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Protecting the base coat color

Posted by Jay Schneider. Filed under Clearcoat.
June 15, 2009

Protecting the base coat color coat has become, lets face it – a difficult task. Taking care of and repairing the protective layer we call clear coat is forever challenging. Finessing compounds, polishes, pads, do-dads you name it have become a way of life for manufactures involved in our industry. New clear coat appearance enhancing products perpetually roll off the assembly line promising better results. Just when you think you’ve got it, BOOM! Chemists announce a new clear coat! At that time a new race starts to form sending manufacturers scrambling to figure out how to deal with its idiosyncrasies. 


Historically, clear coats such as lacquer, catalyzed enamel, urethane clear, urethane tinted, ceramic and now waterborne, come to mind. Lacquered clears were the forbearers made popular in the late 50’s and used primarily through the 70’s.  Lacquered clears were sprayed onto the vehicles surface in multiple applications – sometimes in excess. This was done to not only protect the base color coat, but to seal in decals and give depth the color. They were commonly sanded and beat down with wool pads yielding a spectacular finish. Lacquers opened up a whole new meaning to the term Custom Rods. Automobile customizing was here to stay. Not without problems however. In time the thick lacquered finish would begin the checker, spider web and eventually fail rendering itself un –repairable.


Scott S. Mc Lain

Vice President

Sales & New Product Development


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