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Triumph TR6 - To my Ontario Friends Re: body shop


I have to get my TR painted and body work done. Any suggestions where to take it in the Extended GTA?

I've had problems finding a shop as few want to do restorations because insurance claims are more profitable for them.

The car is still all original and does not have severe rusting but I am replacing 2 fenders because of some small holes, and door skins because of way too many dents.

I have never had body work done so I would be interested in what type of costs should I expect (cost of panels aside).

Curious in what other people spend to have this done. I don't want to go crazy as the car will not be going into a museum and it does not have the inherrent value of and E or A-H3000. But I want a good looking car that people at a show would say wow!

Hi Steven
I had my 6 body (off the frame) painted up where I live ( W of Collingwood on the bay). The body shop has done, over the years, about 30 antique cars so has experience. He is know as the most expensive shops around. You get what you pay for. Yes, all body shops prefer insurance claims. Consider though that you are not in a hurry to get your car back so it helps them.
Might I suggest calling one of the local suppliers of parts for our cars. They ALL must have contacts.

If at all possibe, try to remove as much outer metal
i.e. bumpers, and all lights. Not difficult and you will end up with a better paint job. This should also reduce the cost..less prep time for painting.
Cost? Well what do you want the paint job to look like? A good paint job is only as good as the prep work that went into the body prior to painting. At minimum you want them to wet sand and polish after the paint. So expect to pay from $1000 to $5000.
every little thing you have them do just adds to the sound of their cash register and obviously visa versa.
2 other things, your paint code colour can be matched exactly and make sure they see how and where the back of the car and the rocker panels are painted black.

I suggest you do not tell your wife you are taking the car in to be painted:)

Rick C
Rick Crawford

Hi Steven

Go here in Milton for your first estimate and give it to the wife. Then you can go just about anywhere else and she will think your a Wallmart shopper..:)

On the other end theres an XKe in Kitchener that was painted in the fellas driveway and wins shows? Very experienced at cut and buff don't try at home. He had about 400 of his own estimated hours in the prep? The paint part is cheap..:)

I do all my own work and paint in my $200.00 a month rented hobby garage with help when needed from Pro friends who work for wobbly pop and because I call in favors? Plus a $600 dollar Saita paint gun and others for primer, $1,500.00 compressor and another $40,000 in replacement value tools collected over 40 years according to insurance inventory. Nope I don't Ski/Golf or holiday. And I'm only a hobbiest. Ricks #s are about right for a commercial "wow paint only". Fenders are not bad if they fit? Don't believe the British Heritage crock of made with original tooling. Close only, require time. Re-skinning doors can be real time consuming and almost always need repairs to door frame. Lots of young guys have never done in a day to day body shop.

Points and tips on Prep/paint/TR.

TRs a "Roadster" so much of interior
needs removal for any color change or if paints in rough shape or faded. As Rick mentioned talk to the bodyshop first and then do whatever you can. At $50.. bucks an hour min. you will save a lot. Removing the inner panels and door handles will save an easy $150.00 and the headache of trying to figure out what the idiot did. Unless you go to a shop that knows them they will be buying the same manual you have to take it apart? They can be taped but if you want a wow at the beer store. Remove em. Or go to Maaco.

Black is the cheapest paint, red the most expensive. I like PPG urethane without clear. Just shines better. Black will cost with reducer and hardener $215 estimate wholesale for that car for paint. Reds gets up over $600 depending wholesale. Thats without any fancy additives or colour matching.

Replacing fenders and skins guess 10 to 30 hours? Find real good used doors cheaper. If your stuffs not real rusted a good bodyman may be able to repair? Lots cheaper.

The shop will at least want to do a basic sand checking for original paint condition/coats and type. And any Bondo. Then clean up any small imperfections or big ones they find on first sand. TRs not that big but lots of shape so that first sands about 5 hours? If you have all the goodies off? Without any repairs.

