(Topic ID: 198773)

Fisheye in clearcoat, what went wrong?


By uncivil_engineer

2 years ago



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  • 42 posts
  • 29 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by quinntopia
  • Topic is favorited by 4 Pinsiders

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    #1 2 years ago

    At long last today I decided it was time to finish the clearcoat on my SF2 playfield.

    I spent my spare time over the last few days setting up my spray booth. The last time I tried to paint in my shop, I think I got more paint in my shop than on my playfield.

    IMG_5964 (resized).JPG

    I mixed my paint like I have in the past, using Omni mc730 clear with mh738 hardener and mr295 reducer. It was a nice 65 degrees in the shop when I started painting.

    I cleaned my playfield with naphtha (camping fuel here in California) and set my gun up for a heavy coat.

    Then disaster stuck... Fisheye, and in a big way.
    IMG_5968 (resized).JPGIMG_5969 (resized).JPG

    So what caused the contamination? I don't think it was the compressor, the air filters are almost new. My best working theory right now, is that the rags are used to clean the playfield were contaminated. I use recycled rags that have been washed. I might have picked up one that was used to wax a play field.

    Does anyone else have any suggestions for avoiding fisheye in the future?

    For now, it looks like I will have to start sanding it back down in a day or two.

    #2 2 years ago

    Wow. That stinks. Hopefully u can fix it.

    #3 2 years ago

    A couple ideas...

    This really looks like you had water in your compressor...

    Or- you sprayed at a really wrong temp for your activator. The chemistry is extremely temp sensitive.

    #4 2 years ago

    Fish eyes are most often caused by improper or insufficient surface cleaning or preparation. Many waxes and polishes contain silicone, the most common cause of fish eyes, and are not easily removed from rags through a basic wash cycle. The old finish or previous repair may contain Silicon as well. Usually solvent wiping will not remove embedded silicone. Professional painting is a science and is rife with pitfalls for the Hobbiest.

    #5 2 years ago

    I have seen laundry detergent cause fish eyes, I always use disposable rags.

    #6 2 years ago

    I've never cleared a playfield, but I've done quite a few vehicle paint jobs so I'm thinking contaminants left on the playfield before you applied the clear. That is the one time you really want to use fresh wipe cloths. Some waxes can be a pain to get rid of, so a couple of good cleanings may be needed.

    It's likely not a lost cause, give it a few days to harden and wetsand the surface to remove all the fish eyes. Then lay another coat or two of clear. If you really want to go nuts, give that coat a week and wetsand it again with some really fine paper and then polish it with a buffer to a mirror finish.

    #7 2 years ago

    A lot of spray cans have silicone in them and it can linger in the air for awhile.

    Workshops that have machinery may use silicone sprays on their machines.
    I had to ban certain sprays in our factory because of fisheyes in our painted panels.

    #8 2 years ago
    Quoted from Niterider:

    I've never cleared a playfield, but I've done quite a few vehicle paint jobs so I'm thinking contaminants left on the playfield before you applied the clear. That is the one time you really want to use fresh wipe cloths. Some waxes can be a pain to get rid of, so a couple of good cleanings may be needed.
    It's likely not a lost cause, give it a few days to harden and wetsand the surface to remove all the fish eyes. Then lay another coat or two of clear. If you really want to go nuts, give that coat a week and wetsand it again with some really fine paper and then polish it with a buffer to a mirror finish.

    Thats a bummer. I've worked around body shops for many years and it's tough to determine the cause of contamination without being there. Rags are suspect, although as someone already suggested contamination in the lines and maybe temp could be the culprit. You may also check the sandpaper, yes some has silicone in it. Lastly, did anyone spray any type of tires dressing or silicone product around your project? I still lean towards the lines or silicone in the cloth-

    I'd suggest process of elimination to diagnose-

    Try spraying something else(wood) with same clear, check sandpaper first-if no fish eyes- you have your answer on gun(could still be temp though)
    Try another piece, this time using the same rags-will determine if rags-

    #9 2 years ago

    I forgot the activator is temperature sensitive. It was 65 to 70 degrees in the shop when I sprayed. The 738 activator I used is intended for 75-90 degrees... Would this cause the issue I am seeing?

