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  1. #1
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    Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    I've seen my fair share of videos of detailers busting out paint depth gauges before starting on a vehicle and taking measurements all around. Do any of you utilize these? If so, have they ever saved you from a serious jam?

    Conversely, I've seen videos of guys giving some panels a serious sanding and seemingly not even coming close to cutting through the clear coat. Maybe these devices are more important if planning to due a true correction, but even in instances where the depth is said to be thin I still see correction being completed.

    Any thoughts? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    I do.

    I also have some strong opinions about them.

    I just posted this article and in it you'll see why it's important to use a PTG if you have one....

    Barn Find - 1950 Pontiac Chieftain Deluxe Convertible - Extreme Paint Correction










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  3. #3
    Senior Member TTQ B4U's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    I wouldn't touch a panel of someone else's vehicle without one. It can reveal a lot. Previous paint work, poor polishing/heavy compounding of an area, re-spray jobs, thin paint. It's not even so much about dead-nuts accuracy as it is consistency.

    I have a T&C page that people sign and for a reason. I don't always see with my eyes what's going on but a gauge can tell you to make note of something like a repainted panel or an area where in the past someone polished down a scratch on a panel that if you were treat like the rest of the vehicle (perhaps unaware) could lead to a burn through.

    It's but one of many tools. Information is power and it provides you with information about the vehicle and it's finish. Well worth the small money they cost.
    SOLD my Daily, what's next is still being decided
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  5. #4
    Senior Member TTQ B4U's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    I do.




    Go to a new Mazda Dealer and measure the roof of their new showroom vehicles. Then go measure some 3-5yr old ones on the lot.
    SOLD my Daily, what's next is still being decided
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    2014 Black Mica Metallic Toyota Corolla S - Son's new car

  6. #5
    Senior Member TMQ's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    What is a T&C page?

    Tom
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  7. #6
    Senior Member TTQ B4U's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    Quote Originally Posted by TMQ View Post
    What is a T&C page?

    Tom
    Terms & Conditions.
    SOLD my Daily, what's next is still being decided
    2018 Ruby Red Metallic Lincoln MK-C Reserve | AWD 2.3l EcoBoost - Wife's
    2014 Black Mica Metallic Toyota Corolla S - Son's new car

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  9. #7
    Senior Member 98CayenneTA's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    Old Fairlane, the next person to machine polish this vehicle, and there will be someone just not this guy, is going to find primer.

    That's 15 microns.
    .0005"

    Ripping through your mind like a hurricane full of novocaine

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  11. #8
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    I bought a Highline paint thickness gauge before Christmas as I wanted to have it for detailing but more immediately I was using it to verify a used car I was buying for my son. As TTQ B4U mentioned, I don’t know for sure it is 100% accurate as I’d need a more expensive verified meter to tell me that. But what it did provide was consistency. The paint on his 2014 Toyota Prius measured between 3.7 and 4.1 mils across the entire car minus the plastic bumpers, which I couldn’t test since they weren’t ferrous metal. It gave me peace of mind knowing that the car hadn’t been in an accident.

    And I now get to play with it when detailing though I primarily do my own vehicles.

    HighLine Meter Paint Thickness Gauge 2nd Generation

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  13. #9
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    Quote Originally Posted by TTQ B4U View Post
    Go to a new Mazda Dealer and measure the roof of their new showroom vehicles. Then go measure some 3-5yr old ones on the lot.
    I hear their paint is now infused with graphene so it doesn’t have to be as thick. Come on, catch up with technology man.

  14. #10
    Senior Member fly07sti's Avatar
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    Re: Who here uses paint depth gauges?

    Lots of great info here which I totally agree with. I’d also like to add that it helps with doing test spots. Last thing you want is to do a test spot on the trunk lid then go around the car and find out the results are not the same on the hood and fenders because it’s been repainted and the paint is very different from the OEM.

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