Painting a British Sports Car

All vintage British cars accumulate a patina of age, dirt, and rust which often makes even the most mechanically sound car look destined for the scrap yard. Advertisements for $499 paint jobs may seem like an appealing, cost-efficient way to freshen up a car that’s 40 years old and in need of some TLC, but such a cheap job will yield a disappointing result. A well-done paint job can give a car a new lease on life, but there are several factors beyond the actual paint job which contribute to the overall cost of the job.

Quality Paint Job

Iris 61 MGA 1600 (8)
To create a paint job that lasts, the foundations of the car must be sound. This means thoroughly tackling rust damage, correcting any improper previous repairs, and fixing any collision damage. After damage is repaired as needed, the body must be stripped of all trim parts (no over-reliance on painter’s tape here!). The body is then sanded or media blasted before being repainted. Once finished, the car is reassembled with the chrome, rubber, fasteners, and associated hardware.

Obviously, a paint job is much more than just applying paint to the car. The cost of a complete, competent paint job can be significant. But “quick and dirty” paint jobs that don’t address and correct the underlying problems are merely short term patches that always disappoint. As with most things in life, you generally get what you pay for. A paint job done correctly the first time will give you satisfaction for years to come.

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