    #10 2 years ago

    My compressor has an oil trap/water trap at the pressure regulator... It is empty. I could put another water trap on my spray gun.

    #11 2 years ago
    Quoted from Rody:

    Fish eyes are most often caused by improper or insufficient surface cleaning or preparation. Many waxes and polishes contain silicone, the most common cause of fish eyes, and are not easily removed from rags through a basic wash cycle. The old finish or previous repair may contain Silicon as well. Usually solvent wiping will not remove embedded silicone. Professional painting is a science and is rife with pitfalls for the Hobbiest.

    This. Have a close friend that's a painter... every time I've seen it fish eye it's due to improper prep and cleaning. EVERY TIME

    #12 2 years ago

    This was my last major paint project, it's a little bigger than a pinball machine.

    The interior was painted with just normal enamel paint with a hardening agent added. The exterior was painted with urethane. Think something like clear coat paint, but with color added. Mixed with an activator and a hardening agent, it's really tough stuff. It's actually very similar to what they use on commercial trucks now.

    Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

    I forgot the activator is temperature sensitive. It was 65 to 70 degrees in the shop when I sprayed. The 738 activator I used is intended for 75-90 degrees... Would this cause the issue I am seeing?

    I don't believe so, activator is just what causes the paint to dry and harden. Just being below it's recommended temp would just mean it would take longer to set up, unless you were really out of its recommended temp range. But that more than 5-10 degrees....more like 15-20 degrees.

    IMG_0351 (resized).JPG

    #13 2 years ago

    I always put fisheye eliminator in when I painted cars.

    #14 2 years ago

    This is the sandpaper used exclusively on the playfield.

    amazon.com link »

    It is a silicone carbide based sand paper. I wonder if this is part of my problem...

    #15 2 years ago

    I had this problem in the past, I would use naphta and a microfiber cloth to clean the playfield. The minute I switched to disposable towels I never had it again.

    #16 2 years ago

    You do not want anything that is silicone based anywhere near a playfield that you intend to clear.

    #17 2 years ago

    Silicone sandpaper has to be a typo. Silica is sand, silicone is not.

    Silicon carbide is a common abrasive, silicone is one letter off. NFW silicone carbide is an actual material.

    #18 2 years ago
    Quoted from YeOldPinPlayer:

    Silicone sandpaper has to be a typo. Silica is sand, silicone is not.
    Silicon carbide is a common abrasive, silicone is one letter off. NFW silicone carbide is an actual material.

    Considering the 3m stuff is also uses silicon carbide abrasive. I think the silicone may indeed be a typo in the description of the sand paper I have been using.

    #19 2 years ago

    Are you sure the camping fuel was actually naphtha? Last I looked for some it seemed like they had caught onto that work around and camping fuel is something else now.

    #20 2 years ago
    Quoted from merccat:

    Are you sure the camping fuel was actually naphtha? Last I looked for some it seemed like they had caught onto that work around and camping fuel is something else now.

    I bought the fuel over a year ago. It seems to act like naphtha. It evaporates very quickly and leaves no residue behind. What other options do we have in California?

    #21 2 years ago

    Take a glass eyedropper, fill it with 2PAC and start filling all those holes before the clear gets too hard.

    Allow to cure for a few days, then sand it back to flat.

    Looks like silicone contamination. Could be you've used Dryer Sheets in your dryer before, and now everything you dry will have wax and silicone in it.

