240 240 paint job advice

240240 @240 Canberra
Is anyone here good with painting?
The paint on some panels of my 240 has deteriorated badly in the past 6 months or so. I was going to just get the bonnet and cowl panel (below the windscreen) repainted, as they're the worse, but I've been thinking about if maybe I should have a go at doing it myself.

I don't want to get too worried about it being 100% perfect, just for it to look better than it does now. So I don't want to invest a massive amount of time and money in it either.
I don't have any experience painting panels, so would be learning as I go. Any advice would be great.

This is the worst of it, and would be my priority to get looking good:

The roof is also pretty ordinary. It might come up a bit better with a good cut and polish, but the clear coat is peeling a bit too:

The front drivers side panel has clear coat peeling around the wheel arch, as well as some stone chips, but I'm not sure it's worth worrying about:

And on the passenger side, the clear coat is bad at the very top of both doors, and near the boot. Not sure if I should tackle this though as I don't think I'd be able to do a good enough job of blending:

So, is it feasible for me to tackle this myself, and if so, what's the best way to do it? The bonnet will need a full respray as it's scratched through the base coat in places, but maybe the roof could get away with just new clear coat?


  • jamesincJames @jamesinc Oz Volvo Ice Fortress
    edited July 2019
    Getting a good home paint job is really time and labour intensive (and expect to spend a grand on materials if you don't already own all the basics for spray painting). You can get closed-door resprays that include some basic dent removal for under $2k, and you can tackle some of the prep yourself (like removing all the trim, bumpers, lights, badges, etc).
  • 240240 @240 Canberra
    Getting a good home paint job is really time and labour intensive (and expect to spend a grand on materials if you don't already own all the basics for spray painting).

    Even if I just did the bonnet and roof?
    You can get closed-door resprays that include some basic dent removal for under $2k,

    That's not bad, I haven't been able to get quotes anything like that in Canberra. One place quoted $2750 to redo everything above the trim line.
    Still not sure if it's worth spending that much though, especially since I may not be keeping the car in the longer term.
  • jamesincJames @jamesinc Oz Volvo Ice Fortress
    edited July 2019
    You might have to go to Sydney for the cheaper options, I've heard Canberra is relatively pricey

    A lot of the cost is incurred before you can paint panel #1. If you wanted to just do the bonnet, a paint shop should be able to do that for a few hundred bucks. If you do it at home you're limited to acrylic paints (unless you want to be naughty and spray 2k without a booth)

    Also, with your colour, getting a good match to the existing paint will be really difficult for you. You really need the facilities to be able to paint test cards and tweak the tints as needed.
  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    IMHO, either you commit to learning how to paint and getting the equipment, or learn to ignore the bad paint.

    Doing a reasonable home job of painting is not all that difficult, you just need to be patient with preparation and be willing to start again if you botch it up the first (few) time(s).

  • As a novice, I've had mixed results with home spray jobs. I bought a compressor-driven spray gun and used acrylic. Apart from all the paint I wasted practicing getting the mixture correct before starting, I managed to do a good job of the rear of my cypress green '71 144. Its butt must of stuck out of a carport for decades, as only the rear was sun damaged. I had a disaster doing the wheel arches and around the windscreen of my gold '88 240. Both with not blending right and orange peel. Painting cars is hard.
  • I have an after pic of my 144 with a home-painted butt but not a before. It was actually cellulose paint. It's pictured in the UK, but was a Brisbane car most of its existence. If things go well, a home paint job can look ok.
  • turvolvo_kidNav @turvolvo_kid Lismore NSW
    edited July 2019
    You can also use 2k clear over a basecoat of Acrylic
  • 240240 @240 Canberra
    OK so it sounds like it's probably more effort than it's worth.
    If I paid someone to do the bonnet, would it be feasible for me to do the roof by removing the clear coat and just doing a new layer of clear over the base coat, which is probably OK?
  • May as well get the roof done by a professional as well. Sanding back the clear coat and and doing a new layer of clear probably won't go your way.
  • SpacSpac @Spac Canberra-ish.
    Professionals won’t want to know about re-doing just the clear coat.

    It IS possible to just redo the clear, but the prep is slow and difficult.
    I have done a few clear-only touch ups with varying results.

    There’s photos in the 8-ball project thread, and my ungodly BMW mashup project thread.

