How Is Hot Rod Black Paint With Matte Clear Applied?

May 20, 2019

Modern matte black hot rod paint jobs in Orange County, CA are popular for all the right reasons. They look fantastic, they aren't overly expensive, and they aren't seen anywhere near as often as their shinier, metallic counterparts are.

But how is hot rod black with matte clear painted? What's the difference between flat and matte paint jobs? Does this type of paint job need a clear coat? Where can you get a reasonably-priced matte black paint job?

Read on to learn the answers to some of these common questions.

What is the difference between matte and flat black?

According to some paint manufacturers, matte finish paints are sometimes referred to as velvet or suede finishes. Matte is minimally glossy, but it still has more of a shine than flat paint does.

Flat finishes have no shine at all, to the point of being unable to reflect light at all. Obviously, this description can't be quite true, as it's nearly impossible to find a coat of paint that's 100% non-reflective.

The truth is, matte vs flat spray paint debate ultimately comes down to opinion. While some specialized shops will make a difference between these two types of paints, most classic car owners use the terms "matte" and "flat" interchangeably.

How to spray matte black paint?

Before we get into the specifics, it's a good idea to have an old used car to practice on. Car painting can be extremely tricky, and you don't want to risk ruining your muscle car or having to pay for an expensive stripping job.

The process of spray painting a matte black paint finish is as follows:

  • Step 1: Thoroughly wash the car and let it air-dry before you get started.

  • Step 2: Remove all the detachable parts, such as mirrors, trims, lights, etc.

  • Step 3: Dry-sand the car using a 120-grit sandpaper to scuff the defects and imperfections in the old paint. Expose the bare metal underneath by sanding.

  • Step 4: Thoroughly clean the entire car with denatured alcohol.

  • Step 5: Cover the areas you don't intend to paint (windows, sunroof, windshield, etc.) with masking tape or old newspapers.

  • Step 6: Prime every surface by applying enough paint to fill the pits and scratches you found while sanding. Give the primer 3-4 hours to fully cure.

  • Step 7: After the primer has dried, wet-sand the surface using 600-grit sandpaper. Be careful not to push too hard, or you may end up re-exposing the metal.

  • Step 8: De-grease all surfaces and thoroughly clean the car to remove any particles that may have accumulated during priming.

  • Step 9: Acquaint yourself with the instructions on your canned paint. Seeing as this is the final step in the actual painting process, you should try to apply this coat as perfectly as possible.

  • Step 10: Give the car 24 hours to dry. Do not drive it during this time, or expose it to dirt and dust.

  • Step 11: Once the paint has dried, wet-sand it with 1200-grit sandpaper to make all the surfaces 100% smooth.

  • Step 12: Give your car a refined look by applying a car wax that is designed to be used with matte finishes.

Does the above sound exceedingly complicated? That's because it is. Painting a car on your own is a challenge even if you're using shiny finishes. Painting hot rod black matte finishes definitely isn't a task for a beginner, and is best left to the professionals.

Does flat black paint need clear coat?

A common misconception states that applying a black matte coat is a time saver because it requires less overall work than other types of paint. Unfortunately, this is not the case.

While it's true that some matte black finishes do not need to be clear coated, they are likely still going to need a base clear anyway. The important consideration when choosing paint is to ensure that it's UV resistant, as this will give it the most longevity.

Who supplies the most unforgettable hot rod paint jobs in Orange County, CA?

Located near Terry Park, Chimera Motors is Orange County's top classic car paint, restoration, and repair company. Whether your hot rod is a collector car or your daily driver, rest assured that we can give it the peerless black matte paint job you've always dreamed of.

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