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Old 03-10-2014, 09:13 PM   #1
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2004 GMC 3500 Shortie '$50 Paint Job'

Kind of new to the whole skoolie thing so I'm not sure if paint threads are cool anymore but here goes.

I got this from the Head Start program in town. 55k miles (I live on an island in a maritime climate so most vehicles take a beating earning those miles). It was a bid process. They wanted 5k, I offered 3k and they accepted. Might have overpaid but whatever it's in great shape. I'm negotiating the title process now and have to convert it to an RV. Figured I'd start by making it legal on the paint side.

The inspiration for the project:

I actually found the hex/rgb values for the Ak train but getting a custom shade made was way to cost prohibitive. Luckily my local true value had the 'xo rust' line of paints that are pretty darn close. Picked up a bunch of tape and an HVLP gun and I was on my way.

As for the process:

1. Remove all stickers and decals. This was the most tedious process. Ended up going with the combination straight edge razor and a heat gun (well a hair drier). Clean up and residue left with goo gone in a spray bottle. Clean of the goo gone residue with a generic household cleaner.

2. Sand all nooks and crannies (oh man there were a bunch) with 100 to 200 grit and paper. I used an orbital sander for the wide open spaces and hand sanded with a sponge or a sheet of sand paper on the nooks.

3. Clean up all sanding paint dust with a Mineral Spirits wipe down and some shop towels (blue disposable kind).

4. Tape tape tape. In hindsight I would have painted the yellow stripe first and then painted the rest blue. I had a lot of overspray from flying yellow paint. Kind of a bummer because I really don't feel like spraying it again.

I want to put my city name on it in the same font that's on the train as well as possibly putting a number on it. Also want to put a couple Alaska flags on the hood and the back door. Flag for reference:

I have no real plans for turning it into a permanent RV. I like the versatility the rig offers. I can haul stuff around in it (wood, big stuff, drywall, etc) and I can put a platform in the back to sleep in it. I plan on doing lots of cruising around the mainland this summer in it. Pretty excited about it!
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