View Full Version : Paint compatibility

07-13-2014, 06:45 PM
I just recently had my 1978 Avanti II painted. There are several areas such as at the trunk hinges and door jambs where the painter didn't cover the primer enough and you can see it with the doors and trunk closed. I'm afraid to use the wrong paint to touch-up and damage the existing. I paid $7000 for the paint job and I'm not at all satisfied. I tried to get him to repair it but he refused, saying he had way too much time in it and was loosing money. Too bad I already paid him!
Anyway, my question is, what kind of paint do I use to blend in to the original that is compatible and will not damage the existing paint? The paint that was used was a Pittsburgh Paint called OMNI AU--MBC. I called PPG and they were not much help because I wasn't going to buy more of their paint at $100 a quart. They said it was an acrylic but as far as I know, aren't there acrylic lacquer and enamel paints? I was going to buy a spray can to match the color which you can get in water borne, urethane or lacquer. I want to use something that will not ruin any paint where there is some overlap. These will be getting a clear coat finish.
Any painting gurus out there with some advice?


07-13-2014, 06:59 PM
After more money than I care to mention, my 78 Avanti is nearing completion. Not a full show winning job but pretty good.
Other than some mechanical work, the interior is my next step. My problem is with the wood grain on the instrument panel and console. The wood is faded, dried out and lifting off. It almost looks like cork at this point. What is the best thing to do with this to retain the wood look? I found some vinyl that looks really nice but I don't see any way of putting it on without taking out all of the gauges. I looked at that and I would place it about a nine on the impossibility scale. Is there anything I can do without taking the dash apart?


07-13-2014, 07:12 PM
Onmi AU.....stands for Acrylic Urethane. It should be compatable with any urethane base coat.
Make sure whatever you paint over is fully cured. Even the same paint can lift existing paint if it is too fresh.
On the wood dash overlay you are going to have to remove the gauges to replace what is there. However, perhaps a few good drops of superglue to level the wood, and some GOOD masking... Formby's makes an excellent wood refinisher that you rub on and it sort of melts the old finish and levels it off.
Then some tung oil will finish it off.

07-13-2014, 07:37 PM
As Bezhawk said, let it cure before you do anything. Bad news is that Omni is decent paint but it is not great on color match. Meaning that it is not necessarily the exact shade it should be based on the paint code. There are a few places online where you can order rattle cans of "base coat" that are mixed to the color code you give them. They also have "clear coat". However they will probably not be an exact match to the Omni paint job you have. They should be close so it depends on how perfect you want it to be.

These rattle cans are not 2K base/clear products so they will not be as durable as the rest of your paint job.

If you want an exact match that is properly blended into the rest of you paint job, you will need to find a body shop that mixes their own paint. They should be able to get it tinted just right.

Good Luck

07-13-2014, 07:45 PM
Thanks for the information. Now why couldn't PPG have given me that info. I'll check into that wood refinisher but I think it's too far gone.
I couldn't even get my hand up under the dash to replace the signal light bulb, let alone remove the gauges. That one scares the )@$&@$> out of me. I feel I can tackle about anything on a car but at my age, removing the gauges is IMPOSSIBLE! It would be a shame to restore just about everything els and not the dash panel. So far, there isn't anyone around here that would even consider doing it. If only there were some kind of overlay that would fit right over the gauges. The vinyl would work great but I could never get the cut outs right.
thanks again for the info on the paint, I can now order the urethane. Love this forum!!!

07-13-2014, 07:52 PM
This company sells both the base and clear coats in the urethane. Does this look like what I should use?

07-13-2014, 08:33 PM
As far as the wood grain on the dash and console goes, contact Dan Booth at Nostalgic Motors. Depending on your year and accessories, he may have NOS inlays for you.

52 Ragtop
07-13-2014, 08:34 PM
To pull the gauges, first remove the speedo and tach. That will give you "more" room to pull the rest of the gauges. At least that's how I've done it on my 63.


07-13-2014, 09:39 PM
Be sure to disconnect the battery before removing anything under the dash. Fire is not your friend.

07-15-2014, 06:34 AM
Your local jobber that carries PPG should be able to make you a spray can of the paint on your car if you have the code. My local store charges $16 for a can of mixed paint. Sorry to hear of your troubles.


07-15-2014, 08:11 AM
Sorry to hear of your troubles. At seven grand, a poor paint job, and losing money...your painter was neither a good painter or businessman. Whether an Avanti, or a wheel barrow...you should have gotten complete coverage with a great shine for that money. What troubles me, with these kind of situations, is that it can cause a person to become discouraged and walk away from the hobby forever.

The problem with a rattle can...(even the fancy re-chargeable aerosols) has the potential to make a bad problem worse. You probably won't like my suggestion, but I think you should take your time to find someone with lots of experience to correct the paint flaws. I know it is more money, but on touching up/blending a small area, the job must be "spot-on" or you'll hate it forever. The reason I say "experienced" is that the average painter that earns his living, mixes/blends paint daily, and constantly performs the repetitive task...will outperform the most knowledgeable well-read "occasional" painter.

