So, Last night... I let a friend drive my Fiero. Well long story short is he hit someone. I have a mixed emotion of sad and mad. He doesn't have any money to pay for it so I am hosed on that end. I figured I would make the best or a shitty scenario and take this time to think about painting my car. I don't know how to paint anything so I will need a shop to do that; however, I would like to prep the car for paint myself. Taking the old paint of the car sounds like something I can do in my driveway.
My question is, do I just sand the paint off? Do I need to use a special grit? Any suggestions on what I should do would be greatly appreciated.
BEFORE You SAND, Completely WASH the entire car with (at the least) Dishwashing liquid. Wet sanding with 400 should do the trick, or 500. Remember, ANYTHING that you can feel, even with a fingernail, WILL SHOW (and be magnified) once you put a "shine" on it. *Paint Hides nothing.* You might be better off MASKING it yourself, (depending of where you take it for paint). Painting is "relatively easy", Getting it READY for paint is what takes up all the time. If Changing colors, paint all the edges (and jams you want) Before you take it to get painted. Even If you Don't change colors, Mask off all the jams, so the painters don't turn it into a mess ( again depending where you take it). Firm believer in "If ya want it done right, do it yourself", (If you know what you're doing), otherwise you can actually make the situation worse. LOL Maybe someone here can point out a "Step by Step" LINK for you.
There are tons of posts and youtube videos on sanding, so you are covered there....
On top of that, there are many items you can remove from the car to get a much nicer paint job, with fewer tape lines and over spray on the items.
Items such as: - All side markers and molding (Unless you are just having them sprayed body color) - License plate surround(s), brackets ect - The chromed heat deflectors above the tail pipe(s) - front parking, and rear tail lights - side mirrors - sunroof gasket / tracks - rear trunk seal - The drip rails above the side windows - remove the black plastic inserts in the rocker panels. (top of the rockers when you have the car doors open) - It also helps to remove the headlight doors, so all the edges of the hood and doors get painted well. 99% of the time a paint shop will just paint them on the car and not get all of the edges. - remove the reflectors from inside the rear bumper. - Lastly, not completely necessary, but if you can have the front window removed, or at least the trim this will really help. It is pretty much impossible to have the trim in place and tape it off, and not see the tape lines when the car is done.
If it is a fastback: - If you plan to replace the quarter windows,now is a great time to do it, remove them and paint all in that area - Remove the inner surrounds behind the fastback windows
When you put all these items back on after it is painted, there will be no tape lines or over spray and it will really be a much better outcome.