NitroTrike View Post
Did you also wet sand the primer, or did I miss that somewhere?
I've sanded the primer on previous ocassions, but I've found that the color coat sticks better if you leave the primer unsanded. Sanding the primer will leave a really smooth finish on the color coat, and it'll be close to the mirror finish you want. I don't do it as much because I pay more attention to the color and clear coat finishes.

In conclusion, it's up to you. I managed to get the mirror finish I wanted without sanding the primer, so the decision's yours to make.
cianuro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2010, 08:10 PM   #9
cianuro
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 235475
Join Date: Jan 2010
Chapter/Region: PRSIC
Location: Puerto Rico
Vehicle:
2008 WRX
Silver

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLAG View Post
Wow nice write up. this is going to help in painting in general.
That was my aim. I believe I saw some of these techniques on Discovery's American Hot Rod once, but just the part where they worked on the clear coats. The rest I just applied it to using spray paint instead of a paint gun with compressor.
cianuro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2010, 08:25 PM   #10
cianuro
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 235475
Join Date: Jan 2010
Chapter/Region: PRSIC
Location: Puerto Rico
Vehicle:
2008 WRX
Silver

Default

Forgot to add...

All of this was done by hand. I tried using an orbital polisher and a polishing disk for drills, but these devices tend to rip off the coats because they get too hot during the process.

So, practice by hand, do it by hand.

Here's some of the stuff I did on my previous car:

















cianuro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-27-2010, 08:46 PM   #11
disaster999
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 73197
Join Date: Oct 2004
Chapter/Region: International
Location: Hong Kong
Default

wow that interior looks like crap
disaster999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2010, 12:31 AM   #12
cianuro
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 235475
Join Date: Jan 2010
Chapter/Region: PRSIC
Location: Puerto Rico
Vehicle:
2008 WRX
Silver

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by disaster999 View Post
wow that interior looks like crap
As in dirty, or that you don't like how it looks?
cianuro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2010, 03:19 AM   #13
SlowMoe
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 244321
Join Date: Apr 2010
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Vehicle:
05 WRX

Default

nice final product and write up!
SlowMoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2010, 10:58 AM   #14
NitroTrike
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 62408
Join Date: May 2004
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: GWR, Florida
Vehicle:
2002 wrx w/ STi guts
174k miles on Mobil 1

Default

I remember a guy doing his trim in WRB years ago. Looked pretty sick. I don't think he was able to find it in a spray bomb though.
NitroTrike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2010, 06:51 PM   #15
k2skater
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 71802
Join Date: Oct 2004
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: NJ
Vehicle:
06 STI
CGM

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by disaster999 View Post
wow that interior looks like crap
.... what looks crappy about it??

but good write up and paint looks good
k2skater is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2010, 07:11 PM   #16
SedonaScooby
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 143522
Join Date: Mar 2007
Chapter/Region: SWIC
Location: Peoria,Arizona (aka hell)
Vehicle:
1987 Brat GL 4 Speed
98 Forester L (RIP)

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by k2skater View Post
.... what looks crappy about it??

but good write up and paint looks good

probably how trashed the floors look?

and how the new paint is glossy black and how the dash is a light black/dark grey....

the quality is awesome on inside and out, but i do agree with it looking like crap, there is dust and stuff all over...
SedonaScooby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2010, 09:17 PM   #17
1fly05sti
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 151009
Join Date: Jun 2007
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: NYC
Vehicle:
05 STI OBP
under construction

Default

great write up on the suby part but the interior pieces i think that shiny black gives it a bad look, like cheap i think if people go off to paint their interior pieces a flat black or matte black is the way to go
1fly05sti is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-09-2010, 09:26 PM   #18
wisconsinsubaru
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 232342
Join Date: Dec 2009
Default

looks pretty damn good, you took your time
wisconsinsubaru is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
spray paint side mirrors? omega force Interior & Exterior Modification 11 11-28-2007 08:27 AM
Trying to spray paint to repair anthracite rim... which paint color to get? txl146 Interior & Exterior Modification 0 10-15-2006 11:06 PM
can i spray paint my helmet and still be able to use it in auto x? Duo Motorsports 6 03-05-2004 01:44 AM
Stock Color in Spray Paint Where to get? midnightblackwrx Newbies & FAQs 2 09-16-2002 10:45 AM
where to get blue tail lamp spray paint speed master Interior & Exterior Modification 0 07-21-2001 03:26 AM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:07 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2016 Axivo Inc.
Copyright ©1999 - 2016, North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club, Inc.