Rich Evans (40)
Rich Evans is the owner of Huntington Beach Bodyworks and an award winning painter and fabricator. He offers workshops in repair and customization at his facility to share his unique talents. He also appears on a new show on Speed Channel, Car Warriors. See his Twitter (left) and Facebook (right) feeds for more on Rich's active projects.
For contacts and design samples visit www.huntingtonbeachbodyworks.com
To read Rich Evans' column in PDF format with art, click here
Rich Evans uses only Chicago Pneumatic orbital sanders, which he believes are the best orbital sanders on the market, to create award winning designs at Huntington Beach Bodyworks.
CP7215 – I use the CP7215 for cutting and shaping. When you lay your bondo and want to shape it, the CP7215 covers more area and
cuts more aggressively than other sanders. Once I spread the bondo and cut it, I’ll shape it with the CP7215, because it cuts faster and allows me to get the shape and true form without taking it too far. I typically only use a 36 or 40 grit sand paper with this sander.
CP7255 – I use the CP7255 for shaping radiant areas. It’s slower than the CP7215 and provides a less aggressive cut. I will typically go down to an 80 grit sand paper with the CP7255, but you could even use a 150 grit. I prefer the 80 grit sand paper for fine tuning. If it’s a little dent or ding you can use the CP7255 to buff the ding – for small dings you can keep the shape without cutting too much – and then you can feather the edge.
CP7225 – I use the CP7225 for final feather-edging, light body work and prepping vehicles for paint. When you’re prepping a vehicle for the paint booth, completely sand the whole vehicle with 150, 320 or 400 grit sand paper in order to remove the scratches caused by
the 80 or 150 grit. I also use the CP7225 for blocking the primer areas.
I’ve used a lot of sanders and the reason I prefer the CP random orbit palm sanders is that the handle is the perfect size and you can accurately control the throttle with your hand. In addition, the sanders are light, quiet and have no vibration whatsoever.
Having all three sanders is definitely a must. The color-coded orbits are great when you’re reaching down to grab them during a job. Without the coded orbits, it’s difficult to tell them apart without checking your sand paper grit. When using other sanders, you don’t know which sander you have in your hand – this can be very frustrating if you start sanding with the wrong grit paper when you’re switching back and forth between sanders.You want to always make sure that you are using the right tool for the process.
Because of my experience level, I don’t use a straight line sander very often. But, I do use the CP7268 on special applications or to true a really large panel. For the typical user it’s a good tool for shaping longer and straighter panels.
When using a straight line sander, technicians should remember to never hold it straight. You should always cross cut with a straight line sander. For example, on a radius area you want to cut it one way and then flip the sander and cut it the other way in an X pattern so you keep the metal consistent and flat.
Also when sanding, never put pressure on these sanders – just let them do the work. If you push too hard you can cut too much and create low spots in your bondo work. You’ll get faster and better results if you let the sander do its job. And it’s less of a workout for you. Remember, don’t muscle it. Just be the guide.
SIDEBAR: There’s no real way to store your DAs other than throwing them
on some shelf somewhere. Or, if you are like me, you store
them in the largest drawer of your tool box. The problem with
this is that over time the pads of our DAs get damaged and
warped. If your pad is warped, you no longer have a true
surface to sand with and you won’t get a true rotation, which
will wear the tool out faster. This could cause low or high spots
in your body work. Another problem is that your tool box or
work area gets cluttered up very fast.
To solve this problem, I designed a holster style rack for
storing my Chicago Pneumatic sanders. The rack is magnetic
and fits right inside a tool box, or it’ll hang on the car you’re
working on. With my DA hangers, you can finally have a nice
organized toolbox or work area, and your DAs stay in great
condition. Vim Tools is now manufacturing these hangers –
check them out:
To Read Rich's Article Dad's Truck as a pdf with photos: click here
This month I will be discussing my father’s 1958 Chevy Pickup. The truck has a lot of history and sentimental value to my father. It was originally purchased in 1958 by my grandfather who was a farmer in Brighton, South Dakota. My father grew up and learned to drive in this truck and about 10 years ago, he was given the truck by my grandfather. It was still running and in decent shape, but after 50 years of service, it was in need of a fresh facelift.
