I'd appreciate some advice to help out my brother.

roger1

Member
My brother has a 2017 Corvette which is silver. A while after he bought it, he noticed that the paint on his front bumper didn't match the hood and fenders very well. Mostly it's the metallics look different. Upon inspecting close it was evident that the bumper had been repainted. There were actually several signs that pointed out that the repair job overall wasn't good. He felt it was too late to go back to the selling dealer. But it has bothered him ever since.

Just today he found a silver bumper for sale on a forum that was taken off a 2016 model because the guy wants to upgrade to a ZR1 style. So my question is how likely is it for the original paint on my brother's car to be a match on this one for sale. Is there a good chance it will or is it a crap shoot????

Here's a photo of the one for sale. The seller says it's in perfect condition and that a 3M clear protector is installed on it. The guy wants $850 and is probably a lot cheaper than him paying a quality shop to re-paint the one that's on my brother's car now.



I try not to bother you guys here with a lot of questions but my brother asked me because I paint my cars. But I have no experience to be answer the question my brother has asked me and I know you guys will have a good idea. I'd really appreciate thoughts here as this may save my brother from making a mistake.
 

texasking

Active Member
The problem is it never matched perfect to start with. A match is in the eye of the beholder, and can be anywhere from terrible to damn near perfect, with perfect being unattainable. I would guess it would be an acceptable match to most, but certainly not all, so it is definitely a crap shoot depending on what is acceptable to him. Having the 3M protector also changes the color, and yellows over time, so that is another issue.
 

jlcustomz

evil painter
Hey Roger. Silvers are the worst for either not matching or looking like they don't from panel to panel on a brand new car. See this a lot on Camaros. If there is only one silver color choice in 2016 & 2017 in that sort of shade , then it could possibly be as close as the factory part was when new. If seller is honest, at least it won't be a poor repaint.
So I'd say still a gamble, but hopefully not a huge one if not expecting absolute perfection.

Roger, you've represented & promoted the SPI products well on other forums, no need to feel bad asking for help.
 

Chris_Hamilton

Trying to be the best me, I can be
Agree with the boys. Silver is the worst for this because of the inherent nature of the color. The shade is usually pretty close but it's the flop that throws things off. Add in that because it's a GM product there is probably going to be at least one variant (alternate color) possibly more. Unfortunately I don't have access to paint color info since I left my last job, but you could advise your brother to go to his local paint jobber, Axalta, PPG, BASF, etc with the color code and they could tell him if there are any variants for those 2 years. Axalta would be the one I would recommend as they seem to have the most accurate info on file. If there are no variants between those 2 years then I would say it would be something worth considering doing. If there are he would be better off getting what he has repainted. Find a Shop that can take it apart (and put it back together) without breaking anything (no masking off the blackout areas) which can be tricky on modern covers. IMO $850 would come pretty close to covering what the total cost would be of a quality repaint. At least around my area at our local rate of $48/hr.
 

Chris_Hamilton

Trying to be the best me, I can be
I should add that if he decides to take my advice, bring along the VIN # of the car when he checks with the Jobber. That will help determine what (if any) variant that his car has. If the jobber is friendly they may even let you borrow a chip of the color and compare the cover for sale with it.
 

orangejuiced86

Garage hack at night.....
Good ole switchblade silver... I actually had great success with DBC switchblade a few weeks back. I was kinda shocked, but it was in my cabinet and I refused to spend any money on the repair..

Im not sure what silver I hate more... 636 or PS2........
 

orangejuiced86

Garage hack at night.....
In regards to the original post.....id say its a crap shoot either way. I dont have much confidence in panel painting a silver and having a unnoticeable butt-match. Not saying its impossible, just very unlikely. So depending on what your brother will deem acceptable, there will be blending involved. and the price increase on the repaint will skyrocket.

The down side of the cover, its from a previous year. I dont believe GM changed their 636 code at all, plus the corvettes are only produced in one plant.

I'd personally roll the dice on the used cover if the $850 doesn't bother him that much. Plus the fact that the original cover already has a lousy repair on it.
 

roger1

Member
Thank you everybody for your thoughts!
I sent my brother a link to this thread so I'm sure he's read everything. I will be talking to him on the phone this morning so I will let you know what he's thinking now.
Btw, he's in Austin, Tx and from friends he's talked to he thinks it might be $1,500 to $2,000 get his present bumper repainted by one one the quality shops that are local. Seems high but things are high in Austn.
Everyone seems to think for it to look good the paint will need to be blended up into the hood and fenders. I don't have any experience to know but I've heard that before too.
 

roger1

Member
Crash, there's one thing I forgot to mention. The guy selling the bumper lives in Rhode Island so my brother would have to also pay for shipping. Truck freight on it would be over $200 I would guess. Another negative to all the possible negatives you guys have pointed out.

He told me to thank all you guys for your help with this. He really appreciated it and helped him to come to a decision not to do it. He said it's just not worth the chance and if he wasn't totally happy with it, he'd be right back in the same place but money behind plus the trouble. Better to just make a choice with a shop and have them re-paint what he's got. He's already got a couple of names that have been recommended to him.

