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"Professional" paint correction

 
Old 08-13-2016, 04:53 PM
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What's up guys....I have been doing paint correction for years now and enjoy it a lot. It's a side job/hobby for me but I consider my self to be very good at it.

I use a rotary with Meguiars and 3m products. Wet sand when needed... the whole deal.....

My question to you guy's is how much do you guys charge? How much do you charge a buddy as opposed to a stranger? I only do cars that don't see winter and are hand washed because I feel anything else is a waste of my time as in a daily that sees winter and a lot of automatic car washes lol.

I usually charge buddies $150-$175 for a full days work. Just looking for opinions on gauging prices for different types of costumers if that makes sense?
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Old 08-13-2016, 05:35 PM
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I charge 350 I ain't messing around lol. I use festool wheel and products. There on the pricey side but once u use there buffer once you will never want anything else but. There speed cut compound and ceramic glaze is crazy good. Also for scratches blemishes I use the perfect color sand system 3m. Start off as course as 1200 of u want but finish with 5000. You can almost machine glaze it out after its done. I paint cars for a living use the same stuff for fresh paint also. Takes me all day I really get into it but I enjoy it
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Old 08-13-2016, 08:55 PM
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prices vary per location
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Old 08-13-2016, 11:18 PM
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I'd say $300 is a starting point. It depends how much correction is needed

I do it is often that I can get a pretty good estimate within a few minutes of inspecting the car.

If you do good work, don't cheat yourself. People will pay for quality, there's plenty of guys that will do it cheap. So make sure you're being fair with yourself when you price them.
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Old 08-14-2016, 02:09 AM
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The million dollar question is what is your time worth. I have no idea what your skill level is so my examples may or may not be helpful. If your good and you charge to little, the clients you want to attract are going to think otherwise and likely go elsewhere. There are so many things that effect pricing so its hard to nail a generalized price. So I will say, most of my work for people I dont know range from $500-1100 and I limit myself to luxury, sports or muscle cars. I have no desire to clean trashed minivans or deal with clients that would be just as happy with the "buff and wax" $50 special the local car washes offer.

On the friend side, im doing an a full correction right now on a friends M3, 3 stage and jeweling, cquartz coating, interior and I am charging her 500. Im not done yet but will wind up with around 35 hours into it. It would be much more for someone else and even at 500 she knows shes getting a nice deal.

I went through what your going through and used to charge way too little. Ive found the people you want to do business with see the value in the work and skill and have no problem paying.
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Old 08-14-2016, 09:08 AM
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Been wondering this myself as people have been asking me about getting their cars done after seeing my Camaro and my Dad's C6. I just use the Adam's basic correcting/finishing system with a PC7424XP and have gotten excellent results but it's still extremely time consuming to get a 90%-100% perfect finish on a car with hammered paint. Then afterwards you have to focus on carefully applying an LSP, its not a quick process but don't want to scare away people by asking too much money.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:21 AM
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Thanks for the replies guys. These post have been very helpful and exactly what I was trying to get at.
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by LT4vert View Post
The million dollar question is what is your time worth. I have no idea what your skill level is so my examples may or may not be helpful. If your good and you charge to little, the clients you want to attract are going to think otherwise and likely go elsewhere. There are so many things that effect pricing so its hard to nail a generalized price. So I will say, most of my work for people I dont know range from $500-1100 and I limit myself to luxury, sports or muscle cars. I have no desire to clean trashed minivans or deal with clients that would be just as happy with the "buff and wax" $50 special the local car washes offer.

On the friend side, im doing an a full correction right now on a friends M3, 3 stage and jeweling, cquartz coating, interior and I am charging her 500. Im not done yet but will wind up with around 35 hours into it. It would be much more for someone else and even at 500 she knows shes getting a nice deal.

I went through what your going through and used to charge way too little. Ive found the people you want to do business with see the value in the work and skill and have no problem paying.
Thanks for taking the time for a detailed post. You hit the nail right on the head with what I was getting at.

I don't usually spend 30+ hours on a vehicle but absolutely would if i could find the clients. My usual is about 6-10 hours on a vehicle.

I'm like in the in between spot where I don't know if they are looking for a quick "shiny" polish or a serious job that could be appreciated.

On more serious work I still find myself throwing out $150-$175 estimates and feel I should charge more but struggle to gauge if the client knows exactly what goes into a good job as opposed to a dealer swirl job.

Like you I keep my clients to sports/luxury cars. No matter what someone is willing to pay I refuse to do, like you said, the mini van/daily pickup where my work and effort will be wasted and wrecked by neglect.

The last paragraph is exactly where I'm at and what I want.

