Paint shop for high top

Van Living Forum

Help Support Van Living Forum:

Vanlifenment

Member
Joined
Jul 23, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
1
Hi all,

I just got a new 30" high top, and I'd like to have it painted for longevity. I don't have the equipment to do it myself, and I'm having trouble finding an affordable shop that can fit my van. All I've been able to find so far are RV body shops, and I haven't had a quote under $2k yet. Can anyone recommend a shop that can fit tall vehicles and is affordable? AZ or thereabouts.
 

Morgana

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 18, 2021
Messages
540
Reaction score
469
This is a ridiculously long long shot, but ... one place I lived (not AZ), the state prison had an auto paint shop. Not sure how widespread that practice is, and not even sure whether it was open to the general public vs just to government agencies. The prices were excellent but turnaround times were slow. The one vehicle I saw painted by them was gorgeous. I wouldn't spend a lot of time on it, but might be worth a couple phone calls to see if there's something similar in AZ?

More realistic might be a community college or wherever they teach people to do that.
 

mattvei

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 26, 2021
Messages
170
Reaction score
55
if you're near the Mexican border, go across and search. If that's not feasible, find who sells used tires in the nearest barrio and ask them for a reco (may even know someone across the border). Bring a Hispanic friend with you if at all possible.
 

Vanlifenment

Member
Joined
Jul 23, 2021
Messages
18
Reaction score
1
Thanks for the ideas! I was hoping for a specific recommendation of a shop that someone's used and got good results for a decent price. I'd like to go to a licensed shop that stands by its work, and I'm actually considering Rhino Liner or a similar product, I just can't pay $2k. Around $1-1.3k is doable.
 

maki2

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 13, 2018
Messages
6,065
Reaction score
625
Your inner price monitor is the issue here, not the price you were quoted.. 2K is actually a reasonable price for a large vehicle. There are many hours of prep work involved and places now end up paying wages of $15.00 per hour even for "unskilled" labor. A good painter makes considerably more than that wage as it is an acquired skill to apply even coats with no drips, runs, sags or thin spots. All automotive paints and also the solvents used to do the prep work are very expensve as they contain VOCs. They also have to pay hazardous waste fees and have cost for prep materials, masking of surfaces supplies, cleanup supplies , protective gear for the workers, cost of shop space, insurance coverage, etc.

Jump on it for 2K, it is a bargain...or do it yourself if you can't afford that price.
 
Last edited:

abnorm

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 8, 2016
Messages
1,620
Reaction score
333
We have Nomad friends who used the "Roll and Tip" method to apply MONSTALINER truck bed liner to parts of the exterior of their Sprinter van.........Monstaliner dries with a shine .......they used a "similar" color to achieve a subtle two-tone effect .............with careful masking they painted the lower body panels....roof and hood
 

mudbunny

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 4, 2016
Messages
144
Reaction score
8
Location
Just shy of the 49th parallel on the northern fron
I coated mine with Henry's Tropicool roof paint. My 24" top was painted to match the van color but was sun faded and pealing. I scuffed the top with 220 grit well and rolled and brushed on two coats with an hour or so between coats. It was dry and weather safe in a few hours but not cured hard for a few days. It was shiny for a couple years but has lost its sheen now but is still fine but now a more matte white. I got it at Home Depot for around $60/gal, probably a bit more now. I am happy with it and might get a quart for another coat just to get the shine back if I feel real ambitious.
 

GntlStone

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 6, 2019
Messages
194
Reaction score
73
I coated mine with Henry's Tropicool roof paint. My 24" top was painted to match the van color but was sun faded and pealing. I scuffed the top with 220 grit well and rolled and brushed on two coats with an hour or so between coats. It was dry and weather safe in a few hours but not cured hard for a few days. It was shiny for a couple years but has lost its sheen now but is still fine but now a more matte white. I got it at Home Depot for around $60/gal, probably a bit more now. I am happy with it and might get a quart for another coat just to get the shine back if I feel real ambitious.
You also got the benefit of having a cooler roof by using TropiCool, asit reflects a good bit of the uv.
 
Top