color expert Colour Management

Service • Trends • Training • Management
Matching colours
fast and easy.
How to reach
specific target
Paint art.
Spies Hecker – simply closer.
Prodigious putty.
With the new Spies Hecker Raderal® Special Putty Set 2011
you can reliably apply putty to highly stressed body surfaces.
When repairing accident damage, bodyshops are increasingly encountering a large
variety of materials such as high-strength steels. During body work in particular,
these call for a wide range of repair methods that also have an effect on the nature
of the substrate.
Spies Hecker’s Raderal® Special Putty Set 2011 is a high-grade polyester metal putty
specially designed to cover welds, gaps and rivets on steel substrates. Displaying
excellent filling power, the product ensures outstanding adhesion. The Set consists
of Raderal® Special Putty Powder 2011 and Raderal® Special Putty Hardener 2012,
which are mixed in a ratio of 2:1 by volume.
Thomas Melzer,
Brand Manager International.
Approval from the automotive industry.
Achieving goals.
“The Raderal® Special Putty Set 2011 meets all the requirements of leading automotive manufacturers for proficient repairs,” stresses Frank Barduna, Head of
Technical Service at Spies Hecker GmbH. “This way bodyshops can be sure of
carrying out repairs precisely in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.”
For certain body and refinishing tasks, he expects various car makers to increasingly
specify the use of special putty products.
Dear Readers,
Is your company really fit for the challenges of the future? Does anyone have
the time to even ask this question in
the commotion of everyday bodyshop
In this issue of “colorexpert”, we are therefore focusing on the various processes
throughout the business. We give you
concrete tips and valuable information
so that you can achieve more.
To optimise your business, it is particularly important to critically review your
routine and question your processes.
Even minor changes can take the strain
out of everyday business and boost
your success. However, work processes
can only be improved if they are considered in a broader context, e.g. colour
identification and other processes in
the bodyshop. We want to be there
for you with advice and practical help,
and support you with solutions tailored
to your needs.
This issue again contains many examples from the field – from international
Spies Hecker customers – as a source
of new inspiration for you.
Optimise your business.
Thomas Melzer
Brand Manager, Spies Hecker GmbH
We wish you an enjoyable read and success with your business. And do take a
look at your processes from time to time –
in a broader context, of course.
This involves not only the manual tasks,
but also such commercial activities as
customer acquisition and the systematic management of accounts receivables. Only if you are aware of your
figures and keep a watchful eye on them
can you stay on course for business
colorexpert – tips and information for bodyshops • © SPIES HECKER GMBH / 50858 Köln, Germany • Horbeller Str. 17 • E-mail: [email protected] • Internet: • Responsible under the German Press Act: Karsten Jürs • Editor: Silke Gursch, Christian Simmert • Layout: Adfactory GmbH, Düsseldorf • Text: Mediaservice GmbH, Neuss •
Reader: Tyrone Kirk • Translation: Tim Chafer, ExperTeam, Düsseldorf • Reproduction, even in part, only by permission of the editors. The data and information on the suitability and usage of
our products are not binding and do not release the user from his responsibility to carry out his own tests on their suitability for the intended purposes and processes. The product names mentioned
in the articles are predominantly registered trademarks.
Taking the heat out of costs.
Modern infrared dryers cut costs and optimise the process.
Bodyshops rank amongst the businesses
with especially high energy consumption.
The main cost factors are not only the
ventilation of the spray booth, but also
the drying process itself. Starting up the
dryer to temper individual body parts is
particularly costly. Experts reckon it’s up
to € 8 per hour of operation. In view of
spiralling energy prices, it’s therefore well
worth taking a close look at the drying
How to reduce
energy costs.
“With a properly thought-out process and
the controlled use of IR dryers, the bodyshop can cut its electricity costs,” says
Spies Hecker specialist Wolfgang Feyrer.
Because energy consumption is almost
70% lower compared to the convective
drying of individual body parts. “For an
hour of operation of the IR dryer, we estimate about € 1.50 for energy. The cost of
mechanical ventilation has to be added
to this.” A considerable cost advantage
for the bodyshop.
Waterborne base coat
Top coat
Clear coat
Surfacer on plastic
Top coat on plastic
Clear coat on plastic
The listed times refer to the IRT Hyperion PcAuto series.
Source: IRT
Low-key is all the rage.
Catching the customer!
Silver, black, white and grey – for the paintwork of their vehicles,
car purchasers worldwide go for unassuming colours.
No two customers are alike –
how to reach specific target groups.
among car owners the world over, with
blue and red claiming places five and
six globally.
More shades,
greater variety.
World car colour:
Silver 25%
Black 23%
White 16%
Grey 13%
Blue 9%
Red 8%
Brown / Beige 4%
Green 1%
Yellow / Gold 1%
Others 1%
Silver, grey, white and black are the most
popular car colours around the world –
this is one of the results of the DuPont
Global Color Popularity Report 2009.
All the same, even if colour preferences
are converging on the global scale,
there are still regional differences.
While white heads the pack in North
America, the trend colour typical of the
iPod and its ilk only ranks fifth in Europe.
Here it is black that leads the field,
closely followed by silver and grey.
Colourful paintwork is also popular
Looking ahead, black, white and silver
are set to be permanent fixtures on
the 2010 agenda. “Thanks to the use of
new pigments, traditional OEM colours
are being given new effects and a
variety of intermediate shades,” explains
Elke Dirks, Color Designer Europe at
DuPont Performance Coatings. A trend
that Spies Hecker is already responding
to in the vehicle refinish sector. “Spies
Hecker is offering new special mixing
colours to ensure that the latest OEM
colours can be repaired. To make this
possible, the latest effect pigments
such as ColorStream or Xirallic pigments
are being used,” Frank Barduna of Spies
Hecker stresses. “These are necessary
for the perfect replication of effect
colours from series production.”
Attracting new customers calls for specialised strategies. If you want to appeal to
private customers, leasing companies, fleets, insurance companies or dealerships,
you have to speak their language.