    The green BMW race car came up really well, and could have been pretty much perfect if I had put more effort into the prep.
    The worst result I had was the silver 88 240 - the actual colour coat was super thin, so while you were still sanding off the clear in one place, you were down to the primer right next to it...

  • edited July 2019

    Just out of school I worked at a panelbeater. Over the years I've been forced to hate clear coat. They initially promoted it as 'better': claiming it was longer lasting, produced more shine, stronger against stone chips, etc. (all nonsense). I've seen so many cars quickly look plain ugly by it flaking off, that would have been fine for 20-40 years with 'plain' paint (especially if garaged).

    If you don't plan to keep it, think about how much it would sell for today - and then think would a ~$2500 paint job increase the sale price much (sadly, probably not). A $2500 car you added a $2500 paintjob to, might only bring a couple/few hundred more.

    I've seen several closed-door resprays - by professionals - and even 80%+ of those are disappointing. (But maybe I have 'higher visual standards' than other people.) Years ago I also helped prep a relative's 1970s Ford coupe for a total respray, where we removed all exterior trim. It was done in a garage by a retired spray painter - and it looked 99% like new compared to cars I'd seen painted at the panel shop with their trim intact.

    So if I were going to paint a car, I'd remove all exterior trim, the front grill (so they don't lean on it while paiting and crack it), tail lights, bumpers, mirrors and all door trim and rubbers/seals at waist height along the doors, then tape newspaper over the window glass and wind them down into the doors (no cleaning overspray later). Pull out the glass rubber channel. Also remove front guard blinkers or badges, aerial, and the front & back windscreens (argueably the hardest part)... Otherwise they will sand up to the rubber edge by hand to 'rough up' the paint for the new paint to stick, and because they want to finish the job as fast as possible, they always miss some/many places - which results in an obvious/rough paint edge when done.

    Let me put it another way... In spite of my awareness from working with that panelbeater, I didn't notice one of our cars had been resprayed, until I noticed a different paint edge inside the petrol cap door AFTER we bought the car - because it had been resprayed with all the trim and glass removed.

    I guess I just don't understand why people will pay a couple of grand for a tacky-looking respray with rough edges, when they could have added just two weekends (one to remove, one to replace the trim), so the painter could paint all the way under the rubbers/trim. It makes for less work on the painter's part too where sanding is concerned, which MAY translate into less cost. But even if not, it still means a better looking result anywhere they don't carefully sand right up to rubber/trim edges and perfectly mask.

    Finally, I've always considered owning a tired-looking car as a good thing... Morons will key the paint, or steal the shiny newer one in the next space while ignoring our 'old/dirty/ugly' cars. So just embrace it... Look for the car you want, cash its rego in while you get THAT one ready (including painting if it needs it), while you have this one to drive, it having cost you nothing extra as you planned to sell it anyway. ;-)

  • 240240 @240 Canberra

    Got a few quotes today for the bonnet, roof and plenum panel below the windscreen. Most places are wanting around $1500, give or take a few hundred.

    @jamesinc where in Sydney are you aware of that will do a closed door respray for $2000? I'd be skeptical about the quality of this if bonnet and roof alone are normally $1.5k.

    Realistically, if I sell the car, how much less is it worth with the paint as it is, compared to if it was at least presentable? The car is reasonably desirable, being a late model, M47, Gemini wheels, Bilstein & DVS suspension, as well as other things like power windows, GLE gauges, wood trim, etc etc. The appeal of the car is probably to someone who knows 240's and prepared to pay for the 'right' one, but the paint is probably going to put off such a buyer.

  • carnut222Greg S @carnut222 Daylesford VIC

    If you’re considering selling it, IMHO it would be worth putting it out there with a price you’d be happy with pre-painting...put the feelers out so to speak. Unfortunately everyone wants a perfect car for free! It does sound like it has a lot of desirable accessories, so it could be that the poor paint is overlooked somewhat. Depends on what people want and what your expectations are.

    If you’re planning to keep it, then do it right and spend the money and keep it for a long time because it is a unique colour and looks like a nice car.

  • edited July 2019

    It can take less or same amount of time to paint an entire car, if there's no need to colour-match other panels, less prep time masking around trim, etc. So both might take the same amount of time, but in one case you're only paying a couple hundred more for the extra can of paint.

    Do you have TAFE down there? Inquire if they need a car to paint, would it be free, materials only, etc. Since they're teaching them a trade, any mistakes would probably be redone til they get it right.

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