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Author Topic: Did red paint always fade so badly?  (Read 1289 times)


  • Grand Gearhead
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Did red paint always fade so badly?
« on: November 08, 2009, 12:13:13 pm »
I keep seeing older cars (say 10 years) that were originally bright red but have faded to a kind  of blasted pink. Some of the upper surfaces of these vehicles are almost white.

Small UK Vauxhalls, like the Corsa,  seem particularly bad.

Is modern red car paint less stable than it once was, or is it that since modern cars don't rot away in 5 years like they used to, we tend to see more older ones running around.

Some of the fading is so bad that I would think you could claim the paint as being not fit for purpose and maybe get some compensation, despite the age of the vehicle.
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  • Grand Gearhead
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Re: Did red paint always fade so badly?
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2009, 03:39:32 pm »
A lot of that depends on the TYPE of paint that is applied. Red is always troublesome because it attracts those sun rays that do the most damage. Alkyd enamels are probably THE most fade prone paints as they never set up extremely hard and most are used without a top coating. Think of it as basically "bridge pier paint". Old lacquer-type paints would fade pretty quickly - but they could often be buffed back to life as the oxidised surface would actually protect the undercoats to a degree. The BEST paints on the market today are cyano-acrylic paints such as Akzo-Nobel, Sikkens and the top-of the line Dupont paints. These paints, with complimenting top (clear) coats last seeminly forever due to their surface hardness adn the fact that UV inhibitors are included in the top coats. They are easy to spray and handle - but require precision to mix before spraying and are VERY dangerous to handle as they contain isocyanates. A little rubbing goes a long way for paint maintenance, tho - a bit of your favourite wax applied after a polish will protect that paint for quite a while. No more pink cars (or motorbikes!) ....
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  • Grand Gearhead
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Re: Did red paint always fade so badly?
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2009, 04:22:04 pm »
Yes- red has always faded faster.  That, coupled with few people park in a garage anymore and hardly ever wax their car (unless you live in Charlotte), it goes.  Blue is possibly next in line.  The more expensive cars lay it on thicker, plus those cars are parked in garages and the butler has them detailed often, so it lasts longer.

In my experience, Italian vehicles are the worst for fading.
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  • Grand Gearhead
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Re: Did red paint always fade so badly?
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2009, 04:30:27 pm »
When I lived in Florida, silver was definitely the worst.

In a short time, the paint job deteriorated into a dusty aluminum powder surface with no shine at all.
Very common to see that in Florida.


  • Grand Gearhead
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Re: Did red paint always fade so badly?
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2009, 09:31:18 pm »
i had a 76 BMW K100 that was red..  and turned almost pink within a few years..  I traded it..  I don't look pretty on pink


  • Grand Gearhead
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Re: Did red paint always fade so badly?
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2009, 03:58:19 am »
  Had a '62 Biscayne wagon that had a 348 under the hood and it was a faded out red.  Got her off the back row beauty isle at the car dealer for like a hundred dollars back in '80.  No one wanted it because the of the paint.  Rubbed it out and it looked nice.  Shot 3 coats of clear over the original paint and got Around 2k out of it when I went to a local car show.  Will.
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Blue Ridge Wheeltor

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Re: Did red paint always fade so badly?
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2009, 08:04:36 am »
Have the Enfield Deluxes experienced this fade? The red reminds me of a BSA Lightning.
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