"I went through what your going through and used to charge way too little. Ive found the people you want to do business with see the value in the work and skill and have no problem paying."
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by TransAmWS.6 View Post
Been wondering this myself as people have been asking me about getting their cars done after seeing my Camaro and my Dad's C6. I just use the Adam's basic correcting/finishing system with a PC7424XP and have gotten excellent results but it's still extremely time consuming to get a 90%-100% perfect finish on a car with hammered paint. Then afterwards you have to focus on carefully applying an LSP, its not a quick process but don't want to scare away people by asking too much money.
I hear ya, I think that's part of my problem is not wanting to scare people away so I find myself doing very good work for a "Kmart special price" lol
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Old 08-14-2016, 11:52 AM
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Here are a couple examples of my work. The first two are my buddies black Lexus. The bottom is a f-body sail panel






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Old 08-14-2016, 12:52 PM
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Looks good man!👍
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Old 08-14-2016, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Spiestech79 View Post
Looks good man!👍
Thanks
So do you give buddy discounts? Or do you start at $350 period?
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Old 08-14-2016, 01:25 PM
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Bare minimum for me is 200 for a single stage and sealant only touching the exterior and they bring it washed. 2 stage starts at 300. I charge an extra 100 for Cquartz which I can usually upsell them on. I can usually do about 3 cars with a 50ml bottle. A quick 2 stage takes roughly 9-14 hours for me, 5-7 for a single. I do paint work too on the side. I can usually average 40/hr whether its detailing or paint work. Most expensive detail I've done was $2500 on a Ferrari Enzo and 75 hours to complete.
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Old 08-14-2016, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by HotWhipT/A View Post
Bare minimum for me is 200 for a single stage and sealant only touching the exterior and they bring it washed. 2 stage starts at 300. I charge an extra 100 for Cquartz which I can usually upsell them on. I can usually do about 3 cars with a 50ml bottle. A quick 2 stage takes roughly 9-14 hours for me, 5-7 for a single. I do paint work too on the side. I can usually average 40/hr whether its detailing or paint work. Most expensive detail I've done was $2500 on a Ferrari Enzo and 75 hours to complete.
Sounds good.
Wow, a 75 hr paint correction..... Definitely some patience involved there. I bet it turned out beautiful. Don't suppose you have any pictures of it?

Beautiful car ya got there also. One of my favorite on this site that i have seen
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Old 08-14-2016, 03:11 PM
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Also what are the majority of you guys using for a machine polisher? Am I one of the few that still uses a rotary? I have been thinking about switching to the Porter cable 7424
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Old 08-14-2016, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by 98CayenneT/A View Post
Sounds good.
Wow, a 75 hr paint correction..... Definitely some patience involved there. I bet it turned out beautiful. Don't suppose you have any pictures of it?


Beautiful car ya got there also. One of my favorite on this site that i have seen
I got a million, but here are a few plus a FXX I got to maintain at an event. Pure race car with no tail lights and all. Thanks!

Originally Posted by 98CayenneT/A View Post
Also what are the majority of you guys using for a machine polisher? Am I one of the few that still uses a rotary? I have been thinking about switching to the Porter cable 7424
I always have a rotary handy for buffing out a newly painted/wet sanded finish. If you're going to get a DA, Rupes is up there, but I'd rather have a Griot's 6". The PC 7424 is super weak on power. A FLEX 3401 is awesome. Its a forced DA so its much like a rotary and DA combined. I'd get that over a Rupes. I have a rotary, Flex and Groits
Attached Thumbnails "Professional" paint correction-2012-05-02_13-39-58_hdr.jpg   "Professional" paint correction-2012-06-17_10-40-42_hdr.jpg   "Professional" paint correction-524418_10150815257496880_285946731879_9665997_931184595_n.jpg   "Professional" paint correction-2012-06-17_12-45-31_hdr.jpg   "Professional" paint correction-2012-06-17_11-04-50_hdr.jpg  

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Old 08-14-2016, 09:08 PM
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Originally Posted by HotWhipT/A View Post
I got a million, but here are a few plus a FXX I got to maintain at an event. Pure race car with no tail lights and all. Thanks!



I always have a rotary handy for buffing out a newly painted/wet sanded finish. If you're going to get a DA, Rupes is up there, but I'd rather have a Griot's 6". The PC 7424 is super weak on power. A FLEX 3401 is awesome. Its a forced DA so its much like a rotary and DA combined. I'd get that over a Rupes. I have a rotary, Flex and Groits
Absolutely beautiful work.
Thanks for the direction to go if I choose to pick up a da
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Old 08-15-2016, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by 98CayenneT/A View Post
Also what are the majority of you guys using for a machine polisher? Am I one of the few that still uses a rotary? I have been thinking about switching to the Porter cable 7424
I would seriously skip the porter cable. Its ok if all it was used for was personal stuff but there is far better options out there that will allow you work faster and more efficient.

My workhorse is Rupes lrh21 with 6,5 and 4" backing plates, and griots 3" da and makita rotary.
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Old 08-15-2016, 10:19 PM
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The rupes will definitely save you time. You can get the same results with the Porter cable, it just takes longer.

I still use a rotary for most of my work, I'm just so used to it that it's hard to put it down lol

And I'd start at $350 for paint correction, it's still cheap the time that's involved.

Even the $2500 detail mentioned above, at 75 hours that's only $33 per hour.
You also need to try and educate your customers, some don't realize how much time and work goes into the correction process, but one you explain how much time it's going to take... Then they see the value
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Old 08-15-2016, 10:52 PM
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I got a Griot's DA for Christmas, and I really like it. I bought their newer 5" vented backing plate and foam pads for it. So far I've had great luck with it, but I'm still in the testing stages of figuring out what polishes I like.

I just do detailing as a hobby, but sometimes I have people ask me to detail their vehicles. I wish I could get myself started and make some extra money by correcting paint, but as a college student with a part-time job, there really isn't enough time for me to do a proper detail in a day.
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