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Topic: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: SXDFC
Posted 2011-12-09 21:20:42 and read 4459 times.

Today while I was working a flight, I noticed the winglet of one of our -700s ( as seen in the picture below ) and couldn't help but wonder the process of painting our planes. It appears they paint the whole plane yellow first, but can anyone confirm? If possible, pictures, videos,etc would be awesome to see.

http://i1208.photobucket.com/albums/cc368/737-8H4/swang.jpg

I apologize for the picture quality..

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: aklrno
Posted 2011-12-09 23:58:44 and read 4402 times.

I can't tell you how the standard WN paint job is done, but the general process is shown in lots of time lapse videos on youtube. Just search for " airplane time lapse paint" . Lots of masking tape and paper used before spraying the various colors. Things like the WN Florida theme plane take a lot of work.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: MD11Engineer
Posted 2011-12-10 03:03:42 and read 4379 times.

1. Tape off everything which reacts sensitive to paint stripping (windows, composite parts, antennas, landing gear etc.)
2. Spray aircraft with paint stripper, let it work for a few hours (the stuff is highly toxic and corrossive to skin, the guys
will have to wear full protective suits including gas masks).
3. Wash down paint stripper and paint using power washers.
4. Let plane dry.
5. Sand down remaining paint, also from composte parts.
6. Wipe aircraft with cleaning solvent to remove dust and grease.
7. Spray application of primer (yellowish or green)
8. Cover fuselage
9. Spray wings with grey paint (e.g. BAC 707)
10. Cover wings and stab, uncover fuselage
11. Spray base paint for fuselage (for LH white)
12. Cover fuselage and wings
13. Spray vertical stabilizer
14. Apply decals for logos etc.

Jan

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: ZANL188
Posted 2011-12-10 03:12:11 and read 4376 times.

I know for WN factory paint jobs the winglets are painted prior to installation. Could be an entirely different process from that used on the rest of the aircraft.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2011-12-10 05:25:13 and read 4347 times.

Normally the most predominant colour of the livery is the first colour applied, over the entire fuselage more often than not. Then it's masked off for cheatlines and logos etc. Again, should the colour scheme require several colours then there will be more masking. Paint is heavy and needs to be applied as efficiently as possible.
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: Mender
Posted 2011-12-10 09:31:47 and read 4283 times.

This might help http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=zKnsyYbfC60&feature=popular

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: Barney Captain
Posted 2011-12-10 17:12:31 and read 4168 times.

Apparently Florida One started life as an -800.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: polot
Posted 2011-12-10 19:44:22 and read 4136 times.

Quoting Barney Captain (Reply 6):
Apparently Florida One started life as an -800.

A Virgin Blue one based off the winglets 

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: 737tdi
Posted 2011-12-11 21:51:13 and read 3956 times.

Quoting SXDFC (Thread starter):
It appears they paint the whole plane yellow first, but can anyone confirm?

All of our aircraft, except for the specialty aircraft, are indeed painted yellow first. The reason we were told was so the canyon blue would have the right shade???. Anytime we have to touchup, or paint a repair, if you don't use the yellow prior to the blue it looks terrible.

If you ever fly though AMA look to the north from the new terminal and you will see a bunch of old Air Force hangars, that is Leading Edge where a ton of our aircraft are repainted.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2011-12-13 03:20:05 and read 3768 times.

Take no offence here but as a sprayer myself I find that ridulous! Any shade of blue can be knocked up and doesn't need a coloured undercoat. The only time this would be the case is if we apply a special pearl and need something to base off, even for the flop effect, as it's known. Perhaps the yellow is a primer you're using or is a cheaper base than using the topcoat blue? But for actual colour I've never heard of blue on yellow.

Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2011-12-13 03:21:33 and read 3768 times.

Btw, I'm not saying they don't do it that way but it sounds very strange. Hope you understand?
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: 737tdi
Posted 2011-12-13 09:21:04 and read 3733 times.

No offense taken, I understand your point completely. As I pointed out in my post,

Quoting 737tdi (Reply 8):
The reason we were told was so the canyon blue would have the right shade???.

notice the question marks. I do know for sure though that once they are painted this way, if you paint the blue with out the yellow under it, it looks bad. By the way it is not a yellow primer, it is the yellow topcoat that you see on the aircraft.

I wish there was someone on here from Leading Edge or Dean Baldwin here to explain it.

737tdi

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2011-12-13 11:01:20 and read 3696 times.

