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Old 06-27-2010, 03:02 PM   #1
Mt Man Chad
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Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Need some advise on painting my NOS tailgate putting on my 68 SWB.

Usually would paint the white letters first then mask and then paint blue over.
Anybody had recent experience doing a tailgate.
Photo attached is not mike but same colors I'll be using.
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Old 06-27-2010, 09:48 PM   #2
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

I painted mine after I sprayed the color. just get some fine line tap and get to taping off the letters then mask of the tail gate& spray your white its pretty simple and looks great (sorry no pics) have fun, Pat
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Old 06-28-2010, 04:26 PM   #3
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Vendors also sell peel and stick letters for this.
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Old 06-28-2010, 10:34 PM   #4
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Can the Tailgate letter sets be toned down as far as stickiness and used to cover the tailgate letters that are final color, then removed like masking tape? Letters run $6-10 for the set and would be a lot easier than masking.
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Old 06-28-2010, 11:00 PM   #5
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Here's mine in process - we painted the white first, then are going to mask off the letters, and do the black. I put in a picture of the bed to show the color.
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Old 06-29-2010, 01:58 AM   #6
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

original stenciling was horrible at best. If you want it clean show quality, this is how I did it. I painted and cleared the tailgate. then I masked the letters at the top of the stamping, not in it like factory. Spray couple light coats to keep paint thickness minimal, color sand with block to remove any from top surface, then reclear entire tailgate.
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Old 06-29-2010, 10:33 AM   #7
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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Originally Posted by Musclerodz View Post
original stenciling was horrible at best. If you want it clean show quality, this is how I did it. I painted and cleared the tailgate. then I masked the letters at the top of the stamping, not in it like factory. Spray couple light coats to keep paint thickness minimal, color sand with block to remove any from top surface, then reclear entire tailgate.
Do you have a picture of how it looks that way?
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Old 06-29-2010, 07:49 PM   #8
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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Old 06-29-2010, 08:42 PM   #9
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

or you could just paint that area white... then stick those vinyl inserts that they sell (that are made to use instead of painting) then paint the whole gate over the vinyl... then peel off the inserts to reveal your white paint
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Old 06-30-2010, 12:33 AM   #10
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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or you could just paint that area white... then stick those vinyl inserts that they sell (that are made to use instead of painting) then paint the whole gate over the vinyl... then peel off the inserts to reveal your white paint
This was exactly my question in #4, can it be done, will the letters remove, have YOU done this yourself? I can personally tell you how to do everything on vehicle 'X' by accessing google and responding. I am looking for actual members experience as to success with different applications.
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Old 07-01-2010, 01:49 AM   #11
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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Vendors also sell peel and stick letters for this.
Which vendor? I never have any luck finding what vendor sells what.
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Old 07-01-2010, 08:55 AM   #12
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

My guess is that the label is made to stay on after applied and could remove paint when peeled. Maybe use a heat gun to help take them off? May as well just tape them off and be done with it. Trying to save time usually costs me more.
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Old 07-01-2010, 09:30 AM   #13
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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Which vendor? I never have any luck finding what vendor sells what.
I got mine from LMC, I think Classic Parts might have them as well.
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Old 07-01-2010, 09:48 AM   #14
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Another thought. Buy the labels and cover them with blue painters tape, trim then use the tape. Just tossing out ideas.
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Old 07-01-2010, 10:46 AM   #15
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

That would be a good idea.... once you paint that area white, just cover with blue painters tape, not just the recessed part but one big square of tape over the letters, then stick the vinyl inserts over the tape, trace areound it with a razor blade... paint gate and peel the letters off
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:53 PM   #16
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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That would be a good idea.... once you paint that area white, just cover with blue painters tape, not just the recessed part but one big square of tape over the letters, then stick the vinyl inserts over the tape, trace areound it with a razor blade... paint gate and peel the letters off
Now that sounds like a plan! I have some masking/transfer roll film (12" easier to remove masking tape) on the way already for future painting which would work perfectly. Already got the letters hoping they were for paint template, not permanent.

Perhaps stick letters to tape/film away from truck, trim, then apply. That way I can do it in better light and in a more comfortable position.
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Old 07-01-2010, 03:06 PM   #17
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Easiest would be to just hand paint 'em with 1-Shot lettering enamel.....
Transfer tape, used for vinyl decal installation, would work well too....if ya don't have a steady hand for hand lettering...
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Old 06-07-2016, 06:40 AM   #18
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

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Originally Posted by Musclerodz View Post
original stenciling was horrible at best. If you want it clean show quality, this is how I did it. I painted and cleared the tailgate. then I masked the letters at the top of the stamping, not in it like factory. Spray couple light coats to keep paint thickness minimal, color sand with block to remove any from top surface, then reclear entire tailgate.
Can the tailgate be painted in one day or does this method take several days?

