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Thread: Why paint a PT Cruise..?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Sandpoint, Idaho
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    2,013

    Default Why paint a PT Cruise..?

    I can hear you snickering at just the question.. PT Cruisers have become the butt of so many jokes, but when I bought mine back in Jan. 2001..people were standing in line and waiting sometimes months to get one. There was a time when you couldn't swing a dead cat w/o hitting one..now, not so much. They sell for 1,500-2,000 bux now..if anyone even wants one. I'm probably the only man in Idaho that doesn't drive a crew cab pickup truck. But ya know, this has been a bulletproof reliable car for almost 20 years now. I've kept up the maintenance and it's got 150K on the clock and runs as good as the day I bought it. Why not give it a little love. For it's entire life, it has sat outside wishing it was as cool as the Corvette that sits there now in all it's smugness. The 2-tone paint job that I did mere weeks after buying it has totally gone south. I've cut and buffed the darker color so many times the original silver is showing through in places. The lower silver remains beautiful albeit with a couple of small dings that I'll fix and then paint the whole car again this coming Saturday. I'll take advantage of that beautiful spray booth I have at my disposal while I can. I have a week off from work..so no time to lose..



    First thing I did was buff out the headlight covers and repaint the bumpers to get them back to a factory look. Then I spent about 3 hours removing the double orange pin stripe that separated the two colors. What a pain. They were really on there.



    There were three dings, two in back, and a rock chip/dent in the hood that was repaired.





    I'm simply using red Scotthbrite pads on this paint. I wanted to get all the gray done today. 4-5 hours of scuffing got me there.





    After spraying a high-build yesterday, and blocking it today, I sprayed on a different primer to cover the repairs for paint.



    I'll start on the silver areas tomorrow. I asked my wife if she wanted to help..and she just laughed.
    Last edited by nvr2old; 09-22-2020 at 10:30 PM.
    1979 GS1000S,

    1982 Honda CX500 Turbo, 1982 Honda MB5 w/CR80 motor, 1977 Honda "nekid" Goldwing, 1976 Honda CB550F cafe', 1972 Honda XL250 cafe'

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    New Buffalo, Michigan 49117
    Posts
    5,669

    Default

    Your project will be interesting.
    I was wanting to paint and refurbish my HHR, just before a buck deer stepped in my way at 55 mph.
    The cost of all the bent brackets under the metal added up to a few grand. By by HHR.
    "Only fe' collected the old way, has any value." from His Majesty O'Keefe (1954 film)
    1982 GS1100G- road bike, body, seat and suspension modded
    1990 GSX750F-(1127cc '92 GSXR engine) track bike, much re-engineered
    1987 Honda CBR600F Hurricane; hooligan bike, restored

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Sandpoint, Idaho
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    Default

    The HHR is a cool ride. Too bad about it's fate, Bill. They were right there during that whole neo-retro thing. Some people don't want to acknowledge these cars led to the return of the new Mustang, Challenger and Camaro.

    Although it's hard to tell, I got the silver all scuffed today. Tape protects moldings, chrome and bumpers.



    Sanding each and every tooth of that grill was a challenge to one's sanity..



    I drove this car w/o a front license plate for about 4 years..after getting stopped for it multiple times, I relented and found an aftermarket bracket that mounts it below the bumper instead of right in the center of it.

    After getting it totally scuffed down, I cleaned and sanded inside the door openings. Amazing how much crap, dirt, and leaves finds it's way into cubby holes just waiting to be blown out onto a brand new paint job.



    Ready for masking and painting..2 days early. I'm pretty stoked about how it went. Can't wait to paint it.
    Last edited by nvr2old; 09-23-2020 at 07:22 PM.
    1979 GS1000S,

    1982 Honda CX500 Turbo, 1982 Honda MB5 w/CR80 motor, 1977 Honda "nekid" Goldwing, 1976 Honda CB550F cafe', 1972 Honda XL250 cafe'

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Sandpoint, Idaho
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    Default

    Got started on the PT paint today. 6 straight hours of masking. I forgot how much there is to do to painting a car..











    I think I used, literally, 100 dollars worth of tape and masking paper doing the inside and outside...yikes. There will be nice crisp paint lines inside the doors and under the hood though. It'll look so much better that way. It's worth it.

    Ready for the silver first. A quick run of paper around the car at the belt line to keep it off the taupe color.







