If you have a vinyl top then remove the molding separating the vinyl and paint. Drip rail chrome really should be removed also, but can be extremely hard to take off undamaged. If you plan on buying all new drip molding then definitely remove the old for painting. But if you want to keep the originals then it might be better to leave them on and let the painter mask around. If you have hub caps it's easy to just take them off. While the paint shop should completely mask all four tires, overspray can still find its way in. It's sometimes better to play it safe and just remove wheel covers.
Basically what you're looking for is a good, solid foundation of existing paint that is stable and still strongly bonded to the car. Many times an original factory paint job, even after decades will meet these criteria.
Eco Paint Specialist's or it's affiliates do not take any responsibility of any outcomes of this article. Denver's House Painting Authority, Cal Phillips & Eco Paint Specialist's Inc.
Cheaper then doing it yourself. Some would argue that if you're going to all the trouble to fully prep the car yourself, then why not just shoot the paint as well? Why get a shop involved? The answer is simply that you'll get a better job and for less money. Some would argue with this, but the fact is that if you've never sprayed a car before then your first car will have a steep, and expensive learning curve. Laying down an even, consistent coat of paint takes considerable practice. Also, paint and equipment is not cheap. You'll need to buy primer, color coat, clear coat, reducers & catalysts. None of these are inexpensive and you can easily spend as much in paint materials alone as the cheapest paint job at Maaco or similar shop.
There is still no standard labelling scheme for paint. The blue globe label, pioneered by B&Q, led to VOC reduction on the mass market and has been adopted by other brands, while the European Ecolabel, recognised in 15 EU member states, looks like a flower and appears on brands such as Earthborn. Germany also has a Blue Angel label and there is a green Nordic Swan as well. You will find more detailed information on most of the paint company's websites, as well as a wealth of practical and design advice.
Following a European directive, the British paint industry has reduced VOCs in two stages, the second of which came into force in January last year.
Today, it is increasingly easy to source ecologically sound paints, as most specialist ranges, such as Ecos, Earthborn, Georgina Barrow and Auro are available via mail order. There is a wealth of colour options in these pre-mixed ranges that include lush shades and muted palettes, reflecting their natural ingredients. Ecos continues to lead the field. It has recently developed Atmosphere Purifying Paint, which absorbs and neutralises volatile chemicals, solvents and VOCs from the atmosphere in a home.