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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2016 4:08 pm 
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Welcome Brad. Give us some details about your 356, how much filler, where, background history of the car, your personal philosophy when you chose your car? There is no wrong answer but since you used the meter to evaluate your purchase it would be interesting to hear what you found.

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2016 1:07 am 
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Greg Bryan wrote:
Here are pictures I took at Wilhoits at last March's open house. Certainly there are other doing this level restoration, but i have these pics ...


Greg, thanks for sharing those. To my uneducated eye, it looks like a lot of that coupe has lead on it. Is that typical of a bare metal restoration? I kind of like the look.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:13 am 
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Dave - I think this is very indicative of a new car - Porsche achieved those fabulous gaps by building the edges with lead and hand filing to get the perfect fit. If you haven't seen the "Made by Hand" film from the early 1960s, look it up on YouTube - it's fascinating ...

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2016 4:05 pm 
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David Green wrote:
Hi Steven,
I borrow a friend's Delfesko paint meter that cost him about $500. it comes with calibration strips and its accuracy appears consistent when tested on new car paint. Their website, link below, contains much information but there are at least two types: those for ferrous metals and others for nonferrous, aluminum and plastic that I believe use ultrasound. With it I was able to confirm that there was no original paint under my incorrect color repainted, but otherwise very original, 1953 coupe.
Regards,
David

http://www.defelsko.com/products/coatin ... -gages.htm


David,

Interesting, how were you able to determine that there was no original paint under the re-spray using a paint meter?

Many thanks
Hugo


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2016 8:05 pm 
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40 mils is .040" which is about the thickness of a dime (not very thick). Most original 356s had a good coat of primer that was block sanded before the synthetic enamel was applied and baked on. They will measure around 7-10 mils depending on how much they've been polished.

A typical modern base coat (water base) and acrylic urethane clear coat finish will measure from 12-15 mils, and that's the minimum.

Blocking primer is typically 10 to 20 mil thick once it's been blocked down properly over a straight metal panel like a door. Other areas can be slightly thinner or slightly thicker depending on the painter and/or the condition of the metal. Small imperfections and low areas can be built up using a fill putty and this is rarely more than 10-20 mils.

The cars we do are block sanded to be perfectly straight when you look down the side of the car (like a mirror). Most of our cars will measure between 20 and 35 mils on all panels, and we use zero bondo. Keep in mind that paint meters only read to 35-40 mils.

In my opinion, paint meters are good for determining the thickness of original paint, or to identify a repainted panel on a newer car. They are generally worthless on a vintage Porsche that has been repainted. A solid magnet can sometimes be used on a 356 to identify a thick application of bondo (1/4") but this would only be for someone who has no idea about bodywork or painting. A good bodyman or painter can spot poor quality work without the use of measuring tools.

I have seen cars that were deemed to be excellent with "little bondo" by car purchasing consultants that had serious body issues relating to replaced panels, accident damage, and bad body lines. If you're going to look at a car, take a real body/paint expert with you to evaluate the car. You wouldn't have your "purchasing consultant" check the engine if he wasn't a mechanic, don't have him check the body if he isn't qualified.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:31 pm 
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Thanks, John. Great info.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:59 pm 
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Mike Wilson wrote:
Thanks, John. Great info.



He may have just put Prescott K out of business. :D

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Last edited by Dan Epperly on Sat Dec 10, 2016 1:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2016 8:27 am 
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Dan Epperly wrote:
Mike Wilson wrote:
Thanks, John. Great info.



He may have just put Preston K out of business. :D
I'm not surprised to hear that the meters aren't accurate since I have heard this before but Prescott is correct to point out the cars that were slapped together vs the ones that were skillfully restored. He is doing us a great service by differentiating between the quality of the cars he reports about. It may not interest some but it has a large bearing on value. He is not out of business.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:17 pm 
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Thank you John for your detailed answer on how your shop restores our Beauties. And for including the paint thickness values you end up with.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 01, 2017 12:09 pm 
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Four month's later and I did just pick up the ETG mini Iron/Ferrous for reasonable $240 ish and will start playing with it. Some it the documents say the mini is only good up to 10 mils so 40 mils of the ETG-A would be better since mr. kelly finds cars with 80 mil of bondo. Once it stops raining i'll try it out on my 7 cars.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 2:15 pm 
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I was trying the ETG mini on my 7 cars and did get readings in the 30s at times. It does seem to do up to 40mils. Super!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2017 2:21 pm 
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From John Willhoits values above that sounds very good.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 1:49 pm 
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If you don't have access to a meter, or don't have it with you at all times, it's pretty easy to spot a bondo bucket once you've looked at a lot of these cars.
As mentioned here, fat door edges, and the trailing seam of the front fender are a dead giveaway, they should be very thin.
You should be able to tap on any panel with your fingernail, and it should sound like tapping on an empty coffee can.
My '59 Coupe is like that, and it's very distinctive.
A car with a lot of bondo has a very dead sound, and the weight of the doors, and hood are dramatically different.

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