The driver’s door on the Alfa had a nice parking lot ding in it and rocker panel behind the front wheel well looked like Swiss cheese. Once again, I decided to fix something that professionals should be doing.
After sanding the dents and rot to bare metal, I used fiberglass, bondo and a polyester glazing putty to try to get everything straight. My Makita Orbital sander really helped in getting the edges of the glaze smooth. I used #320 disks for the finish sanding, though I had tried hand sanding before with up to #600. I couldn’t really feather the edges without the orbital sander.
Seth Malcolm, on the Senior Six Registry mailing list, mentioned PaintScratch.com a couple of months ago. I found the Alfa Romeo paint code (which was also on the trunk lid label) at the Veloce Registry. PaintScratch didn’t have the Alfa Romeo AR901 (Nero), but when I sent them the Alfa and Ditzler code, they offered to make a spray can for me for $25 (US).
After two coats of primer, I painted the door and rocker panel with the Paintscratch single stage paint. I had to use a heat gun to keep the surface around 70 degrees, because the temperature here was in the low 50s.
With four light coats, the color match is very good considering the original paint is twenty-eight years old. My results were a little orange peely (see top piture), but I’m pretty sure I don’t know how to paint. Paintscratch says on their web site that their “paint requires a final polishing with rubbing compound to make the paint glossy,” so I’ll give it a week or two to settle down before I compound it.
The rocker panel repair came out alright – but the dent repair looks OK if you’re near-sighted, don’t have your glasses on and you look at it from 10 feet away.