Background on my car and paint dilemma do I or dont I?


Mar 16, 2016
89 Mercedes 230e
I have had my 230e for 9 months now,thankfully I have had access to another car when Bruno has been off the road and he has been off more than on.

In all fairness though its because of his broken history,ownership and a period of neglect :(

He started off as a dealer demo before being sold on to a doctor who owned him for most of the cars life.

The car came with every single old MOT and they told a story of constant regular mileage until around 10 years ago when each year it got less and less up until 2011 when it literally only covered a couple of hundred miles in a year!

Tracing its past I found the doctor was getting old and driving less and less and sadly using the cars bodywork as parking sensors!

Thankfully he never had an serious bumps we are talking scraping paint off on his gateposts at home whilst kissing them reversing in

From 2011 to 2015 the car came off the road and was sorn until the doctor decided he was never going to drive again so it ended up for sale.

Then came owner number three who wanted champagne motoring for tap water money.

He owned the car just 6 months and did nothing but bodges!

It was riding on 15 year old tires full of cracks so he filled every tire with tire foam!

The lacquer was lifting on the boot so he got a dodgy cheap boot lid repaint (in damp conditions from the look of it?)

Broke the glass on the speedo removing the cluster incorrectly to investigate why the instruments back lighting wasn't working.

Destroyed the glove box liner by yanking it out to replace the bulb!

The list goes on!

He did nothing!

I come in last August,I view the car at the time prices were strong and I part with £1500.

The saving grace is it came with a private plate Which I have had valued at £600 so if I ever sold that its a £900 car ;)

The Doctor several years ago payed to have his scrapes painted namely the rear nearside door and rear quarter and the following owner had paint by numbers paintwork do a beer money job on the boot!

The colour is Almandine Red, which as you all know as it gets on in years it goes sort of rose pinky red which mine has (pictures flatter it!)

Two thirds of the paint matches a third doesn't!

The third that doesn't is a good match I reckon for what it would of looked like new but way out now some 20 odd years later!

When I bought the car I didn't notice it!

Yes I failed to notice it as the weather and light was on his side the day I viewed it and you couldn't see it so easily it was only on taking photos I saw it after I bought it !


So 9 months on the car has had

4 new tires
bottom ball joints and wishbones overhaul
new exhaust
new battery
New alternator
New engine mounts
Brake overhaul
4 wheel alignment
OVP relay
Gearbox fluids and filters changed

I am getting on top of it now apart from a dodgy OVP relay socket but sussed out the issue now.

So Paint!!!!

Car has done 71k genuine.

Its solid it looks like its regularly had road salt washed off because there's no nastie's hiding where you would expect them and I know some will say just live with the paint but though it does its job of protecting it the colour match really gets on my nerves now!

It drives lovely and it a good solid base for a project.

Thing is I cant and never will be able to justify a £1500-2000 paint job!

Ive considered doing it myself in 1k paint to preserve the original colour but even doing that there's not going to be change from £500 once you've bought materials etc!

I also believe 1k doesn't hold up that well and the clear coat is poor?

I don't even want to go down the risk home spraying 2k mental disorder LOL!

So I have to stick with what I have!

Or do I?

There is another way........................................

Roller Painting/Spraying synthetic enamel :eek:

Has she gone mad your all wondering?

Roller painting a Benz !

Question is why not?

Ive started to figure this............................

These cars are going up in value granted but this car has no service book though every mot backs up the mileage :D

It will never ever be perfect

When these are changing hands for £10k+ those buyers will want provenance and original everything which even with a top notch paint job ill never be able to give that provenance.

When that time comes examples that are rotten will command £1500+ So in a few years ill probably get my money back however its painted.

There will always be somebody who has always wanted one but has a low budget I am not out to make money flipping this car I want to use and enjoy it.

As I getting old I am no longer impressed with new cars,not a fan of metallic paint either its a bum to match!

I know I can get a good finish but under the bonnet will be the wrong colour

So what :p

I am getting older and not in the best of health and just want to enjoy this for me while I can.

Before you dismiss it I painted this for a friend a few years ago in a tent using Rustoleum Combicolour through a typical electric gun for spraying fences and it cost around £75 all in including paint and materials :D


I know its a lot of work but I figure If we ever do get a constant summer I will get it painted build up the coats let them cure and drive it as is over the next winter then wet sand and buff next spring.

The hardest part has been getting my head around painting a Mercedes with a Roller and/or a Fence sprayer :eek:

But then again there was once upon a time Rolls and Bentley's were brush painted at the factory.

But after all its only a car,If I hadn't of bought it my guess is after a couple of years of further neglect would of been scrapped?

So thoughts guys if you please? I guessing lots will say don't bother leave it as is?

But its getting me down and you cant argue with 5 litres of custom mixed paint for just £50 :thumb:

Over to you.....................


Hardcore MB Enthusiast
Jun 10, 2008
Gods own country
Mercedes SLK R171
I've painted 2 cars in plant enamel and they both came out perfect and paint was still good many years later. One of them was red not too dissimilar to your colour so if you are on a budget then why not? Not everyone has the budget to do a full restoration and £3k paint job.

Decent prep and £50 for litres of plant enamel and you probably have something 95% of the population wouldn't know is 2k paint.

Your car your choice but wish you luck whatever you decide

Deleted member 37751

90% of painting is in the prep anyway so as long as you get that right I can see it being a decent job.

A friend of mine painted his old VW in army green using a paint brush and flatted it off afterwards and it looked really good.

Bobby Dazzler

MB Club Veteran
Jan 21, 2005
Mittel England
ML AMG-line Black Series
Based on the photos it looks good, even if the original paint has faded more than the repainted areas, and you've said it's solid. If the boot is a poor job, get a decent job done on the boot, and leave the rest as it is. Faded original paintwork will more likely get your money back than even a good DIY job (in my opinion). Enjoy her as she is!


MB Enthusiast
Aug 9, 2015
The shire
C204 C63, VW Transporter
Could maybe get the whole thing wrapped for less than £500?


MB Enthusiast
Sep 1, 2012
S320 CDI Perlite Gray Metallic 2005
If you intend on keeping the car for sometime. Why not! That was my logic on having my car painted.

A250 Bennyboy

Active Member
Mar 16, 2016
Northwest UK
A Class A250 w176
Like been said a vinyl wrap will completely transform the look of your car and would be a fraction of the cost of a respray.
Worth thinking about some of the wraps look really neat.


Active Member
Apr 10, 2014
Isle of Wight UK
You have already sprayed one so you know the drill. As above, prep work and dust free area are paramount. While home on military leave many years ago I painted my mother's Oldsmobile in the garage with a rented spraygun, turned out very well, I thought. It was a 10 year old car, quite faded in spots so it was a decided improvement. It gave me a nice feeling of accomplishment as well. I say go for it and please publish before and after photos. Good luck!


Mar 16, 2016
89 Mercedes 230e
Thanks Guys:thumb:

I am thinking of having a go myself with 1k Base and Clear don't want to risk 2k :crazy:

My Thinking now is if I am not happy with the finish or as some suggest it goes dull after a while it will still be all one shade :D

I have considered Wrapping but theres a neighbours cat likes sitting on the bonnet and im worried he might snag the vinyl or is it tougher than it looks?

I did like the idea of a black sort of shot silk sating black/crimson vinyl wrap ;)

Just the thought of the cat clawing it once finished :doh:

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