I have developed a new method of applying rustoleum as an automotive paint that is, in my opinion, vastly superior to applying it by roller. A method I have come to term The Poor Mans Paint Job. This method of paint at home application relies very much so on the methods seen in other online auto paint how-to's, but uses a different paint application technique in order to lessen the amount of sanding involved. This method uses a high density foam brush as opposed to those other methods, resulting in a lot less sanding to finish the job.
I have seen plenty of people paint their car at home with a foam roller brush, with good results. BUT, it takes a lot of sanding work to get it right. I have also seen people use a sprayer with Rustoleum providing excellent results as well, but then you get into dealing with the overspray, needing a sprayer and somewhere to do it.
If the Poor Mans Paint Job is performed correctly, it will help to lessen the amount of sanding involved with an at home auto paint job like this. Oh, there will be some sanding involved, but we will try to keep it to a minimum. Of course, if you are not happy with the finish without a final sand and polish, just prepare for that scenario ahead of time. Make sure to lay down enough coats throughout the procedure to be able to sand at the end if you like. However, I am a lazy SOB and would like to not have to sand too much.
You too? Here's how!
DISCLAIMER: I am in no way responsible for the results of this project when tried at home by you. This is what I did, and this is how it came out. Am I happy, yes! However, I can in no way provide any assurance that your attempt at this will turn out as well or be as satisfying. Please also see step 5, "downsides and drawbacks" before making your decision to try this at home.
Obviously, it worked well enough for me. I cannot guarantee that it will work this well for you. Please, try this at your own risk. BUT, feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.
Step 1: Supplies
Item Quantity Total Cost
Rustoleum high gloss white paint - 3 Quarts = $23.61
Odorless mineral spirits - 3 Quarts = $17.97
Primer spray paint - 1 Can = $4.99
4" High density foam brushes - 7 ea. = $5.67
2" High density foam brushes - 7 ea. = $3.95
Paint trays - 3 ea. = $3.21
Sandpaper - 2 packs = $9.50
Painter's tape - 1 Roll = $5.84
I would say that two or three quarts of paint is all that you will need. Two will do a small car, three your average size car. If you are going to tackle an SUV or large truck, you might need four or even more to finish the job. I laid down six coats on the car and seven on my body kit, bumpers and hood with three quarts. Make sure to use high density foam brushes as they will hold the paint very well and help to eliminate residual brush strokes. As with any project, be sure to purchase everything you will need and have it handy once you begin.