Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Associate Editor
8/2/16 10:43 a.m.

Do you hate painting engine compartments or undercarriages? Terrified to pop the cap on that spray can because you know you're just not quick enough with the scrap of cardboard?

Fear no more! Here's how to step up your masking game, saving time and money while making a way better finished product.

Materials:

  1. Aluminum Foil (I prefer the heavy duty kind).
  2. Paint.

Once you've gathered your materials, you can get started. Instead of taping, bagging, or anything like that, just press the foil around whatever it is you're masking. If you need a clean edge, run a piece of 3/4" masking tape along the edge of the foil.

Ta-dah! Your part is masked. Once the paint is dry, just pull the foil off. Success!

Here's an example on my trailer hitch, but the idea works for almost anything that isn't a flat body panel.

dculberson
dculberson PowerDork
8/2/16 1:07 p.m.

Mind=blown. Genius in its simplicity.

bravenrace
bravenrace MegaDork
8/2/16 1:09 p.m.

I've been doing that for 35 years. I thought everybody knew about that.

Sine_Qua_Non
Sine_Qua_Non Dork
8/2/16 1:13 p.m.
bravenrace wrote: I've been doing that for 35 years. I thought everybody knew about that.

Nope. Thanks for making me feel stupid.

bravenrace
bravenrace MegaDork
8/2/16 1:52 p.m.

In reply to Sine_Qua_Non:

Sorry dude. I didn't mean to make you feel that way. If it helps, I'm not all that smart myself... Oh wait.

Sine_Qua_Non
Sine_Qua_Non Dork
8/2/16 2:35 p.m.
bravenrace wrote: In reply to Sine_Qua_Non: Sorry dude. I didn't mean to make you feel that way. If it helps, I'm not all that smart myself... Oh wait.

2K4Kcsq
2K4Kcsq HalfDork
11/25/16 12:18 p.m.

this is great. im going to ask my painter buddy if hes ever done this trick

Dusterbd13
Dusterbd13 PowerDork
11/25/16 2:17 p.m.

Only done it once on a freshener on a 66 gto show car. Forgot about it til now. Works great!!!

Brett_Murphy
Brett_Murphy PowerDork
11/25/16 2:32 p.m.

Old-type metal Venetian blinds also make a really handy straight edge mask. Wipe with a cloth as you go to keep the edge clean and at the end of the day do the same with a bit of paint thinner when done. I've had various lengths banging around in a bucket for 20 years.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
12/2/16 1:28 p.m.

Another handy masking material is a disposable cup. Cut it down to mask part of a round thing like the underside of a gas cap, or cut out the bottom to make a masking cone for spraying just a small area of a flat surface, like touching up paint on a rattle-canned panel.

DanV8olvo
DanV8olvo New Reader
12/20/16 10:31 a.m.

The foil is neat, I usually tear newspaper and use painters tape to hold it on, now need to go buy AF roll for the garage.....

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