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Clear Coats

Paul said: 
>>Now that I have the engine purring I'm about to take the ol TQC in 
>>for a  paint job. I've been told by some old timers that in Denver I should 
>>avoid clear  coat paint jobs. Something about UV and excess heat build 
>>up dulling the  pigment. Others have said that newer paint systems 
>>have eliminated this by adding UV filters. Does anyone have any 
>>comment on this.

And the Hon. Dave Lawson quoth: 

> I don't believe that is the case with the new paint systems. Maybe 
with some  of the paints long ago, but not with what is available today. 
In fact, I  have an 86 coupe GT which I bought new here in Colorado, 
it's graphite (black metallic) with a clearcoat. I have maintained the car 
and waxed it twice a year on a  good year. I think the paint looks great 
for a 10 year old car, no fogging or  hazey sections, and the clearcoat 
looks great. And this is with a factory paint  job. All in all it has held up 
very well.

I'll add my $.02.  This clear coat situation WAS a problem in the 
70's and early 80's.  My 83 280 ZXT is an example; the clear coat is 
badly checked on the roof and the very top edges of the doors.  It 
has been explained to me that originally, some importers (notably the 
Japanese) had trouble with using clear coat and paint which had two 
different expansion and contraction habits under high temperatures.  
Therefore, after a number of years, checking (cloudiness, roughness 
and eventual loss of the clear coat)  became visible on the parts of 
the car most exposed to the sunlight.  

Literally, the paint was expanding and contracting at one rate, and 
the clear coat at another.  Separation of the two was inevitable.  

Since then, manufacturers have resolved this and the clear coat is 
compatible with the paint if they are correctly matched.  In fact, 
use of a clear coat is generally much preferable to a non-clear coat 
finish if you want longevity.

No opinion on the color - but I have seen some truly lovely dark, 
dark purple metallics which would look almost black - except for 
intriguing highlights.  But if you want to keep it cool, keep to 
bright, reflective colors.  Dark colors absorb a LOT of solar heat.

Al Powell                           Voice:  409/845-2807
107 Reed McDonald Bldg.             Fax:    409/862-1202
College Station, TX 77843           Email:  a-powell1@tamu.edu 
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