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TM reader BlindTreeFrog directed our attention to a site where the owner of the above-pictured Corvair — who knew he’d never have the cash to give his ride a real paint job — describes (in detail with photos) his $50 paint job applied via a technique borrowed from a net-renowned Moparts.com forum thread.

The trick? Thinning Rust-Oleium 50% with mineral spirits, applying it with a roller, and sanding a lot.  Incredibly, his results don’t look that bad.

Would I do this to a car that had a decent paint job already or that I could afford to paint professionally?  Hell no.  But this looks like a pretty decent technique to spruce up a beater — assuming you have a lot of spare time on your hands.

A $50 Corvair Paint Job [RickWrench.com]


12 Responses to How To Paint Your Car For $50

  1. Blind says:

    Hey that’s me 😀

    Yeah, I wouldn’t do this for a show car or anything, but for a beater or a work vehicle it seems like a good enough idea. Hell, for a show car it might be just unique enough of a finish for it to stand out.

    It’s hard to say without seeing a vehicle in person that was done this way. The charger in the Moparts thread looks pretty good, so maybe it is worth a serious look.

  2. Brad says:

    But it’s still a Corvair…

  3. Brad says:

    😉 J/K on that last comment. Paint do looks decent. Can’t believe those results are possible.

  4. olderty says:

    This method was detailed in last month’s Hot Rod too.

  5. Waylan says:

    The above referenced thread is ridiculously long, as are a few follow up threads started after that one was closed. For anyone interested, you can find some more info at http://rollyourcar.com which offers a quick summary of those threads including an alternate marine grade paint. There are also plenty of pics of finished and in-progress paint jobs.

  6. l_bilyk says:

    Any info on doing this on plastic?

  7. Abe says:

    Anyone have the link to the corvair guys site?

  8. Abe says:

    Oops! Found it, nevermind 🙂

  9. Joel Wires says:

    I saw this on Digg.com. It looks sweet the price is event sweeter. (I’m a cheapskate, I know.) I wish I had an old beater of a car now to try it.

  10. Fstedie says:

    Yeah, but Duplicolor now has their new lacquer series that is very cheap. It won’t be $50 but much easier than rolling and much less work…

  11. Ryan says:

    Hey all! I have created my own method of do it yourself auto paint based on this original write up. I have termed it The Poor Mans Paint Job. The write up can be found here:


    My method uses a foam brush instead of the traditional roller used with this type of at home auto paint. This helps to eliminate a lot of the sanding involved with doing this. I laid down 6 coats of paint and only sanded the car 2wice!

  12. How many hours did it take him to complete?

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