First analyse …
Investigate your bodyshop’s potential and your options. What services do you offer?
What do you do best and match these with your customer base? Basically, it’s a
question of finding out where your strengths are.
… and then off you go!
So you know the target groups you want to appeal to? Fine. Now develop suitable
advertising activities and messages. Whatever form they take – ads, flyers or
mailings – the refinishing business should always stress the services that are
important for individual customer groups. For example, vehicle preparation can be
of special importance to company customers in terms of cutting costs when leased
vehicles are returned.
Marketing for commercial customers.
For companies, vehicle fleets and leasing companies, it is the bodyshop’s professional image that counts. A mailing with an attractive company brochure or an overview of services will stimulate interest. Gather information beforehand about potential
customers and don’t forget to respond to their fleet size and distance from your bodyshop, and include a special offer in your letter or face-to-face communication.
Dealerships, fleets, etc.
Matt elegance.
As a professional service provider you have to stress your strong service orientation,
high flexibility, impeccable quality and warranties. The central requirement that your
bodyshop has to meet is cost-effective repairs.
A gentle shimmer and a noble appearance –
there’s a trend towards matt finishes.
Winning over insurers.
Reserved elegance rather than a high-gloss extravaganza – a car that catches
the eye. A current example of a series matt finish is the special CLS Grand Edition
model from Mercedes-Benz. What makes the colour “designo magno platin” different
is its elegant matt finish. “Special series with equally special paintwork and new
effects often call for a special refinishing process,” claims Frank Barduna, Head of
Technical Service International at Spies Hecker. For Mercedes, new Permasolid®
Matt Component MA 110 is mixed with Permasolid® HS Clear Coat 8030 in a ratio
of 75:25% or 70:30%. “This way the refinisher achieves a uniform matting effect.
The degree of gloss can be effectively adapted to the original paintwork by varying
the mixing ratio accordingly.”
Paint system information with detailed user instructions on partial and full resprays
helps the refinisher to achieve the optimal matt effect.
Expertise and efficiency are demanded. Swift, professional claim management,
accurate costing and electronic claim handling are the focus of your message.
Private customers.
For private customers as well, active and targeted customer acquisition is important.
The 50+ generation, for instance, appreciates a high standard of service, transparency, reliability, and a fixed contact. Families appreciate child-friendly waiting areas
and the pick-up and drop-off service. Keeping to estimates and precise information
on the business’s services help to establish the private customer’s confidence in
your bodyshop.
Noble and powerful.
Purist, potent and personalised –
Wiesmann sports cars are hand-crafted one-offs
in a noble guise.
Flowing forms, impressive proportions
and striking details – sports cars and
micro-series are popular. And they have
one thing in common: They are tailormade unique specimens and come
from small but accomplished car manufacturers. Like Wiesmann. Whenever
the roadsters and GTs from the
Wiesmann factory turn up, they catch
the eye. Each vehicle is a hand-crafted,
one-off. 350 working hours, up to eight
weeks for manufacture – and the dream
of a personalised sports car comes true.
Exclusive bodywork.
The bodies for roadsters and GTs are
given their individualistic paint finish in
the German paintshop of Ralf Buran,
a long-standing Spies Hecker partner.
His business has put a shine on over
300 sports cars since 2003. For the
entire paint system, highly developed
Spies Hecker products are employed.
The car “manufactory” supplies the
vehicle parts made of glass-reinforced
plastic to the paintshop. There the components are tempered for nine to ten
hours and sanded, and then putty is
applied. Ralf Buran’s team reaches
again and again for the orbital sander,
applying putty and primer surfacer until
the curves are perfect.
Friedhelm Wiesmann personally.” He is
supported in this by Spies Hecker.
Technicians and employees of the Color
Service are on hand in the background
when it comes to putting extravagant
customer requests into practice.
Painting with passion.
Then painter Devid Ruppert and his
team get down to work. Piece by piece,
each pre-treated part is painted with
Spies Hecker Permahyd® Base Coat
Series 280/285. Be it a two- or threestage finish, and however individualistic
the car and choice of colour, the unique
finish is applied with loving attention to
After the top coat, the team sprays the
film of clear coat with concentration and
care to give each vehicle part a glossy
finish. Overall, the 20 employees at
Buran’s paintshop take over 120 working hours for the paintwork – excluding
drying time. Finally, the parts of the
body are returned to Wiesmann’s car
factory, ready for assembly into a shiny
new vehicle.
The Spies Hecker paint system
for Wiesmann.
• Raderal® Glass Fibre Putty 2507
• Raderal® Primer Surfacer 3508 new
• Permasolid® HS Premium Surfacer 5310
• Permahyd® Base Coat Series 280/285
• Permasolid® HS Clear Coat 8035
Personal choice
of colours.
Be they exclusive effects, unobtrusive
shades or powerful colours, it is the
Wiesmann customer himself who decides on the colour of his car. “For this
we apply sample finishes to a panel that
the buyer examines, selects and approves,” explains business owner Ralf
Buran. “So that the car’s paintwork is
always in line with current trends, we
coordinate new colours with Martin and
Photos: Wiesmann
System solution
a formidable paint system.
Impressively versatile.
The Cranen Fleetservice B.V. bodyshop in Heeswijk-Dinther (The Netherlands) has been
repairing trucks, buses, chassis and commercial vehicles since 1967. For these jobs,
business owner Bob Cranen has consciously chosen the Permafleet® commercial
vehicle paint system. “The painting of large surfaces calls for an extremely versatile
product system. The paint system’s broad range simply offers plenty of options.
By accurately mixing the materials, we can adapt quickly and precisely to different
coating requests and realise different surface qualities to perfection. It’s really
Anyone using the Spies Hecker Permafleet® product system can be sure of a
cost-effective solution, whatever the requirements.
• A product system from the primer to the clear coat, balanced throughout,
and reliable and easy to apply.
