In the day and age we live in, new vibrant colours are out on the market next to the old beloved classics. As colour means emotion and emotion sells vehicles – whether they are new, second-hand or even a classic – the job of a spray painter is to match the colour of the car 100% when doing a repair. A basically invisible repair is what the customer is looking for and what shop owners and paint manufacturers are targeting together.
But this is not an easy task as colours are becoming more and more challenging to repair through built-in effects or – in the case of older cars – ageing of the initially applied colour. Body shops therefore constantly must stay ahead of all colour trends and have to be properly trained on the influence of nature on the colours, as to not suffer the consequences of not being able to mix the required colour.
Next to supplying the full-colour range – covering decades of paint experience – Glasurit equips the body shops with state-of-the-art colour matching equipment and trains painters in expert seminars. After all, the most important factor in matching the colour is the spray painter and our industry has to strive to keep their skills at the highest levels in a world of changing trends.
Within the training and during the regular visits at the shops, the Glasurit team will go through every influencing factor in getting to perfect repair – starting from the substrate all the way to the finish. One should never forget that most of the vehicle is painted by robotic arm application in perfect conditions at the motor manufacturers plant. And now we are expecting the human intervention to create the exact same finish as before. In other words, restore the vehicle to its previous condition under completely different circumstances. It all sounds simple but could be very challenging if processes and painting recommendations are not followed.
Colour means emotion, and emotion sells
Whether it is a new, repaired or even customized part to be painted, it all starts with the specific substrate, as the substrate plays a major part in the colour reproduction. Plastic parts, Carbon fibre, Aluminum, Galvanized steel etc., all have their influence on the results and therefore specific repair processes need to be followed. A plastic bumper for example will react differently to metallic effects – as it has a differing static charge to other parts of the car. If one does not adjust the application to the substrate properly it will lead to an unsatisfying result.
Next, painters will have to make sure that they adhere to the diverse grey shade concepts – matching the complex process at the vehicle manufacturers site. To ensure a perfect colour reproduction, the correct grey shade needs to be applied to the substrate. Most of the new vibrant colours are dependent on the correct colour ground coat to obtain the same colour match as well as the same special effects. Colours are becoming more and more translucent, and therefore the correct application procedures and recommendations are crucial – which is why Glasurit puts such a high focus on training and support.
The most difficult step, of course, is then to match the colour itself, especially as colour can vary nearly daily – caused by several influencing factors such as the painter, colour mixing, application methods/techniques, the vehicle itself, the vehicle manufacturer as well as the material used. All the mentioned influencers will have an effect on the reproduced colour, and therefore it is important to have the support of technology, the proper training and the most innovative paint solution.
the most important factor in matching the colour is the spray painter
We also have to remember that the colour changes over time through environmental influences and only looking at the colour code a car at hand will not do the job. The key, therefore, is to use the available blend inn methods– so that the repaired panel or part seamlessly blends into the rest of the car. A perfect panel to panel match is very time-consuming and the painter needs to spend a lot of time perfecting the colour as well as his painting procedure. Therefore – to limit key to key time – it is recommended to blend in paint repairs, even if this means covering a slightly bigger area.
Finding the colour
But how to find the colour – reconsidering that there are so many influencing factors making each repair unique? Next to traditional methods of colour chips, Glasurit supports the painters with the latest technology – namely the unparalleled spectrophotometer Ratio Scan 12/6.
This phenomenal piece of equipment has brought a new revolution to the colour matching world. With no less than 6 cameras and 12 geometries, colours can be reproduced much easier and much faster.
With its wireless transfer capabilities to the mixing room, colours can be scanned and the results sent to the paint management program for mixing. There is also a correction functionality, that would adjust the colour even closer after comparing it to the photos that were taken by the colour matching tool. Basically, perfect colour matching at your fingertips in the blink of an eye.
Using all the latest tools and aids available from Glasurit, as well as attending the broad range of colour seminars, each paint shop has the capabilities to deliver perfect results. If the repair is good but the paint finish itself is not, the customer will not be satisfied. Glasurit and all its partners understand the importance of customer satisfaction, and therefore Glasurit will never stop investing in colour reproduction methods as well as repair processes.
Tips whilst mixing colours
Last, as we strive to develop skills in our industry to perfection – unconditionally of whether shops are using Glasurit products – we below list a few tips that each and every one should consider whilst mixing colours:
- Ensure that all mixing bases are stirred properly (stir the bases twice per day for
10 minutes on the mixing machine)
- When mixing the colour, stir thoroughly before and after adding the reducer
- Make a spray-out sample and check for hiding power
- Bake the spray-out sample properly
- Match the colour to the vehicle in daylight conditions
- When tinting, use mixing bases contained in the mixing formula
- Do not use several mixing bases for adjusting a colour unless you need to make the colour look darker
- Make a spray-out sample after each adjustment step
- For basecoat/clearcoat systems, spray-out samples must always receive clearcoat
- Respect the basecoat flash-off period before applying clearcoat
To learn more about the Glasurit Ratio Scan 12/6, watch this video:
Article kindly sponsored by BASF Coating Services