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Paint Costs



It's getting near time to have a new paint job on my car. It would be the same color, for me its hard to beat black. I was wondering what sort of prices poeple have been paying for NON-Macco type paint jobs.
paint costs

what stage is it in? is it stripped bodywork done,or has it been started? i can give you an estimate that should be pretty close,what kind of paint is going on the vette?and are you taking it to a dealer or independent paint shop? lots of things to look at when getting one ready to paint espesially a vette.oh yea what year is it again?
Its an 1980 no body work is really needed . Nothing has been done to it. The paint is in reasonable shape for being 20 odd years old with the exception that at some time somebody who didn't know what they were doing buffed it out and took the paint off the edges of the fenders etc. I intend going to an independent shop to have the work done. The only real change would be to go to a base coat clear coat type of paint.
Welcome to the CAC Vettasy!

Wise move not taking a Vette to Maaco, in fact I'd make sure the place you take it really knows Vettes.

Where in Colorado are you? One of my neighbors has about 12 or 13 hot rods (but only one Vette) and they all have some really nice paint (except the Vette:cry) . He moved here from the Denver area and has a lot of car connections there - I guess with that many cars you'd expect no less. Next time I see him I'll ask him for the names of good paint shops.
Paint prices vary depending on several factors.

1. Will all the original paint be removed?
2. Will they be taking the trim and mouldings off the car, or taping over them?
3. Will they hand long block the whole car to remove even factory imperfections.
4. Will the weatherstrips need replacing?
5. What brand paint, and what type of warranty/guarntee will they provide.
6. Will they color sand and buff the entire car to get "show car" slick look?

With that said, an excellent paint job that is done "right" can cost upwards of $2,500 +.

For a basic scuff, tape, and shoot you will be looking at $1,200 to $1,800.

Materials are very expensive and can make the difference in the long run. I spend as much as $600 on just base coat, clear coat, and related primer and additives when I do my own paint work. That does not count sand paper, tape, equipment, and my time.

Doing most of the prep work yourself can save $500-$1,500 depending on the job. Don't be surprised if you can't find a shop that will not come behind your prep work. They might, but won't give any guarantees.
I've been looking too...

And I've only gone to recommended shops and Vette specialty shops. The range seems to be $5,000 to $8,000 around this area (that's based on 5 recent estimates). Though mine is 11 years older than yours and does need some minor body work.

Good luck!
Barb :w
Hi guys,

If there is no bodywork needed,
1. scuff
2. sealer
3. paint
your looking at approx 2,000.00 for a half decent job.
You really need to ask around and get references, spend the time to look at car they have painted.
You really need to ask what they intend to do.
Will they remove the trim
Will they paint the door jambs if needed?
Will they color sand the paint?
Are you sure the original paint will provide a solid foundation?
Of course they will probably not guarantee the work because the paint isn't being stripped.
Just to give you an idea I had stripped the paint on my 71 and performed all bodywork, it still cost me 3,000.
Does the shop use a paint booth(highly recommended)
This is a big step, of all thses concerns the most important is the shops reputation.
I also have a black on black 71 with white top - looks great!
have fun,
My friend had his 82 recently painted. He took me out to meet the painter while his was being done to get an estimate on my 69. I discussed my car with the painter. He seemed very knowledgable. He immediately knew my color was Can-Am white, was drawn to the tiny stress crack on my left front fender, and through feeling the underside of my wheel wells, told me that my left rear fender was replaced with another panel. It was repaired with glass strips, not the original bonding strips.

He also noticed a slight variation in the colors of the panels. This I never noticed even after several waxings until he pointed it out.

He explained, in detail, the process he would use. He would remove all trim, fix all imperfections in the body and apply an original color paint job but add clearcoat. He said he would never paint a Vette unless he was able to paint it as was done by the factory. This meant, door jams and a piece of the underside of the hood. He explained how all orange peel would be hand sanded. And how failing to remove all orange peel would result in paint that is weakened and susceptible to major rock chips because the rocks would not glance off easily. To me this guy was a painting god and obviously loves his work, especially Corvettes.

Then we started talking price, the whole job would cost me $1,400. I thought, wow this is great. A show car finish for a fraction of what I was expecting.

OK, with that said, my friends car was over a month late being completed from the promissed date. That was because, the guy's kid was moving cars around in the garage and damaged three of them. One of which was complete and was to be delivered that day.

Well, the 82 was finally done and my friend brought it to work. When I saw him he turned beet red and we looked at his car. There were drips and runs and actual holes in the paint. The finish was rough and you could see definite buffer swirls. There was dirt embedded in the paint. I've never seen anything like it!

The moral is when you pick a painter get referrences and ensure you see their work in person. I'm so grateful I was able to do so before dropping off the '69.


