What Paint for a $450 Car?


Combo Man
In the old days, having dozens of quart cans of paint on the shelf was normal for several reasons. But paint has gotten so expensive that leftovers represent a severe financial drain. Lately most of my paltry leftovers go as ground coats for bumpers and jambs to minimize the amount of new color needed. Gathering enough leftovers to paint a car in today's refinish market is at least about $500 of basecoat. But a similar idea would be to check the paint store to see what they have in the way of goofups or no shows.


Trying to be the best me, I can be
I wondered about tinting SPI white. At this point I’ll see what the local paint supply shop has for base when they open back up next week and use Euro clear. I’m planning on spraying some flattened clear on a different project and from reading it seems like most people are getting less orange peel with Euro than with Universal, so I’ve been wanting to try it on something less important first.

Like TK said you won't need basecoat, just a few grams of black and red shade yellow toners. If you are on good friendly terms with your Jobber he might even do it for little or no charge. Barry has said that most of the quality base systems out there you can use their toners. It wont take much.


Combo Man
Some of us may even have access to the formula you want in the basecoat version you might be getting toners for. That would be a good guide but you couldn't assume the SPI would tint the same. I'd get the formula and put maybe half of the toner amounts in and see how it's reacting.


Promoted Users
What if some of us on the forum could come up with enough donations of the same brand to send to John? If it was a color mix it could be the forum Astronaut color. Only extra I have right now though is a qt of MS base, I forget what color but he's welcome to it. ;)


Promoted Users
I was looking around at my leftover paint and actually have a decent amount of single stage black and white, probably not quite enough for two coats though of each, although Nardo Grey is super popular right now lol. We don't really do any other body/paint work other than our restorations so we don't end up with much leftovers as far as basecoat or SS colors go.

With the amount of work I've sunk into it so far I'll call Monday and get an order of SPI white epoxy and SS sent this way. I've been using three coats of epoxy as a one step "high build" which I'll need over the spots where dents were fixed and the rear quarters, I've got the filler dialed in close enough that three coats of epoxy should be good for blocking with 280 to flatten the peel then wetsand smooth with 500. I'm off all week so I should have time to finish fixing the dents and get prepped/painted.

It's become a mini-widebody since my last post. I bought wheels with the right offset to clear the struts and 9" wide to get the right amount of sidewall stretch that I had pictured in my head with 205/50 tires. 8" with 195 wide tires would've had the same stretch and been easier to fit but I found a killer deal on Hoosier radial 205's locally, so 9" was set in stone at that point. The front fender lips rolled flat easily since they're single layer, and pulls out over the tire by hand pretty easily. The rear wheel opening is really stout since the folded lip is welded directly to the inner wheel house, so there was no room to be gained for wheel/tire clearance without cutting.

Front clearance after rolling/pulling the fenders and slotting the struts to allow a few degrees of negative camber.


Cutting the rear for more clearance, then pushing it out with a portapower. Gained right at an inch before the outer quarter didn't like flexing in ways it wasn't meant to and buckled vertically directly over the wheel, so I stuck a long 3/8" extension in the new opening and practiced my non-existent paintless dent repair skills.


Which I patched with a 2" strip and plug welds. Ugly and semi-functional.


Before/after, both with the stock slight positive camber.


Stock profile.


New profile:



The camber wont' be anything crazy, no more than -5. I run -4/-3.5 on my daily and with the toe set to zero tires last long enough. Handles better and cuts through standing rain better than zero camber, and also makes it look like a real race car, right?



Promoted Users
Didn't get as far as I wanted to; getting the second quarter widened took awhile, the spoiler was a mess, I ended up pulling bumpers off a parts car instead of trying to prep the originals, and I spent most of one day driving to NC to pick up a really nice original hard top that popped up on craigslist for only $50.. couldn't pass that up! But for now all the bodywork is roughed in and the bare metal/filler spots are sealed with a couple coats of epoxy. I think I can get by with doing a small amount of touch up and spraying a couple more coats of epoxy to make it all slick enough for paint. I also shaved the front emblem mounting holes, the antenna hole, and I'm planning on going back and shaving the wiper washer holes and I'll probably shave the spoiler mounting holes, I'm not 100% sure I'll use it. I'm tempted to shoot 3 coats of high build and block it to make it super straight now...

