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I would like to get input from car owners what they paid for paint jobs. I've got a few painters/body work estimates but they're either crazy high or want to do it by the hour. I'm not giving anyone a blank check. My car needs a lower rear quarter panel replaced due to rust, but the rest of the car is pretty straight. A few small dings and dents, and needs all panels and gaps lined up. I tell them all the same thing, I want a nice cruiser paint job, not show quality.
Any input from you folks on here is appreciated.
 

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paint job cost

Hi Bob, I just got my 66 back after almost 2 years in paint shop prison. I got a base coat clear coat sanded and buffed for 5,000 but it has a few spots in it. It is Marina blue and looks good I plan on driving this one instead of leaving it in the garage all the time. Good luck it hard to find anyone to paint one in our area anymore. Butch
 

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paint job cost

I forgot to say there wasn't any body work but blocking on my car I had it stripped and in primer when I took it to the painter...
 

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Hard to tell not getting to see your car. But I get the idea.

Personally, if I were to do it again, I would get the job bid. I used a friend of a friend and, while he does amazing work, we agreed to have him work by the hour. It became too expensive for what I wanted--and he only did the body work. I spent another $2500 (quality materials included) to have interior and exterior painted AFTER all the body work was done, and that was for a spray job that was more street cruiser than show car.

That said, if I could get the body guy to do the work for a flat fee, I'd use him again because I'm happy with the panel alignment, he didn't over-restore the body panels, and he did a good job. It's a convertible, and I can hang a Rock Auto fridge magnet anywhere on the car and it sticks. His metalwork was really great, but it put me too much into the car for body work costs.

Total cost was around 10K for both body and paint.
 

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Bob, I won't be showing my '72 but never the less I wanted it laser straight. I would never be happy with high and low spots. It had to be dead straight.

That said, the biggest part of my $8500 labor cost was spent on priming-blocking, repeat, repeat. A significant amount of time was also spent on closing gaps. My hood and trunk were absolutely horrible to the point where metal had to be added. This was another significant expense.

As the saying goes, good paint starts with good prep. In reality, good prep eats thru your budget quickly.

Lastly, do all of the disassembly/reassembly yourself and by any means, do not hire a shop on a time and material basis.

My experience/advice....
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Paint

Thanks all for the feedback. I guess it's the same everywhere. I'm now thinking about getting bodywork done and try shooting the paint myself. I've already experienced enough scheduling and other problems just getting interior installed.
Thanks again for sharing!
 

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Thanks all for the feedback. I guess it's the same everywhere. I'm now thinking about getting bodywork done and try shooting the paint myself. I've already experienced enough scheduling and other problems just getting interior installed.
Thanks again for sharing!
Go to a body shop supply store and look at the prices on sandpaper, body filler, paint thinner and reducer, masking tape and paper, a quality primer and quality paint. It will give you a feel for why prices are so high.
 

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I got quotes from 12-25k. I had my car media blasted, has new quarters on the car, repop doors, NOS fenders and a new glass hood and mine still cost 15k
 

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Paint!!

I stripped my 63 to bare metal in 1995 replaced passenger side quarter with GM metal the only rust in the car limited to the tops of both fenders replaced with NOS pieces. I used the best products from PPG at the time I had the car painted in 1999 by a good friend who did the metal work and paint. I traded labor with him at the time all said done I spent $2,500.00 or so on materials myself at his cost and his bill was $2,500.00 for his part. so roughly $5,000.00 to do the metal and paint work. it still looks fresh today!! you only pay for QUAILTY once!!

 

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Just got my '74 painted last month. I had "theoretically" done all the body work except for a couple of holes I wanted welded up, and one front fender that I never finished sanding the body filler on. I ended up going to a collision shop (not many of them will take on a full-body paint jobs any more), and they charged their standard rates of roughly $50 per hour. Even though I had the car in primer they insisted on stripping it down and re-priming it. They did the whole job, jams and all, out the door for $4500 using PPG paint. I thought it was a bargain compared to other quotes I got.

The shop gave me an estimate up front for both time and money, and they hit both on the nose - I got the car back in two weeks.
 

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My local shop painted mine. I disassembled it, repaired some sheetmetal, stripped the old clear coat off, long boarded the car down to the primer that was previously applied over the original paint. As above, most of the cost was prime/block, prime/block. They did my engine compartment, the interior and exterior, then sanded to 3000 grit and polished it. They spent a bunch of time getting the car straight. I've seen straighter cars, but mine is much straighter than it was new. They also sealed the car with a special primer since we were going over the original paint, and they also used the high dollar clear coat. I'm now re-assembling the car. They charged me about $10,500 and had the car about 4 months. I could not be happier.
 

