Dutton Kit Cars and their owners
So the cars only been on the road for a few years now and i'm not particularly happy with the paint/body. When we originally started the re-build, the body was in a very bad state, absolutely covered in cracks required a huge amount of time getting it into a reasonable state. After this, the paint was then done with many spray cans, hoping to get a reasonable and inexpensive paint job. So considering this was the first major body work I've ever done its not too bad.
Never the less a lot of cracks have re-appeared, a section on the bonnet has bubbled up due to lack of heat reflective material against the exhaust manifold and there are lots of thin patches.
I plan to have a second attempt over the summer using a proper spray gun, hopefully getting it to a more professional standard so any advise on equipment and techniques will be very useful.
I'm in the same boat, the more I drive the more it stress cracks. I suppose the paint has hardened over the years, plus Gelcoat is inconsistent in thickness etc. I will watch with interest how you get on.
When Dutton made these cars longevity was not in his mind only low cost and thus both the gelcoat and the layup are light and so prone to gelcoat crazing. Just painting over the cracks will result in them soon appearing through the fresh paint.
Reinforcing behind then sanding away the cracked gelcoat before filling with a flexible filler (there are some good carbon fibre based ones now) is the best route to a decent finish but one must remember these were not quality build cars and expectations must be re-adjusted accordingly
My 2 penneth worth following on from BV who I agree with. My bodywork was in the same state, I went down the route of chasing out all the cracks large and small, washing out the matting with acetone, filling the cracks 50% with fresh resin and then using flexible filler with glass fiber filaments mixed in it. Several coats of primer filler then 2k base coat colour and a few coats of clear coat.
The result was rather good, well as good as it gets by an amateur! What I am noticing now is in certain lights I can see some of my repairs and possibly even new cracks on the gelcoat under my paint, they have not come through but can be seen.
Almost as if the clear coat is working like a magnifying glass. When I did mine, these new carbon fibre fillers were not available, I have been told they are very good.
If you are spraying 2K paint (top coat) you will need a spray gun with a 1.4 tip/nozzle maybe 1.7 for your high build primer and you will need a compressor that can keep up, when I sprayed mine last year (bonnet and boot, still have the tub to do) I used 2K solid with this set up and I do but have a 200litre compressor and I was pleased with the results although I'm never happy and as you know its all in the prep.
I recently swapped cars for a bike engined kit, and following my car home I could see body flex, not huge amount but it was there. My car was resprayed a good 10 years back and the car had been well used and abused before that. So all in all not to bad in the long term. Plan is to get on top of it properly, but it is what it is for now, a bundle of fun on a small budget, it looks OK from a distance, stood at an angle on one leg and squint :-)
Steve Matt before spraying 2k get a mask , search Gerson or an air fed one , 2k contains basically Cyanide (not good for you) , Its causes organ failure . Use an angle grinder to grind out the stress cracks but go nearly through the grp itself ,most problems occur in the GRP (not the Gel Coat) which causes the gel coat to crack . There are various fillers on the market ,the Carbon fibre filler is good also easier to rub down than the grp fillers ,I also use an isolator coat followed by an acid etch primer then a spray on Polyester filler (you need a 2.5-3mm nozzle gun) which you can block down ,then a high build primer followed by your colour ,you will find direct gloss easier than basecoat and laq
ps Mr Kerswell normally stands like that anyway -:)
Oi ! I heard that Daryl :-)
Thanks for all of your comments.
For repairing cracks we have always ground them out using a small cutting disk, making sure to taper them out and usually going right through to the fiber glass under the gel coat. Then using the ISOPON P38 body filler from halfords to fill and lastly sand/smooth using a block. I'm not sure how good that stuff is in terms of flexibility or whether we should try one of these other types you guys have mentioned?
Also when prepping for paint we would wet sand right down using 2000 grit paper, would this be too smooth for the paint? Possibly causing it not to stick very well and run?
I think the main problem with using cans is not being able to get the stuff on thick enough so that you could then buff to get a nice shine which im hoping using a gun should eliminate.