The weather has been most cooperative the past few days so it has afforded me the chance to get more work done outside on my velomobile project. As most of you have already seen the prep work for the painting of the velomobile has begun in a big way. I started with the hood of the body, then the body itself and now am back to the hood once again. This time around I have been using a finer grade of sand paper to get the outer surface smoother and smoother with each coat of primer. Here is how the progress is going.
After the first coat of primer had dried I started once again using my orbital sander using 150 grit sandpaper. The grit is just slightly finer than the first pass before any primer was laid down but already the top surface of the hood has improved greatly. The picture above is how the hood looked just after sanding. It looks terrible but in actuality it is very smooth to the touch.
This photo is just after the second coat of primer had been sprayed on. It looks very similar to the first coat of paint if you compared it to the an earlier photo but it actually has fewer flaws in it when you look at it with the naked eye. This is a good thing as I know that I am making real progress with each coat of primer.
I like this shot of the hood as it shows you just how smooth the surface is already just after two rounds of sanding. The gloss on the primer can still be seen as it is still wet from putting the new coat on the part. But it also gives me a good preview as to how it will look once I finally paint the part with a good gloss paint. I especially like the look of the hood in this shot with the opening for the headlight and the "V" shaped contour of the hood leading up to the windshield mount. It will be really impressive once I get it painted and trimmed with a good color scheme that I have in mind.
Over the past couple of years after working on painting and priming various project here at the Tinker's Workshop I've learned a lot about getting a professional looking part. I always thought that all you needed to do was spray a coat or two of primer on a part and then just paint it. Boy was I wrong! As you can already see it pays to prime, sand, prime and sand over and over again to get a nice smooth surface for paint. The pay off with this amount of effort is a really great looking paint job when you are done which in turn will make your project really stand out from the rest of the crowd. I'm looking forward to getting the rest of the body as smooth as this hood so it should be interesting to see how it all turns out.