    Don't use fisheye eliminator:

    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-ultimate-playfield-restoration/page/17#post-1699777

    #22 2 years ago

    I'm learning myself with the Vid documentary. You state, "I cleaned my playfield with naphtha (camping fuel here in California) and set my gun up for a heavy coat." Did you Start with a thick heavy coat right out of the gates? Thought a light seal coat almost dust was the way to sneak in on it. Curious. You have your work cut out for you there but don't give up!

    -2
    #23 2 years ago

    Its fine brotha....that's what some of my newer stern look like after 500 plays...

    #24 2 years ago

    From years of panel beating/painting it's usually caused via a chemical reaction between products ie old paint/primer/clear to new. This is why most painters will use a 2k primer before painting and clearing. Obviously you don't want to prime your lovely Playfield so the risk for fish-eye is high. For future reference two drops of eliminator in the gun and load it up, turn on the oven or infrared and come back to glass! Either way your fine, let it dry, block it back and load it up.

    Fyi don't use 2pak in that booth and don't use it with out the proper 2pak mask. You will take 30 years off your life spraying 2pak with no mask. There's a reason why a proper certified booth costs $40,000+

    Feel free to spray enamel, lacquer, dulon etc in that sweet home made booth

    #25 2 years ago
    Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

    What other options do we have in California?

    No kidding, I'd like a good option... everywhere I see... "just use naphtha" but we can't buy the stuff, it's frustrating, just because there is a chance some idiot might use it irresponsibility. Going to have to import some next road trip.

    #26 2 years ago
    Quoted from Rody:

    Fish eyes are most often caused by improper or insufficient surface cleaning or preparation. Many waxes and polishes contain silicone, the most common cause of fish eyes, and are not easily removed from rags through a basic wash cycle. The old finish or previous repair may contain Silicon as well. Usually solvent wiping will not remove embedded silicone. Professional painting is a science and is rife with pitfalls for the Hobbiest.

    it's exactly this. There is some wax or something on that field that didn't come off with naptha. This is why I use an anti wax agent first on the first layer of clear. Then naptha on layers after. I've had a lot of MB's for some reason that had some super wax on them that would not come off.

    Also, did you really scuff the surface a lot before this? Some times you really have to rub that wax off with chemicals.

    #27 2 years ago

    I always use wax and greese remover, wipe it on with a paper towel and dry it off with another, never had a fisheye problem ever, painted lots of cars and parts and a couple playfields.

    #28 2 years ago

    Contamination is always a concern, especially with a playfield. There is no telling what has been sprayed or wiped on over the years. All automotive paint manufacturers recommend the first step as wiping with wax and grease remover before you do anything else and disposable towels. Sanding over contamination can just grind it into the surface. Problems still occur, and frequently you never know why.

    #29 2 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Take a glass eyedropper, fill it with 2PAC and start filling all those holes before the clear gets too hard.
    Allow to cure for a few days, then sand it back to flat.
    Looks like silicone contamination. Could be you've used Dryer Sheets in you dryer before, and now everything you dry will have wax and silicone in it.
    Don't use fisheye eliminator:
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/vids-guide-to-ultimate-playfield-restoration/page/17#post-1699777

    I will get my droppers out this evening. This method sounds like the best way to salvage the coating I have already put on.

    BTW, this was not the first coat of clear I have put on this playfield. This was supposed to be my 3rd and final coat. None of the other coats have done this.

    #30 2 years ago
    Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

    I will get my droppers out this evening. This method sounds like the best way to salvage the coating I have already put on.
    BTW, this was not the first coat of clear I have put on this playfield. This was supposed to be my 3rd and final coat. None of the other coats have done this.

    seems like the rag.. or something else done in the area after spraying sound like the culprits. Good luck with recovering it!

    #31 2 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    Take a glass eyedropper, fill it with 2PAC and start filling all those holes before the clear gets too hard.
    Allow to cure for a few days, then sand it back to flat.
    Looks like silicone contamination.

    Hello,

    OK to fill fisheyes with an eye dropper... But will the clear stick to the pf?
    Indeed, the silicon contamination will remain under, no?