Next depending on repairs/paint used and their methods. A couple of coats of high build primer/good block sand that will take most primer off. Looking for imperfections if painters happy hopefully a good coat of Epoxy primer. Then another high build and maybe another all blocked in between. Now you have about $300.00 and thats a wholesale price in primers. And another 5 hours.

RickCs car was totally apart and soda blasted primed prior to shop. So actually cheaper to do for body shop than a rolling car.
Do not sand if you don't have experience!

Bill Brayford

Gotta admit, if u take a soda blasted tub to a body shop 1 hour after it was blasted (on a warm spring day), the price is lower.....well not a lot lower. The final cost was $5,200. It was done in 2 stages. tub was VERY clean so did primer and blocked. Only 2 areas of body that where history was front R. edge of bonnett and back L. edge of boot BONDO.. new metal and they did a very good job on them. Interiour 3 areas engine bay, interiour, and boot done to final coat. Body put back on rolling chassis. EVERYTHING put back on car with 100% new interiour. All electrics checked and working...all out side stuff removed windshield frame installed and back to shop for final coat then "cut and buff". I know Steven, not what u plan to do...simply FYI for others thinking of doing a body off restore. Gotta agree with Bill, 2 new front wings where not the best fit. Don spent at least 20 hours on body allignment. We had agreed on a price so got a little lucky on that one.

Bill and I have an underlying get what you pay for . Good points Bill.

Bill, I am surprised at u...u know there is no swearing allowed here...MAACO...shame on u.

Rick C

P.S. Bill, I think next get together is at your 200 a month shop Whata ya say Doc?
Rick Crawford

Hi RickC

No problem anytime you guys are up for it. Shops heated insulated and cosy.

I wasn't bragging about the shop stuff just making a point for Steven that even though my paint jobs work out cheap up front. I pay big time in the long run. Good for me because its my total hobby.
Reason I have always rented a shop is Inground pool at home. I always saw it as an awesome pit area under my new 2 bay shop. Unfortunately the Boss sees her flower gardens and Grandkids frolicking in the pool! Some ladies have no sense of humour when it comes to the important things?

Bill Brayford

Sorry Rick I am a bit confused, was the $5200 for just the paint or for everything including body work, installing all the parts and putting in the interior and final painting.

So if I hear correctly that new fenders are not that great and it is better to repair my originals. Mine have a couple (3) of pencil eraser size holes only around the head lights. inner fenders are good. My car has never been driven in the winter and was a Vancouver car but the rust is mainly surface from incorrect storage over the years. It still has the original paint.

I got a quote of around $4000 to redo my car not including the parts ie the skins, upper deck parts, rockers and fenders (I have already bought them previously). The shop has done a few TRs recently including Fred's (Brit autosport) They also did a TR250 that won 3rd at Bronte

that price also includes Me doing the stripping ie removing all the chrome and external parts and re-installing them.

Is this reasonable? What sort of costs would legendary charge?


Do you know Joe at JD Auto in Rexdale? He told me that he farms out painting and bodywork to someone located in Scarborough.

Don't recall what he said about pricing but I did see some of his work and it looked real good.

Another try is Bob Beiler with the "Magenta" TR6, faboulous paint job.

I too would like to paint my car this winter (TR4) and I have used Europa Coachworks in Milton, his nam is Victor, guy is amazing. I did my MGB several years ago at his place, great work, think total bill was around 5 large but he did alot of work. Only problem is he is just too busy to take on other work.

Bill Brayford, what if we brought dinner and came to your shop to see how it's done? I am starting the body soon on my TR , first attempt at BODYWORK, would love to extract some of that knowledge you've been hiding on us.

