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Old 05-11-2012, 06:23 AM   #1
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Red Caliper Paint – Closest To Original

I started repainting my “S” calipers last week because they were starting to look a little worn. After going through almost an entire can of Dupli-Color Red Engine Enamel, I decided that I didn’t like the color… much darker than original.

I didn’t have time to order anything, so I went on a quest to find the closest spray off the shelf to the original color. I figured I’d post my findings for anyone else who wants to give this project a shot in the future…

Dupli-Color 500* Engine Enamel Red (DE1653) – too dark
Dupli-Color 500* Engine Enamel Chevrolet Orange-Red (DE1607) – too orange
Rust-Oleum 500* Engine Enamel Ford Red (248948) – too orange
VHT 900* Caliper Real Red (SP731) – almost perfect

Of the 4 I tested, the VHT Caliper Real Red wins hands down. I’ll post some pictures once I get everything put back together.

If anyone else has any brands/colors they’ve tried, please feel free to post them here!

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Old 05-11-2012, 08:01 AM   #2
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Good info, thanks for posting!
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:06 AM   #3
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My calibers are looking very faded.... Is a repaint the only option or can you get away with a wash and polish.... If so what polish / product??
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:10 AM   #4
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How did you prep them prior to painting?
What about the lettering?
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:13 AM   #5
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I followed Pedro's DIY at www.PedrosGarage.com for the prep, and I bought the white Porsche caliper decals from eBay.
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Old 05-11-2012, 12:05 PM   #6
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This is a job that doesn't require nearly as much thinking as you might think!

I've painted calipers on my Boxster and prior to that a BMW Z4. My 17 year old painted the calipers on his 323ci recently as well. Pedro's instructions are great.


I did mine as follows, using brush on caliper paint.
1. Raise one side of car and pull wheels.
2. Spray and clean calipers as best you can with Brake cleaner ( I used 1 can per side of car).
3. Use blue painters tape to mask off the bleed valve and brake lines.
4. Use news paper to cover rotor.
5. Apply a couple of coats to each wheel.
6. Let dry for a couple of hours and put your 'Porsche' sticker on if you want.
7. Install wheels, lower car and repeat for other side.
8. Give the car at 'till the next day before you drive.

We didn't bother to add any clear over the color and the calipers have held up quite well. Its been three years for me with the Boxster. I may repaint again next year or two.
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Old 05-11-2012, 06:16 PM   #7
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Years ago, I used Dupli-Color Engine Enamel, Ford Red. I didn't do a scientific study, but I think it came out very close to the original powder coated color.

I would definitely add a clear coat, after the stickers go on.
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:00 PM   #8
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I used 2k Vw tornado red, applied stickers and the covered with 2k clear coat.
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Old 05-12-2012, 08:17 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dja1980 View Post

Dupli-Color 500* Engine Enamel Red (DE1653) – too dark
Dupli-Color 500* Engine Enamel Chevrolet Orange-Red (DE1607) – too orange
Rust-Oleum 500* Engine Enamel Ford Red (248948) – too orange
VHT 900* Caliper Real Red (SP731) – almost perfect

Of the 4 I tested, the VHT Caliper Real Red wins hands down. I’ll post some pictures once I get everything put back together.

If anyone else has any brands/colors they’ve tried, please feel free to post them here!
Yes the VHT is the closest I fund. After putting on the decals I used a clear engine enamel and they look awesome. A year latter still look like new.
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Old 02-15-2013, 11:24 AM   #10
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I never updated with a pic!

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Old 02-16-2013, 02:21 AM   #11
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Thanks for the thread guys….now I know what to get!

Thanks for circulating good info!

….My brakes will be faded Factory RED with envy, until then!
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Old 02-18-2013, 05:57 AM   #12
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I thought I'd throw this in, since I just did my metal lawn furniture; Rustoleum red is a dead match to Guards Red. I know it's not adequate for the heat produced by brakes, but for some kind of little ancillary garage project, it's fun to have.
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:47 AM   #13
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When Re-painting, did you strip all of the old paint off first or just spray the new coatings over the old paint? And if you did strip it did you just use paint removal or give them a sand down?

Last edited by Jbocio; 02-18-2013 at 08:49 AM.
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Old 02-18-2013, 08:57 AM   #14
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I cleaned them well with brake cleaner first. Then, I roughed them up using a palm sander with fine grit and cleaned the dust. I wet-sanded imperfections between coats with ultra-fine (1,000 - 3,000) grit.
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Old 01-22-2015, 10:53 PM   #15
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Any other tips on where to get decals? I've noticed, because I did this years ago, that your new decals are a larger font. Meaning they are bigger than stock. I got the OEM sized ones (same dimensions) from a company who went out of business, any suggestions?
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Old 01-23-2015, 05:55 AM   #16
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I found it's not the paint but the clearcoat that fails on Porsche calipers. Forgetting for a moment the (lack of) wisdom of base coat/ clear coat on calipers vs. just painting them red - I used a plastic tool to remove all the bubbled areas and then fared in the chips and resprayed them with high-temp clearcoat, and they look like new.
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Old 07-31-2015, 06:19 PM   #17
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Anyone else test the "clear coat only" idea?

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Last edited by amagalla; 07-31-2015 at 08:36 PM.
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