I understand indeed but find the method counter productive to the point of stupid. Like I said, ANY shade of any colour can be mixed. A yellow base to the final blue indicates to me the blue, for whatever reason, is more expensive. I'd even understand the red going on as a base to the blue, then mask it off for the final top of blue. As the yellow is such a very little colour in that scheme it baffles me. Your absolutely sure it's not a wash primer? That's yellow.
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: QANTAS747-438
Posted 2011-12-13 18:22:36 and read 3627 times.

Quoting SXDFC (Thread starter):
It appears they paint the whole plane yellow first, but can anyone confirm?

Why on earth would they paint the entire plane yellow, then repaint it in the remaining colors?

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: EMBQA
Posted 2011-12-13 19:08:02 and read 3611 times.

Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 13):
Why on earth would they paint the entire plane yellow, then repaint it in the remaining colors?

Only the areas that are going to be yellow get painted and they feather off the edge a little so it blends in. It's done to prevent the edges from errosion on the letters. I've seen dozens of planes painted this way.

[Edited 2011-12-13 19:16:11]

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: 737tdi
Posted 2011-12-14 00:56:08 and read 3581 times.

Quoting spencer (Reply 12):
I understand indeed but find the method counter productive to the point of stupid. Like I said, ANY shade of any colour can be mixed. A yellow base to the final blue indicates to me the blue, for whatever reason, is more expensive. I'd even understand the red going on as a base to the blue, then mask it off for the final top of blue. As the yellow is such a very little colour in that scheme it baffles me. Your absolutely sure it's not a wash primer? That's yellow.
Spence

Have you ever thought that a multi million dollar company might have been smarter then you? Yes, It is painted yellow first (and no it is not primer). Question me on this again and you will get the same answer. Dang, It's a paint question, I gave you the answer and you just keep on. I don't know why, I told ya I don't know why. It is what they do. It is painted yellow then blue. Hell maybe it's only 2 mils. I don't know.

I have been an aircraft mech. on heavy jets for 30 years and I know primer. It is not primer!!!!

737tdi

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2011-12-14 01:08:49 and read 3577 times.

737tdi, what's your problem? I wasn't questioning you personally nor insinuating you was lying. My question was rhetorical. The method seems peculiar to me is all. Relax.
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: 737tdi
Posted 2011-12-14 10:56:44 and read 3520 times.

Sorry Spence: No problems, I'm just saying the way it is done. It's just some of the responses say it's stupid, when they have absolutely no idea why it is done either. If you don't know why then how can you say it is stupid? You can not compare it to painting a car etc... By the way, again it is not primer, it is the yellow you see in the pic. from the O.P.. Nuff said on this I think. I am not an aircraft painter, although I have stripped a few, so I'll leave it at that.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: SXDFC
Posted 2012-04-13 20:05:18 and read 2556 times.

I'd like to thank the posters above for spreading their knowledge with regards to HOW WN paints their planes. After watching the recent promitional video of our new -800 it proves that WN does indeed paint their planes yellow first.

I did however want to ask another question with regards to WN repaints. I have noticed after a WN plane goes through a repaint, the registration font is different (not as bold or wide) and a bit higher then it is normally placed when Boeing first paints the plane. Although this is a bit of detail, does anyone know why this is the case? I don't seem to recall any other airline repaints like this.

"Factory Paint"


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Steven Pellegrino



"Repaint"


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Thomas Warloe



Our -300s also seem to have their registrations almost directly atop of the window line


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Andrew Hunt - AirTeamImages



Again I know these are miniscule details but I figured I'd ask anyways.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: soon7x7
Posted 2012-04-13 23:57:04 and read 2484 times.

I have a WN v/fin panel and the red tail graphic does have a yellow base coat. On the other hand, the fuselage section I have in Canyon Blue does not have a yellow base coat. Aerospace opaques have a high pigment content and the only case I could see for a base color coat would be white. But not even these days as paint technology has come along way, pigmented base coats are not required anymore especially given to weight vs fuel. Not knocking you 737tdi, but I'm with spencer on this one...I too don't understand...not to say they don't do it that way. I had to duplicate a Canyon
Blue mix with no yellow base coat and it was a perfect match....however...Canyon Blue is a strange mix!...one of the toughest colors I have mixed to date. Also happens to be one of my favorite...It would make for an interesting test however. I still have some remaining. I will shoot a test this week and see if any differences are evident...g

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: Fabo
Posted 2012-04-14 09:50:47 and read 2410 times.

Quoting SXDFC (Reply 18):
Factory Paint"

I would be grateful if someone were able to point me in the direction to look for this (or equivalent) font and cut...

