Step 5: Downsides and Drawbacks

Picture of Downsides and Drawbacks
No, this is not the end all method to painting your car. This process was not intended to produce show quality results, nor is it intended to be as good as a professional paint job. It is however an excellent method to bring some life back to your car at a very reasonable price. I could see this making a great Father / Son project on the boy's first car. It was good enough for me and my 19 year old car and it just might be good enough for you, BUT...

I have been told that the paint will chalk, chip and fade all within a year. I have also been told that if you want to seek a professional paint job after having performed this paint job on your car, you will need to have all of the Rustoleum stripped off completely before the new paint can be applied.

My rebuttle...? So what.

Even if the paint does chip, fade or crack within a year, I'll just throw another coat on and perhaps improve the prep work to help avoid it happenign again. Now that I have painted the entire car, I think I could paint one damaged area rather quickly... even the whole car again if needed. Plus Rick, the gentleman who did the $50 paint job write up, posted pictures of his car at 4 months, 8 months and a year after his paint job was complete. He shows no signs of anything past normal wear and tear on his paint. His car, just like mine, is a daily driver and is parked outside nightly. However, he did finish his paint job with some heavy sanding and a polish.

As for seeking a professional paint job after having performed this one, I dont think so. That was the purpose of doing this myself! To not have to pay someone else to do it! If you are thinking of getting a professional paint job on your car in the future after having done this to it, perhaps you should seek some knowledge from the paint shop first.

Again, is this a method you would use on a rare collector car? No.
On a professionally built show car? No.

Should you do this to the old beater VW Beetle you have out back? Sure!
What about the $500 car you just bought for your son or daughter? Perfect!!!

Please, read this write up in its entirety and ask any questions you may have before jumping into the project. I would reccommend trying this on a test piece such as an old fender or maybe even your lawn mower before attempting to paint your car with this method.

With all of that being said, please take a look at the picture below. As you can see the final result yielded some brush strokes. That is about as bad as any of the spots where you can see the brush strokes. A small price to pay for a $75.00 paint job!
ScienceWiz3 years ago
Thank you so much for your writeup!!
I just bought my first car (I'm 17, got a '98 Mustang) and it could use a paint job.
I have been looking at methods of painting for some time and was going to just give in and buy an airbrush, until I saw this. It seems like exactly what I want!

I do have some questions, however, hopefully you (or someone here) can help:
Firstly, there is some minor body damage on the driver door, I'm going to fix it with bondo, but I was wondering if there was any special steps I needed to do for the bondo. Do I need to primer it like I would bare metal, or treat it like the rest of the car?

Second, I am planning on applying a custom vinyl graphic to the side of the car, it's self adhering and all that good stuff, but I was wondering if this paint would, maybe, not be able to hold the weight of the graphic. I know this is sort of a stupid question, but I just wanted to get your opinion about applying a graphic to this paint job.
Hope to have pics up as soon as I can complete this project! Thank you so much!
Styluss (author)  ScienceWiz3 years ago
The graphic will go on just fine. This paint will hold stickers just like any other paint.
As for painting on bondo, I honestly have no idea.
ScienceWiz3 years ago
Sorry for spam, but one other question I forgot:

Is it possible to paint the bumpers with this method too? My bumpers are plastic soft bumpers but they need new paint as well. Can I use the same method as stated in your writeup? Sand the paint off, then paint as normal?
acdc7603 years ago
Would this work with dealer paint?...I plan on only doing my front bumper because it is currently got a large chunck out of it, and i plan on buying a used whole one.
Styluss (author)  acdc7603 years ago
I honestly have no idea. Try it and tell me how it worked!

BUT, you're trying at your own risk!
LinkTGF4 years ago
I have a 1997 Ford Mustang that I am planning on stripping down with a sand blaster I just bought. Once I get it to bare metal, I have Rustoleum Primer (White) and Rustoleum Gloss Regal Red to repaint the car (with a spray gun)

I'm assuming that because I'm stripping it down to bare metal and then primer-ing, it will be much easier to paint.

Any ideas? Would you still recommend 6 coats of the color, or would I need less because of the primer (or because of the spray gun)?

BTW, I love the tutorial - I've read it several times in the past when I had the idea to do my old Chevy Blazer in Biohazard Yellow =)
Styluss (author)  LinkTGF4 years ago
I cannot speak for how many coats you will need as I did not paint from bare metal. However, I can tell you that you should apply as many coats as it takes to have a nice, even finish that covers the car completely. I would think that it will be around 6 coats.

Thanks for the props on the write up. One of these days I'll update it...
pfred2 Styluss4 years ago
If you can at all avoid it try not to strip automobile paint down to the bare metal. Doing so exposes the metal to the atmosphere and that can lead to all sorts of problems down the road. If you do a metal conditioner is made that you should apply to the sheet metal before you prime it, then paint it in order to drive the contamination out of the panel.

The stuff smells a bit like rubbing alcohol to me but it actually stains the metal blue after it has been applied.

When I spray paint a car I am done in 2 to 3 base coats. If I clear coat it another 1 or 2 coats of that. The famous come back to hearing 17 coats of hand rubbed lacquer is, what were the first 16 practice? 6 coats isn't quite as funny, but almost!
MikleJayWox4 years ago
Not sure about Rustoleum but here in Australia we have Galmet, which is an oil based enamel, probably of the same nature. You can add enamel hardener to the paint, and extend its life considerably. Having said that one old beast I did was dark green, garden furniture green, and it took three years to get daggy. White should last way longer.

Oh, and here's a tip. Do not paint your car garden furniture green. Everybody, and I mean everybody, recognises it, and everybody, absolutely everybody, even strangers walking past, comments "that looks like somebody painted it with garden furniture paint" and look smug just like they solved the Da Vinchi code.

Absolutely everybody.

raydiv7 years ago
that's pretty great...thanks for the detailed write-up! I'm looking into restoring a car - not a 100 point show car but a nice re-do. I think I could use your method for door jams, etc. and have the outside sprayed. Might be a medium-budget option. I see Duplicolor has some inexpensive auto paint in half-gallons and maybe pints so I might try a test on some old panels. I wonder if it would be workable with automotive paint (non-metallic). I might test that too. If so, I think the fading issues (if any) would be negated. Interesting how little paint you need when it's not all going into the atmosphere!
Styluss (author)  raydiv7 years ago
Well, I think I used maybe 2 pints, tops. That was 6 coats on the car, 8 coats on the hood and two trunk lids with two different spoilers.
I want to paint my car from a green to a zilver color. Will your techique work for that too? If so, do you have any advice about doing it?
I've never heard of zilver. Where can you get that? JK!
Styluss (author)  speedy2266 years ago
No advice, just read the write up! And changing color is no big deal. It will just take a few more coats.
deckard15 years ago
Has anyone tried using their pump style Gilmoure garden sprayer, can't be any crazier than using a foam brush?
sk8fux5 years ago
should try to paint a dark brown, then a tan over it made to look like wood grain....would be a good two tone made to look like the old beach buggers :)
Mak_CVG6 years ago
Great tutorial, thanks. Would this workwith all colors ?
Styluss (author)  Mak_CVG6 years ago
Yup, this will work with any color Rustoleum. I have done it with White, Black and Red now.
For those in Canada; Canadian tire sells the paint for $30 a quart. Combine with a $20 spray gun... and your done!