This is where a lot of teams will skip a step and then wonder why their paintjob doesn't look up to par. Check for any cracks or holes in the applied sealer. If there are any small holes you'll need to do a little bondo work.

Shockin' Yall Media gave us a great rendering of what the Circle Track car was going to look like. Now all we had to do was tape the design on to the body panels. This can get tricky with the body off the car, but we took our time and placed the panels together and mapped out the design using 1/4-inch design tape. With the design mapped out, we decided to paint the black first, which meant we had to tape off the entire red area. I found out this is where most of your time will be spent. Which leads me to my next point: Make a template out of carboard to cover large areas of one color. It will save you a lot of time.

Next, you'll need to mix your paint. You have to mix a reducer with the paint so that the paint gun can spray it evenly across the car. Check the back of the paint can you're using for the correct reducer-to-paint ratio. Don't assume it's 3:1. It can vary with different colors. If you use the wrong ratio, it can easily cause runs in your paintjob.

Before you start to paint remember that the best temperature for a great paintjob is in the 70-80 degree range.

Now that the paint is mixed and you've had a chance to make sure the surface is as clean as it can be, you can start to paint. Just as with the sealer, make sure that you're spraying it evenly across the surface. It's going to take two to three coats to get the color that you're expecting. Let it sit for 5 to 10 minutes between each coat.

ClearCoat/Sit Time After the paint has dried, it's time to make it pop! A few layers of clearcoat will do the trick.

Before you shoot your clearcoat, make sure that you take a new tack cloth and wipe the car down again just to make sure there isn't any dust that might have landed on the car overnight. The clearcoat will provide protection for your paintjob and it will accentuate the colors you've chosen for your car. It will also give it the glossy finish that makes the fans go wow. The clearcoat will take at least one more coat than the number of paint coats you applied. The guys at Automotion say that usually somewhere between three and four will do the trick.

There you have it; the intimidating task of painting your car is finished, and you have a sleek new paintjob. It all comes back to how much time you set aside to do this job. If you give yourself ample time and really make sure that your surface is clean before you paint, then you'll have no trouble at all. This way when you unload your car at the first race of the year, your competitors can stare at your car and say, wow, what did he do to get his car looking like that?

A special thanks goes out to the guys at Automotion. We started the painting process at 9 p.m. Friday evening. But we finally finished up around 5 Saturday morning. So we got it completed in what would amount to a normal work day. Ryan and Reed, thanks for all of your hard work. The car looked fantastic down at PRI.

Spray Paint and Equipment Of Kansas City, MO Automotion
DuPont Performance Coatings Shockin' Yall Media