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MG Midget Forum

Painting the Midget

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BillHoltzman Bill Holtzman
Annapolis, MD, USA   USA
Hello everybody,
It has come to the time where I need to paint my Midget. I have already bought primer, filler, a sanding block, 80 grit and 120 grit sand paper, and a spray gun. I have a 20 gallon 175 psi compressor, is that enough? I would like to keep it the same color. It the classic MG red (not sure what the color is called, photo of car is attached). If I sand down to the preexisting primer do I still have to spray a new coat of primer? Is there a tool I should use to identify low spots in body filler? Where should I buy the paint, and how many coats should I spray? And how much paint should I buy? What type of clear coat should I get? What is the most cost effective way to protect me and my garage from overspray? What other supplies might I need? I would like to keep the car the same color as it is now, but with black rocker panals. What is the procedure for doing this? Any help on identifying the color red that is currently on the car is appreciated.
Thanks,
Bill in MD



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-16 09:38 PM by BillHoltzman.

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taylorschone Taylor Schone
St. George, UT, USA   USA
I can’t comment on painting techniques but I can lead you to a helpful link for finding the correct paint code for your year and model:

http://www.teglerizer.com/mgcolors/

I believe the black sills were originally satin black. I’m sure some paint experts will chime in with your other questions. Go get er done!



1972 Midget - Aqua/Navy

rhodyspit75 Avatar
rhodyspit75 Ernie Connor
Cumberland, RI, USA   USA
Go up to the black toolbar at the top of the page. Click on library then tech library. Scroll down then look under body and paint. Lot of info there.

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NOHOME P P
O, ON, Canada   CAN
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"
Buy a set of these and rolls of stick on paper in 80 220 320 and 500 grit



Go on Youtube and search for the videos on using the blocks.

Sand the car down with the 80 until you just start to see metal. If you need to do filler work you can sand the area to bare metal and do the filler work with Rage Gold filler.

Buy a gallon of primer surfacer. I am using this Valspar product that is either a high build primer or a sealer depending on how you mix it. Mix it as a high build and shoot three coats on the car. Using the durablocks and the 220 block sand the car. Stop when you sand down to metal. Repeat until the car is flat.



Mix up the primer sealer as a sealer, shoot three coats. Sand wth 320 and then 500. You are ready for paint

Shoot a base clear if you like or a single stage.

Pete

NOHOME P P
O, ON, Canada   CAN
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"
Eastwood has some great videos on the subject matter and well worth watching. You could do worse than to stick with their line of products across the board as the safest bet. Mixing and matching products from different manufacturers is always a risk when getting started.



I am currently in the thick of this game for the third time with my project.



Note the length of the sanding block on the hood of the car. That is what you need to make a large low crown surface flat. Always use the longest sanding block possible.

If your sanding block looks like this, it is going to give you a wavy surface. It may be smooth, but it will be wavy.

The golden rule is that you fingers should never touch the back of the sandpaper; ALWAYS use a block of some shape or size to do the sanding.




Pete



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-17 08:50 AM by NOHOME.

littlecars Avatar
littlecars David Bassett
Nashville, TN, USA   USA
1965 Chevrolet Corvair "Ski Team Transport SOLD!"
1965 MG Midget MkII "Buffoon"
1966 MG Midget MkII "Swiss Cheese...SCRAPPED"
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "Tamara's Turd... SOLD!!!"    & more
That Volvo will be a stunner, I'm sure NO HOME. What finish do you plan for this project?

NOHOME P P
O, ON, Canada   CAN
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"
In reply to # 3718686 by littlecars That Volvo will be a stunner, I'm sure NO HOME. What finish do you plan for this project?

The engine compartment is already painted the final color.



