In this case study, we explain the whole repair and refinishing process of this Mini Cooper using the Blucrom water-based system. On this particular occasion, the car owner not only wanted to repair the scratches and dents but also to give the color a different touch to make it more eye-catching. This effect was achieved with a pearlescent pigment, applied with a three-coat system.
Condition of the car
The bodywork on this car had several scratches and dents in the most common areas: bumpers, sides and hood.
First of all, the condition of the exterior paintwork was visually checked, marking all the areas to be repaired in order to easily detect all the damage.
Color reading using a spectrophotometer
As it was a complete refinishing job, the painted area that was in the best condition was identified in order to perform the color reading. Once this area had been detected, the surface was polished with Robercar polish to eliminate any small imperfections in the clear coat. The aim of this process was to achieve a completely clean layer of clear coat so that no particles would interfere with the color reading.
Afterwards, the xCrom spectrophotometer was used to perform a color reading. On average, 3 readings are usually taken in the same area, in different positions, to ensure the best possible color reading. This information was transferred to the iCrom software, which provided the color formula and recommended the shade of primer to be used.
To repair all the scratches and dents, all the accessories (mirrors and handles) and the bumper were removed and painted on a stand. The damage was repaired with putty, and then a coat of the primer shade recommended by the iCrom software was applied.
Once the primer was completely dry, it was sanded with a P-400 and P-600 grit size. Once the sanding process was finished, it was blown and cleaned with a degreaser to remove all traces of dust and dirt.
Preparation for painting
The car entered the booth, where the windows, wheels and parts that were not to be painted were masked using paper, masking tape, fine line tape, etc.
Blucrom water-based color was weighed and mixed according to the iCrom software formula. On this occasion, a color test was carried out on a metal sheet to check the final result of the color.
Just before painting, the surface was again thoroughly cleaned with degreaser, blowing with the compressor and wiping with a dust cloth, to avoid any remaining dirt that could affect the final result.
Painted with a water-based system
Blucrom water-based paint was applied with an HVLP spray gun with a 1.2 nozzle at a pressure of 1.8-2.2 bar, applying 2 coats of the color until the surface was covered, and drying between coats with the Venturi system as the paint was water-based.
To customize the color, another layer was applied with resin and pearlescent pigment to give it a pearlescent effect, and dried with the Venturi system.
With an RP spray gun with a 1.3 nozzle, the Kronox 3100 clear coat was applied to obtain the best quality and a high gloss. After 10 minutes – the approximate evaporation time of the clear coat – heat was applied in the booth at a temperature of 60ºC for 30 minutes.
Once cooled and the clear coat had hardened, the bodywork could be handled. The masking materials were removed and the parts and accessories reattached that had been removed at the beginning of the process for painting on a stand, such as the bumper and accessories.