• Adaptable to the varying requirements of commercial vehicle refinishing,
high mechanical and chemical resistance, non-slip, elastic, and suitable for
different substrates.
• Three grades to choose from: High Class for extremely high-grade three- and
four-stage finishes by using Permafleet® HS Bus Surfacer 5530; the Top System
for cost-effective three- and four-stage commercial vehicle paintwork applied
wet-on-wet; and Economy for efficient clear over base finishes.
• Different degrees of gloss and textured surfaces are also possible.
• Faster drying of individual paint films during multi-stage finishing.
• Comprehensive service: customised consultations, paint system recommendations and training.
Perfectly equipped.
The right colour tools and working aids equip you perfectly
for the painting of commercial vehicles.
ColorDialog spectro.
Always a solution.
High-power service for heavy goods vehicles. Brixner opts for Permafleet®.
The commercial vehicles at the Brixner
family business in Germany are painted
with the Spies Hecker Permafleet® paint
system. The firm has been specialising in
the repair and surface coating of heavy
goods vehicles such as horse boxes,
semi-trailers, grain transporter vehicles,
and special-purpose and local-authority
service vehicles since 1963. “The system
is designed for simple and swift handling. We’re impressed by its flexibility,”
the entrepreneur reports. Profitability is
top priority. “We’ve been able to effectively optimize our labour and material
costs as we can apply the paint in
different grades.” Brixner uses special
Permafleet® paint system components
for differing requirements and standards
of finished paintwork.
For the painting of commercial vehicles,
the refinishing experts also rely on support from Spies Hecker: “The customised
The Spies Hecker spectrophotometer for
digital identification of house colours and
OEM commercial vehicle paintwork –
ideally used together with the CRplus
colour software.
Color Index.
System Poster.
3,000 colours on 28 extra-large colour
chips document all widely encountered
truck, standard and house colours, with
colour codes on the reverse for rapidly
finding the colour mixing formula.
Top coat, substrate and mixing ratios –
all the fields of application at a glance
on a poster. This gives you greater assurance when processing and applying
Permafleet® materials.
Color Mix Master.
Mixing Ratio Disc.
consultations, flexible product system
and helpful documentation ensure a
high standard of process security and
quality.” Even though the HGVs have to
be back on the road at the double.
Manufacturer: Assmann GmbH, Germany. Paintwork: Karosserie + Lack Brixner GmbH, Germany.
Services for
• Repairs
• Sandblasting
• Box and refrigerator bodies
• Frame alignment for
large vehicles
• Painting (commercial vehicle
painting unit for vehicles up
to 16 m long)
The right colour formula is yielded by
the Spies Hecker colour software CRplus,
with comprehensive data on over 3,000
colours for commercial vehicle finishes.
Extra functions include materials management, an overview of stocks and orders,
and user management.
Making colour tinting easier – with this
overview, refinishers can quickly select
the right mixing colours when refinishing
commercial vehicles.
A single twist, and you’ve got the precise
mixing ratio for hardener and reducer.
It couldn’t be simpler.
10 golden rules.
1. Calibrate the device.
The user is prompted to regularly calibrate
the ColorDialog spectro with the black box
and white tile.
3. The surface must be level.
The measured surface must be level.
6. Light conditions during colour measurement.
The ambient light is irrelevant during colour
7. Colour search.
By entering the manufacturer, colour code and
paint type, you can create a shortlist of hits.
8. Sample panel for colour comparison.
A sample panel should always be produced.
2. The surface must be clean.
Clean the surface with Permaloid® Silicone
Remover 7010 and polish the area that’s going
to be measured.
4. Temperature conditions for calibration and
The temperature and humidity should be identical
during device calibration and use.
5. Measure the colour.
Each colour reading requires three measurements.
9. Care and protection of the device.
When not in use, the optical measuring head
must always be protected with its cover on.
10. Operating the device.
Press the Operate button to switch the device on.
The colorimeter switches itself off automatically
after a certain time on standby.
The step-by-step procedure.
Damaged car.
Transfer the reading to the PC.
Create a shortlist of hits by entering
the manufacturer, code and paint type.
In the list of hits, the formulation
with the closest match is listed first.
Obtain details of the mixing formulation.
Use the computer scales to mix
the selected formulation.
Compare the sample panel to
the vehicle.
Apply the mixed paint.
Satisfied customer.
Double-check with
a sample panel.
• Stick a small panel onto a large
Identify the colour in
the immediate proximity
of the damage.
piece of paper.
• Make generous use of the paper
surface during painting.
• Use the same painting process as
on the vehicle.
Produce a sample panel with
the selected mixing formulation.
• The sample panel must be vertical
during painting.
Spies Hecker – simply closer.
© Spies Hecker GmbH, 08/2010
ColorDialog spectro: from colour measurement to the mixing formulation.
Lean thinking benefits everyone.
Concept focuses on the most effective ways of giving value to your customers.
Gary Steele,
Muradi’s Lean expert.
With support from Programme Partner,
Muradi, bodyshops in the UK are embracing Lean thinking and incorporating
the principles to make their businesses
more efficient and profitable.
The basic idea of lean is simple. It is
that the organisation should be focused
on the most effective way of producing
value for their customers. An organisation
using lean will approach this challenge
by: applying five basic lean principles;
concentrating on understanding waste
and value in its operation and training
staff who do and manage the work to act
as improvement teams to bring about
The five principles are:
Value: Value is what the customer wants
and it requires a precise understanding
of the needs of the customer. It is said
that up to 95% of process activities are
supportive or non-value adding.
Value Stream: These activities, when
done correctly and in the right order,
produce the product or service the customer values. A lean organisation traces
and manages all activities in the organisation that deliver value.
