Lacquer or Enamel?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2015: Lacquer or Enamel?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Daniel E. Snell on Sunday, September 06, 2015 - 09:40 pm:

In the past, I had always used Lacquer paint for body parts. I am now getting back into the hobby again after 30 years and was wondering what is the best to use nowadays? Remember, we are working in a home garage and do not have a dust free facility at hand. Any advise is greatly appreciated by the experts or experienced.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bruce Kile ....San Jose CA on Sunday, September 06, 2015 - 09:46 pm:

I just painted my Model A with single stage urethane in black and it came out great, if I do say so myself. I bought it from Summit Racing, free delivery and no sale tax. I painted it in a temporary booth set up with plastic sheets under the car port next to my garage. Any nibs and dust in the paint can easily be sanded with 1000, 1500, 2000, 2500 grit paper and then buffed out with a power buffer.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Justin H. - Western PA on Sunday, September 06, 2015 - 09:55 pm:

I second what Bruce said. My TT is painted in black single stage urethane. I painted it in my driveway (dampened down) and had virtually no dirt and what was there sanded and buffed out nicely. The brand I used was from SPI (Southern Polyurethanes) but I have also had good luck in the past with Martin-Senour from NAPA. Both are reasonably priced.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tyrone Thomas - Topeka KS on Sunday, September 06, 2015 - 09:58 pm:

No expert here and certainly not a purist other than a speedster purist. I have been painting Dupont (Nason) Urethane paints from Orielly's auto parts. It is a easy paint to mix, spray, hard but fexible, great shine with little too no rubbing out. Not a harsh chemical but always where a good mask. I too have to shoot in my garage or outside under cover, with limited equipment. Pick a still day, match paint mix to weather conditions and you will have great results. Urethane is a forgiving paint to paint. I know it's not old time but time is not on my side.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tyrone Thomas - Topeka KS on Sunday, September 06, 2015 - 10:00 pm:

Oh, a paint job is only as good as the prep below it. *Everything* is in the prep work.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Chester W. Lowery TN on Sunday, September 06, 2015 - 11:22 pm:

I also spray in my garage but here in the south the humidity changes so much I personally stay away from lacquer paint due to clouding... Although I do like the finish of lacquer when wet sanded and buffed.... like Bruce, Tyrone and Justin I use the urethane.... As long as it is non-metallic you can wet sand a run the next morning and buff it right out or any dust that may get in it... But when spraying a newer car I use the base coat clear coat..... I have a 48 Studebaker Truck that still has urethane on it after 15 years, and 15 years ago it was in the centerfold of the classic truck magazine.... Still looks good today....


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 12:48 am:

I believe the EPA has pretty much shut down the use of lacquer and enamel in some states.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Jelf, Parkerfield KS on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 01:01 am:

If it's in some states and not others, it's not the EPA. It's the states, or maybe urban legend. I was told in several California paint stores that lacquer thinner had been banned by the state. I went into a Home Depot and found a shelf full of Guess what! lacquer thinner. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Les VonNordheim on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 01:59 am:

Have not used Lacquer for final color since the 60's. Also switched from using Lacquer primer to epoxy or Polyester which holds up much better and does not shrink as much. Lacquer sometimes cracks over time.
I still use Lacquer thinner for cleaning my spray guns.
The paints today do not require thinning like before. I normally add a hardener to urethane.
I find that enamel and urethane final color paints are more chip resistant compared to Lacquer.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By stuart clipson on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 08:43 am:

i used single stage for the black parts and nitrocellulose lacquer for the body of my model A at home in my makeshift paint booth. turned out to my satisfaction.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By john kuehn on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 09:35 am:

I painted 2 of my T's with Nason single stage urethane.
Its simple for me to use and looks pretty good for a non-professional painter!

BUT I have to say to get a nice looking finish it's all in the body preparation. 90% of a nice job is body preparation.

I used a Harbour Freight HVLP gun and it works fine. It was around $40.00 for the kit. I learned this from the body shop instructors at the local college where I worked.

They start the students out on basic equipment to learn the right techniques and it really pays off. The students did some beautiful jobs with those Harbour Freight spray guns. And of course they buy their own better quality guns if they want to but most don't after they see what good work they can do with the cheaper guns.

You don't have to spend big bucks to get great results.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Walker, NW AR on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 09:49 am:

I use single-stage acrylic enamel with a hardener. It works great for me.

pu


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dan Treace, North FL on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 11:11 am:

With Mike on paint.

Single stage acrylic enamel w/ hardener catalyst, for shine and hardness, plus fast cure. Double wet coat.





DuPont acrylic enamel. As sprayed, didn't do any sanding or rubbing. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Dewey, N. California on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 12:23 pm:

Stuart,
We both have the same model & color Model A!
I'm the second owner of mine, slid down the fenders when I was about 4 years old.
1954 to 1961, she sat here


1975, McCloud, CA "Baby Blue Marine" movie set. Kewanee & Elkpoint green, original colors (although I now know the Elkpoint now on her was mis-mixed and has too much "grey" in it; maybe there was that much difference in the original mixes?


