Paint -- how to -- best methods??

Thu Sep 09, 2004 12:07 am

So I have the yellow and white PPG paints.... I was going to brush them on, at least the engine and everything else that is hard to get at. But my Deere friend (his wife has a Farmall 'C') said it is insane to paint with a brush. Figured I would have a pal at a body shop do the hood.
I have 'Rust-mort' on the head and front casting where it was rusty and the paint had gone missing. It seems to work well.
Comments on spray can primers would be appreciated too.
The plan is to clean/prep an area and prime, topcoat when I get a big enough area.
I am sure this has been discussed before, but it is all new to me.
The last paint job did not seem to have been primed.
Should I invest in a sprayer and practice on the old camper in the driveway?????

Thu Sep 09, 2004 6:51 am


Well seeing as you already gots the paint, I would suggest you go back to your dealer and gets some good high-build primer. If he doesn't have it, then go to NAPA or a good auto-paint store and get some Dupont Centari hardener and thinner and the high-build. High-build is a little more expensive, but I have been finding it is well worth the little bit extra in costs when comparing the final result.

Remember, the most important step in a top flyte paint job is PREP! PREP! PREP!.

As for a compressor, yup. A good compressor and a decent gun will certainly provide you a better shot at a good finish. If you have a commercial compressor shop around - one that deals with cabinet shops, body shops and garages, you will be able to get a really good compressor for probably less money than you would spend on a cheap Campbell Hausefield, Craftsman or something like that. 5 hp is great, 3 hp is good and 2 hp is the ABSOLUTE minimum. The recycle time would be pretty high on a 2hp. Personally, I would not waste my money on anything less than a 3hp. Try to get a 100 or 150 gallon tank with your compressor and the best electrics you can afford.

This will be your best investment in tools for years to come.. I have been converting over to air tools for years now, in fact, they are the only tools I buy if there is a choice.

Then get yourself a half decent gun. Chicago is about the cheapest I would go to. DeVilBliss is probably one of the best. I personally do not like HVLP and prefer a standard gun, but that is my preference. You will have to do some research on that.

Be prepared to spend more than 200 or 300 on a compressor, probably 50-100 for a gun, 50 for air hoses and couplers. BUT it will be a good investment.

Thu Sep 09, 2004 8:16 am

I don't know about the new Primers but the old red or gray one need to be sanded before the top coat could be applied. that ok on the hood and sheet metal parts a little tough on the engine and casting. I did mine out side in the dirt with a HVLP gun that I had, Campbell Hausefield I call it a suit case sprayer cause its all in one unit. but mine is a work tractor I just used a wire wheel on a 4 inch grinder after it was degrease washed it down with Chem- prime shot it with straight enamel I did sand the hood, fenders and dog legs. next one I do I will probably use the hardener. good luck and happy painting



Thu Sep 09, 2004 9:23 am

Dogman: My tractor is used for work, so I'm not looking for a show quality paint job. How long did it take you to clean, prep, and paint? What did you use to degrease? Would Simple Green work?

Thu Sep 09, 2004 10:19 am

Simple Green will work but I have been using Greased Lightning i think it works better found it a dollar store but have just bought 5 gal. at Lowe's. use what ever you can to scrape the heavy stuff off spray it on and let it sit agate with a brush if its heavy rinse & repeat
it took me about three month but I did other things like the motor, clutch 'and front end its not that hard and you learn by doing and if you don't like it paint it again next year :twisted: :twisted:

Thu Sep 09, 2004 11:22 am

Another item you can find at the dollar store is (Heavy Duty Oven Cleaner). I have tried every brand of grease/oil cleaner brand I could find but I will guarentee you that nothing cleans grease better than oven cleaner. Its a little harsh on the lungs so dont spray it on in the wind. {Cough-cough & lung burn for a week}. :twisted:

Thu Sep 09, 2004 2:06 pm

Any paint job Popeye gets will be better than it has right now and it will have to be good enough for a few years! Thanks for the tips.

Thu Sep 09, 2004 8:29 pm

Thanks for all the wisdom.
As for cleaning question, I scrubbed and scrubbed with straight simple green when I first got the tractor. It does work OK and I did manage to get the major chunks off. When I got the hood off I used what I call a hillbilly pressure washer (since I am a displaced hillbilly) with kerosene. It is essentially a air/blow gun with a pick up tube. That with a bit of elbow grease, scotch brite, putty knife did a pretty good job. Then I repeated with simple green in the pick up tube and rinsed with water. That worked pretty good.
Wish I had just started with oven cleaner in the first place. I was a bit concerned/careful about seals and such, so I was possibly overly cautious in the beginning.... and at the time had no intention of painting it!

