Many painters get attached to their tools, equipment and processes, especially if it can help them do an exemplary job.
In this case, Rob Paddock, owner of Paddock’s Paint Works in Chesterfield, MI, is a devotee of SATA, and that’s why his logo contains a depiction of a SATA spray gun. Without really knowing it, Paddock has become a brand ambassador for SATA and isn’t afraid to tell the automotive world about it.
Paddock works on classic, primarily pre-WWII vehicles, many of which are million-dollar jobs headed to Pebble Beach, CA, for the annual Concours D’ Elegance. If you’re a car connoisseur, you know it’s the Super Bowl for car enthusiasts, where the finest---and most expensive---vehicles in the world are displayed and compete for coveted awards.
Company At A Glance...
Type: Automotive Restoration
Facility Employees: Five
In Business Since: 2012
Number of Locations: One
Production Space: 4,000 square feet
Paddock fell in love with classic and exotic cars at an early age.
“While I was a kid, we used to go to an automotive show here in Michigan in the Upper Peninsula called the St. Ignace Car Show,” he said. “My uncle was a member of the Corvette Club of Michigan, and he had 10 1957 Corvettes. So, my mom would drive one, my dad would drive another, and my whole family would come along. I think I was around 8 years old when an Impala was there, painted black with flames. I thought it was the coolest thing I’d ever seen. And from that moment on, I decided I wanted to paint cars.”
Let’s fast forward to 2012, a significant year for Paddock and his career.
“I’ve always loved what I did, and I worked for some great shops, but I was kind of unhappy with my current situation,” he said. “So, talking to my wife, she said why don’t you go out and do this on your own? I was reluctant because starting any business can be risky. But my wife insisted and kind of pushed me out the door. Otherwise, I don’t know that I ever would have had the courage to do it. My cousin gave me a break and got me into a building and that’s how I started.”
Luck and family connections led him to the creation of Paddock’s Paint Works.
“I painted an offshore racing boat for my cousin, he owned the building that I painted it in. So, we talked, and he said, hey---I’ll give you a break on the building. So, we set up a paint booth and went from there. I owe my cousin for helping me because it really helped to get me started.”
Paddock said SATA spray guns have been in the equation since nearly day one, a decision he has surely never regretted.
“In my high school’s auto body program, I used another brand because I didn’t know any better. One day, a coworker at a shop where I was working was spraying with a SATA gun, and I asked him can I use it? It was amazing and I have never considered using a different gun since that day.”
Now he owns a dozen SATA guns, all of which play a different role as he restores highly collectible Duesenbergs, Packards and old Bugattis.
“I love the way the SATA guns fit in my hand,” Paddock said. “With many of the cars I paint, I’m shooting at 90 degrees into crevices, which can be difficult. It also depends on the fan in many cases. I have it opened wide sometimes, and then I have to pin it down a little bit depending on the contours of the vehicle I am painting.”
Paddock has developed his own style of painting over the years.
“I kind of spray differently than many people who think I’m kind of crazy,” he said. “I use a 1.2 tip versus a 1.3 or 1.4 when I am spraying clear coat because it atomizes better and lays out nicely. That way, I’m not just pounding material on whatever. In addition, I am using less material with the SATAs. With these high-end cars, I will put four to even six coats on a car but I’m putting less on at a time because it just lays out much better.”
Paddock also values the customer service offered by SATA, even though he has only needed it once, he said.
To read more auto body shop profiles from the October 2022 Shop and Product Showcase, click here.