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1991 Hardtop 3-door Tracker 1.6L 4WD 5-Speed No A/C
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got a 1991 Geo Tracker that came in what GEO called "ELECTRIC BLUE". This color was only available on the base model, and I don't know if it was available on the SIDEKICK. I also don't know how many years this color was around, although I think some Geo Metro's used it.

Anyway, I've got some spots that need some attention. Some would call them "small blemishes", other will call them "major catastrophes". Whatever, what suggestions, approaches does a DIY person have? The biggest issue is on the roof -- which is hard to notice -- but should I consider spray or can paint first?????

The original paint is from 1991, so matching will be difficult, but the roof is a good "testing ground"

Any advise will be appreciated.
 

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When you say 'can' paint are you talking about a full blown spray gun job? I will assume that the clear coat is bad, which leaves you with sanding off what is left, priming and doing a gun type job. Making a good job with a spray can is pretty much impossible on a large surface. With that said, you can usually get your local auto paint store to make up a large can of spray paint instead of using touch up cans.
 

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I would recommend getting the paint code and doing a lookup on the number. For example, I have an '89 Geo Tracker and my paint code is printed on the card inside the glove box, 88U WA-9526 (at bottom left), which translates as "Dark Gray Metallic". I used that code to find a matching can of paint for touchups.

In order to set your expectations right, please keep in mind that clearcoat finishes are notoriously difficult to patch up.
 

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I've purchased paint in both spray cans and brush on bottles (like fingernail polish) for both my Sidekick and Miata. Matched perfectly for fixing small rust spots or scrapes. You select the proper color by entering the year and model of your car or the paint code if known. Also have the clear coat. Got the paint from these folks:
touchupdirect.com
 

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1991 Hardtop 3-door Tracker 1.6L 4WD 5-Speed No A/C
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
When you say 'can' paint are you talking about a full blown spray gun job? I will assume that the clear coat is bad, which leaves you with sanding off what is left, priming and doing a gun type job. Making a good job with a spray can is pretty much impossible on a large surface. With that said, you can usually get your local auto paint store to make up a large can of spray paint instead of using touch up cans.
When I say, "I've got some spots that need some attention", I do not mean I want to repaint the Tracker.

I don't mind doing a little sanding, but I'm talking penny-sized "corrosion". NO DENTS!!!

There has to be a way to deal with this besides a total paint job.
 

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1991 Hardtop 3-door Tracker 1.6L 4WD 5-Speed No A/C
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I would recommend getting the paint code and doing a lookup on the number. For example, I have an '89 Geo Tracker and my paint code is printed on the card inside the glove box, 88U WA-9526 (at bottom left), which translates as "Dark Gray Metallic". I used that code to find a matching can of paint for touchups.

In order to set your expectations right, please keep in mind that clearcoat finishes are notoriously difficult to patch up.
Your approach was "right on".

I checked and my paint code is "26U WA-9961" -- although it was VERY hard to read. It was on the BOTTOM of the glove box.

There are several places that have this "touch up" paint.

I don't need much paint, but is that all I need -- or will I need to sand, prime, and THEN paint the spots?
 

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Once you have your paint color code, my recommendation would be to decide whether you want to do a spot repair or a panel repair.

For a spot repair, you will typically use a color matched paint and then a single step clear coat. Some online paint shops will sell kits for this. I would not recommend sanding with this method, it is just for aesthetic appeal rather than actual repair. You can get a "20 footer" appearance quality for little money, but it won't look showroom perfect.

A panel-at-once paint job is the method most shops would use, and you can find (2) part urethane clearcoats in a can that are same quality as OEM. This method also allows you to sand, patch, or repair if needed. This method will use new paint and clearcoat from end to end of a single panel, so it is a much bigger job to take on. You can get it to look as good as you like, but nice paint and materials are usually pricey and labor-intensive.

If you start on the car top surface, at least you'll have some experience before proceeding. I'd probably do the quick and easy job there as a test, see if you can make it look how you'd like. Also, if you can upload some photos, maybe you can get some feedback about what people on the forum would advise?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
More info and pix

Attached are two files -- Front rust and Rear rust. I hope they show up.

The front rust seems pretty easy. Just sand it down, prime it, paint it, and clear coat it. No dents to fix.

The rear is worse. I have not determined if the rust goes all the way through the metal. So I might need a patch. I can't tell until I can get the black, plastic cover off (in picture) of the rear door. None of my manuals even mention it, and my quick look -- outside and in -- shows no easy way. It seems to me that snow/rain/etc. gets caught under it and leads to a SLOW leak and finally rust.

But there are lots of small rusty spots on the roof that I can work on first -- and develop my skills.

I think I've figured out what paint supplies I need, and I have all of the tools.
 

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1991 Hardtop 3-door Tracker 1.6L 4WD 5-Speed No A/C
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Correct paint name

Although GEO labeled the 26U WA9961 paint on my 1991 Tracker as "Electric Blue", it is more commonly called "Competition Blue".
 

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I've got a 1991 Geo Tracker that came in what GEO called "ELECTRIC BLUE". This color was only available on the base model, and I don't know if it was available on the SIDEKICK. I also don't know how many years this color was around, although I think some Geo Metro's used it.

Anyway, I've got some spots that need some attention. Some would call them "small blemishes", other will call them "major catastrophes". Whatever, what suggestions, approaches does a DIY person have? The biggest issue is on the roof -- which is hard to notice -- but should I consider spray or can paint first?????

The original paint is from 1991, so matching will be difficult, but the roof is a good "testing ground"

Any advise will be appreciated.
car paint (gallons)
What does everyone think of the new electric blue color available on the Blackwings? I read that they will also make it available on the regular V's for the 2022 model year. I really like. Always been a fan of blue. Wave is nice but the electric blue is a more eye catching, especially against all the black accents. Makes the car pop and is a very sporty stand out color. Really highlights the body lines nice too. What you think?
 

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What does everyone think of the new electric blue color available on the Blackwings? I read that they will also make it available on the regular V's for the 2022 model year.
whats a blackwing?
we are in 2023 BTW...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I've got my touch-up paint -- and clear coat. I just have to find the time to do it. Prepping will take much more time than the actual painting, but both require specific conditions -- good temperature & no rain. So it will be a while. The paint is a perfect match.
 
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