Regards, Dino
Dino Zappi

Ha Dino,
welcome, another Ontarioite. We will take over this BBS yet! A TR4, nice! Dino, we do not talk about MGs here:) Yup , Bills brain is definitely worth picking. He has gone out of his way to help me out..thanks Bill.
Bill, GREAT..set a DATE! Did not think you where bragging, but I am jealious. I gotta have a talk with your wife!
5200 was paint and body work as mentioned. The car went to him twice over a 2 year period. Soda blast was 800. I installed all new interiour myself...well Cherly helped with the rear wheel arches. Seats where recovered in the spring. All exteriour parts I put on the car to check fit and function (lights)then removed car went for final paint then I reinstalled all exteriour parts.
A short point on soda blasting. Soda blasting is better than sand blasting. Better finish (not rough bare metal) and also there is not the heat generated like sand blasting so large flat pannels like the bonnett will not warp from the heat. More expensive though for the soda. Tubs can be chemically dipped but any seam sealants can be lost and tub must be washed after....rust??
Steven new pannels are good quality it is just that they do not "fit" very good and are expensive!! If you only have 3 rust holes then definitely leave them on the car. I understand you have already bought the fenders...too bad. Tell us what the 4000 gives you. Kinda difficult to say if high as I (and Bill) do not know what you are having done to her. If they did Fred's 6 then I would think OK. Keep in mind, Fred was a body off restore. I have seen a red 250 (member TTC) that he paid 12,000 for the paint and body..and it showed! If it is the same one then 3rd must have been very disapponting to him. With you doing the removal of all parts I am sure has helped to keep the cost down. I would want to do that anyway just to get the better paint tape lines.
Rick C

Rick Crawford

Hi Steven

OK from your list of parts bought. Especialy sills and deck. I assume were talking rear deck gas filler area?

One thing as Rick pointed out around 4Gs and done for 4Gs is a big difference. Remember his point "we had already agreed on the price" So extra 20 hours at 50? hour is an extra grand. Does Rick pay or does the shop eat the time and learn from that experience. If its open end time and materials you may double that. If they call up and say sorry we found ? and the added cost is etc. next time etc. Remember that getting quotes! Be carefull if they don't know the car many will walk away leaving you with a mess.

Fitting the fenders or wings is relativley easy. Compared to other parts you mention.

Sills inner and outer. I question that if your outer sills are at the point that you feel replacing needed that the inners aren't needed and maybe floor pans as well. That structure holds up the A posts or front door mount and B posts the back door latch posts. Door alignment and whether the car looks like the Concord nose down?

The upper deck squares up the rear alignment for the boot lid and the whole rear look. There is inner structure there but is still tricky.

Holes around the headlights are tricky complex shapes. The hole you see after the paint is off is a lot of rust. Fenders probably best. Can't see from here.

Surface rust you mentioned needs to be taken out completely. Not a quick sand and Bondo smooth or you will be doing it again shortly. Bondo is OK thin on stable parts not flexing much.

We covered the door skins aspect so in my opinion if these folks will do all that for 4Gs guaranteed and "WOW" painted take it.

They are skilled and experienced or short of work. Either way its a deal. Most shops make there money on insurance work. That takes priority they call it production. Off time is when good work may be performed if the boss is genuinely interested in developing that market.

Don't know if you looked at the legendary motor car site and caught the entrance or watch TV Sunday afternoons? My wild guess would be 5 times as a low buck the 4Gs your quoted if not more. Will it be perfect "YES" Can the TR sell for the money you spend "NO" not yet.


Bill Brayford

Hi Dino

First off Dinner and a Movie. Compared to welding/paint fumes and grinding dust just don't cut it :)

Licenced autobody techs go to school for a couple of years and then aprentice for a few more. Some learn more than others while doing?

Sort of an art form. books practice and any advice you can get. Practice screw up and try again. I had an old Dodge fender not on anything with a few holes years ago and used it. Decided to get it straight as practice. Thought I had it many many times painted it black and started again. Got fairly good as a hobbiest :)

As I mentioned friends are good. My one buddy Kent licenced bodyman specialty painter does 4 cars everyday. I think I have my pride and joy ready for paint. He walks in and shows me a weeks work. Very religous fellow so thats cheap advice. Ron or Dean drop in drink half a case of beer and then show me what Kent missed as they leave?