Flow: In a lean organisation, work should
flow steadily and without interruption
from one value adding or supporting
activity to the next. Where appropriate,
flow significantly speeds the process and
every effort should be made to eliminate
obstacles and bottlenecks that prevent
Pull: The system should react to customer demand. In non-lean organisations, work is pushed through the system at the convenience of the operators
and so produce outputs that are not
Perfection: As the first four principles
are implemented, organisations should
understand the system ever better and
from this understanding should be able
to generate ideas for more improvement.
A lean system becomes yet leaner and
faster and waste is ever easier to identify.
A perfect process delivers just the right
amount of value to the customer. In a perfect process every step is value adding,
delivering a good result every time.
Drawing on the expertise of Muradi,
CUI in the UK has established a Lean
Academy and the first group of bodyshop Lean Champions are now halfway
through the programme.
The Lean Champions programme is designed as an entry level to the Lean Coach
programme which focuses on the individuals who are tasked with improving the
quality, cost and delivery performance
within a bodyshop environment.
The approach during these workshops
is very interactive and focused on effective learning and therefore uses a wide
variety of exercises, case studies, puzzles,
group discussions and varied media,
personal and group work as well as presentations.
In some cases the Champion’s own businesses will host a module of the programme so that delegates can make
use of the workplace.
Charles Williams of C & P Panelcraft says
that Lean thinking is a slow burning process which benefits the whole organisation and carries a real potential to significantly increase profits. He describes it as
“very thought provoking and fascinating
stuff. There’s waste in every facet of the
organisation and in odd places you might
not think of.”
His feeling that there’s an even greater
need to run a company lean in times of
recession is echoed by James Gore of
Adamsons. “Because you’re running a
successful business you think you are
doing it all correctly, but then you realise
you’re not. Lean shows you what you don’t
know and opens your eyes. It teaches you
to manage your processes effectively.”
Finally, Steve Walker agrees that Lean
can transform a business. “Even if you
use just half of what you learn, you will
Examples of how Lean can bring improvements.
Waste & definition.
Administrative example.
Production example.
Moving items and cars unnecessarily.
• Parts department remote from
the workshop, requiring additional
• Moving a car back into the parking lot
because a spare part has not arrived
as expected.
• Mobile Estimates.
An excess of stock and work
in progress.
• In-trays piled high with work to do.
• Stationary over spend.
• The number of courtesy cars in your
fleet. The amount of vehicles on site
that you do not have the capacity to
start working on.
• Consummables over spend.
Unnecessary movement of people
• The fax machine position at the other
end of the office to the clerk booking
in jobs.
• Cluttered layout of work bay that
means the tool box you access all day
is located on the back wall.
Any delay in the process that stops
value adding steps happening
• Making multiple attempts to contact
a customer to book their car in.
• Delays in the supply of spare parts
from your supplier.
• Estimate delayed for authorisation.
• Vehicles sat with nothing happening
to them.
Over Production
Pushing more work to the downstream
activities than they can accept.
• In-trays piled high with ‘work to do’.
• Too many cars stripped, waiting for
the panel department to repair.
Over Processing or
inappropriate systems
Doing more work than is needed or
double handling information.
• An admin clerk completing a policy
holders details in the management
system, only for the same details to
be entered into the estimating system
by a different clerk.
• Polishing the whole vehicle, when you
only need do the panels that have been
Scrap / rejects, reworks, inspection.
• Supplements and re-working on
• Painting a job more than once.
Untapped Human Potential
Not utilising staff to their full potential.
• Concentrating on number of estimates,
not quality of output.
• Bodyshop manager continually
‘fighting fires’ and not developing
the technicians capabilities.
• Cars to book in that production can
not receive.
• Uncovering an issue at final QC,
not as vehicle is moved between
At the cutting edge.
RMB use everything at their disposal to ensure the very highest standards.
Quality is a way of life.
Staff at Porsche-approved SL Restoration take pride in their work.
SL Restoration, based near Gatwick
Airport in Sussex, is in the business of
repairing prestige vehicles. The company is a Porsche Centre Approved
Body Repairer as well as having a long
term appointment as a Mercedes-Benz
Certified Collision Repair Facility and
Audi and VW Group approval.
Committed CUI members, the business
was established in the late 1970s
by Colin and Pamela White and is now
owned by their four sons Tom, Ben, Nick
and Oliver.
SL has invested heavily in equipment
and training and the spacious premises
have recently undergone a major refurbishment with a reception area that epitomises the company’s quality image.
Evidence of the company’s complete confidence in the quality of its work comes
in the form of a CCTV system linked to
a large TV screen in the reception. This
means that owners can sit in comfort
and watch their cars being repaired.
Tom White, Managing Director, explains
how this complements the company’s
attention to detail and customer service.
“Our customers love their cars. They are
real enthusiasts who love to get involved.
So many of our customers do come in
and watch what’s happening.”
Not many bodyshops would show this
level of confidence in their staff and
processes. “Quality isn’t just a buzzword here, it’s a way of life,” says Tom,
“Working on prestigious vehicles isn’t a
race. Nobody earns a bonus for speed
here. We are a true specialist and pride
ourselves on our work.”
He adds, “Because we specialise in prestige cars, we can have confidence in our
knowledge of the cars we’re repairing
and the needs of the customers who
own them.”
North-east based RMB Automotive
Limited was established around seven
years ago, when owner and managing
director, Robert Bennett, acquired two
Toyota centres, a Lexus centre and a
Mercedes bodyshop.
The 11,000 square metre bodyshop, in
Yarm near Darlington has recently undergone a major investment in a refurbishment programme to transform it into a
high quality, well-equipped centre, complete with aluminium bay. The bodyshop,
RMB Prestige Accident Repair Centre,
repairs an average of 200+ vehicles a
month, has retained the Mercedes approval (which dates back twenty years)
and has added Toyota and Lexus. The
company is also at an advanced stage
with other prestige vehicle marques.
Robert comments, “We do work for insurance companies but we are opting to
go the route of manufacturer approvals.
I think the vehicle manufacturers genuinely have the interest of their customers
at heart and set standards which our
clients expect and deserve”.
