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An all too common problem.

Urethane paints require a finishing to them as they have to be brought to a shine. It is also a single stage paint so if it wears, you are down to the primer, or whatever is under it. It is a lower total cost to put down.

Base/clear is the paint of choice these days. A well done job will outlast a single stage job and is more durable overall.

There is a difference in quality between paints. It's best to stay with the professional brands. The reasons why clears separated was due to the lack of total paint sprayed and poor jobs doing them by the factories.

Probably one of the biggest single issues on why paints don't lkast well is that not enough coats are put down. Factories and cut rate body shops put as little paint down as they can get away with. Another issue is how well the base is prepared before paint is applied.
 

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Bob's right about the two very durable paints. Imron has been used on emergency vehicles like ambulances with success.

The new EPA regs have been modified thanks to SEMA not to apply to hobbyists who paint two or less cars per year. The legalities of spraying at home don't really apply, therefore. Still and all, you do need to be very careful about physical exposure, especially respiratory,
 

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Bob is correct. The issue with clearcoat separation that was prevalent some years ago was due to poor application rather than the nature of the paints themselves. Preparation of the basecoat surface is important also before shooting the clear. It's no different than what is needed to insure good adhesion of any stage of primer, paint or dye.

For example, I've gotten quite proficient at dying vinyl and plastic. Preparation turned out to be even more important than how you shoot the dye. Paints are no different. You can have issues with even any single stage paint if you don't take the time to do proper prep. Do it right, you'll have no problems. Do it wrong, you'll know it in time.
 
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