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painters and bodyshop owners advice needed

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by autobodyed, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. autobodyed
    Joined: Mar 5, 2008
    Posts: 1,943

    autobodyed
    Member
    from shelton ct

    hey guys, i've been using sikkens brand paint for over 20 years now, and like everything else, i've watched the cost increase dramatically. i think it is probably one of, if not the best paint in the world. (my opinion only) but now i think it's time to change. i just bought three gallons of toners, and the 811m silver has a price tag of $758.50. 1 gallon of 120 white, $510.00, and 1 gallon of 190 white gray, $605.00. my cost w/discount is $1554.91. i think it's rediculous, i almost shit myself when i saw the ticket!! i sent it all back! now, i know you get what you pay for, you wanna use good paint it's gonna cost you, and all of that. my question is, what brand paints are you guys using that you are happy with putting on customers cars and not having to worry about problems down the road. i already have thier U-TECH system for my fleet accounts and thats fine. but i really need to re-think this whole auto base plus line. i've talked to dupont reps, ppg reps, transtar reps, glasurit etc. etc. etc. but, i value your guys opinion more, and i really could use some input as to what you guys are happy with, price wise, color match, reliability wise, etc. sorry, water is not an option. this thread is not intended to turn into a pissing match, and if the mods think it is too off topic they can close it. i do custom paint work as well as collision work. i need to bust a move on this, so lets hear what you have to say, thanks in advance, eddie.
     
  2. afaulk
    Joined: Jul 20, 2011
    Posts: 1,191

    afaulk
    Member

    Do a test for yourself on PPG's Shopline (colors only). Stick with one of their high solids clears. It's WAY less expensive and the high quality clears give excellent durability. I have only done complete jobs with this system and don't know how well the metallics/pearls blend.
     
  3. Ran into this issue many years ago when I bought a second shop. This was in 1996 but I believe certain issues are relevant . Both shops were identical in size and were producing similar volumes . I gave the Sikkens distributor 2 months to get his costs in line or we would change the new store over . They could not come close . We were using SW at the time . Over the years SW corporate practices caused us to leave them and move to Du Pont . We never experienced any difficulties with any of the brands .

    I would suggest you turn the screws on your Sikkens supplier . There are many pricing discounts out there based on your purchase volume . Spending $6k plus per month should get you something . The PBE guys are being sqeezed by the supplier and are stingy in discounting.

    Our local vendor gave me a surprising little fact a couple of months ago .
    They said body shop purchase of paint declined as a percentage of overall sales by more than 30% over the last couple of years. This is significant and this supplier knows what he is doing and has been around for over 60 years. They have made up the sales decline from automotive by increasing the fleet side of their business . I believe this situation is common among PBE suppliers nationwide .

    Rising costs for paint and materials has been a constant issue , especially over the last several years . Especially when you are challenged to pass on the costs to the end purchaser.

    In the end it gets down to what you find acceptable and what desire from a paint system .
     
  4. autobodyed
    Joined: Mar 5, 2008
    Posts: 1,943

    autobodyed
    Member
    from shelton ct

    thanks for the responses guys, i should note that i only spend between 2 and 3k a month on liquid, (before this last price increase) and about a grand on disposable's. (tape, paper, sandpaper and such). also, we're a small shop, 4 full time guys plus me, 40 - 50 cars a month. i do all the painting, so there is no waste, i only mix what i need, and i try to get the guys not waste materials on there end, but you know how that goes. they did offer a better discount, but i've been going back and forth on this for years with them. i guess the last order just put such a bad taste in my mouth, it's just time to move on. anyone else using a different brand they like?
     

  5. toad611
    Joined: Jun 19, 2008
    Posts: 58

    toad611
    Member
    from Tennessee

    Have you looked at the Lesonol brand also ditributed by Akzo. Just as good a color match as their Sikkens line but less money?
     
  6. I have been using Nason clear (Duponts economy brand) for many years with good success for production work. Recently I tried their colors, it took a lot to cover but still was a better value than regular Dupont
     
  7. For your epoxy,and clear
    Try SPI will save ya $$$$$'s and the quality and customer service can't be beat
     
  8. KrisKustomPaint
    Joined: Apr 20, 2007
    Posts: 1,107

    KrisKustomPaint
    Member

    House of Kolor is surprisingly affordable. Just checked 1 gallon of silver is $192, 1.5 gal sprayable clear is $283. Not to shabby for bad ass paint.
     
  9. Barsteel
    Joined: Oct 15, 2008
    Posts: 726

    Barsteel
    Member
    from Monroe, CT

    I am NOT a body man, nor have I ever been one, but I have heard some people say good things about Kirker paint.

    www.smartshoppersinc.com

    Good to see another CT person on here...

