Painting the Town... any colour you like

Vehicle Paint Matching Services from AutosuppliesWhat does a toilet seat, cast iron bath, piece of wood, packet of Walkers cheese and onion crisps, mobile phone and Vienetta ice cream wrapper have in common?

Incredibly these are just some of the weird and wonderful items customers have brought in to the Autosupplies refinishing team, and asked them to create a paint to match.

Paint Matching to any item and any colour from AutosuppliesDave Sleeny, and Supervisor Keith Hollindale create 70- 100 different mixes of paint a day, through some of the most sophisticated technology available on the market today.

The team largely serves independent bodyshops and small dealerships looking for paint matches¬and they have been asked to match paint for virtually every make and model of car on sale (plus some that haven't been sold for a long time).

Keith said: "Every day is different! People have got to know what we do through word-of-mouth, our website and the sales representatives."

He explained their work reflects how trends have changed. He said: "Pink is in at the moment and white is out. Pearlescent colours are very popular at the moment too."

Identifying the formula for a particular colour is an art in itself. First, a spectrometer is used to analyse the paint on the bodywork of the car. The spectrometer is plugged into a computer database, which provides information on the paint match - and a percentage value showing how close that match is.

Using a Spectrometer to analyse paint colours painting matching using colour matching charts

Keith said a 98-99 per cent match would be sufficient to provide a seamless colour match. A 95 per cent match is the lowest needed for a metallic finish, while 85 per cent would be a good starting point for a solid paint.

If the figure is 70 per cent or below, the team would refer to their stock of colour chips for a better match.

As all the team have an extensive background in the field, so they have developed an extensive network of refinishing suppliers - including Spies Hecker, Lechler, Mipa, HMG, Shipley and Tetrosyl.

And those top names are really put to the test when a customer brigs in a blue cast iron bath and wants the colour matched.

Keith said: "We had one person come in with a spec of paint no bigger than half a centimetre square. And we successfully matched that."

Team Rizla Suzuki - another colour matching requestOne bike enthusiast wanted his machine in the blue colours of Rizla - to match the colours used by the Team Rizla Suzuki in the British Superbike Championship. Again, not a problem. And as Keith says, who knows what bizarre requests tomorrow will bring!

Paint Mixing Lab - Autosupplies


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