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From: Brian Cooper
GOOD LUCK!!! I used Aircraft Stripper to remove the five layers of paint on my 57 on the body and 100 and 80 grit wheels on an air grinder for rust and door jambs. I STRONGLY recommend stripping the car. It is by far the easiest method. Get a handle for razor blades (metal not plastic) and a big box of blades to scrape off the paint after the stripper has loosened it. This trick saved me many hours of frustration with a putty knife. You MUST strip the car outside or the ammonia fumes from the chemicals will gagg you! Get a set of cheap throwaway leather gloves to use for the stripping, they don't let the chemical get on you, which burns like all hell, and can be used several times since you can't do the car in one day. They also breathe a little so your hands don't sweat. I have tried every brand of stripper available without a liscence of some sort, and Aircraft Stripper is the best hands down. Wash the bare metal with a garden hose then laquer thinner, paint degreaser, or whatever. This steel will rust the same day you strip it even if you don't wash it with water, so be prepared to shoot a quick primer coat over each panel you do each day.
These are tips I learned the hard way, especialy the rust part. I had to sand a quarter panel I stripped the day after I stripped it, and the car was in the garage every night. I used PPG etching lead free epoxy primer. It ain't cheap, it doesn't sand, but it seals great. Be sure to shoot three or four good primer coats (blocking between each second coat!) of high build or sanding primer on top of the epoxy before painting. Don't try to paint on top of the epoxy.
E-mail me if you have any more questions. I spent about two or three months stripping every night and weekends. It took me eleven long months working basically alone to get it prepped for color coats.