Thursday, December 10, 2015

Job 9: Clearcoating

At last, we come to the most stressful part of the restoration.  Clearcoating is expensive, toxic and time-consuming and can go wrong at every turn, which it did. I gathered my supplies, cleaned everything to the best of my ability and got started. First, I propped up the playfield and leveled it using an app on my iPad.

Then I suited up and sprayed the first, very light coat. A few hours later, once it was dry, I went back and touched up some of the black areas - the acidic clearcoat compound easily eats through the decals, so you have to barely mist it at first. 

The second coat went on a bit thicker, but my gun was clogged and I had to get a new one.

The third coat went on thick, but something else went wrong and the finish was marred by a few dozen pockmarks, caused by moisture or dust or something in either the compound or the air line.  I immediately filled the divots with an eyedropper and they turned out okay.

Finally, I had enough stuff left for a light topcoat and this one yielded thousands of pockmarks - an evenly pebbled surface. I hereby concede that I am terrible at clearcoating and will avoid it in the future at all costs.  I can sand the pebbling down when I reach the polishing phase, so it's not a big deal.

For now, though, the results are too embarrassing to post in photos and the clearcoat requires several weeks to cure before I can sand or polish.


No comments:

Post a Comment