For kicks I took a spring out and test fit a wheel and tire for the first time since stretching the rear quarters. I'll narrow the lower control arms to bring in the bottom of the wheel for less camber,and I may need to make an adjustable trailing arm to center the wheel in the opening but I'm really happy with the way the top fits in the newly shaped wheel opening.





This angle really makes the wider quarters apparent.



Promoted Users
I forgot all about this thread. I ended up doing more work to it, like shaving the spoiler and third brake light, antenna, badges, etc. I bought a gallon of 2K and shot it once all the spots were fixed and I've blocked that up to 220 on the main shell and 500 on the panels I removed.



I'm used to spraying thicker Poly primer... the 2.5 tip might've been to blame too.


Wet blocking, reflections are looking good.


I used dry guide coat before sanding with 500 to make sure I didn't miss any imperfections or 220 grit scratches.




I got sidetracked for a couple of months on another new project that I couldn't pass up so I'm just now getting back to the Capri. The stall it's been in has just been used for storage for the past few years and was pretty dusty and dirty. Last week I cleared everything out, pressure washed, painted the ceiling and walls, and put up new led lights to make it more workable.


I found a Momo steering wheel for it, and machined a hub adapter to fit it using an old Honda Odyssey front hub.




Also pulled the trunk lid and convertible top storage cover off so I could prep the jambs and mask it easier. Still on the fence about pulling the doors off. I think I'll spray the loose panels first to get a feel for the products; it's first time I've used SPI base or Euro clear. I've read that Euro sets harder quicker so I'll have less time to get it all buffed, smaller batches will be easier to manage in my free time.




Promoted Users
Good job Astro. Remember, it's got your name on it regardless what it's worth.

It'll be a little above average for a daily driver but the whole point was to have something I'm not worried about to daily. My other cars are to the point that they're getting really rare to find in good condition so I want to quit dailying them and get something that doesn't matter if I hit a deer or someone wrecks it. I drive about 15 miles pretty much every night and have been lucky to not hit a deer yet, but the pucker factor is high when it's typical to see 5-10 deer that are 30 feet or less off the road every night. I have about half a dozen of these as parts cars so deer hits would be easy to fix.


Promoted Users
Had some time this weekend to finish prepping and masking it, then shot sealer yesterday and paint today.

The 2K primer had pretty noticeable shrinkage- I blocked it with 220 on an acrylic block about two months ago and when I sanded it with 400 this weekend there was a lot of texture and DA scratches showing up.




It took a little over 1.5 quart (3qt sprayable) of base to cover the white epoxy I sprayed as a sealer.






I thought I was taking it easy on the vertical sections on the first coat, but Euro seems to flow longer than Universal does, but I've mostly sprayed Universal in higher temps. I used medium activator and medium reducer with panel temps around 78-80, mixed 4:1:1.


A few weeks ago I cut the busted windshield out of this car and a crack-free w/s from a parts car. Wanted to do that before I painted it to reduce the chance of scratching the new paint. The donor w/s was covered in wiper marks so I spent way too much time polishing them out. Usually I'd just order a new glass but these are NLA.





I noticed that the old windshield had an oil change reminder sticker from 2000- it was only driven about 1,200 miles per year up to that point.



Promoted Users
Might as well wet sand and buff it at this point... Got the deck lid and convertible top storage cover done so far.


I cleaned up and shot all of the trim parts with SEM Trim Black, buffed the taillights, and started reassembly. Also dug through my wheel stash and picked out a set of Riken Mesh that fit better than the set I was originally planning to use.







I found this receipt when I was cleaning out the glovebox, $323 for the ugly purple paintjob back in 2011.