Engine Tin Paint

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Ronald Sieber
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Engine Tin Paint

#1 Post by Ronald Sieber » Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:11 pm

I want to paint my engine tin using urethane so that it stands up to engine bay challenges. In addition, I would like it to be authentic for 1957.

From reading former posts I understand that it is supposed to be a semi-gloss. It will be sprayed with a gun. The engine will be for a late '57 A Normal, which means black fan shroud, etc.

Regarding the black to be used, does anyone have a particular standard black (or mix of blacks) to recommend?

Probably most importantly, what is the correct % (of total volume) of "flattener" used to achieve that factory semi-gloss look?

Thanks in advance,
=rds

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Doug McDonnell
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Re: Engine Tin Paint

#2 Post by Doug McDonnell » Mon Jul 31, 2017 5:02 pm

I love Bruce Baker's response to this question "Pete, all, tell me if I'm wrong, but I disagree with the 'call John or Ray' suggestion at this time.

If John is completely cured from his head injury, fine...and I hope he truly is back to 100%, but he is likely still 'catching up' even if he is well enough to give 'free advice.' Therefore, I'd recommend, as a friend and another restorer who can only imagine being in his position, to give him some space.

This topic has been covered time and time and again with and for Registry people by Registry people, so I can only assume it's archived. "Look it up."

'Way back when, John was very big on 'preservation' and engines he'd display (with PCA) were just very, very clean originals, down to the rust next to the original black paint on the unprimered tinware.

Anyone involved with this for a long time can tell you that the black finish on any one original engine can have variations piece to piece, but if it's nice restoration you want, unify the sheen and color as Porsche would have done if money were no object.

One mo' time= "Not quite semi-flat, not quite gloss.....more of a semi-gloss." In the Spies-Hecker brand of urethane (urethane= durable and fuel-proof) it's 10% by volume Blue-black mixed into Rally Black.

It truly is a clear example of "If it looks good, it IS good."

John and I used to joke that to be absolutely correct and original, we'd need to be sure there were drips (usually upside down to the way they are viewed in place) and shake our heads while painting.... to be sure enough lint and hairs were present......."
1965 356C There is never enough time to do it right, but always enough time to do it over.

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Vic Skirmants
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Re: Engine Tin Paint

#3 Post by Vic Skirmants » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:04 pm

Eastwood's chassis black, semi gloss.

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Ron LaDow
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Re: Engine Tin Paint

#4 Post by Ron LaDow » Tue Aug 01, 2017 12:38 am

The factory bought what tin they could from the VW suppliers and probably negotiated with them to do what wasn't VW-specific; remember, they were trying to make money.
It wasn't primed, was dipped (hence those upside-down drips), lasted for at least two or three engine cleanings before it fell off.
How original do you want to be?
Ron LaDow
www.precisionmatters.biz

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Ronald Sieber
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Re: Engine Tin Paint

#5 Post by Ronald Sieber » Tue Aug 01, 2017 9:27 am

Thanks for your responses, guys. If I missed reading a recent similar posting, I apologize for being redundant. However, I had looked in the Archived comments section and did not find much help on this topic. I then did a search of forum posts and got a list of 549 pages. I went through the first ten and saw the post that Doug had also put up, as well as a few others. However, it appears that a lot of different folks have asked the same question over and over again over the years, and probably because there is no definitive answer for what is the right black color and sheen to use. Paint contents, quality, and performance change over the years, especially with environmental regulations, so it is a moving target to "get it right."
Vic, I take your suggestion of using Eastwood Semi Gloss. I will get a spray can of it and spray a card, see if the sheen looks about right compared to the original piece that I have kept as a reference. If not, I will probably get some Gloss and experiment with different percentages of "flattener" (using a gun) until we find a sheen that we like that looks like "1957."

Mike Horton
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Re: Engine Tin Paint

#6 Post by Mike Horton » Tue Aug 01, 2017 9:42 am

Ron, be cautious with the flattening agent, and "sneak up on it", so to speak. I have shot a lot of Imron, as on the white spray plains, it was the most impervious to the chemical stains. However... And I read this on this board decades ago, but agree. If you intend to use decals over urethane paints, you'll need to scuff the surface, as adhesion of the decal will be more difficult. I hope this helps. We had to use the flatteners on prop blades after the US EPA all but put those of us who plated, realistically out of business, and the prop makers, moved to industrial urethane finishes. For pilot safety, the flat finishes were needed, but, these go a long way. For prop blades, we used Sherwin Williams " Polane", a very durable finish... with the flattening agents,
Mike

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