Our painting process begins the minute we receive a phone call or email requesting paint pricing. We like to build a relationship with our customers that last a lifetime. Our entire inspection and paint process usually take three to four weeks and follows a five-stage process, outlined below.
Stage 1: Scheme & Color Design
After contacting us, we work with the customer to pick out the best paint scheme for their needs and desires and can recommend colors and lines that work well with there ideas. Once determined, we schedule the aircraft to arrive. We work with Scheme Designers, Dream Scheme Designs, and AircraftStudioDesign to help our customers design a custom scheme for their aircraft. Deciding on a scheme or colors can be challenging, but we are there to help. We have painted aircraft from schemes that were drawn on a napkin or from a photograph and can help make any of your ideas come to life.
Stage 2: Visual Inspection
Upon arrival at our facility, we perform a visual inspection of the aircraft with the owner and determine what defects need to be repaired and if any fiberglass or plastic parts need to be replaced.
Stage 3: Prep for Paint
First, we start the tear down process, where we remove all control surfaces, cowlings, cowl and gear doors, and any trim pieces. Then, we mask off any remaining non metallic parts. Next, we apply the chemical strip of all the old paint and primer, then a hot pressure wash. Any dent repair is done and all parts are either fixed or new parts are fit to the aircraft, then it is washed with an industrial soap. Once all the soap is removed, a chromate-free conversion coating is applied.
Stage 4: Paint Process
When the aircraft is dry the repaint process begins. First, a coat of corrosion preventative epoxy primer is painted, then three coats of the base color. The scheme is then applied and the stripes painted all in base coat. Once the scheme is finished we perform another visual inspection performed on the aircraft assuring no defects in the colors and scheme. After we are satisfied, we complete the painting with three coats of clear. In our process, we use all Sherwin Williams aerospace coatings.
Stage 5: Completion
After completion of the paint process, all control surfaces are rebalanced to manufactures' specifications, and the aircraft is reassembled. Once assembly is complete the entire aircraft is inspected by an A&P mechanic and then an IA.
Griggs Aircraft Refinishing provides our customers with many Standard Procedures that would cost extra at other paint facilities including:
Ten hours of dent repair
All non-structural hardware replaced with stainless steel hardware
Complete strip and repainting of all gear wells
Resurfacing of composite pieces
New wing root seals on low-wing aircraft
Base and clearcoat refinishing
We also provide customers with another, less expensive option to get your aircraft looking new – our Paint Rejuvenation Process. If you want your aircraft looking new without the down time and the cost of a complete repaint, we can in most cases repair your current paint. Our rejuvenation process begins much like our complete refinish process with the customer inspection of the aircraft. After we discuss repair options or alterations for your current scheme, we can restore the original shine of the aircraft and repair any damages done to the paint.
About Sherwin Williams Aerospace
For more than 80 years, professionals have asked for the Sherwin-Williams Aerospace Coatings full line of topcoats, surface prep, and interior coatings products. The company has extensive experience providing coatings solutions for the aviation industry.
In 1928, Sherwin-Williams introduced its first aviation product Aero Enamel. The next year, this revolutionary new coating was the paint of choice on the Southern Cross, the monoplane flown by Australian aviator Sir Charles Kingsford Smith in the historic, first ever, Trans-pacific flight from the mainland of the United States to Australia. With this flight Sherwin-Williams made its mark in the aviation world and continues to do so today.
For more information on their full line of products, visit Sherwin-Williams Aerospace online.