When it concerns car repair works, one of the most common paint procedures is refinishing a panel. Today, colors of cars are highly complicated, having metallics, pearls and various combinations of hues, which make the job of matching colors highly challenging. To cope with this, several paint techniques have been developed to blend the new color into the old one. If the match is slightly less than ideal, the eye might fail to see the changes. That is why a lot of paint companies recommend that all repairs be blended. But what are the ways to do it to make it unnoticeable? In this blog, we will provide you with a quick overview of blending techniques.
There are basically three types of blending: standard blending, reverse blending, and wet-bed blending.
- Standard blending. As paint colors became more and more complicated, there appears a problem of mismatched colors. That is why a standard solution is to extend the new paint into the old one. Generally, up to 4 coats are used with the first one, which extend 4-5 inches into the old panel. The next coat extends 6 inches beyond that, and the third also extends beyond the second. After the repair area is sprayed to full coverage, a color-corrected light is used to check that all areas are covered, especially problematic ones such as fender edges and recessed areas that are hard to spray directly. Though the booth typically has color corrected lights, professional painters prefer turning them off and using a color corrected light instead because otherwise shadows are cast that may hide thin paint. The defect then might stay unnoticed until the car is out in the sun.
- Reverse blending. It was developed to deal with the issues mentioned above. Although the reverse blend overlaps each coat by about 4-5 inches, the same as the previous type, the main difference is that the first coat is the one that extends the farthest: 12 to 14 inches into the adjacent panel. The second coat is blended 4-5 inches less, and the third one – 4-5 inches less than the second. To cope with problems such as halo, visible blend line, and poor metallic orientation, products often referred to as the orientation coat have been developed. One of the key issues that occurred with highly metallic colors, such as gold, is that the metallic flake would gather in even small scratches left when prepping the panel to be blended.
- Wet-bed blending. If you want to use the wet-bed blending technique, you should spray a full wet coat of orientation, or wet bed, over the whole panel to be blended. Then the color is applied using the previously described method. This technique makes it possible to spray the color onto a tacky surface where any small scratches have been filled with the orientation coat, which will make the metallic orient correctly. Halos, though not always eliminated completely, are considerably reduced.
Think of the result you want to get and make your choice wisely.