About 7 years ago, my father asked me to help him with the restoration, but at the time I was really backed up at the shop and didn’t have the time for another restoration. The idea was to fully restore the truck and show it to my grandfather, but since he passed away 2 years ago and with my father’s birthday around the corner, I thought that it was finally time to get this old truck back on the road. My father had recently rebuilt the engine himself and had a friend of his begin restoring the body of the truck.
After getting the truck to my shop, I began breaking it down on December 1st. Now, around the first week of January, it should be ready to present to my father.
We began by breaking down the whole truck and having it all sent to be walnut blasted. In many cases sand is being replaced with ground or crushed walnut shells. It’s a soft abrasive that’s less damaging to surfaces and safer to handle if any of it is inhaled. After the blasting, I mocked up the cab of the truck with the doors and panels. I could see that the rocker panels where replaced, but didn’t quite align correctly. So after cutting them out and realigning everything with my alignment tool kit, everything should come back together nicely when we’re all finished. Before welding the new rocker panels in, I used a 36 grit disc and grinder to prep the surface to tack the new panels in place. Afterwards, I completed a nice even weld around the new panel. Both lower rear corners of the cab and part of the door jams where also ground, cut out, and had new panels welded in their place. Besides some welding to the cab, it was actually not in bad shape for a 50 year old truck. However, the roof, dash, and hood of the truck was littered with decades of compression dings and dents. So, I went to work with my hammer and dolly from Martin Tools.
There are typically two ways to fix a dent. You can either raise the dent from behind to match the surrounding surface or you can pull the dent from the front to match the surrounding surface. The first method requires two things, access to the rear of the dent and a hammer and dolly. The second method requires you to use a pin and slide hammer. This truck was pretty bare so I was able to reach every dent and use the hammer and dolly. Every metal shaping kit comes with an assortment of dollies. You need to select the one with the correct contour for your panel and place it behind the dent. Hold against the surface firmly so it does not bounce around when you hammer it. If you raise the dent to far, just place the dolly on the other side and continue the process. No matter how good you are, it’s not going to be perfectly smooth like it was when it was stamped in the factory. Some amount of filler is going to be needed before painting, so all any of us can do is get it as smooth as possible so we use the least amount of filler as possible.
After all the metal work was finished and the welds ground flush with the panels, we used a little filler on the cab to sand and smooth out. We started with a block and 36 grit sandpaper, then 80 grit. I then sprayed the cab with some PCL Poly-Primer and wet sanded everything 150 grit dry sandpaper and then with 400 grit wet sandpaper. The bed and front fenders where replaced with new ones, so there prepped and painted as usual. Like a lot of old trucks, ours came with oak wood flooring for the bottom of the bed. Here’s where I should mention that most of the parts that I purchased for this truck where purchased from the Truck and Car Shop in Orange, Ca. They made the whole project go smoothly and I would recommend checking them out for yourself. I purchased a bed kit from these guys and sealed the wood planks with varnish before installing them into the bed. I also painted the wheels and purchased new tires.
Now for the painting. I painted the chassis with DP90 Black and Wurth’s Satin Black, which is specifically designed to match that factory blacked out steel look. The cab itself is two-tone orange and white, with the exception of the top of the dash, mirrors, and other miscellaneous parts, which I painted black. The entire truck was sealed with DP48 White. I then sprayed the cab with PPG’s 6260 Olympic White. This was the brightest white that I could find. After that had dried, I masked over the area’s that where to remain white in the two-tone paint scheme to protect them from the orange that I was about to spray. Such as the roof, grill, bumper, and rear window section of the cab and the top of the dash, which was painted black. With these areas masked, I next gave the whole truck three healthy coats of PPG DBU 2915 Bright Orange and PPG DBU 9700 Black unmasked the previous sections the two-tone paint job. Afterwards, I gave every painted part of the truck three good coats of clear and the truck was now ready for polishing. If you notice, I planned out the order in which to spray the colors very carefully. First the DP90 Black for sealer, DP48 White for sealer on the body, PPG 6260 Olympic White, and then finally PPG DBU 2915 Bright Orange. This order allowed for the least amount of masking which in turn allows for the fastest turn around time and lowest edge build up between colors.
