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pillar painting time

 
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Old 27 May 2016, 11:22 pm
leftyjay's Avatar
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Default pillar painting time

I've tried everything on these black pillars, and nothing seemed to work. faded, dented, scratched, water stained. i went to the local junk yard and picked up a couple pillars that were in better shape then the ones i had.

i really didn't want to go the stick-on route. i don't think chrome pillars would look right on a cool vanilla pt. with the blacked out rear windows, the best thing to do is paint them. i'm not talking rustoleum or krylon spray cans. i mean, just like you would paint a quarter panel, or hood, or spoiler.

so i took a trip to the auto body paint store and picked up a pint of urethane sealer/primer with hardener and a pint of black base and a pint of reducer. i took off my pillars and reinstalled the window moldings. that way i can drive the car without pillars for a couple days while finishing this project. you can hear the wind whistle in the car without the pillars



one thing to remember.....don't lose the shims on the top of the pillars. i just taped each one to the back of that pillar so i don't lose them.

sanding process is pretty easy. you just need to scuff them with 400 grit or a red scotchbrite. if there was a dent, i used a rounded off 3/4" dowel and lightly tapped the dents back into place.

i taped up the back of the pillars so i only painted what was going to be seen when mounted. then i used the sealer/primer. this stuff helps the paint adhere better. i waited 30 minutes after the sealer coat and sprayed the base coat. fortunately, you can lay these pillars flat and get a smooth coat with no fear of runs.

waited another hour for the basecoat to dry, then its onto the clear coat. i paint guitars as a side line and fell in love with Dupont Nason panel clear (496). it has uv protection. it goes on a tad thicker and hardly ever get a run or sag in the finish. it comes with a hardener that you determine with the temperature outside. it was nearly 90 degrees here and the shed was probably 100. i used the high temp hardener. one mist coat, wait 10 minutes, followed by a medium coat, then wait another 10 minutes, followed by a heavy coat so it lays smooth as possible.

i let it set over night till today (Friday) when i started the wet sanding process. they were pretty smooth, but not like glass. so i level block sanded starting with 1000 grit and then 1500, 2000. then onto the compound and polishing. i have a multi speed polisher that i use on my guitars. these pillars were pretty easy to sand and polish. i'm sure you can hand polish these too with a micromesh cloth.

here is a side by side of an old pillar and a newly painted pillar.


i finished up about 8 pm and decided to install them. the middle pillar is a bugger. it has a piece of rubber molding attached and is very hard to install. especially, when you don't want to scratch the pillars. a lot of blue painter tape was used to protect the edges as well as the doors from getting scratched. don't forget to use a rag in the window crack so you don't lose the screws into the door panel. i forgot ONE time to put the rag in place, and wouldn't you know it, the dang screw fell right into the hole and got lost in the door panel. luckily for me, i remember to take the screws from the junk yard of the spare pillars, so i had a few extras.

they are installed and i have to say, it was well worth the effort to do this the right way and not use a rattle can. within a couple weeks, these pillars will be rock hard just like the cars finish. no more fading and i can polish them to shine just like the windows.

i will post daylight pics of the pillars on the car when i get up tomorrow. stay tuned....
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Old 28 May 2016, 02:29 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

other than the pollen in the air that landed on the car over night, the pillars match up real well with the blacked out windows.





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Old 28 May 2016, 03:22 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

Man,those look great, Jay. Maybe you should start offering your services (for a fee of course) to other forum members that might like to have this done. Mine's not worth doing that too as the paint is for crap on it, but some other members have some very nice PT's that could use that.
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Old 28 May 2016, 08:12 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

not sure if it would be worth it to do this for others. it took quite a bit of time doing all 6 pillars. a lot harder than painting a guitar. i probably spent $50 in paint supplies. but the labor is where the end results show their worth. i am particular when doing something like this and dont want to go the easy route. i want to go the best route. hard to put a price on this type of labor.

for the DIYer thinking of painting the pillars, i think the best way to paint is to buy urethane paint in a rattle can. the kind you can get at (house of kolor) or (big daddy roth). they have 2 part clear in a can. you push a button on the bottom of the can and then shake and spray. same results without the mess of cleaning guns and setting up the compressor. you can probably get the job done with 2-3 cans of clear and one can of black base.

the hardest part was installing them without scratching the finish. you have to bend them slightly to slide them into position. i thought it would be best to install them before they completely cured so they will bend a bit without issues.
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Old 28 May 2016, 08:14 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

I see your point. Just know that I'm sure I'm not the only one here that admires your work.
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Old 28 May 2016, 08:31 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

Quote:
Originally Posted by leftyjay View Post
not sure if it would be worth it to do this for others. it took quite a bit of time doing all 6 pillars. a lot harder than painting a guitar. i probably spent $50 in paint supplies. but the labor is where the end results show their worth. i am particular when doing something like this and dont want to go the easy route. i want to go the best route. hard to put a price on this type of labor.

for the DIYer thinking of painting the pillars, i think the best way to paint is to buy urethane paint in a rattle can. the kind you can get at (house of kolor) or (big daddy roth). they have 2 part clear in a can. you push a button on the bottom of the can and then shake and spray. same results without the mess of cleaning guns and setting up the compressor. you can probably get the job done with 2-3 cans of clear and one can of black base.

the hardest part was installing them without scratching the finish. you have to bend them slightly to slide them into position. i thought it would be best to install them before they completely cured so they will bend a bit without issues.
A while back I had inquired at a local body shop (Service King) about painting all 6 door appliques the body color of my PT. They quoted a price of $225, just to give you some idea of what someone may charge for this. But you did a great job on yours
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Old 28 May 2016, 08:34 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

Beautiful job. I want to repaint the pillar moldings on my 03 Tangerine Dream and 02 Golden Dream in the Body color to get the old time separation of the doors and windows look.
I acquired a set of mouldings at the junkyard quite a while ago. Your most excellent post gives me hope! Ha
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Old 28 May 2016, 08:59 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

Quote:
Originally Posted by rckstein View Post
A while back I had inquired at a local body shop (Service King) about painting all 6 door appliques the body color of my PT. They quoted a price of $225, just to give you some idea of what someone may charge for this. But you did a great job on yours

thats about right. dont know if its worth it. you can buy brand new pillars for that, although they wont hold up to the weather. and if you want to paint them to match the body color, you're looking at a specialized custom job, which would cost more.
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Old 28 May 2016, 09:11 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

as far as custom painting....
here are just a few of my guitars i painted. warning....you may need sunglasses

kamen blue metal flake telecaster

custom red metal flake gretsch

sparklecaster collection

most have been sold, but i found a market for retro flake paint jobs offered to lefty guitarist. we've been deprived the choice of custom paint jobs. i decided to give them an option. so, i have guys sending me their guitar bodies to me for a custom flake paint. just a side line to my normal professional musician job
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Old 28 May 2016, 09:17 pm
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Default Re: pillar painting time

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Originally Posted by pasadenahotrod03Dreamer View Post
Beautiful job. I want to repaint the pillar moldings on my 03 Tangerine Dream and 02 Golden Dream in the Body color to get the old time separation of the doors and windows look.
I acquired a set of mouldings at the junkyard quite a while ago. Your most excellent post gives me hope! Ha
there are some auto paint stores that will make you special color base coats and put them into rattle cans. might cost 15-20 a can. but i think you could do all 6 with just one can. if they offer rattle cans, i'm sure they have the 2 part clear to spray also. my local store doesnt offer that option anymore. so i went the old fashion route.
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