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: HAWK21M
Posted 2012-04-14 12:43:58 and read 2372 times.

This is one good educational thread on the process of painting aircraft......
Just wondering a repainted aircraft can never be as good paint job wise as a newly 1st time painted Aircraft.Whats the painters opinion on that....

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2012-04-14 13:23:08 and read 2367 times.

Hi MEL. IMO the original paint has the best finish. It all depends on the prep work done at the end of the day.
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: HAWK21M
Posted 2012-04-15 01:50:20 and read 2284 times.

Quoting spencer (Reply 22):
IMO the original paint has the best finish. It all depends on the prep work done at the end of the day.

I thought so too.The Importance of the Temperature in the controlled environment will make a difference too.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2012-04-15 02:17:12 and read 2276 times.

Temp is definitely a factor; it just won't work in too cold a climate.
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: soon7x7
Posted 2012-04-15 03:51:13 and read 2309 times.

You gotta remember that most OEM's when they paint their aircraft and internal parts use electro static spraying systems. This system alone results in far better finish than non static systems. This is not to say a good repaint cannot be achieved. It is all in the prep. Many paint shops cut corners here. I have seen topcoats over bare metal with out primers being used. I have seen logos repainted with paint rollers rather than guns. This is a practice that is allowable and some of the paint is designed for this application but at close inspection, not a good method. Capturing bugs, dirt and skydrol under fresh paint doesn't cut it. Where logo changes occur like with Delta, I have seen them spray right over the previouse logo with minimal prep. Another words...you can see the original tapelines from the original logo very clearly. N171DZ, has this...the "Habitat for Humanity".Good repaints are a result of one thing. how much money is the aircraft owner willing to spend. Corporate aircraft much better at it than the big boyz!

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2012-04-15 08:28:04 and read 2252 times.

It's all down to money as you say. I personally wouldn't like to apply a base coat without a primer; the whole idea of a primer is for better adhesion and a longer life for the base coat / top coat. As a rule aluminium requires an etch primer, normally a high solid yellow as I tried to describe above. It resembles yellow paint and to the untrained eye is exactly that...
As to using rollers, yes it happens and again it's a question of money. Handy in a tight hangar where you don't want the paint atomised.
At the end of the day, if the original paint is stripped, the proper prep work is done and primer/base/clear coats are all applied (preferably electrostatically), then a repaint will be as good as when it left the factory. Not many companies (read not all) do this however!
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: soon7x7
Posted 2012-04-15 17:56:40 and read 2179 times.

Quoting spencer (Reply 26):

True, economics and location. A recent notables 757 was repainted in a rather dirty hangar rather than a paint facility and upon close inspection...it was actually not too bad. Helps to have a knowledgeable team...

Another idea here that may support why the yellow base coat is used for initial topcoat builds, the first application may be yellow followed by the final Canyon Blue finish as yellow is a cheaper color than Canyon Blue. Any bright undercoat will make a bright color pop. Violets and some reds are the most expensive colors, and Canyon Blue utilizes these colors.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: 737tdi
Posted 2012-04-15 21:06:20 and read 2142 times.

The factory paint is most definitely higher quality, not knocking any of the aftermarket paint guys. They do a good job with what they have to work with. I think I mentioned earlier that alot of our aircraft are painted at ATS in Amarillo TX. If you were to get a chance to see this place you would be amazed that the aircraft look as good as they do. They use old USAF hangars and they are filthy.

Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 19):
I had to duplicate a Canyon
Blue mix with no yellow base coat and it was a perfect match...




Just going from my experience of painting repairs on our aircraft, when you don't use the yellow the the blue looks alot lighter. You have to realize it is surrounded by the original paint, so it definitely looks different.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: spencer
Posted 2012-04-16 00:27:54 and read 2109 times.

With the new paints now only one coat of base is required, on top of the primer. No more 2 or 3 coats nowadays, everything is cromate free, waterborne, easy to apply. If you're using older materials then yes several coats may well be required. So long as there's a uniform coloured surface underneath, you won't need a separate colour to base on to for 99% of colours.
Spence

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: HAWK21M
Posted 2012-04-16 00:49:31 and read 2111 times.

Painting over a previous coat without stripping it out totally adds to unnecessary weight.This over a long period of time proves uneconomical.

Topic: RE: Painting Process Of A WN 737?
Username: soon7x7
Posted 2012-04-16 06:39:47 and read 2083 times.

Quoting 737tdi (Reply 28):

We are already on a 4th paint supplier, they all perform differently, so anything is possible. Nothing really surprises me...g


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