Paint booth with car in it
The Paint Shop

Smart, Efficient Paint Application from 3M

Resources for Surface Prep, Masking and Painting

  • Surface Prep, Masking and Painting SOP icon

    Standard Operation Procedures for The Paint Shop

    Here you will find step-by-step procedures from start to finish, including how to mask a vehicle, feather prime block, preparing bumpers and e-coat panels and mixing and spraying using disposable paint cups. These SOPs are recommended for helping ensure you create the most suitable panels for car paint application.

  • Surface Prep, Masking and Painting Technical Tips Icon

    Technical Tips for The Paint Shop

    3M provides vital tips that support car panel repair, critical for an area that combines product, process and pure skill for truly outstanding results. Our tech tips make your life easier, while still allowing you to achieve the best results and auto body shop efficiency. Check them out below.


  • Important Note
    There are of course many factors and variables that can affect an individual repair, so the technician and repair facility need to evaluate each specific application and repair process, including relevant vehicle, part and OEM guidelines, and determine what is appropriate for that repair.

Featured Standard Operation Procedures for The Paint Shop

  • paint spray gun being used in paint booth

    Paint Application | In the Booth

    Your paint booth is not just where you earn your living. It’s where you prove yourself, and the value of your entire shop, every single day. At 3M, we provide solutions to help you from the moment you step inside the booth. They include our 3M™ Dirt Trap products, for keeping the paint booth and your work clean, our revolutionized 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Spray Cup System to drive painter efficiency and ease, and our 3M™ Accuspray™ ONE spray gun to further simplify the painting process.

    For truly spectacular results coming out of the paint booth, discover the best practices, processes and procedures to bring into it.

    View In the Booth Application Details


  • Feather Prime Block

    Feather Prime Block

    These 3M SOPs for feather, prime and block cover critical procedures for vehicle panel preparation. Included are products, procedures and abrasive grades for feather-edging and masking for primer, as well as primer application and effective block sanding.


  • General Masking of car

    General Masking

    Review the basics for effective masking for smoother, better auto paint work. Excellent for masking large and small car panels, these SOPs describe products and techniques for paint overspray protection using plastic sheeting as well as critical edge masking with fine line tapes.


More 3M Standard Operating Procedures for the Paint Shop


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Technical Tips for The Paint Shop

Maybe more than anywhere else in collision repair, it’s vital to gain valuable insights into best practices in the paint shop. This especially applies when you begin using new or upgraded equipment, such as our 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Spray Cup System. Here are a few tips from the technicians at 3M who can help you convert smoothly to the highest-performing spray cup system on the market.

  • Properly Attaching the Lid

    • 3M PPS paint cup on table

      Q: How can I ensure that the PPS™ Series 2.0 cup, liner and lid fit tightly together every time?

      A: Place the liner into the cup. Line up the lid with the cup as shown on the right: one tab on the lid should be centered with the clear access window on the cup. Push the lid straight down into the liner. Once pushed down, lock the lid onto the cup with a ¼-turn. There is no need to overtighten.

  • Properly Attaching the Spray Gun

    • 3M PPS paint cup lock system

      Q: What is the best way to make sure the 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Cup is connected securely to the spray gun?

      A: Place the liner into the cup. Line up the lid with the cup as shown on the right: one tab on the lid should be centered with the clear access window on the cup. Push the lid straight down into the liner. Once pushed down, lock the lid onto the cup with a ¼-turn. There is no need to overtighten.

  • Best Practices for Spill-Free Lid Removal

    • 3M PPS Paint Cup being attached to paint gun

      Q: How can we avoid spillage during refilling?

      A: The 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Lid is designed to hold up to 3 oz of paint below the filter to minimize sputtering during spraying. After spraying is complete, you should allow a little extra time to let this filtered paint drain back into the cup before you remove the lid for tinting or refilling. To make it go as quickly as possible:

      Unhook the air from the spray gun. Invert the gun and hold the trigger open to start the paint drain. To speed up the flow, gently tap the gun and cup assembly against a solid surface. If it appears the paint is not draining, tap a little harder. Remember, there is more paint below the filter, so it will take a little more time vs. legacy PPS™ disposable paint cups.

  • Using the PPS™ Series 2.0 Universal Shaker Core

    • 3M PPS Paint Cup Universal Shaker Core

      Q: Can we use the 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Cups in our paint shaker without breaking them?

      A: Yes. Use the 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Universal Shaker Core, which works with all sizes of 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 paint cups and absorbs and distributes the force from the shaker through the clamps. Simply tighten the shaker core over the lid until snug. Do not over-tighten, as this can cause the hard cup to break (usually along the bottom of the access window).

      Remember, you ALWAYS get a FREE hard cup in every case. The 3M™ PPS™ Series 2.0 Cups are NOT designed for extended use.


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Need Help Finding the Right Solution?

These 3M resources are meant to help you save time, save money and get the most out of your collision repair operations. If have additional questions about metal panel repair and replacement or anything related to 3M collision repair products and solutions, we’re happy to help. You can send us a message at the right. Or, if your needs are more immediate (or if you just want to talk shop), we’re ready to chat. We look forward to working with you!

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