An important part of Robert’s plans for
the future has been to achieve PAS 125
which completed in April. “Training is an
expensive element of the process and
that’s why being part of CUI has been
important to us. The company has made
full use of assistance from Programme
Partner, John Chapman to identify and
implement staff training, his experience
has been invaluable.”
The bodyshop manager, Terry Walker,
joined RMB at the beginning of the
year and in that short time has doubled
the turnover. He explains, “My goals are
straightforward. To keep the quality of
our work high so that cars go out repaired
to the exacting standards of the manufacturers we represent. It’s also important
to make sure that our greatest asset,
our staff, are motivated and focused.”
As part of the upgrade, the decision was
taken to switch to Spies Hecker refinish
systems. Terry says the Paint Technicians
like working with Spies Hecker as it’s a
quality product and easy to work with.
Robert concludes, “I think that standards are going to continue to be driven
up by the vehicle manufacturers and our
customers, which is why we must use
everything at our disposal to ensure we
are at the cutting edge of our industry”.
UK News
Keeping in contact.
The virtual art of communication.
Back in the brand.
Tyrone Kirk,
Spies Hecker UK brand manager.
Big push and plenty of ideas from Tyrone Kirk.
2010 looks set to be an exciting year
for the Spies Hecker brand and the CUI
network, consolidating many existing
projects designed to support and assist
member businesses as well as the
development of new programmes and
initiatives aimed at achieving sustained
Leading the resurgence of the Spies
Hecker brand and the CUI network is
Tyrone Kirk. Until recently Tyrone has
been involved within other projects within the DuPont organisation, however, he
is delighted to now be able to focus his
efforts exclusively on the Spies Hecker
brand and CUI and its members.
“I intend to roll back the years with our
‘simply closer’ approach” he told Color
Expert. “The people at the heart of our
business are the refinishers who use
Spies Hecker paint and the bodyshop
owners who have chosen to retain a special relationship with us over the years.”
He continued, “One of the great things
about being free to concentrate on
Spies Hecker and CUI is that I will be
able to visit bodyshop premises. This will
help develop even closer relationships
with important Spies Hecker customers
and will enable me to discuss members’
future requirements with them.”
Tyrone explains that the Spies Hecker
Training Centre at Stevenage is a valuable asset. “We are planning a comprehensive training programme for 2010.
We’ve just completed a two-day apprentice training which was free of charge to
CUI member bodyshops.”
A new course designed to help technicians achieve the ATA accreditation has
just been launched to aiding bodyshops
wishing to achieve PAS 125.
Tyrone is constantly seeking new Programme Partners for the CUI network,
companies able to offer a further dimen-
sion to the range of business support
available to help bodyshops improve
their professionalism and profitability.
“The quality of the CUI network in the
UK is beyond question. The fact that the
Volkswagen Group has included three of
our members in the league of the UK’s
top ten bodyshops based on customer
feedback, is a good example of this.”
The most recently included Programme
Partner is a company called Specialist
Waste Recycling that can help companies to recycle 75 % of the waste they
produce, meaning bodyshops can prove
their green credentials to work providers,
local authorities and customers.
“We have plenty of plans in the pipeline
that will hopefully continue to enhance
our special relationship with customers
including the fantastic Colors in Cologne
event which everyone in the UK is looking
forward to.”
At a recent Inspiration and Education Day held at Stevenage, those delegates unable to physically attend
could participate in the meeting from their desks in front of a computer screen.
To take part all bodyshops had to do was log-in via a straightforward process and then they could watch live
transmission of the event and, during the question and answer session, type any question they wished to ask
into a display window which was sent to the meeting co-ordinator. These questions were then directed at the
speakers who could offer an immediate response.
One customer unable to attend on the day was Steve Walker, from Steve Walkers Bodyshop in West Lothian
Scotland. Steve commented, “Joining in the live webcam from Scotland and being able to participate in the
Q & A session was extremely worthwhile and enjoyable. An excellent business tool.”
Noel Clough, area sales manager, agreed that the web cam proved a great success. He said, “I can see this
concept growing, allowing us to reach out to members who are unable to take part in person at our meetings
and events.”
Aston Martin plans for the future.
Luxury car maker recommends Spies Hecker throughout the world.
Famous British luxury car marque, Aston Martin, has extended its
relationship with Spies Hecker as a preferred paint supplier to all of its
approved bodyshops.
For a prestige car manufacturer such as Aston Martin, paint quality is
of prime importance both in the original production line finish and in
refinishing. Over the years, Spies Hecker products have consistently
achieved the high quality standards demanded by Aston Martin.
Aston Martin will recommend Spies Hecker products to its dealers
and approved bodyshop repair centres throughout the world.
Satisfied VW customers.
Paintwork guarantee re-launch.
Customer service feedback sees CUI bodyshops in Top Ten.
Repair warranty offers a great deal to
customers and bodyshops.
The expertise and professionalism of the CUI bodyshop network has been recognised
by the Volkswagen Group UK Ltd Paint and Body League Table. No less than three
CUI bodyshops feature in this prestigious league table thanks to providing exceptional
levels of customer service.
The scores are based on the feed back from customers of the VW Paint & Body Centres.
The three CUI members to make it into the list are Steve Walkers Bodyshop, K J Rule &
Son and Gillibrand Accident Repair Centre.
Spies Hecker UK brand manager, Tyrone Kirk, commented, “This is an outstanding
achievement by these three CUI members. It illustrates the determination of the network to improve the quality and professionalism of their businesses.”
He adds, “The CUI package of business support partners, with expertise in areas such
as lean thinking, HR and marketing is proven to assist bodyshops to enhance their
levels of customer satisfaction.”
The Colorgarant lifetime paintwork repair warranty has just been re-launched in
the UK.
Bodyshops are now able to purchase copies of the warranty folder, which is given to
the customer following a repair. The folder includes a two-part Repair Certificate that
is completed with customer details, repair description and other information.
