Welcome to the Corvette Forums at the Corvette Action Center!

Pearl paint job



I have been in need for a new paint job ever since I bought the car 3 years ago. I would like to go with a pearl finish. I have not seen one on a vette. Does anyone have any pictures they would like to share with me. :)
If you have any past issues of Corvette Fever or Vette magazines, take a look through them. I've seen a few Vettes show up in various colors of pearl paint and I think they look sharp.

If I'm not mistaken, the recent "C5 Tigershark" Corvette came in a pearl paint which was reviewed in both CF and Vette.
Thanks for the response. When I get back home (in 3 months;I am at war in the Arabian Sea on a Destroyer) I will certainly look through some of the old magazines. :)
Pearl Paint Job

To Stryker_78
First, you guys are doing a great job, I'm retired Army 30+ years as a pilot, so I know how it feels to be separated from your Vette.
On the pearl paint job, there was a guy at Ft. Campbell, Ky that has or had a white pearl paint job on a 1981. I didn't think it looked that great, it didn't seem really stand out. You had to get up within about 5 ft from the car see that it was not plain white paint. Maybe it was a poor job, but he spent a lot of $$$ for the paint. At the time I had a 93 Arctic White/Torch red Z07, and he like the factory paint better than his.
Maybe somebody else will give you better news.
Thanks for the insight. I am thinking of getting rid of the original white paint(it needs it) and going with a black pearl finish. I have been told and have just recently found a website with pearl paints, that the black is the way to go. It shows the pearl additive in the clearcoat much better than in a light coloured base coat. Thanks again. :)
I agree, I think the darker cpolors show the pearl additive much better than the lighter colors.
Ive been painting for16 years { cars trucks bikes And now custom signs} chack with House of colors. they have any thing you can dream of . There stuff is a little higher than say Dupont Or ppg But it is worth the xtra in the long run .I finished a 66 nova in Black base with purple and burgundy pearls . Dark colors are the way to go. Like Vettepilot said thank YOU for a great job
Thanks for the comment and the vote of confidence.
My wife and I are very excited about getting a pearl finished paint job. We like deep rich colors and are leaning more towards a dark maroon or dark green with a pearl finish over that.
I thank you for your input. :w
White pearl

I have a white pearl paint job and it looks great in the right light. However in the wrong light it looks like just another white corvette. It looks like you decided on black anyway.

My pearl white paint job is about 4 months old. I bought the car that way, and I love it. It's not overbearing at all, but can certainly be seen in any kind of light. Just this past Friday night a friend saw my car with only the porch light on, and he immediately could tell that it was pearl. I guess it just depends on how good of a paint job it is.
I have one pearl paint job under my belt, and it happened to be white. I did it on a 1985 GMC Jimmy.

There are several ways to achieve a pearl look. One way is to simply paint the car white base coat, then mix your desired amount of pearl in the clear, and do a pearl coat, then a straight clear on top of that.

This method is very tricky, so please interview your painter and request samples of their work first. It is hard/impossible to see the pearl going on. A difference in mixing, or spary pattern will cause the pearl to be splotchy, or you may even get a pattern in it that is not uniform.

The other methos is a tripple stage type paint where the base coat is tinted with a pearl base. You don't get as brilliant of a flip flop, but you get more consistent results. Ford used a red type pearl in the mid/late 90's on many cars.

The only other and maybe not so obvious concern with pearl is the difficulty touching up or blending. If you have to do any repairs on the car it is almost impossible to make a perfect hide as the free floating in the clear pearl would require the same exact mix, air pressure, spary pattern, and distance away from the vehicle when spraying for an exact match.

Also, if the painter gets a run in the clear/pearl coat, that is stuck in the finish unless it is blocked all the way back down, re-sprayed with white base, and start all over.

So, that is why a good pearl job is so expensive, and you don't see more of them on the street. When done right, they are out of site! With the many curves on a vette, pearl paint is a great compliment to the car.

One last note. There are different kinds of pearl tints. I think Violet pearl looks the best on a white car, yet it will still flip with a green/blue tint under the right kind of light.
That is exactly how my paint job was done...white paint, then pearl over it. The guy who sold me the car is a painter as well, so he did a really sharp job.
Thanks Trixie and 69myway for all or the info on pearl paints. :) It is greatly appreciated.

Scott :w
I own my own body shop. True pearls are a 3 or 4 stage finish. First a base color, followed by a mist coat of pearl, then clear topcoat. Some also use a tinted clearcoat after the pearl and then cleared. Dont let anyone tell you all about the high price in hundreds of dollars that just the pearl costs. Its only used in 1 or 2 misted on coats. A pint or most, quart is all thats needed over the basecoat for almost any car. Be aware that any pearl will make a color slightly 'muddy' if its not in direct lite or sunlite, especially white. A very nice looking pearl on a Corvette is on Nissan 300ZX of early 90's vintage; yellow with goldish pearl. Any pearl color I recommend seeing a test panel painted first before you put it on your car. Results always arent what you expect from looking at a color chip.
Thanks for the reply 86Targa. I am not going to keep the original white but am going to go with a dark blue and have that in a metallic or pearl finish.

Scott :w
I've already made plans to have my Bonneville repainted Cadallac Pearl White. It's a regular white now.
Why white? I like the color, and this way I don't have to refurnish the interior, which is red.
The cost, including a small amount of body work is about $1200, done at a place near me that I've done quite an amount of business with.
I'll let you know how it turns out.
By the way, I think all your other choices would work very well.
And I didn't know destroyers had sails. Good job there, and be safe.
I just got my Bonneville back from the paintshop. Pearl white was definitely the right color to go with. It looks veery rich.

Hope you're home by now and reading this in the comfort of your home.

Take pearl white and know-not another corvette for 1000 miles with that color.


Corvette Forums

Not a member of the Corvette Action Center?  Join now!  It's free!

Help support the Corvette Action Center!

Supporting Vendors


MacMulkin Chevrolet - The Second Largest Corvette Dealer in the Country!

Advertise with the Corvette Action Center!

Double Your Chances!

Our Partners

Top Bottom