This will guarantee smooth mixing between each stroke and those lying above and underneath it on the vehicle’s surface. This will likewise ensure that the thickness of the paint will be adequate since the paint saved at the top and base of a solitary stroke is unavoidably more slender than that at the center.
You need a great overlap if you are painting on candy colors. This means using highly transparent paints over a metallic base to gain a deep, lustrous, glossy sheen that seems to hold infinite depths of color beneath the surface.
Experts in the field recommend a 75% overlap in place of the standard 50% — since candy colors are clear, and need to be very precise, this wider overlap will ensure that there is no streaking at the edges where the strokes meet.
To find the ¾ mark, you need to aim not at the lower edge of the stroke, but at a line halfway between the stroke’s center and lower edge. Point your spray gun nozzle at that imaginary line, and follow it down the whole length of each stroke.
The Proper Spray Gun Positions
“Four-square” is a good term to describe the way you must hold your spray gun for optimal performance when painting a car. The spray gun should be held about one hand-span from the surface of the car for regular guns or about 6-8″ inches away from your panel, and half that distance or slightly more for HVLP (high volume low pressure) systems.
Any further and too much of the paint will dry in midair before it reaches the surface and will cause a rough dry finish that will need to be sanded and repainted. Any closer and the paint will either pool on the surface and then produce long runs down the side of the vehicle, or else so much will ricochet off the hard substrate that paints coverage will end up inadequate.
This distance must be maintained constantly – you cannot expect to produce a good paint job if the gun is too close at the start of the stroke, just right at the middle, and too far at the other end.
You need proper fluid settings, combined with a smooth hand and gun flow to achieve the perfect run free finish.
The gun needs to be held straight on to the car’s surface at all times. Slanting the gun to one side or the other will cause a distorted spray pattern, with excessively heavy spray at one edge of the spray pattern and far too diffuse paint at the other margin.
If anything, tilting the gun at an angle up or down is even worse, resulting in a stroke that is thin and dry at either the top or bottom and saturated to the point of running at the opposite edge.
All of your movement and positioning of your arms and body must be focused on keeping the spray gun at this optimal distance and angle. All successful car painters must learn to keep their spray gun correctly aimed while walking the length of the car.
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