Count’s Kustoms, the Las Vegas shop known for its over-the-top custom builds on television, unveiled another jaw dropping vehicle in the Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes Booth No. 10839 in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center at The SEMA Show. A 1961 Cadillac, borrowed from Danny “Count” Koker’s personal collection, is refinished exclusively in custom colors mixed from the new Matrix Edge bank of toners and pearls.
Ryan Evans, the shop’s lead painter, worked with Lonny Speer, also a painter at Count’s Kustoms, to mix 33 shades of teal to bring the vehicle’s chic California custom look to life. “It’s very reminiscent of a car that would cruise the boulevard in the 1960s or ‘70s era,” says Evans.
The teal color inspiration came from the car’s factory interior. “When we started to pull the patterned inserts from the seating, we uncovered virgin vinyl in teal, and we had no choice but to paint the car in every variation of the color,” says Evans.
Evans pushed the Matrix refinish system to the ‘edge’ with custom graphics accentuating the refined lines of this ’61 Cadillac – everything from scallops and fades to tape shades. “You name it, it’s got it,” he says. “Everything but flames.” Stripes highlight the long lines of the body rather than redirect them according to Evans, “The overall design makes the car look longer and lower to the ground, yet we didn’t actually modify it,” he says.
An exciting project personally for Evans, this particular model is not uncommon, but it is a unique bubble top. “Plus it’s not every day that you get to give a classic Cadillac a crazy custom paint job that’s reflective of a lowrider,” he says.
The 1961 Cadillac marks the fourth vehicle by Count’s Kustoms to be shown at SEMA in nothing but Matrix brand paint and products. “We’re a Matrix shop,” says Evans, “and have been since 2012.”
Committed to the Detroit-born brand, he and Speer would only switch from one Matrix system to another. “The performance is always there with Matrix,” says Evans. “We know this. We trust this.” He and Speer switched the shop from Matrix’s low-VOC bank to Edge – embracing the opportunity to use the brand’s newest system which includes a selection of bestselling primers/sealers as well as four basecoat qualities and even, single stage, where needed.
“With any system, you get comfortable with the performance, and there’s always anxiety about changing, especially with a build headed to SEMA,” says Evans. “But, we know Matrix and we trust the performance with every system. With Edge, I knew as soon as I started mixing color, and sprayed it, I was sold.”
Evans likens the new system to Matrix circa 1983. “It instantly time-warped me,” he says. “Basecoats are just naturally delicate, but not with the old system and not with Edge. You don’t have to worry about tape tracking or bumping into the paint and scuffing the metallics. The basecoat is super durable even without any clear on it.”
Evans encourages painters to put tape down and relax, and when it comes time for clearcoat he says, “the basecoat just takes to it, there’s no issue with crosslinking.”
Matrix Edge clearcoats remain unchanged with this new system. Formulas, everything from AG-40 Euroglas Design Clearcoat to MS-52 Universal Clearcoat, are original. Color tools make the system that much more appealing, and include color retrieval software (Color Focus 2.0), color books with domestic and import colors, a color map system (with chips, including OEM colors) and the most important addition to color capabilities – the camera (or spectrophotometer). For more information, visit Matrix Edge online.