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A good reputable body shop should be able to give an estimate on a complete. I know there is alot of depending on the cars condition, but the big surprises comes when the car is stripped. It can be sometimes hard to paint over an existing finish and it all depends on what type of paint is on there/ how old it is. A quarter panel replacement is about a 10 to 15hr job (depending). A good complete full strip paint job is 10k to 15k. That's why a lot of shops do a time and materials type of bid. That's how a lot of the restorations that we do at my work are setup this way. I do a lot of side work, and I can give a ball park but I say to the customer, dont be surprised if 25 percent gets added do to other work that is not seen. I document with pictures and part cost/material cost to show them that they are not be taken. I usually start a complete paint job off at 100 hours bid and if it they want it stripped or other things, it just gets figured in. Good materials and with 3 coats of clear will run $1500. I know your looking for a driver quality paint job, but using cheaper materials and maybe cutting a few coners(not saying you are) will only hurt in the long run. I could talk your ear off about the difference between a $100 per gallon clear vs a $500 per gallon clear, but cheaper isnt always the better solution. There is a lot of behind the scene stuff that goes on that sometimes goes unnoticed and that's why it costs so much to paint a vehicle. I made a list to itemize when I do side work to show the customer what's all involved for products that are or can be needed to fix a car.
 

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most shops wont paint over your primer, since paint is only as good as the prep and if used cheap primer then it will wrinkle.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I've certainly been educated by all of the experienced car people on here, and very much appreciated. I see now I'll have to up the $$ for paint to meet my expectations.
Thank you all sincerely,

Bob
 

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Another tip that the owner of my shop gave me was to use a paint that has no no pearl, and is a common color. That way, if they need to fix something in the future, it's easy to blend in.
 

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While I have painted cars before, I knew I couldn't do the quality that I was looking for in my Nova. I used a quality shop that specializes in customs/ restoration and does not do any insurance or collision work. They charged for materials and used a timeslip and clock to track exactly how many hours are spent on a car. In an 8 hour day, I was typically charged for 6 hours max as they assume that there would always be some downtime, etc. I felt that this was extremely fair for both me and the shop. I stripped the car myself and had the body and panels dipped as well.

I've had cars painted where they underbid and then problems start occurring as they don't feel fairly compensated, etc. The reality is until the car is stripped they have no way of really knowing. Every dent is different, every part fits different.

Materials on my car alone were probably in the $3k range when I tried to price them myself.

On the C10 that we are building for my son, we have a guy that does sidework that comes over every 2-3 Saturdays and works for 6-8 hours and works with my son on what he needs to do in between sessions to help cut costs. He charges $40 an hour.
 

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Hi Guys

So here is a different slant on the subject, So you decide to do all the body work and prep yourself no problem, But you only have a god hobby compressor, no air dryer or professional air traps or filters only hobby stuff.
So you prime your car but unbeknown to you, you have moisture in the air line which transfers into the primer. so you take your car to a paint shop and they charge you whatever for the paint job which comes out as well as you expected or better.
However after about eighteen months little bubbles start appearing all over your pride and joy, I hate to tell you but your paint job is toast, so who do you blame? you don't know that much about paint because you just do it for a hobby so you go back to the paint shop and they say you have Micro blisters and these have erupted from the primer that you applied and to rectify the problem you will have to go back to bare metal.
so there is the quandary, Pay the asking price and have a guarantee. Or take the chance that you don't have any problems with your prep.
This is a real life scenario that I have seen many times, And it never ends amicably as both sides blame each other, When in reality it is 99% of the time down to the primer coats containing moisture because of sub standard moisture control from the compressor.

Cheers Ian:uk:
 

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Hi Guys

So here is a different slant on the subject, So you decide to do all the body work and prep yourself no problem, But you only have a good hobby compressor, no air dryer or professional air traps or filters only hobby stuff.
So you prime your car but unbeknown to you, you have moisture in the air line which transfers into the primer. so you take your car to a paint shop and they charge you whatever for the paint job which comes out as well as you expected or better.
However after about eighteen months little bubbles start appearing all over your pride and joy, I hate to tell you but your paint job is toast, so who do you blame? you don't know that much about paint because you just do it for a hobby so you go back to the paint shop and they say you have Micro blisters and these have erupted from the primer that you applied and to rectify the problem you will have to go back to bare metal.
so there is the quandary, Pay the asking price and have a guarantee. Or take the chance that you don't have any problems with your prep.
This is a real life scenario that I have seen many times, And it never ends amicably as both sides blame each other, When in reality it is 99% of the time down to the primer coats containing moisture because of sub standard moisture control from the compressor.

Cheers Ian:uk:
 

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Ian makes a good point. Since most of the cost is the labor, and it's very time consuming, my body guy actually encouraged me to block the car myself. He wanted to spray the primer, then give me the car back and I block it. He figured we'd have to spray/block it 3 or 4 times. I talked him into doing the whole thing, but could have saved a bundle by blocking the car myself.
 
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