Thursday, December 29, 2005

Digital Clothing for Your Car

Gizmag reports that an Autralian promotional company named Decently Exposed, has developed a product named Auto Skins. It is a digital skin for your car. The skin costs between $US1500 to $US3000 depending on the size of the car.
They have been used not only for artistic impression but also for advertising. McDonalds, Coca Cola, Nokia and Australia├é’s largest fleet, that of Australia├é’s telco giant Telstra.
The AutoSkin has the double advantage of forming a protective coating which can be stripped off to reveal the original, as-new unblemished paint the car came with.

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Friday, December 23, 2005

Nissan paint that doesn't scratch

There is a story on the site that announced a new non scratch paint form Nissan.
"The Japanese automaker said the paint contains a newly developed resin that can stop scratches from marking the car's outer layer."
Now I can almost imagine a resin that would do that but there is always a trade off as Dom Palon keeps reminding me. What would a resin like this trade away, color life, fade resistance, how well would it stand up to chemicals. There is also one other little thing about the story they show a scratched hood when you photoshop a photo you can usually tell what the original photo was in this case it was a Chrysler Town and Country. We'll wait and see.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The Worst Cars of all Time

I like lists. I came upon Dan Lienert article on the Forbes web site a list of the all time worst cars. Some of the cars on the list would be on anybodies list the Yugo is there and the Fiat Strada. Also the Ford Pinto, The Chevy Vega and the AMC Gremlin. There's also the 1983-1989 Ford Bronco II this is the one that defined "prone to rollover"and the 1979-1984 Oldsmobile Delta 88 remember that one General Motors tried to convert standard gasoline to diesel. Probably the worst car of all time was the 1957-1962 Sachsenring Trabant P50 this little gem was made in East Germany and I am told everyone of them smoked coming right out of the factory. The thing is for every bad car, and I can think of a couple that are not on the list, there is an internet tribute page or a car club that honors or collects them. To view the whole list go to the Forbes The Worst Cars Of All Time and place your vote
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Saturday, December 10, 2005

The Colors of the Future

Dee-Ann Durbin of the Associated Press reported in the San Diago Union Tribune on future color trends.

"Blue will get more popular in the next four years as more dramatic shades are introduced, such as watery blue-greens and smoky lilacs. Yellows and oranges will get richer and warmer. Reds will glow in deep shades of cranberry and wine, and dark brown will make a comeback."

This year PPG is showing 130 new colors for the auto makers to consider

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Friday, December 09, 2005

The Colors We Buy Now

Worldwide new car sales
34% silver
14.4% white
12.7 blue
11% black
Red, green, beige and other shades with less than 10 %. But new colors are on the way.
More on that tommorow.

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Saturday, December 03, 2005

How much higher will paint prices go?

Mark Johnson of the Automotive Body Repair News interviewed officials of Dupont,BASF and Sherwin Williams and indicated that the price of paint could rise 25 percent. Now this is no surprise what also is no surprise is that the one insurance company that responded felt that was not their problem. Where does that leave the folks that fix wrecked cars well squeezed in the middle of coarse.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

What will the paint companies do?

With the recent run up in the price of gasoline some may have noticed that the price of all the allied chemicals have gone up also.
Petroleum experts warn that the maximum amount of available petroleum is approaching (estimates range from with in years to with in decades.) We have heard a lot about the need to move to a hydrogen economy but have the paint companies given any thought or more importantly invested in what they will do when there isn't enough petroleum to go around. It's really hard to imagine what a world would be like when the pharmaceutical companies are competing with the plastic companies over increasingly scarce and expensive recourses were will paint rank on the bidding list?

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Monday, November 28, 2005

Spray Can base coat

We saw a Dupont dealer bulletin today introducing their new aerosol spray cans. Seems like a good idea. We've been doing it for a number of years and it's worked out well for our customers. Dupont doesn't mention anything about including base coat fix in the paint. You know making it real base coat nor do they make a recommendation about which clear to apply over the base.
Congratulations over at Sherwin Williams for the guy that landed the account for the spray cans this is going be big for you.

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Friday, November 11, 2005

Evercoat urethane repair

The Fiberglass Evercoat factory rep stooped in yesterday and showed us thier new products. Their new MAXIM™ Medium Urethane Adhesive and the MAXIM™ Fast Urethane Adhesive caught my eye. These are urethane repair material that first comes in a standard caulking tube so you can use a regular chalking gun second it works on all the plastic we are likely to run across doing auto repair. No more deciding if it's flexible or rigid no trying to decide if it is PUR, RIM, TPE, TPUR, PC, TPO, PP, or R-RIM.
Now the next big thing you can use this stuff to rebuild tabs on bumpers and do the repairs. That is going to keep many more bumpers out of the landfill.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Thiking of a new car? Thinking small?

