Took the plunge and decided today was the day to paint the hatch. I’ve had a few goes at removing paint from the underside, but today I decided to do the top side which will be the one mostly on show. I applied two coats of Nitromors to the old paint – I did warm the panel with a heat gun but the stripper didn’t really see to react very vigorously like it has done. Perhaps the colder temperature was the cause. Anyway, I scraped the old paint off, but it did leave quite a lot of residue. Following the instructions I removed the remaining paint by using Nitromors applied to a wire wool pad. This is tedious and time consuming. I also used a wire brush to scrape off the old paint. Eventually I had removed enough of the old paint the bare metal was showing across the whole panel near enough. I then applied an etch primer, followed by two coats of high build primer, allowing for drying time between coats of around 10 minutes. I then commenced with the gloss paint, using Moss Glacier White Aerosol. It took a whole can just to cover the primer and I started on the new can for a final coat before packing down for the day. There is plenty of paint left in the second can so my plan is to allow the paint to harden and flatten it back for a some further coats. A gloss finish is beginning to emerge through the primer although it still looks a bit yellow (the primer colour) so it will need building up. A couple of things became clear during today: 1) Paint stripping uses a lot of materials, the stripper is expensive, it uses up brushes, brush cleaner, soap, wire wool, paper, cloths and cover sheets; 2) Paint stripping uses up lots of space even when just doing a single panel; 3) Achieving a good finish in a normal garage environment is difficult. Today was a lot of work for not much reward!
On a brighter note, while I was working on the MG, a van pulled up and a friendly man called over that he was doing the same as me. Turns out he is restoring a roadster MGB. We had a good chat about our respective projects. His requires a bit more work and he is learning to weld to sort out the bodywork after ten years in storage. He had a good look around the car and he seemed to think that the work that has been done on my car was good. He did identify an issue in that the wings have not been fitted with the closure panels which prevent muck from going up inside the sills. This is an easy thing to do so one to add to the list. In showing me this he inadvertently helped me because I can now access the aerial which I have previously failed to work out. After our chat, the chap gave me his card (he lives locally) so I can contact him if I want to see his project. This restoration is all about the experience and meeting Keith today was part of that. We wouldn’t have had a conversation without the MG!