1. Paint entire tailgate primary color.
2. Clear entire tailgate.
3. Mask off around letters.
4. Paint color into letters.
5. Wet sand around letters.
5. Clear entire tailgate again.

In my case the truck is green and letters are white.
I spray and clear entire tailgate green.
Wait 2-4 hours per Clear Specifications to tape off the clear.
Spray directly on the clear or do I need to scuff inside the letters?
Remove tape and clear tailgate again.
Do I need to scuff the clear that I put on first or just spray over it?
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Old 06-07-2016, 09:41 AM   #19
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Smile Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1LoC10 View Post
or you could just paint that area white... then stick those vinyl inserts that they sell (that are made to use instead of painting) then paint the whole gate over the vinyl... then peel off the inserts to reveal your white paint
This is what I did the last time I needed painted letters. It worked great, and is the only way I would ever do it again!
I've tried painting the whole letter white, up to the top, then knocking of the overspray and clearing the whole gate, but the letters looked a little too "chunky".
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Old 06-07-2016, 11:00 AM   #20
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

One of the things that's been mentioned here is going to be very helpful if you consider it.

If you clear the tailgate after painting it your main color, you can apply white over the letters if you scuff first. Then any mistakes, changes, challenges you have are simply on top of the clear. This process protects your main color as long as you don't burn through the clear. Once you have your letters to your liking, scuff the entire gate and clear everything.

This process is used widely by airbrush artists in order to "lock down" or otherwise save work already done.

Good luck with your tailgate!
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Old 06-08-2016, 08:46 PM   #21
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

I painted and cleared my tailgate on Tuesday. Tomorrow, Thursday I will probably paint the white and clear the gate again. Here is a picture of it with just the green. After I paint the white and clear I will post another.

[IMG][/IMG]
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Old 06-10-2016, 08:26 PM   #22
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

My experience was less than desirable.
I had that beautiful super quality painted tailgate that was clear coated also. I put on the white and expected to wet sand off the perimeter.
I ended up sanding through in more than one place. I made several attempts to fix it but ended up having to start all over on the front side.
Not fun getting that back down to a manageable surface with green, clear, and white in the letters.

I think those tailgates, with all the letter stamping are not very flat. The edges of the letters are high and it is easy to burn through. In a small area like the ridge of the letter it is very easy to burn through. I am sure that I could be accused of incompetent sanding, but I thought I was exercising caution. If taping off the letters was easy this thread would not exist. With that said, taping exactly on the edge of the high ridge is not feasible or would not allow the white to overlap to sand. When scuffing up the inside of the letters to accept paint, some of the clear obviously was removed from the high edge.

I just ordered letters from a source online. I will paint the white first this time, and cover with letters stuck to tape, then paint the green and clear the entire gate.

Neither side of the tailgate is easy to prepare. I think a much safer way to achieve the two tone painted logo is to start with the inside of the letters.

[IMG][/IMG]

Last edited by RestoreAmerica; 06-11-2016 at 08:25 AM.
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Old 06-11-2016, 06:30 AM   #23
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

I couldn't help but notice while looking for tailgate lettering that the same picture of the same truck that is in post 8, the red one with Colorado license plate 858-OSG, is used on EBAY to advertise 67-72 fleet side Tailgate Vinyl Letters. I thought post 8 was a picture of someone's truck that painted the letters.

[IMG][/IMG]

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Old 06-21-2016, 01:07 PM   #24
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

I have painted the letters a few times by masking each letter but could never get it perfect. What works great and looks awesome is paint your tailgate all one color and clear coat. Once the clear is dry scuff the letters with scotchbrite or 1000 grit paper. Then back mask on a body line so you don't get any base coat where you don't want it. Now very lightly blow in your color choice into the letters but not a whole bunch because after that has dried you wetsand the the whole area and then reclear the whole gate. Looks awesome and perfect lines! I have to paint the letters on my 58 and will take a few pictures along the way to show everybody what I mean if my description does not make sense. Hope this helps.
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Old 06-21-2016, 01:40 PM   #25
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Re: Painting "CHEVROLET" tailgate lettering

Quote:
Originally Posted by Musclerodz View Post
original stenciling was horrible at best. If you want it clean show quality, this is how I did it. I painted and cleared the tailgate. then I masked the letters at the top of the stamping, not in it like factory. Spray couple light coats to keep paint thickness minimal, color sand with block to remove any from top surface, then reclear entire tailgate.
This. This is how skilled pros do it. It's not really difficult, have done it a few times in my former autobody life.
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