The Obvio is on the way. Brazil's import will be for sale in the United States next year.
This a three passenger car has an integrated rollcage disk brakes and will of course will have to comply to Federal safety standards. With a 1.6 liter 4 valve fuel injected engine that produces 115 horsepower.
It has an on board imobile carputer that if I'm reading their web site correctly has gps capabliities is your mobile phone plays cds and dvds and if your one of the first 1,000 buyers you get an I-Pod player and Boblbee backpack.
The external panels are "ABS/PMMA a special high-tech twin-sheet vacuum thermoformed multilayer plastic".
And the price: about $14,000.

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Friday, October 28, 2005

Capone painter to the stars

My daughter and I went out yesterday and to visit the new and as yet undisclosed location of Capone’s Kustoms. Capone is Denver’s own custom painter to the stars he has painted the cars of NBA stars Kenyon Martin and Chris Anderson, NFL great Tyrell Davis and is being backed by Denver Nugget Carmelo Anthony. I know there are others of note that he’s told me about but the names escape me.

The new shop may remain at an undisclosed location. He was working in a very small shop in Aurora and guys and media people hanging around was getting to be a real problem. The new shop is a big improvement it will be interesting to see what this talented young guy does now. He is the most talented painter I know.

Next time I go out I’m bringing my camera.

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Friday, October 21, 2005

Web Work

just installed Flock the new web browser it is still in beta so it's still a little buggie but it is still interinsting

Flickr Photo

Saturday, September 10, 2005

New Orleans and Global Warming

Now this is a harsh thought, and I do sympathize to all those people that lost so much, but given the realities of global warming and climate change. Are we going to look back in 50 or 100 years and say "New Orleans was the first great city we lost" See the Union of Concerned Scientists for a discussion on Global Warming Lending Strength to Hurricanes so the question is does it make sense to rebuild?

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Radio Show

I was a guest this morning on the Hot Rod Talk show with Van Jeffries and Mike Young on KCKK radio AM 1600 in Lakewood. That was a lot of fun we talked paint and old cars. It’s a talk show in the usual call in format. I gathered it hasn’t been on the air long and they have a 13-week run.

They seemed pretty happy with me but well, I’m a talker I like to talk I took a couple of calls. I was a little nervous at first but I think I got over it quickly. They’re going to make me a cd of it so I can hear myself. I’d like it if they would ask me back.

I wasn’t going to say anything about this considering it was my first time and all but I couldn’t help bringing up the idea of podcasting the show and I got the usual vacant look when ever I say podcasting.

Oh well if it’s only a one time thing it was fun.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Revolutionary Transmission

Thomas Kasmer's has come up with a come up with a new and revolutionary transmission that is 97 efficient and much lighter weight than a conventional transmission. Essentially it is a variable drive hydraulic pump that is attached to another variable drive hydraulic pump that can also act as a hydraulic motor. Mr. Kasmer is in talks now with Ford to equip Explorers and give them 40 to 50 miles to the gallon.

The transmission could be used to break the car and store the energy that could be used again to power the car back up to 90% of it’s speed with the engine at idle.

Read more about it at

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Aircars in our future

I've been complaining for years that the promise of the Jetsons has not been fulfilled. Well the time may have finally come. The Moller Skycar company is "accepting deposits to secure delivery positions for our M400 Skycar " Its about the size of a large car, has vertical takeoff and landings, gets 20 miles a gallon and can cruise at 315 mph.
Step right up put your money down and be the first one on the block to have one

Thursday, July 21, 2005

how to wet sand and buff your car

I have had a couple recent requests to post a detailed article on sanding and buffing your car.
I'm talking about basecoat/clear coat paint jobs here. You can wet sand and buff a solid color single stage paint but not a mettlaic or a pearl. Usually I just say when you do single stage you simply need to accept that what you get is what you get and just accept it and leave it alone. So if you are useing basecoat/clear coat here is how

1. Wash the car

2. Wipe the car with a mild solvent or commercially available wax and grease remover

3. Buy 3 or 4 sheets of each 2000, 1500,and 1200 grit wet and dry sand paper

4.Were going to walk down a ladder here and then back up again. I can’t see the condition of your paint so I can’t tell you which grit to use. Start with the 2000 grit if that seems to be leveling the surface great. If you determine that it’s just not doing the job go with the 1500 if that isn’t getting the job done go to the 1200. Now let’s say you have to use the 1200 after you have introduced throes scratches your going to have to cut the tops off of the scratch with the 1500 and then again with the 2000 grit. You can see you will be doing the whole job three times with this example so you want to get the job done with the finest scratch that will work.