Patience is a virtue. Ability to do it yourself is a major Buzz.

Ask any question I will help if I can. Can't do it in an hour though.

Come on over when we get the time for meeting set or any other times OK just mail me.

Thanks for hanging the time hook on my door Rick. You should talk to Peggie about setting dates.

"WE have to go to Dinner/Play at Aboretum" ??. Dec.4th Is that OK?/ $200.00 bucks. "WHAT" One of her good clients Christmas party and but its for charity. Thats what I woke up to this morning :)

Bill Brayford

WOW Bill good reply.
Steven, Bill is I said above, we agreed on the price up front. The body shop owner did the body allignment himself "after hours".. he made a point of telling me this. Bill and I are not trying to scare you..just get it in writing upfront. Definitely make the point to the shop that "u have the car for the next month (or 2)". Allows them to take their time. I know mine sat idle for times (totaling weeks) while insurance claims got done for customers that wanted their cars back yesterday.

Bill, Peter would probably be, as u say, 5 times more. But then Steven could have his trailer queen transported down to Pebble Beach for the big one:)

Would you like to have your car restored by LMC...H*** yes. Could the average joe afford it....H*** no.
Rick C

GEESSS Bill, did not realize I had to contact your appointment scheduler...maybe if I call Peggie she could "pencil" us guys in sometime in the near future...just kiddin my friend:) Could of had a lot more fun with this one:) Your tub is ready for paint? This is great! So you will be at Bronte next year.
Rick Crawford

Nope an old chevelle is ready for paint that a friend of mine had blocked under poor light in his own garage.

Due to this old guy eyes I have some major suplement lighting when plugged in. Nope didn't have anything to do with blackout! Honest. Constant rain here he had to be inside to reblock. I had the best free space and the old well I'm here I might as well do the other side. 2 weeks it came out great.

Still working on my frame. Tubs stored. Bronte is a long while off unless I get a huge infusion of money and energy.

Patience is a virtue refined by married men with children. Of course my wife will say the oposite.

The point on the visit is your furthest away. Decide what might work for you and then give Chris a mail if he wants to come. Put it out and let others RSVP. I'm open to anything other than who's that banging on the door at 6:30 AM :)

Bill Brayford

For the brave at heart, I found a great Do-It-Yourself garage on Greenwood and they have a paint shop. Very good prices. Ideal for the cheap and industrious. I was thinking a turquois/hot pink colour combination for the TR ...


Totally agree, dinner and a movie does not even come close to argon/co2 my favourite after shave.

Just say the word my friend and I'll be there, I'll bring the Chianti!

P.S. Took some welding courses last year both at George Brown and a private TIG course in Oakville. Went out bought a mig, love it but wished I had opted for a Tig instead, much more precise.


Tigs nice Dino, but this old guy has a problem with walk and chew gum coordination? Never mind foot and 2 hands. I tried it a couple of times and for me would take a year of practice. Think I'll stick with my Miller.

Bryn thats a nice nice color combo? Heh Heh Heh. When did you buy the Miata? Hows the girlfriend by the way has the therapy helped. Twitching stopped? Think maybe last years adventures affected you a bit more than you thought at first or your getting way too many fumes in the interior? Might want to check into that? I hear you know JimD UH OH??? Some guys have it all taste and good fortune! WOW

And on that note I'm outa here>>>>
Bill Brayford

In the grand plan of things while we look at our monumental problems and tasks with the little brits. These are modified British Cars. And as he notes the builder is not in the trade. Just enjoys the stuff.

Check out this guy.

Follow down the page and click on each picture, sites huge. Follow through and then on to another car

"That is bodywork Dino" I've only learned to patch and minor modify. Thats what I want to do. If I live that long?
Bill Brayford

This thread was discussed between 04/11/2003 and 09/11/2003

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