I thank you all too!
 

crashtech

Combo Man
I can say without a doubt that I would not take the job on if I thought the customer was unreasonably particular about the color match. Plastic bumpers are always approximate, even if they are sprayed at the same time, same gun, same paint, etc. as the front end. It's just a property of the material, mainly the way it holds and distributes static electricity that makes it a crapshoot.
 

roger1

Member
Thanks. I'll make sure he sees this. I think he will be reasonable. I think he will also show the prospective shop guy his car and explain what he doesn't like about the match now. He thinks the color matches ok but the metallics just didn't lay down the same way making it look like the wrong color at certain angles and where the sun/light is. I have seen it and see what he means.
Btw, would most shop painters blend paint into the hood and fenders when painting a bumper, or no?
 

crashtech

Combo Man
Btw, would most shop painters blend paint into the hood and fenders when painting a bumper, or no?
Typically, no. Certainly on an insurance job, they simply refuse to pay for it. Also as mentioned, you can go ahead and blend it all in and it still may not be quite the same, though in a tough situation, this procedure, while much more expensive, give the best chance of giving as good a match as could possibly be achieved.

 

roger1

Member
Thanks again Crash. He can't file a claim on this since he bought it this way so I guess he will have have to discuss this with the shop when he goes to talk to them. If they say it's the best chance like you are saying then my brother can decide if the higher quote will be worth it to him. He's only got 5K miles on this car and wants to keep it for a long time as he just loves it.

Edit:
Was also wondering if because this bumper has already had a repaint, if it should be stripped in the prep for another repaint? I've read here about a one repaint only before repainting and I would assume it would apply to a plastic bumper.
 
Last edited:

crashtech

Combo Man
We won't warranty any paint job that isn't done from a bare substrate or on sound OEM paint, and it's likely that most reputable shops will have the same policy. Not so much because it is necessarily that terrible to have a third paint job on there, but because we can't know how well they prepped or if quality materials were used. Sometimes we are in the position of re-painting portions of other shop's work, and we note it in the repair order and talk to the customer about it. It's hard to say from here what should be done about it. Perhaps it's not even a repair but a replacement with one quality paint job on it that just happens to not match. I might offer to sand it down in one area and see how it is before deciding what to do. Stripping plastic bumpers with complex contours is tedious, time consuming, and unrewarding.
 

texasking

Active Member
All good advice above. If that job came to my shop, I would do spray outs and color adjustments until I was happy with the match , then get the customer to look at it before I sprayed the bumper, explaining what I said above about a perfect match being unattainable, As crash said above, even painting the bumper and blending the hood and fenders at the same time is no guarantee it will butt match, and probably won't. I just looked at my estimating program and it would be around $800 for complete disassembly, a small repair, and refinish. Those bumpers aren't as high as I thought to purchase new if the one on it looks like it has been repaired or painted incorrectly.
 

roger1

Member
Paint the whole car SPI black/black & be done with it. :p
Or, how about SPI white like my El Camino? Even though I like his silver car I think my choice would be white. I've seen white Grand Sport Vettes and they look superb. Anyway, my brother loves silver. He had a 2015 Z51 Vette before this one and it was silver as well.
 

roger1

Member
If that job came to my shop, I would do spray outs and color adjustments until I was happy with the match , then get the customer to look at it before I sprayed the bumper, explaining what I said above about a perfect match being unattainable, As crash said above, even painting the bumper and blending the hood and fenders at the same time is no guarantee it will butt match, and probably won't. I just looked at my estimating program and it would be around $800 for complete disassembly, a small repair, and refinish. ...
I had another conversation with my brother on the phone today and we discussed what you said here and what Crash said about my stripping question. It gave us other thoughts on how he might proceed.

I helped my brother take his bumper off about 6 months ago to help him change out his broken front camera. It wasn't that hard at all.
We could take it off again. I have all the sandpaper and blocks needed to gently hand sand strip that bumper. Heck I just did that not long ago on the plastic bumper that my El Camino SS has. His would be way easier than what mine was because mine had an integrated and painted egg crate grille.

Then if we can find paint shop that would be willing to do spray outs exactly as you describe, then the shop is only looking at repaint only. We can re-install the bumper afterwards. If your estimating program says $800 for R&R, prep and repaint then he should be able to have it painted for somewhat less than that.

The guy selling that bumper has been sending my brother emails. He's anxious to get rid of it. I'm sure if my bother made a lower offer, he'd take it but with the info you've given us here it still doesn't make sense compared to my scenario above. If the guy was local maybe but not sight unseen with a freight charge.

You guys have been a big, big help.
 
Last edited:

crashtech

Combo Man
I would recommend finding a shop beforehand that is willing to accommodate your plan, since they would be being asked to paint over your prepping and primer, which WE know will be fine, but they may not. As mentioned earlier, many shops have a policy of no warranty on any substrate other than bare material or good OEM primer or paint.
 
Top