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Old 12-16-2003, 12:29 PM   #1
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Painting the Exterior of an A/S

Has anyone tried painting the exterior of an A/S, not with Rustoleum, but with a clear metallic acrylic?
Dick
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Old 12-16-2003, 12:51 PM   #2
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You can see a 25 foot Airstream painted metallic silver on our web site, http://inlandrv.com

Andy
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Old 12-16-2003, 01:03 PM   #3
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That is EXACTLY what I had in mind.
Is the paint available, or propriety information. Its a long haul from DE to CA.
Dick
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Old 12-16-2003, 03:45 PM   #4
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We have friends here in Bowling GReen who had there AS painted-looks great, although I can't decide whether I like it enough to spend thta much money on it. They also had the windows tinted pretty dark and that makes it look cool, too.
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Old 12-16-2003, 03:45 PM   #5
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Navigator.

The paint is available.

The process is proprietary, but can be obtained under certain circumstances.

The process does require professional application, by an experienced spray painter.

Andy
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Old 12-16-2003, 03:56 PM   #6
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There are several earlier threads that discuss painting Airstreams...

Check out "Silver Paint Trailer" in the search of the archives...good luck in whatever you decide to do!

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Old 12-16-2003, 03:56 PM   #7
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Andy,
OK, I have a professional spray painter lined up at a body shop here in DE.
Pray tell, what are the "CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES?"
Dick
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Old 12-16-2003, 04:18 PM   #8
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If you have a pro he should know how to prep aluminum. They paint airplanes, aluminum boats, aluminum cars every day. I painted my mh and it was a lot of work but only because of the size.

John
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Old 12-16-2003, 05:53 PM   #9
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From what I have been able to gather and asimilate Painting is about equal in cost to: Stripping and Polishing or Stripping and Re-Plastikoting. I also gather that the Plastikote only has an apparent life span of 5 years or so. It seems to me that a high quality paint job might be an improvement, if you don't want the high gloss shiny look along with the required maintenance

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Old 12-16-2003, 06:06 PM   #10
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With all due respect sir, that does not answer the question.

After appropriate sanding with____?grit, random orbital or linear stroke?

Do we phosphate? or chromate the bare metal? Etch or no?
Now lets discuss primer. Neoprene? Nitrile? Other? Coating thickness?

Metallic Paint: Acrylic? polyester? PPG Delstar DAR34363?
Coat weight?

Top Coat sealer? We all know that UV inhibitors are yellow.
Thats bad if you want a faint blue tint. How do we manage that?

I cannot understand others recommending urethane as the top coat, because a high molecular weight linear acrylic is far superior to any urethane for UV and weather resistance.

I do not expect any professional body shop to have the answers to the above.
If I am shelling out my hard earned bucks, I would like to
be assured that the proposed application is technically sound.
Respectfully,
Dick

In retrospect, I think that I will just withdraw the question and do the testing myself.
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Old 12-16-2003, 07:05 PM   #11
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Navigator -- You would need a very sure way of removing all plasticoat or whatever the specific product was in your vintage. I've seen that in threads, though you could guess keywords for a search as well as I.

Surface prep...? ASForums are a bit slow this time of the season but keep this up there -- don't go away with the topic yet. A number of aircraft workers keep mentioning their profession in the forums now and then.

You probably don't want your Airstream to be anything but silver. One product was recommended in an Argosy paint thread -- probably just the wrong color.
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Old 12-16-2003, 07:11 PM   #12
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A quick search and this thread I think answers some of your questions.

http://www.airforums.com/forum...+and+airstream

About half way down. I also remember somewhere reading that the color coat that Andy uses is a custom blend that he spent many hours of development time and testing with DuPont to get it so it would last. Thereby making it a custom proprietary mix. Sounds like you may be able to get some depending on what those "special circumstances" are.
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Old 12-16-2003, 07:14 PM   #13
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Okay, here is a link to another forum mentioned previously. This isn't nearly as organized as airstreamforums.com. Good luck finding anything. I can't offer much personal experience there, though many browse it now and then -- http://www.tompatterson.com/VAC/Archives/maillist1.html

Some areas of interest indexed elsewhere on the site: http://www.tompatterson.com/VAC/List.html

And I will say you are pursuing an interesting idea. Come back to this thread and let us know how it went. Thanks!
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Old 12-16-2003, 07:22 PM   #14
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FWIW, my 72 Overlander had been professionally painted at some time during its life. It is a metallic silver, flecks and all. Very nice job. I have the usual dings, dents and scrapes that I plan to fix at some point and then have the trailer painted again.

Based on the information I got from notes left in the manual, (reciepts and such for various repairs,) I am guessing that the paint job had been on there well over 10-15 years. Not bad longevity for a trailer.

I know I'm not helping with any of the real questions asked, but a decent body shop knows how to prepare an aluminum surface for painting, and what kind of paint to use. My next door neighbor is in the automotive paint business, and some of his clients regularly paint aluminum wheels that have been clear coated, with excellent results.

I would check with the automotive paint companies and get some reccomendations for some good local painters. It is beyond my current capabilities, but I'm sure not a big problem for professionals.

Let us know what happens!

Painted... can you tell? (I know, I know. It hasn't been washed or waxed in years!)
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