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Working on it

Minor update

I've spent most of my spare time this past week spray-painting high-build cellulose primer and a guide coat onto various parts of Fenchurch. I had a bit of a setback when the zinc primer on the bonnet cracked in several places after spraying the cellulose primer on top - I suspect I'd put the zinc coat on too thick, and the thinners in the cellulose primer reactivated it, then it redried and shrunk after the celly primer had already hardened over it. To fix that I stripped all the paint off the outside of the bonnet, sanded it clean, then etch-primed it (no zinc-primer coat this time). Another problem I've run into is big flakes of dirt falling off the ceiling of the garage and landing in any wet paint every time I walk across the floor of the office above. It's not too bad at the primer stage because I can sand out the dirt when I flat down the guide coat, but I'll have to be more careful when I do the topcoats. I may try to fasten a big polythene sheet to the ceiling. I've also noticed that paint has seeped under the edges of the masking tape in places onto the wood, so I'm going to have to figure out some way to clean that off without damaging the newly painted metal next to it in the process (current plan is to try carefully rubbing it off with a cloth dipped in thinners).

Here I am this afternoon spraying the guide coat on Fenchurch's bonnet. The reason it's sky-blue instead of a dark navy shade is because the paint is thinned down so much you can see through it to the light grey primer underneath. The point of the guide coat is to be sanded off - you know you've sanded deep enough to get rid of any surface imperfections when you can't see any of the guide coat any more.


The simplest trick to cope with the paint on wood - well to stop it being a big deal anyway - is to apply a couple of middling generous coats of wax (woodworking beeswax plus Carnauba; not Silicone!) to the wood, along the edges where it meets the metal. this ought to prevent any paint from adhering to the wood (can remove the wax later with white spirit).

I know it's not much help at the moment though!

You are very probably correct in your estimation of the cause of the paint cracking; it sounds very like the 'chinese writing' effect that occurs if you do something similar with french polishing.