Underbody paint recipe
La Tempesta will seldom be driven in the rain and never on salty roads, so the paint protecting the suspension parts and other things under the car is the very old, tried, tested, famous and patented Farmer Hansen’s Blue.
Primer (“Farmer Hansen’s Blue”):
1 part Owatrol, 3 parts Arcanol mixed together. Arcanol is an alkyd-based paint which at least comes in either semi gloss black or semi gloss bluish grey. I chose the latter to make it easier to see where the top coat had been applied or not. Arcanol was patented in the 1930’s and was used extensively on Norwegian whaling ships. Jotun bought the Arcanol patent in 1932. Note: Arcanol is also sold as “Bengalack Metal Primer” (Bengalack Metallgrunning). It’s the same stuff, but the primer may not be available worldwide.
Owatrol is a colourless oil paint additive and is sold worldwide. It’s been on the market “forever”. It penetrates the pores of the metal, makes the Arcanol flow better and stick to almost anything. Before applying, make sure that the surface is clean, as rust free as possible (you can paint directly on the rust though) and degreased. You can use petrol or paint thinner for degreasing. Apply two thin coatings with a brush and let the first layer cure before applying the next. Curing time is about 24 hours in room temperature, but much longer in low temperatures. Let the primer cure for as long as you can, however. For extra protection you can use a coating of pure Owatrol before a layer or two of Farmer Hansen’s Blue.
Alternatively, use POR-15 instead of Farmer Hansen’s Blue. POR-15 needs much more careful preparation than Farmer Hansen’s Blue, something which isn’t always feasible when doing spot fix-ups under an old car.
1 part Owatrol, 4 parts Bengalac mixed together. Bengalac is an alkyd-based enamel paint which comes in a multitude of colours and have traditionally been used to paint almost everything that needs a hard, glossy surface. I chose semi gloss black. The top coat mix needs much more vigorous stirring to mix the paints, but the end product can be applied equally well with a brush and a spray nozzle. Always use two coatings and allow the final coating to dry and cure for at least a couple of days. The end result is a glossy, viscous and “oily” coat which will not chip, peel or flake and withstands high pressure washing.
Note: “Farmer Hansen’s Blue” (Hansens Bondeblått) is the unofficial in-joke name for a 75/25 mix of grey Arcanol and Owatrol. You can’t buy the mix anywhere, and should you refer to it by name, nobody will probably know what you are talking about. There is apparently a bearing grease product called “Arcanol” from the company AHR International on the market. Don’t get them confused. Owatrol is sold as “FLOOD Penetrol” in the US.