As part of the terms and conditions of Colorgarant, vehicle owners need to return
to the bodyshop for an annual check up, so there’s a positive opportunity to offer
additional related services.
The UK has teamed up with a company called Interactive Marketing that offers a
cost effective service that contacts customers by telephone to remind them to book
their cars in for the yearly inspection.
Getting into training.
The Stevenage Training Centre hosts courses for all levels of ability.
The Spies Hecker Training Centre at
Stevenage is a busy place, with a wide
range of activities offered to Spies
Hecker users, from courses for apprentices through to the advanced technician
The apprentice training is aimed at body
and paint technicians or junior staff requiring an introduction to paint technology and paint shop working practices.
Its aim is to enable delegates to gain an
understanding of paint processes and
the requirements of the modern bodyshops via a mixture of theory and practical exercises.
At a recent course, Kevin Welling, the
Spies Hecker training centre manager
guided delegates through the range of
products, product development and
their application and preparation whilst
Tyrone Kirk talked about marketing
techniques, colour development and
colour perception. They were supported
by two representatives from SATA who
demonstrated spray gun operation as
well as air breathing equipment.
Delegates from Doseley Motors, John
Aldridge and Castle Coachworks attended the course and all felt they had learned
a great deal and enjoyed the variety of
the individual trainers teaching styles.
Ian Joynson from Doseley Motors said,
“I am very impressed with the technology
at the Spies Hecker training centre,
the state-of-the-art facilities and clean
working environment. I was unaware of
how many products DuPont as a company are involved in and the technology
behind them. It’s good to know that this
similar technology is behind the Spies
Hecker paint brand.”
As well as assistance for those entering
the body repair industry, the Training
Centre also provides training for those
technicians at various stages of their skill
levels as well as the ultimate, the ATA
Technicians need to gain the ATA accreditation if their bodyshop is to achieve
PAS 125 and the British Standard’s
There is a general shortage of places
available for technicians wishing to prepare for this tough qualification which
makes the assessment course offered
for Spies Hecker users so valuable.
Two levels are available, that of Paint
Technician and Senior Paint Technician.
The assessment covers both the necessary practical assessments as well as
the underpinning knowledge test.
It’s not just end users who have put
themselves through the accreditation
process. All 24 DPC sales and technical
staff attended specially arranged sessions. The result is that all the staff are
now fully qualified as Senior Paint Technicians and able to offer valuable extra
services to refinishers across the country.
Kevin Welling explained, “Field staff were
enthusiastic about gaining ATA qualifications. It is very important for them to
pass through the Academy, undergo the
ATA process as their customers would
and be able to use that experience to help
bodyshop staff get their own award.”
The Stevenage centre is able to conduct
this work as it has been accredited as
an ATA centre for refinishing. The staff,
premises and processes have been
rigorously tested by assessors from the
Institute of the Motor Industry and now,
for the first time, refinishers using any
paint brand can obtain their Paint
Technician or Senior Paint Technician at
the centre.
The Centre has appointed dedicated ATA
coordinators, invigilators and sufficient
assessors to have one available for every
three candidates taking their ATA.
Kevin Welling,
training centre manager.
Dealing with debtors.
Complete confidence.
How bodyshops can stay solvent even in challenging times.
Product solutions, service and training –
car manufacturers worldwide rely on Spies Hecker paint systems.
Accounts receivable are steadily growing and customers are taking longer to
pay. All of a sudden, the business has
cash-flow problems. Before the bodyshop gets into serious difficulties, business management skills are called for.
With systematic accounts-receivables
management and forward-looking liquidity planning.
Direct payment from
private customers.
The key is to keep the periods for payment short. Private customers in particular should be asked to pay on the
spot. Whether in cash or by credit card,
where small sums are concerned,
immediate payment is essential. If after
extensive repairs the customer insists
on transferring the sum later, a downpayment or instalments can be agreed.
Maintaining liquidity.
On-the-spot payment of small sums.
Agree on automatic debit transfer rather than remittance.
Regularly check accounts receivable and liabilities.
Keep an eye on the monthly upper limit for accounts receivables.
Enforce a reminder system for debtors.
Reach agreement with defaulting customers on debt repayment plans or
part payments.
As a general rule, automatic debit transfer should be preferred to remittance.
This way you have more control over
account entries. In the case of new customers, a check of their credit standing
by the bank reduces the risk of default.
Cash discounts and extra benefits in the
event of cash payment create further
incentives for direct payment by private
Vehicle refinishing calls for specialised knowledge and product solutions. And it is not
only bodyshops, service centres and dealership networks that rely on Spies Hecker,
but the automotive industry as well.
Spies Hecker is improving efficiency in the workshop network of General Motors
Europe (GME). An important element of this partnership is a European framework
agreement. This covers the use of advanced paint systems and the optimisation of work
processes plus practical training and consultations for workshops by Spies Hecker
experts on site.
A watchful eye.
If you do work for dealerships, insurance
companies and leasing companies,
payment can be speeded up with management of accounts receivable. An ongoing check of outstanding payments
and liabilities helps to keep track of the
business’s financial situation. The level
of accounts receivable becomes critical
when it exceeds the average monthly
credit sales of the previous year –
a warning signal before insolvency
One rule of thumb for calculation is
to add the accounts receivable from
January to December and divide by
twelve. This yields the business’s average monthly accounts receivable. For
the average monthly credit sales, divide
the total annual sales of credit customers by twelve. Now compare the two
sums. The average monthly accounts
receivable must not exceed the average
monthly credit sales.
If this monthly upper limit for accounts
receivable is exceeded, action has to be
taken. Letters of reminder, arranging
meetings with defaulting customers to
agree on debt repayment or part payments, and cash discounts on supplier
invoices help to improve liquidity.
Obviously, you will only stay solvent if
you are prepared to consistently chase
up debtors.
