Tuesday, August 27, 2019

How to Paint your Car?

I have many times wondered if it would be fun to paint my car myself. I would then be able to paint myself a completely new shade that will stand out from the crowd. The paint is available with any of the automotive paint manufacturers in India. All I would need are a few tools and a place where no one would disturb me. I am sure it will be a cathartic process and will bind me even more with my car. But then I happened to speak to the automotive aerosol spray paint suppliers manager and I was lost. Two parts, single stage, urethane, enamel and many more terminologies made my endeavour a short one. But here is an easy way to make your own paint for some of the more adventurous souls out there.

Paints have three basic ingredients, a binder, the pigment and a carrier agent. The pigment is the actual colour that we see. Binder is a resin that is a thick and sticky liquid which hardens when it reacts with air. And the carrier agent is the solution that keeps this resin suspended till it is applied to the metal. On paint application, this carrier agent either evaporates or gets chemically bonded with the metal sheet of the car. Easy till here… now comes the confusing part.

The binder or paint resin can be made from three chemicals, namely lacquer, urethane and enamel. Lacquer is a polluting material made from toluene which does not bind with the car but evaporates. Most automotive paint manufacturers in India do not use lacquer anymore as it requires a lot of maintenance in terms of waxing and buffing and becomes brittle with age. But it is good for any car shows as it gives a very nice look and where the car will be inside and not in the sun that accelerates its aging process. 

Urethane and enamel both come in a variety of options, namely synthetic, acrylic and also hybrids with varying mixture levels where this chemistry between these hydrocarbon polymers provides the resin. Enamels are softer of the two that gives a dry to a glossy finish and less expensive whereas urethane is more durable but is difficult to spray. If you have come out of that conundrum of choosing the right binder then there is more to the puzzle yet.

The automotive paint manufacturers in India produce one or two parts and single stage or clear coat paint. I was as confused as you feel right now but this is easy to understand. The one part paints do not need an activator to dry and most of the automotive aerosol spray paint suppliers use them as they are ready to spray, especially if you are repainting the entire car. The two parts product needs a hardener or activator to stimulate the chemical creation to bond the paint to the car. This two part paint is weatherproof as it is non porous and will protect your car from rusting. In terms of quality both are good.

And if this information has not discouraged you from the task yet, be aware that mixing the paint is an art and strange things to the colour may happen if not mixed properly. I for one decided to leave this hassle of painting to the experts.

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