This guy was the Vette butcher
I have been watching this post trying not to say anything and to see where it went. I got really nervous when I first started reading Dave's reply, but felt alot better when the story was over. The best advice is "You get what you pay for" and the next best advice is " If it sound too good to be true, it probably is" and let's not forget " cheaper is not always better (or cheaper)"...............Do your homework, check out the shops, make sure that they are "Vette Experianced"..........Steve
like ssvett said you get what you pay for.when doing vettes myself i get between 3-5000 dollars.and that is detrimming the body (TOTALLY). that means all trim,bumpers,handles,locks,glass,removing the hood and doors so you can get the paint everywhere,and removing the carpet and seats and doing the floor. then stripping the body of all the old paint, owners are really surprised that they're baby has been wrecked or been painted 4 or 5 times.corvette owners are a very picky bunch so the only way to satisfy them is to do it right no matter what.valkguy, your painter sounds pretty good,in the 17 years of doing bodywork i have never heard the ". And how failing to remove all orange peel would result in paint that is weakened and susceptible to major rock chips because the rocks would not glance off easily. " to me if a rock hits your paint its chipped whether its wet sanded slick or not. 1400 is very cheap for a showroom paint job.i did my father in laws '74 last summer with tilt front end and custom rear bumper and my body and paint cost alone were more than that including my discount and not paying for the booth(production manager does have some benefits,,lol) i wish you the best and send some pics when its done,by the way i spent over a year on his working about 3 hours a night and weekends,been 2 years on mine now and almost ready for primer,good luck------joe
#$*&%@G Paint

I just had my 80 done a couple months ago, they did a pretty good job, took the old paint off did a nice job priming it and repainting her, even took her into a shop that has a very good reputation and they complimented the job that was done. This kind of reassured me coming from a competitor. And mine cost $4,800. And believe me I have picked it over with a fine tooth comb and have found a few things that I wasn't to happy about, but bottom line is that for $4,800. I think they did a pretty good job.
Just got an estimate for my 81 last week. $4500-5500 I've used this painter before on my street rod and watch him do a total restore on his on 81, so I'm not looking any farther. A shop in the next town advertises a 6 coat clear coat for $399.95 I wouldn't take my ex-wifes car there! :D
Kev :w
Mine cost me almost 3k. Stripped, blocked, shot. Looks great . . . worth every penney.
My husband had his 74 convertible stripped of its original paint, a couple of very minor cracks repaired, and repainted its original Corvette Orange. We provided all the emblems. The paint job cost $5000...and was really worth it! The car is unbelievable! There is NO overspray anywhere...and absolutely no "orange peel". Four members of our Corvette club had this shop do theirs so we saw the finished products 4 times!! Each was a perfect job. That's all the recommendation we needed. Alan's 74 has since taken 4 first place trophies in 4 shows this summer! It all comes down to...."you get what you pay for"!!

Lemon Peel aka Elaine
I have to share a quick story here that is going to kill you guys. A good friend and co-worker of mine has a 77. The car is nothing really special, but most everything works and it is in good overall shape. He bought the car to have something to tinker with. He has no mechanical abilities or automotive know how.

The car was black. He decided he wanted to repaint it and asked me what to do. I went over his house one day after church and showed him how to wet sand the car, putty fill minor scratches, and what things to and not to pay extra attention to.

He is a very busy buiness professional, but found time of the next four or five weeks to sand a little each night. I then showed him how to spray primer and where in town to buy it. Over the next couple of weeks he spotted areas that needed extra attention and blocked them down.

He then picked out the new Corvette Yellow. He took off his own doors, cleaned, scuffed, and shot them by himself on a Saturday afternoon (this guy does not even change his own oil!).

We got together with a friend of mine that runs a body shop and borrowed a booth for the day. We shot the car in single stage ICI brand paint.

Total cost--less than $500. The value of his paint job-near $5,000 based on the post in this thread.

The car looks awesome. He took his time and carefully blocked and prepped the body. The prep is 9/10 of the final job. Plus, he yanked the mirrors, grilles, emblems, etc. etc. himself and had the joy of putting all that back together later.

If he can do this, anybody can. However, his time investment and bloody finger tips was quite significant.

On the other hand, my piece of scrap heap has so many problems, I have already spend nearly $1,000 on materials just to get the body back together (doing it all myself), and have another $1,000 to go before I can spary the final paint.
Photopoint link

Here is a quick photopoint link to see a pic of Bill's 77. The funny thing is, the brakes went completely out in this photo and this is where he coasted the car until a wrecker could come get it. This was the first time I got to see the car with the trim and emblems back on.

It was so sad, because he has really never had time to enjoy the car, and the first time he tries, it brakes-dangerously.

He is now trying to sell it. I think he is going to ask like $6,500. Turns out one of the calipers had a complete failure. He fixed it a few weeks later.

looks pretty sharp

Maybe the worst is behind him and it is now time to enjoy.


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