Car maker Ford has also extended its successful longstanding cooperation with
Spies Hecker. Along with the cost-effective product systems from the Cologne-based
paint manufacturer, Ford Central & Eastern Europe is also opting for practical and
highly professional Spies Hecker training. In concrete terms, this means that body and
paint centres in over 30 countries of the Eastern European, North African, and Near
and Middle Eastern regions will now be using Spies Hecker product systems for
the repair of damaged Ford vehicles.
Extra flexibility.
New binders for industrial coatings:
How you can flexibly paint different surface textures with the Permaflex product system.
With the Permaflex industrial coating
system, different paint textures and
degrees of gloss can be realised on
numerous different substrates. Whether
the coating has to be highly elastic or
hard-wearing, “with the Permaflex system, the bodyshop can satisfy any customer request,” explains Arno Steyns,
Spies Hecker expert. Three new binders
inject extra flexibility into the system.
Iron mica.
Acrylic Plus.
Permaflex Iron Mica Binder 510 delivers
extremely long-term protection from
corrosion and has high scratch resistance. “It also creates a rough matt
finish and a tough surface,” Arno Steyns
explains. It is designed specifically for
the painting of objects such as shopfitting elements, railings and benches.
Permaflex Acrylic Plus Binder 575 is extra
light-fast. Arno Steyns: “This binder is
intended particularly for the painting of
elements exposed to strong UV radiation,
e.g. window frames and plastic covers.”
Stone Impact
Protection Paint 515.
Permaflex Stone Impact Protection
Paint 515 is highly elastic and resistant
to mechanical stressing, and gives surfaces extra protection from stone impact
damage. Its speciality is the coating of
large surfaces, e.g. large appliances and
Process optimisation
Hans Hoffmann,
Many tasks, one workplace.
“A rethink is worthwhile.”
All-in-one. Multifunctional workplaces help to simplify
painting processes and save energy.
Wolfgang Feyrer on the benefits of
multifunctional workplaces in the workshop.
Every refinisher knows that the spray
booth is the bottleneck in the bodyshop
during everyday operations. This is
where a backlog can build up and where
things can get tight when add-on part
finishes, minor paint repairs and full
resprays are all waiting to be done. So
maybe it’s worthwhile taking a closer
look at work processes in the bodyshop.
Does every part really have to go into
the spray booth?
“If you can organise your work process
according to the type of job, you can distribute repair jobs efficiently in the workshop,” says a confident Wolfgang Feyrer.
What the Spies Hecker expert means
is better organisation of bodyshop processes. Spot repairs and partial resprays
can be handled at a multifunctional
workplace. “The spray booth is then
available solely for large-area and full
resprays.” This way the business can
manage its workload more efficiently.
The right equipment.
But what does “multifunctional” mean?
The principle is simple: At the workplace,
not only the preparatory work such as
putty and surfacer application is carried
out, but also base coat and clear coat
application. Drying and hardening as well
as cleaning up can also be performed
at one and the same place. “Powerful
ventilation, a vehicle lift and modern
IR technology are essential items of
equipment of the enclosed workplace,”
Wolfgang Feyrer explains. “Minor repairs
and the partial respray of vertical surfaces such as doors, sidewalls and mudguards can then be efficiently carried out.”
The bodyshop reserves its large-area
coating work for the spray booth.
Cutting energy
At the multifunctional workplace, energy
use is more efficient. Because drying with
IR heaters reduces consumption. “When
infrared drying is used on minor repairs
and partial resprays, costs are cut as
a result of the shorter process times,”
Wolfgang Feyrer explains. “Compared to
the drying of individual body parts in the
booth, energy input is minimal.”
Who can benefit from this approach?
Setting up a multifunctional workplace is always a decision taken locally with the
specific aim of optimising processes in the business. Refinishers who want to boost
their throughput or work more efficiently should take a look at this approach.
However, implementation mustn’t be at the expense of existing capacity in the preparation area. Such a strategy may therefore only be planned in connection with an
extension of the workshop area. Another important point to bear in mind beforehand
is compliance with regulations in the various countries of Europe.
Does this mean a change in working methods?
Obviously the processes are different and demand greater care. This calls for a
rethink in the workshop. First of all you have to decide whether or not the damage
can be repaired outside the spray booth. At the multifunctional workplace, a single
refinisher should be responsible for handling the entire repair job – from the preparatory work through to clean-up.
Simply working faster.
“This form of repair organisation shortens
the overall process by 25%,” Spies Hecker
estimates. It’s drying that makes the
biggest contribution. “Thanks to infrared
technology, the base coat and clear coat
dry and harden much faster. Time spent
on set-up in the spray booth and shunting
vehicles back and forth are eliminated
as well.” The bodyshop speeds up its processes and can increase its throughput,
curtail the time vehicles are off the road
and organise its jobs better.
Process times are shortened.
Right, by roughly a quarter. This is mainly because of infrared drying. The technology
isn’t new, but it’s undergoing constant refinement and really comes into its own at
the multifunctional workplace. In concrete terms this means that drying time for
base coat application is reduced by 60% and for clear coat by as much as 70%.
These are impressive figures. A rethink is worthwhile.
Thank you for the interview.
Wolfgang Feyrer,
Spies Hecker expert.
Phoenix from the ashes.
While calling for passion and enthusiasm, the restoration of old vehicles
can also be painstaking, time-consuming and nerve-racking.
An absolute must is special skills when it comes to applying the paint system.
Be it a Jaguar E-Type V12 sports car
of 1971, an Opel Admiral of 1938 or
a Rolls-Royce 20/25 of 1933 – the
expert repair of such old gems demands
the full complement of specialist knowledge and practical skills from bodyshop
professionals. Because the right treatment of the substrate and a precise
paint system are particularly important
for the restoration of such automotive
The right preparation.
