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Thread: Can anyone chime in that has painted their Atom?

  1. #1
    Fermion
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    Can anyone chime in that has painted their Atom?

    Hey guys I am seriously thinking about painting my Atom. I just don't like the current color and I think that the plastic pieces look cheap..... Thinking about painting it all sans frame.
    I had a few things in mind such as all silver or all white with black stripes, but am not sure how the white would look with the black frame. I kinda think that the all white with black frame and cf wings would look nice. Even thought about foregoing the cf wings and going with painted wings to match the body.
    Can anyone share me their experiences with painting their Atoms and also does anyone have a picture of an all white Atom with a black frame as I cannot find any examples.

    Thanks guys!
    Last edited by Elonheater32; November 22, 2015 at 10:53 AM. Reason: Typo

  2. #2
    Neutrino
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    just going to throw this out there.....check out wraps, not permanent and you can change the whole color of the car for very low money....if you don't like it, or want some pieces one color and others a different color it's simple to have it changed.

    Any qualified paint shop can paint the panels that are already painted, if you want the black panels painted it's going to be very labor intensive to get them flat to where the paint would look good


    Lane has done some cool paintwork you may want to PM him

  3. #3
    Up Quark
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    The Atom I was purchasing had a black frame and white bonnet etc. I had it painted all black and I think it looks great. I always thought the silver frames look cool.

  4. #4
    Fermion
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    Thanks for the feedback guys.... I am very curious as to why it would be so labor intensive painting the flat black plastic panels. Is there special prep work involved? More coats of paint required? Specia paint required?
    One thing I like about the flat black plastic pieces is that it does not show any swirl marks, hazing, or cobwebs etc and can be cleaned without much worry of scratching it.
    The one thing I hate about it is that it looks cheap..... very cheap.

  5. #5
    Electron Lane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elonheater32 View Post
    The one thing I hate about it is that it looks cheap..... very cheap.
    You ever spend significant time in a early 1980s compact/economy car? In comparison, the Atom's panels aren't even near that quality. Rather than say they look cheap, I'd say they are purposeful. Minimalist. Fitting for the theme of the car and not the least bit out of place. Less of a worry for the occasional nick or scuff than the painted panels. And much easier to mend back to factory look/finish if you should ever have a rough off-track excursion, doing what the Atom was meant to do.

    The black panels on my Brammo Atom 2 have a texture. To sand them to a glass-smooth finish prior to painting would surely be labor intensive. After reading the forums for years now, I've seen a few cars where the owner has chosen to paint ALL the panels. To me, none have looked that much better than the stock panel paint scheme. One or two have even caused me to cringe.

    I've participated in the Hot Rod Power Tour 5 times so far, and this is an event I look forward to. Enough to want to change up the car a bit with either some custom paint, or more recently, a vinyl wrap. Here are some of the paint jobs I've had in the past (and I still have the two sets of panels with the airbrushing).



    More photos of the airbrushing process can be seen in the galleries on my website here: green fire, skulls.

    Vinyl wrap comes in at less than half the cost of paint, and if you want to stick with only one set of panels, you can peel it off when you get tired of it. I've done a hornet gold metallic wrap and I really liked the results.



    One bit of advice though - don't go with the cheap stuff. When applied to the compound curves of the snorkel cover, it has to be stretched to the extreme. A cheap vinyl will show minor creases, stretch marks, or changes in color. Don't ask me how I know. Here's a link to the forum post with more info on the Power Tour event and more photos of the wrap process can be seen in the gallery on my website here.

    I've also applied a very good quality 3M matte black wrap to the aluminum wings with outstanding results. Even over the rivets where I thought it might not adhere the best, it looks like a million bucks.



    Right now I'm considering what's going to be on my next set of panels and it'll most likely be another vinyl wrap. Just trying to decide the color & pattern but I'm leaning toward a bright red metallic, or maybe something like an alligator or lizard skin texture. There are so many options.
    Ariel Atom 2, Ecotec 300, owner since 2007. Drive, Detail, Improve, Repeat. Visit my website.

  6. #6
    Fermion
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    One I painted earlier
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Fermion
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    @Lane, I took a look at the plastic panels on my Atom and they seem pretty smooth. Were the panels on the older Atoms textured? Mine is a 2013.
    Why did you say that some of the paint jobs on the other Atoms make you cringe? Was it simply the color scheme that they chose or was it poor craftmanship/poor prep?
    If I were to wrap all of the black plastic pieces in a high quality white vinyl wrap.... What should I expect to pay in terms of materials and qualified labor?
    I am still trying to find a picture of a white Ariel Atom with the standard black frame, but am not having any luck!
    Thanks to all of you guys for your input!

  8. #8
    Electron Lane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elonheater32 View Post
    @Lane, I took a look at the plastic panels on my Atom and they seem pretty smooth.
    Compared to my painted panels, my textured panels aren't smooth at all. These are from my nose cone, and the yellow is the vinyl wrap on my bonnet.




    You can't paint over that and expect it to be remotely glossy. It would take a lot of prep work to sand that to be mirror smooth. My dash panel is not quite as rough, but it sure isn't smooth either:



    Quote Originally Posted by Elonheater32 View Post
    If I were to wrap all of the black plastic pieces in a high quality white vinyl wrap.... What should I expect to pay in terms of materials and qualified labor?
    Vinyl for my bonnet, snorkel cover, and wing endplates was about $100 off eBay for medium quality vinyl. Good quality (3m) would be about 50% more. The labor to apply it to the bonnet and snorkel cover only was $150 if I recall correctly. So if you want to do ALL the panels on your car, I'd be surprised if it came in at any less than $1000 for materials and labor. And that's only if the vinyl is able to be applied to your black panels with no surface prep labor included. But what do I know - why not just get an estimate from your local vinyl shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by Elonheater32 View Post
    Why did you say that some of the paint jobs on the other Atoms make you cringe?
    I like the contrast of the black panels alongside the colored ones. It works very well for the car and highlights the right details on the car. Paint every panel and the car looks different, and not necessarily as aesthetically pleasing as it was prior. Beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder.
    Ariel Atom 2, Ecotec 300, owner since 2007. Drive, Detail, Improve, Repeat. Visit my website.

  9. #9
    Fermion
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    @lane... Thanks a ton for your input. The plastic on my atom are definately much smoother than the one pictured. The more Iook at the wraps the more I like the idea. There are so many wraps available that I am starting to think of options that are probably way too wild.
    I was thinking of how cool it would be to wrap all the plastic in polished chrome and wrap the bonnet and snorkel in black chrome as well as the wings (chrome on the end plates). Whatcha think? Potential disaster??? Can someone try for me and let me know how it turns out lol

  10. #10
    Electron
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    I purchased mine this way, but I really like the paint scheme.

    Carbon fiber bonnet, snorkel, and wing. Black fenders. Verde Ithaca green aka Lambo green.


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