Polishing begins with color sanding. Start with a clean bucket, clean water, and a clean block, so there won’t be any dirt particles in between the sand paper and the finish to gouge the paint and cost more work, time, and money. Start with a good block and some 800 grit wet sand paper to smooth out any imperfections and flatten out any orange peel. Depending on the quality of the clear you are using and even if you’re very proficient with a spray gun, there’s always going to be some amount of orange peel to flatten out. From here, use the 1000 grit to remove the 800 grit scratches. Then use 1200 grit to remove the 1000 grit scratches. Finally, use 1500 as a final step to remove the 1200 grit scratches. Stay away from the edges. Always remember that the paint is thinnest at the edges. Most guys will use some 3M vinyl tape to protect the edges while sanding.
Next, grab a buffer, some 3M Heavy Rubbing Compound and a #1 wool pad to start buffing the finish back to a shine. Next, buff with a 3M Finesse-It Finishing Material. Then switch to a foam pad or a waffle pad and buff the finish with a quality glaze. Finally, with a micro fiber cloth, apply some hand glaze, wax, and polish for a pristine finish. I’ve gone over the color sanding and buffing procedure before, but reviewing your steps and procedures is always a good idea.
Other than putting this truck back together, I’m pretty much done. I will align everything together on the chassis, which should not be a problem with my alignment tool kit. Please check out my website for more information on this or any of my other products. This truck will be returned to my father and he will complete the last cosmetic steps to it, like the headlights, taillights, etc.
Also, please check out the Truck and Car Shop website at truckandcarshop.com, wurthusa.com, martinsprocket.com for there auto body industry products. Until next month, have fun and good luck in your custom car and truck projects.
Recently I was putting a completed project together – reinstalling the hood, deck lid, and doors. You don’t have to be in this business to know that no matter how meticulous you try to be, things usually don’t go back together as easily as it was to take them apart – especially with cars and even more so with a custom car. When you get a new project for custom paint and body work, you first mock up the car, break it down, do the custom body work and paint, clear it, buff it, and put the whole thing back together again.
Applying custom graphics and artwork to helmets can sometimes be a little troublesome. Helmets can be just as time consuming, if not more, as painting a motorcycle tank. This is because with helmets there are many more parts and materials that need to be masked and protected.
A crucial first step to laying out graphics on helmets is to take many measurements.
The best way to lay out graphics centered and straight is to find middle point on front and rear.
The visor opening must be sealed off so that paint cannot damage the interior.
The helmet design process can also get a little tricky because there can be many hours of labor when customizing. The question to keep in mind is whether the customer is willing to pay for this. Most don’t see a problem with paying top dollar for a first-class custom paint job, but probably not when it’s for a helmet. There is often a balancing act needed to decide between what the customer wants and what he or she is willing to pay.
Rich tip: The fastest paint jobs are usually freehand, so try and stick to this method especially when doing something less expensive such as team sport helmets.
Measure and mark for reference
Sometimes laying out graphics on a helmet can be a little frustrating. It’s important to take a lot of measurements and mark as many reference points as you can with little pieces of tape. Hopefully the helmet is not perfectly smooth and has some ridges or vents to use as a reference point when measuring.
The helmets are very round and it’s sometimes hard to line up graphics and lettering to be perfectly centered and straight. Your best bet is to find the middle point of the front, which is not usually too hard, and then find the middle point of the rear, which is a bit harder.
Then lay a centerline down the middle of the helmet with some fine line vinyl tape. This is a good place to take further measurements for the rest of your paint job and get everything laid out and evenly spaced from one another.
Rich tip: Make sure every graphic is laid out just right before you spray it or things could end up looking lopsided.
I recently added the Chicago Pneumatic QRS Quiet Rotary Screw air compressor to my shop because of its quiet operation, smooth and pulse-free air output, compact size, high output volume, low vibration, prolonged service intervals, and long life.
QRS Air Compressor
The QRS rotary screw package is built to be able to run continuously 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, if necessary. However, the built-in timed shutdown will stop the compressor and motor when compressed air is not needed, resulting in lower energy demands. In contrast, reciprocating compressors should be operated at a 70% duty cycle in order to not overheat the pump which could cause excessive wear or - even worse - failure.
The QRS HP (without refrigerated dryer) model supplies cleaner and cooler air than reciprocating compressors. Oil lubricates the bearings, seals between the rotors and cools the air during the compression cycle. This oil is cleaned by an oil filter and than taken out of the air by an oil separator resulting in clean air. Since the QRS does not create friction like a reciprocating compressor, and has a built-in cooling system, the compressed air is delivered at a minimum of 100 degrees cooler than reciprocating compressors, resulting in less moisture in the delivered compressed air.