I was once tasked with conducting a seminar at a major brand golf ball producer. The seminar was on setting up spray equipment for painting the golf balls (yes...golf balls get painted.) As a supplier of paint equipment, I often assisted in selecting the equipment, installation, set-up, and training. In this seminar, I had folks that were new hires and some that had been doing it for over thirty years. I informed the group that I had assisted in setting up spray guns for spraying coatings on everything from Mack trucks, furniture, vitamin pills, to butter in a bakery. However, I never did any of those tasks enough to claim competence. I knew the operation of the devices, how fluid flow rates, velocity, and atomizing air interact, and the adjustments required for desired results.

It is the person who performs the task everyday that develops the "skill." The person who knows what puts money in his wallet and food on the table that has the vested interest in seeing that the job is done correctly. My point being, I could cover all the talking points, tell all about the features of the equipment, and conduct the seminar (and leave)...but...they were the ones who had to paint the golf balls. I only asked that they listen to my presentation, followed suggestions, and applied their skills to make it work.

The same rule applies to your Avanti. It needs to be in the hands of someone experienced and who has the skills to do it right.

07-15-2014, 10:36 AM
If your just painting the hinges and small parts where they can be painted complete either off the car or after masking I would get a single stage paint that you need to mix with a actavator. You should get a close color match and you do not need to clear coat. Should work fine on any parts like door jams and under hood and trunk. If you have to repaint anything on the out side of the car keep in mind what your painter used is a base clear system and you will have to repaint in this to have it look right. Clear is hard to blend and not be able to tell where it was done even by a pro. You almost have to sand the whole panel with 600 or finer and blend your color and reclear the whole panel. Be sure to add about 1-2 ozs of clear activator to your new paint per cup of reduced color to keep it from lifting the fresh paint under it. You will have to use what ever paint you activate or throw it out as it will set up on it's own. If you need any more info PM me.

07-15-2014, 11:12 AM
In the "For What It's Worth" category...if the painter is not willing to make a less-than-adequate $7000 paint job right, a call or email to his local BBB would be in order. Grrrrrr....:mad:

07-15-2014, 11:14 AM
Mostly I am painting under the trunk and the edges where he missed. There is a spot at the face of the fender where it meets the door where I got some gasket cement on it and it removed the paint to the primer. A very small spot about 1/2" long and about half the width of a pencil. This is the only spot that needs to be touched up, the rest can be masked and sprayed. I can try and take a picture. The car was painted with a PPG OMNI AU MBC ( which I assume means Metallic Base Coat ). I have been told that the AU stands for Acrylic Urethane. I have found a local store that can mix an aerosol can with the exact match to the PPG color. I have a friend that used to paint cars and he thinks he can touch it up to look decent but it cannot be done perfect. I think it's at a spot that if it's close enough it won't be noticed. I'm not adverse to paying for the touch-up but it's so small I wouldn't want to repaint the entire area. There would be no stopping point from the door all the around the front to the other door.

07-15-2014, 02:23 PM
Did the painter catalyze all the paint that he had? A good painter will always hold back a little paint in case he makes a mistake or for the customer to use for touch ups. It is your paint you paid for it and are entitled to it, go back to your painter and demand what is yours. There is not much that you can do about it if he claims that that he used it all but if he is honest he should be forthcoming and give you what is yours. Explain to him that you are dissatisfied and that his company's good name is at risk if he fails to make it right.

07-15-2014, 03:12 PM
The painter refused to buy more paint saying he was loosing money. That's why he didn't paint under the trunk or hood, he didn't want to buy more paint. In the scheme of thins, a $100 quart of paint for a $7000 paint job is peanuts. I think I need to post this guy's name so nobody here ever uses him. He recommended someone to do the gaskets and interior who gave me a quote of $1,800. The guy begged for money after about a days work saying that he was about to loose his house. I told the painter that he wanted money up front and he said that if the guy didn't follow through he would take care of it. I paid the guy $1,400 and he took off. The lying SOB of a painter naturally refused to keep his promise. Both of these guys were scum and took advantage of a sucker that felt sorry for them. The painter actually threatened to halt work on the car if I didn't pay him ahead so he could purchase paint and supplies. I guess I'll never learn. I still have met more genuinely good people than bad. I'm just going to write them both off as losers and get on with my restoration.

07-16-2014, 11:27 AM
I used AU on an old truck 2 years ago. Had to repaint one fender,a week later,and no problems with lifting or anything. BUT,I knew the paint had catalyst in it. You"ll have to test spray a spot in an inconspicuous location to test it.[inside a door jam,or maybe the bottom of a door-if there's paint on the bottom of the door.
Sorry for the bad painter,one guy like that casts a shadow on all of us bodymen!

07-16-2014, 06:50 PM
52hawk The omni base does not call for a catalyst in the base coat PPG only calls for it on their single stage. But if you put in about a 1or 2 oz's to a mixed cup it will make for a better base. Just take it a little longer to set up between coats. It will also keep it from lifting on a fresh paint job. davette59 I would think small claims court maybe your answer in this case and I dont like going to court for may reasons.