    BR

    Eric

    #32 2 years ago
    Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

    I will get my droppers out this evening. This method sounds like the best way to salvage the coating I have already put on.
    BTW, this was not the first coat of clear I have put on this playfield. This was supposed to be my 3rd and final coat. None of the other coats have done this.

    You shoulda mentioned this in your first post, I think it would have helped people pinpoint your problem and give better advice, after everything it definitely sounds like your clothes were contaminated but if you mean that it's been sitting for some time with the first 2 coats and now you've just applied the 3rd it could have also been in the air as many people suggest.

    I hope the advice in this thread can help you salavage your work and help others down the line!

    #33 2 years ago

    In any case.....its shiny as hell

    #34 2 years ago

    At least Im not the only one who thinks that SF2 is worth some love....

    #35 2 years ago
    Quoted from Leveeger:

    Hello,
    OK to fill fisheyes with an eye dropper... But will the clear stick to the pf?
    Indeed, the silicon contamination will remain under, no?
    BR
    Eric

    It all depends on how long the old coat accepts a new coat w/o sanding. It will say on the can "Can be recoated up to 48 hours without sanding...." .

    Usually you have a day or so, but I've only used relatively few of the thousands of 2pac on the market.

    Any sealed under silicone is trapped forever once the 2pac is catalyzed, it's not like lacquer where it comes back to bite you a day latter.

    #36 2 years ago
    Quoted from uncivil_engineer:

    I bought the fuel over a year ago. It seems to act like naphtha. It evaporates very quickly and leaves no residue behind. What other options do we have in California?

    So you don't *KNOW* if it was naptha or something else? Looks like Naptha has been banned in California for years: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/naptha-alternative.

    What you need is something like Prepsol -- but if VOC containing solvents are illegal in California, you probably can't get this either.
    https://www.johnsonautobodysupply.com/DuPont-Prep-Sol-Cleaning-Solvent-3919S-Gallon.html

    Truthfully though, that doesn't look like traditional fish eyes to me. Those pits look really deep-- like maybe you overapplied the coat and had some air or water dropets trapped.

    #37 2 years ago

    I think the eye dropper idea is your best bet, as long as it's pretty fresh it should be ok.
    Here's what we use for a wiping cloth.

    IMG_2198 (resized).JPG

    #38 2 years ago

    If your water and oil separator is close to the compressor, the water has not had a chance to condense out of the hot air, you should Have about 25 to 50 feet of hose prior to the water and oil separator to condense the vapor so the traps can catch the water and oil.

    #39 2 years ago

    I don't think it's water.

    A problem with the trap setup would have been evident on the first or second coats.

    Yes, it would be better to move the trap further downline, but I admit my trap is right on my 120 gallon compressor and I never have had any water contamination.

    Probably wax from the dryer or underarm deodorant contaminated the rags.

    #40 2 years ago

    Its contamination from something you touched, my auto body teacher back in highschool was probably the best painter/bodyman i knew, he said one time he had fisheye problems and couldnt figure it out till it dawned on him he used armor all on his interior and steering wheel of his car. When i do paintwork im pretty obsessive compulsive with keeping my hands clean and my paintwork area.

    2 weeks later
    #41 2 years ago

    I always use a fresh papertowel soaked in naptha to wipe off my pf between coats, I just don't trust anything else. It looks like silicone contamination to me, just sand it down with 2,000 and recoat, rinse and repeat until you've leveled it out man.

    #42 1 year ago

    I had very similar fisheye results with some SprayMax 2k (eliminates the trap question). After reading another explanation from Vid on this, I realized I did indeed use a freshly washed microfiber cloth (with Naptha) hat may have also been used for some auto was.

    That convinced me never never used a washed cloth. You can't see it and even the trusty Naptha test on your playfiled will be deceptive. Brand new or disposable from now on.

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