Getting back to the subject matter, Ma Green is done in Acrylic Lacquer, but I have painted many cars since and the enamels and Urethanes we now have can be applied fairly easily and produce magnificent results, even when painted in a back yard. The trick is to practice, pick a calm morning (no bugs, no wind) wet down the area before painting to keep dust down AND wear protective gear--the stuff CAN KILL you!
Of course, no paint job is as good as the surface beneath it, preparation, preparation, preparation!
Remember, you aren't paying yourself, so you can take the extra time a paid person doesn't have to do the job. Your paint will only be called 'amateur' because you weren't paid!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Daniel E. Snell on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 01:48 pm:

Wow, this topic generated quite a response! I see that the vast majority now uses Urethane. Would someone explain what "Single Stage" Urethane is and where it could be purchased?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By stuart clipson on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 01:51 pm:

david....mine has been in the family since 1954, and off the road until 2006. the colors, like yours were the two tones of green originally. much fun to restore. the top was quite a challenge but, turned out quite good. cheers


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mike Walker, NW AR on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 02:26 pm:

Daniel -- Just because more people use it doesn't mean it's better. Dan and I know what to use! :-)

Single-stage paint means that the color coat is the top coat. Two-stage is more common on modern cars; that's a color coat followed by a clear top coat.

(Message edited by coupelet on September 07, 2015)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dennis Seth - Ohio on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 02:54 pm:

I have used a Base Coat/Clear Coat which is a two stage painting process. You get a nice depth to the finish but you need to wet sand the clear coat with 1200 sand paper after it sets. Kind of a pain with all the bead work on the fenders but I like the result.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Daniel E. Snell on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 03:53 pm:

I have used Eastwood products in the past, what product line for Acrylic Urethane Enamel should I be looking for? Also, if I may ask, the size of the compressor and spray needle you use.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David Dewey, N. California on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 04:37 pm:

Stuart,
Wow, sounds like your car has quite a story with it too. Mr. Green died in 1954, and the car sat where you see the first pic until about 1961, which is across the family resort's driveway. Out in the weather, including snow with cardboard boxes stacked inside (I have no idea what was in the boxes, I just remember them). Nowadays, the modern house's kitchen is right about where it sat. At that time my brothers decided to "fix it up" for Ma Green and I remember the moving day. Well, they went through High School and the car sat, taken apart, but the engine repaired (but not well enough, rats). In 1966 I started working on it, and had it running to drive my last week of high school & to my graduation June 1971--no top, just primer, but together again!
I finished the car in time to drive it to the MAFCA National Meet on the Queen Mary. Drove it by myself from Dunsmur to Long Beach and back--The bravery of the young!
It still has the original rumble seat back rest, the upholstery is tired, but not bad & it doesn't match what the judging standards claim should be there (hmmm, SF assembled car, might explain that).
Unfortunately it has sat the past few decades, and right now it's "captured" by a bay window and a kitchen cabinet I have to put in the house so I can drive her out of the garage!
I know, TMI!

Summer of 1971, old family friends in Ma Green


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Royce in Georgetown TX on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 06:04 pm:

Eastwood stuff is repackaged from many brands, some excellent, some average. They are not a paint supply. They are a mail order place that happens to sell paint.

PPG, Dupont, Sherwin Williams, and many other companies are known for their good quality paints. I think more important than one brand or another is finding a local paint supply that is convenient. Use what they stock, and get all the components in the same brand. Follow the instructions given by that manufacturer for their product line. You will have good results.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary Tillstrom 30 miles N of Memphis TN on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 08:00 pm:

Follow what Royce just posted. Use compatible primer, surfacer, and top coat. Tell the guy behind the counter what you're working on as well as what your experience level is and he will recommend each item you need being compatible with each other.

They have to back what they sell. They want your repeat business.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Walter Higgins on Monday, September 07, 2015 - 08:44 pm:

The constant burdensome paint regulations imposed by the states, and encouraged by the federal government, are not urban legend. There is a lot of misunderstanding around them, but what you're hearing about use of solvent based topcoats being made illegal is correct. In Pennsylvania I can buy and use acrylic urethane, but in Delaware and Maryland, the sale and use of such topcoats is illegal, even if you buy it here and carry across the border to use.

The joke about the whole thing is pretty much only the base in a base/clear system is available as a waterborne component with exception to a few waterborne primers making their way on the market. Lacquer thinner isn't going anywhere anytime soon because even in the most heavily regulated states it is still needed for clean-up.

Most importantly, take care of your lungs. Get yourself a good 3M organic cartridge respirator. Better yet a supplied air respirator if your ventilation is poor, or at least a full face version that covers your eyes. Some people go to great lengths to cover up everything but their eyes and there they are taking a direct hit each time the atomized paint bounces off the panel they're spraying.


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