sticky Re: Restoration tips for beginners


My two bits on the paint thing... my car got held up for 2-3 years because I didn’t have the tools or skills or money to paint it with a gun. 

After helping my son paint his Rambler using the roll-on method and Rustoleum marine grade paint, I decided to do my Crosley with rattle cans. I grew up painting model rockets and knew how to get a decent finish. Work with what you know. 

For me, cans were simple and easy to control. I used Rustoleum in standard colors they will always make (Hunter Green in my case). I’ll always be able to touch up scratches and dings.  

Whether you are doing it professionally or with cans, much of the finish depends on the quality of the prep work and the finish work. Wet sand between coats, then wipe the car with clean water, then wipe it down with mineral spirits, then wipe it down with a tack cloth between every coat. 

Humidity and temperature play a big role and can subtly affect the color and finish. Buy a little thermometer/humidity meter and keep track. I ended up moving a dehumidifier into the garage as the summer got muggier. High humidity leads to orange peel finish. Aargh!

The nice thing about paint is that if you screw it up, you can just sand it down and do it over. 

My car looks fine for an amateur restoration. It won’t match up with pros at big shows, but it’s plenty fine for me. I even got 3rd in class at the ‘19 Nationals.

And, going with what I knew got the project back in track. That’s important!

- Park

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