    Chris
     
  10. I belong to the cult of PPG, 30+ years and counting(probably closer to 40)...I can relate to the cost of toners--and I'm still using solvent. I adjusted a few years ago to stocking quarts with backups on 80% of my color bank, and it sure helped loosen up $$$ previously captured as inventory. Why have a bunch of gallons sitting around if you're not emptying them in 60-90 days? Something to consider, unless you're moving that much material out the door--in that case, you shouldn't say a word unless your pricing structure is low and you're losing money on jobs. :eek: Seriously, stock quarts if your jobber is nearby. Going to another brand will not balance out in money saved vs a cheaper and possibly inferior product, PLUS, you 'know' what you use and how it reacts, durability, etc. It just ain't worth the change to save a few bucks.
    Just my opinion, based on my personal trials and tribulations :)

    oh yeah--what Larry said too....lean on your jobber. Sikkens is as bad as any with their freebies and incentives to try to convert shops...they should focus on keeping loyal customers. For instance, the megashop down the road from me has changed lines and jobbers 3 times in 5 years, and every time they give him thousands of dollars and material up front. Last time he changed, he was under contract and the new line/jobber paid off his contract and gave him cash(and another contract). It's insane what companies do to get new business---seems like they would be better served taking care of us faithful guys. But it's a corporate world now I guess, so....
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014
  11.  
  12. Ok looking at your paint to ap ratio you seem a little high there, should be a 70/30 mix or 300 in ap for every 1000 of Liquid. Do you use job costing to capture the liquid expense on your estimates, are you getting blend time, getting payed for tri coats? Do you guarantee your work for the life of the vehicle? Many of the lower line pants don't carry the same warranty as the upper end products.

    I like Mikes suggestion of keeping quarts on your bank. If you are doing collision work the average RO is 2500... You aren't doing completes for 2500....so you shouldn't need gallons. Squeezing a jobber for another 10 points is gonna nab you an extra 2400 to 3600 a year! Is that gonna keep your business healthy? I doubt it.

    You need to maximize 2 things in your shop in order to maintain profitability....labor ( 47% profit) and writing a good sheet in the office...I.e. Getting payed for what you do and the materials you use. You would be amazed at the dollars many shops lose in both of these areas.

    What if you Made an extra 20 dollars on every estimate you wrote?

    50 RO x 20 dollars = 1000 x 12 = 12000

    Much better than that 2500-3600 that 10 off would get you.

    Good Luck
     
  13. Noland
    Joined: Oct 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,237

    Noland
    Member

    I like PPG DBC and there clears 2021 overall and 2042 spotclear. Or RM is very nice too. I know neither of these are cheap paints but Ive used cheap second line paint and its crappy. Ive used omni(ppg) and I wouldnt suggest that junk for someone painting there lawntractor. Nason(dupont) worked ok I guess but I felt I didnt get nearly as much sprayable material as others. They're 4/1/.5 basecoat activator were as PPG is 1/1 for basecoat. also with nason you cant "nib" the base like you can PPG.
     
  14. autobodyed
    Joined: Mar 5, 2008
    Posts: 1,943

    autobodyed
    Member
    from shelton ct

    again, thanks for the replies fellas. real quick, i never said i wasn't making money on my materials, that was never the issue. yes i do get paid for tri-coat, blending, edging, flex, special materials for raw plastic etc. i got all of that covered. the auto-base line has 72 toners, 12 of which are available in gallons only. your binder,balancer, 2 whites, 2 blacks, 5 different silvers, and a course red metallic. ( all the popular toners of course!) i also have a backup (58 of 'em, average price $170.00) for every liter on the shelf. my issue is, i just can't wrap my head around the prices i'm paying for paint, primers, and clearcoats, hardners, etc. all i wanna know is, do i really need to be paying these rediculous prices, or is there a paint line i can use that's gonna give me the same results and not make my asshole pucker every time a get a bill for a paint order. when my salesman came in and found out i wasn't interested in using their paint anymore, and to take back all of the unopened toners, clears, hardners etc. he almost dropped dead. of course now the sikkens rep has been kissing my ass and promising deeper discount, use the lesonal line, try our wanda (?) brand. like i said, just want to hear about the brands you guys are using and how do you rate it. thanks again, eddie.
     
  15. I think the basic answer to this is no. If you go for comparable material you will get comparable pricing. The thing you have to watch out for is paint companies will pretty much say or do anything to get your business but 6 months to a year down the road you will probably find yourself in the same spot as you are now with a different paint line unless you go for a generic or lower paint line and then you will not have the same performance as the top of the line products.

    I think any of the paint lines pretty much have a good quality product and if you ask 10 painters what is good you will get 6 different answers. It is all a matter of preference. Paint companies have quite the racket going on it must be nice to raise your prices 5-7% every year like clockwork and have no one bat an eye.
     

  16. x2 . Remember the anti trust price fixing dilema several of them got into a while back . Settled out of court and quietly swept under the rug. makes you wonder .
     
  17. toad611
    Joined: Jun 19, 2008
    Posts: 58

    toad611
    Member
    from Tennessee

    As I said above take a look at the Lesonal line, it is comparable to Autobase but a little more economical. Priced about like PPG DBU, DBC.
     

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