Frankly, it's been so long since I did this and considering you're looking for an alternative I'm not sure! I'd suggest looking at a can of Rustoleum and comparing it to your other choices. See if you can find an alternative with similar properties.
Of course it would! You just may need a few extra coats to help cover up the fact that you're going from a darker toned color to a light one.
Well, it depends on how much prep you want to put into this. If you choose to sand to the metal you have a lot of work ahead of you. Unless you're painting a single part or something. I would not recommend sanding to the metal unless you're ready for one hell of a paint job. Just scuff down the existing paint and then sand smooth to a nice surface that's ready to take paint. I did a lot of what I needed to with a garden hose nearby for wetting the car as needed. Soaking the paper will only get it wet for so long. I say use a hose with a spray nozzle to help you keep the area you're sanding wet and the car cleaned up as well.
Use matte paint! I re-did the car a few years ago in matte white and it was DOPE. But man, it was SUPER hard to keep clean. I was thinking that maybe a matte paint that was then covered with a clear or protective layer of some kind would give it a satin look maybe and that could be cool. That would be the only way to keep the paint clean and looking good really. If anything touched it at all it left behind dirt or grease.
Sorry for the delay in response! I used regular old Rustoleum. I'm not sure they had an automotive paint option when I first did this! I used both the high gloss enamel and their matte paints. It was gloss originally and then I repainted it matte.
I did not. That's just the gloss Rustoleum! Well, and my excellent choice of photo location! ;)
Honestly, the paint went bad a few years later. But it was a very easy thing to do to then just apply another 2 coasts to freshen it up! I'd highly suggest using a clear coat of some kind after applying the paint as I bet that would make it last a long, long time.
Concerning your color question of course a primer coat is recommended for the best finish. But if you wanted to not use a primer coat you'd more than likely need additional coats of color to cover up the prior paint. It won't distort the color, it will just take more coats to cover up. As for using a sander you can, but it won't give you as smooth of a finish because it will jump around the car slightly giving it an uneven sanding job. It will definitely speed things up though and the difference may not be that noticeable.
Other colors work just fine but darker colors will show imperfections more. And yes, humidity will cause it to take longer to dry and may affect the application some. Just be mindful of the fact.
I'm sure you could easily add something for more shine and protection, but I can't offer any advice on doing so.
If you're happy with how it looks now I wouldn't mess with it. But I would put on a clear coat to help keep it looking good longer.
I found that the roller applied too much paint at once, leading to the need to sand heavily between coats. With the brush you get a lot more control of how much paint is applied and where.
Colorado warm... 70* or more. Part of the key of this paint process is to not paint in direct sunlight as it will cause the paint to dry too quickly. If you're in a smokin' state such as Arizona you'll definitely want to do your painting in a well shaded area.
I have no experience with any other paints so sadly I cannot recommend another paint or brand for you. I'm sure a local paint store can assist you with this question.
Excellent write up! I wish I would have thought about this as it seems my old (I just moved) swamp cooler was the damn same as yours. I was always grabbing the hose and spraying that pads to get a boost of cool.
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