To give bodyshops optimal support during the efficient preparation of Admirals,
Rolls-Royces and the like, Spies Hecker
has put together special VOC-compliant
paint recommendations for the restoration of old vehicles – from grinding
and putty application through to surfacer
and paint application – in a neat and
compact presentation. “The Technical
Data Sheets explain each step in the process in detail and give precise technical
instructions on correct product use,”
explains Frank Barduna from Technical
Service. “These resources give the user
a greater assurance of immaculate
results when repairing sand-blasted or
bare vehicle bodies.”
Off with the old paint.
Restoring the vehicle to its former glory
starts with the preliminary work. The old
paintwork first has to be removed down to
the bare substrate and rusted areas have
to be ground right down. Frank Barduna:
“Then the body has to be orbital-sanded
with grit P150 to P180, all the dust
removed and the surface cleaned with a
suitable Permaloid® cleaner and silicone
Frank Barduna,
Technical Service.
Well protected.
Now it’s the turn of the surfacer and
putty. After priming with Priomat® Wash
Primer 4075 in two coats followed by
30 minutes for flash-off, Permasolid® HS
Vario Surfacer 8590 is applied to the full
surface. Once the surfacer has dried,
surface irregularities can be sanded off,
using the orbital sander with P180
to P240. “After this, the whole body
is cleaned with a suitable silicone remover.”
Now the putty is applied. The expert
recommends Raderal® IR Premium
Putty 2035 for this. After drying, the refinisher has to sand the full surface with
an orbital sander, flat-bed sander or
sanding block with grit P80 to P150,
using P120 to P240 for meticulous
end-sanding. Care must be taken when
sanding the putty, as any spots that
have been sanded through have to be
treated again with primer and surfacer,
and re-sanded.
A gleam come true.
When the surface has been cleaned
again with a suitable silicone remover,
the surfaces and irregularities have to be
smoothed. To this end, apply Raderal®
Spray Polyester 3508, followed by drysanding (orbital sander with P150 to
P180, with corners and edges treated
by hand) and careful end-sanding (with
P240). Then blow the surface again and
clean thoroughly. Again, treat any sandedthrough spots with primer and surfacer,
and sand them.
“When the surfacer has dried, the
Permasolid® HS Vario Surfacer 8590 is
sanded with the orbital sander using
P400 or P500,” explains Frank Barduna.
“After blowing several times and thorough cleaning with silicone remover,
the top coat can be applied. For this
you can use Spies Hecker Permahyd®
Series 280/285, for instance.” The times
for flash-off between coats and at the
end must always be observed. The
Spies Hecker professional: “In doing so,
it is essential that the refinisher takes
account of the surface and ambient
air conditions in the bodyshop.” As the
last step, the clear coat is applied,
e.g. Permasolid® 2K HS Clear Coat.
To wind things up, clean up the vehicle –
and the beautiful old vehicle is as shiny
as new!
1933 Rolls-Royce 20/ 25,
Autolakk A/ S, Norway.
Cycles aglow.
In his time, he’s realised a life-size plastic donkey for an office competition. In garish colours. And painted a
Golf in shiny gold, including the tyres, windows and mirrors. Both of these are objects that Jürgen Grass,
senior vehicle refinisher and owner of Grass GmbH in Einbeck, Germany, describes with a smile as “refinishing
curiosities”. A number have come the way of the four-generation business over the years, some of them even
making it into the museum.
Take the 30 bikes, for instance, now on show in a bicycle museum. Art objects from a bodyshop? Dead right!
“We cleaned the cycles and treated them with a caustic solution. Then we applied white surfacer wet-on-wet
and coated them with a special yellow fluorescent paint and two kilos of clear coat as a fixative,” explains
Jürgen Grass. The trick here is that the reflected pigments now light up in bright yellow under the museum’s
UV light. Visitors are wowed by this futuristic “cycle armada”.
A passion for painting.
Ines Braun in
the Butterfly Garden.
Paint on the wing.
The Butterfly Garden of the Princess of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn in
Bendorf near Koblenz, Germany, is an environment with high humidity, high temperatures, birds on the wing, colourful butterflies and
dense jungle vegetation – a genuine tropical hothouse. Putting on
an exhibition here is obviously a real challenge. Yet Ines Braun,
participant in the “Invertebrates” art project, has done just this with
ingenuity and bravura. Her “Megaptera” (literally “Big Wings”) fit
perfectly into the jungle setting of the tropical house – and delight
all viewers with their individuality.
Creating her Big Wings was by no means easy, since the objects had
to withstand the extreme conditions. “They had to be non-weathering
and big enough to stand out in their jungle environment.” She had
her flash of inspiration at Spies Hecker. During a refinishers’ training
session at the Cologne Training Center, Ines Braun noticed two
freshly painted mudguards standing next to each other outside the
spray booth. A single glance, and the idea was born. The materials
for her work are mudguards from the scrapyard, painted in the same
colours with bright Spies Hecker paint products. Each Megaptera is
a one-off. The Big Wings are now part of Ines Braun’s “Insecta
Urbanica” project. Two exhibitions are planned for 2010, and her
painted artwork is again centre stage.
The best Masterpieces 2010 come
from South Africa,
Denmark and
Classic cars, helicopters, race cars,
trucks – no less varied than vehicles in
their myriad forms are the fascinating
finishes on the international Spies
Hecker Masterpieces Calendar 2010.
As in years past, over 200 bodyshops
from all over the world competed for the
much-coveted twelve calendar places
and sent in their best work. Given so
many outstanding projects, it was difficult
to make a choice – but a choice had
to be made. The best of the best on the
Masterpieces 2010 victory podium
come from South Africa, Denmark and
Germany. Incidentally, we even received
inquiries about taking part in the competition from Indonesia – when it comes
to bodywork and painting, creativity and
passion evidently know no bounds.
rely on us – worldwide.
We give our best, make use of our entire experience and follow the global trends
in the refinish paint market. We thus develop product solutions and services that
move you forward. This is something you can count on.
Spies Hecker – simply closer.
Spies Hecker - DuPont Performance Coatings - Wedgwood Way - Stevenage - Herts SG1 4QN -