5.Start with the finest grit, 2000 put a couple of sheets into a bucket of warm water and add a few drops of detergent (I just use what ever I'm using to wash dishes with at the time) and yes I almost always wash the dishes at my house. Let the sand paper soak for at least 15 minutes until it curls up we want the sand paper saturated. The detergent is for lubrication. Wrap the sand paper around a sanding block or a sponge and as you sand keep the surface wet and dunk the sand paper often a single piece of sand paper goes a long way if you keep it wet. When you are done the surface is going to look very dull and to bring back a shine we have to get rid of the sand scratches.

6. This is the point at which you need a piece of equipment; the standard of the industry is a 7” polisher you can rent these or purchase them form $75 -$400 Pads for the buffer are made off wool or foam. I like foam pads they don’t last as long as wool but I’m less likely to scorch the surface and I get better results. You will need two pads (a dense firm pad for compounding and a soft pad for polishing)

7. With old paint a rubbing compound was used to scourer the surface it had an abrasive in it but with modern urethane clear coats we need a rubbing compound that actually reflows the clear. Squirt some on to the surface and “butter it in.” That means spread the compound lightly with the polisher used at low speed and then let it sit on the surface thirty seconds or so to let the chemical action begin. You want to work areas that are four square feet or so before moving along operate the buffer at the lowest speed and don’t press down. Let the buffer do the work you are just there to guide it. Now it should be starting to look good. However you will see swirl marks the darker the color the more you will noticeable the swirl marks will be.

8. Hang in there we’re getting near the end. We are going to use a polymer sealant to fill throes swirl marks fill up the voids in the paint and give a gloss. WE ARE NOT GOING TO USE WAX. Wax is bad for paint it has always been bad for paint it was just the best thing they back in the good old days. Today with the advances in polymer technology we can make the paint stronger, longer lasting shiny 3M, Meaguire’s and Finish Kare all make good polymers sealants I use Finish Kare’s Polywipe. Go down to your local automotive paint store and ask them what they carry. Don’t bother to ask at the local parts supply house they just don’t know about this and will likely sell you wax. As far as how it is applied well that is very much like wax apply it with a soft cloth tee shirt material is good old cloth diapers are even better, work it in then let it have up for five or ten minutes. Next, buff with your clean sot foam pad. Work small areas at a time because you don’t want it to harden up it will get very hard and you will have a hard time removing it. Pay special attention to the hood and drivers side door those are the areas people look at closest.

9. Pay attention to the little areas like the edge of the hood and trunk lid get those spots clean before the polymer hardens

10. Pat your self on the back for a job well done.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Hydrogen fuel record

How many miles per gallon could a hydrogen car get, is 10,000 mpg possible? Check Jack Dex, 13, will attempt to break the world fuel efficiency record.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Candy Paint

The big player in the custom car paint business is House of Kolor. They are no longer the only player SEM has now entered the field and I am very impressed. They're new line of candy concentrates and pearls is very impressive.

Monday, July 04, 2005

Flat paint for cars?

I guess it just shows that all fashion is cyclic, or as my mother used to say "Wait long enough and it will be in fashion."
My friend Mike works at D & C Auto Body told me that in California flat automotive paint is the new thing. It's a throw back to the 1940 and 50's when the hot rodders were leaving their rods in black primer. Now here's the problem it's the shiny skin on the paint that protects the metal. I've looked at this from a few different ways and I can't think of a good way to do it.
My advice go for gloss.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

flake buster dvd

Rick over at Old School Flake has put out a dvd about how his flake buster gun works. I must admit I really didn't understand the tool before. It is very cool and I'm going to make sure all my friends that do custom painting see it.

Not only that it has some great out takes at the end. Well done Rick, will Hollywood be calling soon?

Thursday, June 30, 2005

first things first

Let me introduce myself. My name is Jim Lyons. I work at Allen Paint in Denver. I won't dwell on personal stuff, I don't want this to be a commercial for where I work but I want to be up front about my day job. I've run a web site for 6 years not a big deal but you can check it out at I've taught basic web page design for to middle school students for a couple years and I wanted to do a blog (I’ve tried to do a personal blog I just couldn't think of too much to say).
There are things that come up at work all the time and this seemed like a good idea. Please feel free to comment I may not know everything and in the world of car painting there are often more than one right to do things.