Does anyone know if 'rattle can' primer is even worth doing?? I am now a bit leery of good adhesion when topcoated. I do like to cover areas of 'clean' (unpainted) metal as soon as possible, but may be better off in the long run with an epoxy primer, even if some minor surface rust develops before I prime?
Thanks again.

Thu Sep 09, 2004 11:05 pm


When I did my 8N Ford, I started out using a chemical stripping process. Well this works good for removing the old enamal pint, but what do you do about rust? So had this brain storm of having the tractor sandblasted, BIG MISTAKE! Done an excellent job and was a wonderful job in the end. Getting rid of the sand was another job.

Now here I am a few years older and much, much wise. Now I have my second tractor, the Cub. The painful learning experience in sandblasting the Ford. I decided to only do the parts that could be taken off to be sandblasted. Wheels, centers and brackets, thing of this nature. Basically anything that could be taken off and all the holes and hiden cavities clean out of the sand residue. Of course I would never suggest sandblasting any of the light sheet metal parts, such as the hood or gas tank. I have seen hoods warp terribly bad really look like hell after sandblasting has been done. I did however sandlbast the rear fenders, along with the bolster housing. (it was taken off already for a weld repair and I wanted to seal the inside of the lower tank.

The engine, transmission, torque tube was ALL chemical stripped wiht a brush on product and then I also use a few cans of Easy-Off oven cleaner. I then washed it all off with 2500 pounds of high pressure water at 190 degrees f. then blew everything off. Almost didn't have to everything was very hot and the water evaporated off very quickly. But keep in mind this tractor, unlike my 8N, the cub didn't have any rust, just about 15 old layers of paint.

A couple of days later (just before it started to start rusting) I primed painted it all and then put the final finish coats.

I used a PPG red oxide spay can to paint the small items after I sandblasted or stripped them and it seemed to work very well, then gave everything a shot of the regular red oxide from my spray gun.

Keep in mind that I am NOT a professional in any way, BUT the two tractors I have done have come out looking very nice and almost looks like a pro done it.

My spray gun is a cheap Craftsman gun for 75 bucks, my Air compressor is a Quincy QT-5 dual stage 5 horse compressor for $1,200 and then I have a Rankison air conditioned air dryer in line for about $500. Along with the line filters/water traps and air regulators and of course hoses and couplers. The honest truth NOW, is I have about $150.00 US total in all my painting equipment. The A/C and dryer was returned to the factory, due to the freightliner wreck in shipping, my brother works at Quincy Compressor and got them for me, then got me what few parts I needed to make it like new again at his cost. But I did buy the paint gun new at Sears.

As DOGMAN said, "PREP, PREP, PREP" is the key thing here. What ever you DON'T do will show up in the end. Honestly speaking, I can't hardly even paint with a rattle can, but if you TAKE YOUR TIME, you will be surprised how well you can really do. I'M LIVING PROOF! (By the way DOGAMN, love those before and after pictures you posted)

I think the worst part of the whole process was getting the right amount of reducer and hardenr mixed with the paint and the clean up. But they make these inexpensive plastic mixing cups with ratios printed on them for easy and accurate mxing.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, WEAR A RESPIRATOR or at least some kind of filtering device, to keep from sucking in all that paint overspray into your lungs.

John Niekamp

Fri Sep 10, 2004 12:03 pm

Have any of you guys done bodywork to the sheetmetal to smooth it out? My hood/gas tank has a couple of dings and dents here and there and I imagine a pretty paint job will bring it out even more.

Fri Sep 10, 2004 12:48 pm

For dents I just put a bucking bar behind it and tap it with a small hammer till back to original shape if you can get on both sides of it. For small dents like on the tank itself I use BONDO.

Fri Sep 10, 2004 3:46 pm

Bronson you are my new hero!
I was getting tired of running the grinder with a wire brush, so I looked in the basement to see if I had any oven cleaner... sure enough there was some pretty old stuff in with the other unused cleaning supplies. (all my cleaning supplies are unused, except for the auto stuff and now the Cub stuff)
Yow! does that work great!!!! Went to the local 'cheap' store and they had oven cleaner for .99! A couple of hours later I have the baked on hydraulic oil GONE. Nothing else (way more expensive too) worked anywhere near that good! Sure wish I had known that earlier.
John, I have a very soft spot in my heart for Fords, especially the 8's. I nearly bought one a few years back.
Looked at your web site and both of your projects came out great.
Soon as I can I will try to post some pictures.
You guys are awesome.