Pete

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76lucas Avatar
76lucas Gold Member Josh L
Floyd, VA, USA   USA
1978 MG Midget 1500
1979 MG Midget 1500 "Parts Car"
Here are my 2 cents. Check with the maker of your compressor to see if it is usable with your gun. Keep it clean. If your going to paint it in a garage then make sure you have proper ventilation. You should take has much out before has you can make sure whatever remains is covered. Clean the garage really good. Any dust,dirt ,grit or grime in the area can be kicked up during the painting. Same goes for the car get it clean using the proper methods. Don't wash it with just any old cleaner. Use the one the that the maker of your paint says to use. Get some scrap metal and some paint in small cans and practice a little with mixing and spraying.It is important to be patient. Don't paint it until your sure the body is right. Don't just look at the car while fixing it. Feel it for low and high spots. A little water on primer can also show a lot. Anything you notice with wet primer will show in paint. Most of all don't let it overwhelm you. Has for yourself while spraying you should at least use painters coveralls and a proper respirator. Trust me a paint fume high will end with a nasty massive headache.



If you never try to do it You will never be able to do it

Dan Lockwood Avatar
O'Fallon, MO, USA   USA
In reply to # 3718381 by BillHoltzman Hello everybody,
It has come to the time where I need to paint my Midget. I have already bought primer, filler, a sanding block, 80 grit and 120 grit sand paper, and a spray gun. I have a 20 gallon 175 psi compressor, is that enough? I would like to keep it the same color. It the classic MG red (not sure what the color is called, photo of car is attached). If I sand down to the preexisting primer do I still have to spray a new coat of primer? Is there a tool I should use to identify low spots in body filler? Where should I buy the paint, and how many coats should I spray? And how much paint should I buy? What type of clear coat should I get? What is the most cost effective way to protect me and my garage from overspray? What other supplies might I need? I would like to keep the car the same color as it is now, but with black rocker panals. What is the procedure for doing this? Any help on identifying the color red that is currently on the car is appreciated.
Thanks,
Bill in MD

Since everyone is kicking in their 2¢ worth of advice, I have about 1¢ worth.

Bill, let me preface my comments and possibly a wrong assumption on my part about your hands on skill levels.

Based on very basic based on your very basic questions in your post and the car you want to repaint, I would suggest that unless you're willing to have a less than stellar painting results, I would opt for painting something else before you delve into the MG.

I'm speaking from experience about painting. I'm what I would consider a highly skilled and adept person in many respects on mechanical things, cars, motorcycles etc. I admit that I'm ignorant in many fields on cars, and painting is one of them. I've repainted several cars that turned out good in the old days of lacquer and straight enamel. I've painted a few frames and did quite a bit of body and primer work too. I have a good compressor with a filter/dryer and very good HVLP gravity paint guns.

But what happens is that with my lack of experience, I tend to do things many, many, many times over what a knowledgeable body person would do. Example, I can spread out body filler with the best of them and I have the 14" air body files and all the blocks one could imagine. But I just keep sanding and adding, sanding and adding, not knowing when to stop with the filler and sanding and moving on to high build primer. If I start with a gallon of filler, I end up with a gallon on the floor, not a good thing.

This is where the hypocrite comes out in me and I'm sorry for it.

All I'm saying is that if you need to ask all the above questions and even viewing YouTube videos, unless you are a VERY quick learner, your paint job will probably not be what you had hoped for.

I'm all for doing things myself and I'm going to be painting my Boardtrack Racer motorcycle project myself and I know I'll spend 2 to 3 times the time a painter would spend, I'm still going to do it. But I also know it's not going to be as nice and look like my old Harley paint job that I hired out back in '05.

I know that there are many people on this forum that do all of their own paint work and I'm sure that their first paint job did not turn out as nice as they wanted, but they persevered.

I'll say one last thing that I think a lot here can appreciate. I have over the years done a ton of welding. I have my MillerMatic 200 MIG and my Lincoln 185 Square Wave TIG. I've welded in my teen years with a torch set and coat hangers. My dad had torches so that's what he taught me on. I got pretty good at brazing too. So I "know" how to TIG aluminium well and I've done it a lot, but it was MANY years ago. I think the first words out of anyone's mouth here on TIG welding will be practice, practice, and more practice. Paint work is very much like TIG welding, you may know what you need to know, but without hands on experience you'll only be "so good", not perfect.

