67.You can't be too clean before painting. Just when you think it's clean enough, make one more cleaning pass before picking up your spray gun.
68. On your final coat of paint, go ahead and over-reduce the paint by one more part. This will help it lay flatter, but make sure to turn down the air just a bit.
69. A good way to spray flake is to use a gun with a 2.0 tip. The large tip allows the flake to come out without clogging. Add the flake to some clear, drop a small, brand-new nut in the paint-gun reservoir to act as an agitator, crank up your air psi, and spray away.
70. When spraying metallics on a disassembled truck, make sure all of the panels are orientated as if they were on the truck. That way, the metallic paint will lay down uniformly. This can also be applied to flakes.
71. If you are using huge or splinter flake then you will need a flake-buster gun. Follow the instructions on the flake-buster, and once applied, slip-on a nonpowdered rubber glove to gently push the flake down flat.
72. If you have never sprayed candies then don't try it on your ride with your first paintjob. If you are going to try and spray candy paints for the first time, then cut the candy mixture a little more with an intercoat clear. This will help prevent blotches, but you'll have to lay down more coats.
73. When spraying the candy, make sure to start at one end of the truck and walk the whole side as opposed to doing it in panels. This will help keep the coats uniform down the whole side of the truck.
74. When you are spraying clear, make sure your first coat is a very light coat. Let it flash off and then you can start laying on thicker coats from there.
75. If you are spraying clear over graphics that have tape lines like stripes, spray a light coat over the graphics first. Let it flash or dry, and then do another light coat over the entire truck. This will reduce the chance of creating runs along the tape lines where clear will build up the fastest.
76. If you do end up with a run or sag in the clear, just let it dry and sand it off later. Some seasoned painters can keep spraying until the run drips off the bottom of the truck but that is a skill learned in time.
77. Ground the truck. A piece of chain that drapes over the truck's frame and down to the shop floor will cut down on the static charge the vehicle has and reduce the chance of dirt being drawn to it.
78. Don't lay out any graphics until the truck is assembled and all of the sheetmetal is properly aligned.
79. For graphic lines that carry over a seam like a doorjamb, be sure to carry the line in at least 1/4 inch and then cap it with tape. This will look much better than a bunch of multicolor overspray blobs.
80. To go one step further, you could carry the graphic all of the way through the jambs. But, if you chose to do that, don't forget the back of the cab and the tailgate jamb.
81.If you are going to use an airbrush to create a design, keep a watchful eye on the tip. It can get partially clogged pretty quickly and screw up the atomization of the air and paint. A quick wipe with your finger tips should be sufficient to remove anything that might be on there.
82.You can save a little money in the pinstriping area by painting it yourself. Instead of learning how to use the brush, add the stripe during the graphics with one more taping step. After you get the graphic laid out, spray your pinstripe color along the edges of the design. Once dry, tape over it with 1/4-inch tape and proceed to paint the graphics color. When everything is dry you can peel away the tape to reveal the pinstriped graphic.
83. To duplicate a design on the other side of the vehicle make a pounce pattern. Use some masking paper to lie over your taped area and rub it with a crayon. The crayon will leave a dark line where it goes over the tape. Remove the paper and set it on a piece of cardboard. Then, with a pounce wheel (small spur-looking thing) punch holes along the dark lines. Place the pattern on the other side of the truck and pat the dotted line left by the pounce wheel with a sock filled with baby powder. You'll end up with a dotted line of powder to follow with your tape.
84. When the paint/clear is dry use wet or dry paper to knock down the orange peel. 1,500-grit paper is fine for the initial cut, but then switch to 2,000-grit for the final sand.
85. If you are sanding a factory paintjob, grab some 3,000-grit paper and be very careful.
86. Soak all of your wet or dry paper in a bucket of clean water overnight to soften the papers' backing. This will cut down on the chance the paper will gouge the surface of the body panels.
87. Have a bucket of water and a spray bottle ready when color-sanding. The bucket will be used to clean your paper, and the spray bottle filled with soap and water mixture will be used to lubricate the sanding process.
88. If you are color-sanding a truck that is already assembled, protect all of your chrome and trim pieces with tape to prevent scratching.
89. Use tape to protect body lines and seams. These areas will sand very fast and usually are the first places you will break through.
90. When choosing a buffer, make sure you find one with a variable speed adjustment, like the Dewalt 849 or the Makita 9227CY.
91. Don't sand an area that you can't get the buffer into unless you feel like polishing that area by hand.
92.Sand in a back-and-forth motion from the front to the back of the panel, not in circles. Check your progress often with a squeegee. Stop sanding when the surface is devoid of shiny dots.
93. The buffer is designed to be used flat, so fight the urge to tip the buffer on edge. This will just increase the chance of putting in swirls and/or burning the paint.
94. Keep a close eye on your fresh paint if it gets bird poop on it. Remove it quickly because the acids in the crap will have a field day on your unprotected finish.
95.Use rags, cardboard, or any other soft material to protect the paint while you rehang things like the doors or bumpers.
96. Don't apply wax for at least a month to let the paint fully cure. During that time, you can use a quick-detailing product to keep it clean.
97. For a deep clean before you put wax on the truck, wash it with dish soap. This will remove any wax, dirt, or road grime that might have found its way on the paint.
98. Once the paint is cured and you are ready to wax, use a clay bar on the surface of the truck to remove any tiny contaminants stuck to the paint surface. This will prevent you from trapping a bunch of crud under your wax.
99. After clay, take your time and lay down a very good coat of wax.
100. Invest in a good set of microfiber towels. They don't scratch paint nearly as bad as shop rags and take off wax with less effort.
101. The last tip we can pass on is to be proud of your work no matter how it came out. No one shoots a perfect paintjob the first time. Just make sure not to repeat any mistakes you might have made the first time.