    Nice to see the first color down. It's sitting in the booth as we speak drying for a couple of hours at 80 degrees. I'll head back there in a little while to do the same mask on the silver to spray the taupe. Unmask and final 3 coats of clear. It's gonna be a looong night. Once you start you can't stop. Hopefully some finished pics late tomorrow after striping it and putting it back together. Thanks for looking.
    Last edited by nvr2old; 09-26-2020 at 09:02 PM.
    1979 GS1000S,

    1982 Honda CX500 Turbo, 1982 Honda MB5 w/CR80 motor, 1977 Honda "nekid" Goldwing, 1976 Honda CB550F cafe', 1972 Honda XL250 cafe'

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    St. Catharines, On.
    Posts
    7,689

    Default

    Larry, i am amazed at how different/better your car looks with just the two tone paint and the tire/rim/hubcap choice you have made.
    To my eye a little "gangster" vibe to it.
    2@ \'78 GS1000

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Sandpoint, Idaho
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    Hey Steve. You're absolutely right. I knew what I was going to do to this car months before I bought it. The look of a 37 Ford sedan was what sold me and what I wanted to emulate. First up was 2-toning it. I wanted to get right on that because I was sure everybody and their brother would want to do the same thing. As it turned out, very few did. Maybe they didn't want to sand and repaint a brand new finish. I had Wheel Smith in California custom make the smoothie wheels with caps and trim rings..first set made. I also wanted to lower it a few inches. A set of Eibachs took care of that.

    I went back to the shop at about 8:00 last night to start spraying the clear. Good news, I got it sprayed by 11pm.





    The bad news..I got 13..count em..13 runs in the clear. After 14 hours I was toast..not paying close enough attention to what I was doing, I guess. Hit the bake mode 140 degrees for 40 minutes..went home..pi$$ed. I didn't get a wink of sleep last night wondering what I was going to do next. I went in early this morning, sandpaper in hand and blocked every run out successfully..whew. Huge relief. I went ahead and cut back the rest of the car and spent most of the day buffing. I just got home with it about an hour ago. just enough time to wash off the excess compounds and polishes. I still have to pin stripe it along the belt line with a double orange line and re-assemble some trim and molding. For tonight though..I'm done. A prepped and painted PT Cruiser over the course of 7 days and 60 hours labor. Cost me right at a grand for the materials. Thanks to Route 66 for the use of their shop.







    I'll post some finished pics in a few days. As always thanks for the interest.
    Last edited by nvr2old; 09-27-2020 at 10:16 PM.
    1979 GS1000S,

    1982 Honda CX500 Turbo, 1982 Honda MB5 w/CR80 motor, 1977 Honda "nekid" Goldwing, 1976 Honda CB550F cafe', 1972 Honda XL250 cafe'

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    MoN, AZ
    Posts
    18,278

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    That one has a classic Bug vibe going. I like 'em. The storage inside them is incredible. They don't do as well on gas as I think they should have, but they are hella practical and, to my mind, 1000 times more interesting than a Versa.
    "Thought he, it is a wicked world in all meridians; I'll die a pagan."
    ~Herman Melville

    2016 1200 Superlow
    1982 CB900f

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    New Buffalo, Michigan 49117
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    Look what labor hath wrought!!
    "Only fe' collected the old way, has any value." from His Majesty O'Keefe (1954 film)
    1982 GS1100G- road bike, body, seat and suspension modded
    1990 GSX750F-(1127cc '92 GSXR engine) track bike, much re-engineered
    1987 Honda CBR600F Hurricane; hooligan bike, restored

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Stupid Freehold Boro NJ
    Posts
    10,220

    Default

    Looks great. Your wheel choice is excellent.

    When consulting the magic 8 ball for advice, one must first ask it "will your answers be accurate?"

    Glen
    -85 1150 es - Plus size supermodel.
    -Rusty old scooter.
    Other things I like to photograph.....instagram.com/gs_junkie
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/152267...7713345317771/

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    Sandpoint, Idaho
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    Default

    Thanks you guys. Got it pin striped and back together late today right before it got dark. Amazing how just the bit of orange accents the 2 other colors. I'll get a couple of shots tomorrow..oh wait..the debate..maybe Wednesday..
    1979 GS1000S,

    1982 Honda CX500 Turbo, 1982 Honda MB5 w/CR80 motor, 1977 Honda "nekid" Goldwing, 1976 Honda CB550F cafe', 1972 Honda XL250 cafe'

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