I applaud your for wanting to try this on your own and I wish you the best of luck in your project. If nothing else, maybe pull one of your front fenders or maybe your trunk lid to practice on. Sand down to the metal in places and then fill/primer back up and try your paint work out. You can just strip to bare metal when you're done. You really cannot hurt a thing practicing like this.

Again, good luck and let us know how you're doing. smiling smiley



Dan Lockwood
O'Fallon MO

Dan's Photo Albums

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littlecars Avatar
littlecars David Bassett
Nashville, TN, USA   USA
1965 Chevrolet Corvair "Ski Team Transport SOLD!"
1965 MG Midget MkII "Buffoon"
1966 MG Midget MkII "Swiss Cheese...SCRAPPED"
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "Tamara's Turd... SOLD!!!"    & more
In reply to # 3718742 by NOHOME
In reply to # 3718686 by littlecars That Volvo will be a stunner, I'm sure NO HOME. What finish do you plan for this project?

The engine compartment is already painted the final color.



Pete

You appear to have cut off the front end of the car! Is this the same Volvo wagon?

jimandcassdavis Jim Davis
Swanton, OH, USA   USA
1967 MG Midget MkIII ~ For Sale ! ~
1976 MG MGB
For what it's worth, I agree with Don. Why would you put all the work into restoring the car and end up with an "amateur" paint job. Yes, painting the car is expensive, and in my experience it is hard to find a shop willing to do it. But, you will end up with a car that you will be proud of and not a "10 footer". A good painter is an "artist" and this skill is valuable.

NOHOME P P
O, ON, Canada   CAN
1967 MG MGB GT "Maggie (GT From Hell)"
In reply to # 3719299 by littlecars
In reply to # 3718742 by NOHOME
In reply to # 3718686 by littlecars That Volvo will be a stunner, I'm sure NO HOME. What finish do you plan for this project?

The engine compartment is already painted the final color.



Pete

You appear to have cut off the front end of the car! Is this the same Volvo wagon?

Got ya!

The Volvo wagon is in fact a Molvo wagon. What I did was to take one very nice rust free 1996 Miata, and removed its clothes


Then I introduced it to the P1800 ES bodywork.


Of course the wheelbases did not match, so we had to cut and extend the Miata 7" from the firewall forward


Then we did a bit of welding to join the two and stuck a ford 302 and AOD in the engine bay. So bumper to bumper underneath it is a V8 converted Miata and above a stock body P1800.



Interior is not very Volvo like



Bill: Sorry for the derail on your thread....To get back to painting..I have been sanding for a calendar month so far at 10 hours per week. The goal is to have it ready for paint by the end of June. Dan has pretty much summed up the reality that I live with when it comes to painting. If you look at the picture of the car being sanded, you will see the pile of dust on the floor; it is the third or fourth time the same pile has been there and I am on my third gallon of filler. So even though I have the equipment and done reasonable work in the past ( see bugeye below) I am going to have topcoats of paint done in a booth by a shop that has done good work for two of my friends. I will however deliver a ready to paint rolling shell.

Bill, I would not discourage you from doing a full paint job. I consider it a rite of passage for a motor-head. Much like building your first engine you will learn a lot. But sometimes what we learn is that while it is good to know what it takes to do this stuff, it is hard to beat the experts at the only game they do. I have learned that it is imprtant to realize when I screwed up and go as far back as necessary to do it properly. ( had to sand down and re-shoot the ba$ecoat on the bugeye cause I used wrong de-waxer and got fisheyes) I am looking forward to pictures as you get going. The Bugeye was my first effort. Not terrible by a long shot.





Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-18 10:41 AM by NOHOME.

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