Painting the Interior Skin
Now it all starts coming together. All the hard and dirty work is behind, and the trailer starts coming together into its final form quickly. The original Zolatone finish, while durable and nicely neutral looking, hadn’t survived the many years of neglect, damage and wear from the existing cabinets and appliances. Here’s how we applied a lifetime finish using Zolatone, but using modern methods and techniques. The effect we were after was a soft, warm finish to compliment the upcoming birch wood, linoleum and coral/turquoise accents.
As with any paint job, the preparation is 3/4th the work. The first step is prepping the surface. Here was our starting point – all the skins are back in place, all the holes filled, and the surface lightly sanded.
Zolatone recommended a black primer for our color combination. In retrospect, the beige would have been better. I was impressed with the primer – it is hard as steel once applied. It can be applied with a conventional HVLP spray gun, and is one-part. It dries quickly. These pictures required really powerful floodlights to take a picture – the end result was a Halloween black.
Just when y0u thought it couldn’t get weirder, you paint that dead black with a bright color base. The original Zolatone was 4 colors, but since modern Zolatone leaves out the important warmer 4th color nowadays, you have to compensate by adding a base color before applying the Zolatone, otherwise the final finish is very cool in color. As we wanted the finish to have a slightly coral feel to it, we chose a satin enamel floor paint in a color called “Coral Cloud”, made by Sears (Weatherbeater), of all places.
The Zolatone sheer coat is the Zolatone paint applied at high pressure (50PSI) through a large diameter nozzle (.080″) spray gun . I drilled out the nozzle of a conventional spray gun of a Harbor Freight HVLP spray pot & gun. The Zolatone website was plenty of information on how to apply, plus recommended spray guns.
It is amazing how the high pressure “sheer” coat softens the coarse color coat. It is important to use your test panels to get the coverage down just right to cover up enough, but not too much of the color. It took less than 1 gallon of the 20-80 Desert Camo to cover the 22 foot Flying Cloud, providing the texture and durability layer for the next layer.