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Help in Choosing the Paint Color for My TR4A

Posted by wrightgcbuilder 
wrightgcbuilder Avatar
Dan Wright
North Platte, Nebraska, USA   usa

I realize this subject has been hashed over a thousand times, but please bear with me. I'm looking for you recommendations.

Here's what I'm dealing with: 66 TR4A IRS, which had a factory New White finish originally, with black interior.

At first I had planned on a repaint with the original color. But, when it became obvious that just an exterior respray would not do it justice, I decided to refinish the engine bay, interior, and trunk area. That's when I started kicking around the idea of a color change.

Here are my choices: New White and keep it original, Jasmine Yellow (Pale Yellow), Midnight Blue, or Valenicia Blue.

I'm not particulary attracted to the New White, although you don't see a large number of them, and it was the original color on the car. Jasmine Yellow was not available for the 66 model, but came a little later with the TR250/TR6 models. My wife's fantasy car is a vintage Mercedes Convertible in Yellow, but you can guess why that's not going to happen. A couple of years ago I saw a Jasmine Yellow TR250 sell on EBay, and it was absolutely stunning with the silver racing stripe to my mind. I also favor Midnight Blue, but I think it's most striking with a Tan Interior. Mine being all new Black, I'm not so sure that combination would be as stunning. Valencia Blue also came a little later, but would be something that would not fall into the more common colors like BRG or Red. Nothing wrong with the last two, there's just too many of them.

I'm leaning toward Jasmine Yellow or just keeping it original, but consider your opinions valuable. Resale is something else to take into consideration on color choice.

So, help me out with your comments.

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grubscrew Avatar
grub screw
The suburbs of, Winfield, Maryland, USA   usa

Myself, I am partial to jasmine yellow winking smiley but unfortunately in your case it's not a correct color so I'd rule that out.

A club member has a stunning 250 in black, and of course, the 250 looks similar to the 4 in general body style.

Bottom line, though, is my personal choice would be the white. Another club member has this one:


1970 Spitfire Mk3
FDU 78359L
34/11 (Jasmine yellow/Black interior)

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Lilypons 2011-011.jpg

wrightgcbuilder Avatar
Dan Wright
North Platte, Nebraska, USA   usa


I would have to tend to agree with you, although my favorite is not White. My concern was that the white was a little Plain Jane. My next question would be, although I'm pretty sure what the response will be, would it be a no-no to put the TR250 stripe over the hood and fenders, or just go with what it had to dress it up a little? I really don't care for the front to back stripes, although the black on white constrast looks good on your member's car. I take it originality is the best course?

The chances are, the car will be sold on this Spring or Summer. I value your opinions, so the most can be maximized from any offers. I hate to have the lack of originality take it down if that's what is important to the Triumph Enthusiast.

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t.lay Avatar
Tom Lay
Grayslake, IL, USA   usa

There are folks who would take issue with a non-original color to that year, or for that matter, any color change to the car - personally, I think there are plenty of examples of original cars so saving it for posterity wouldn't matter that much to me. A color change might have an impact on top dollar value later, but if it's a quality driver type car instead of a show/trailer queen, having a decent quality paint job in the triumph range of colors is probably close enough to maintain value - so my attitude is go with what you like. In my case, bringing one back from the brink - whatever color it ends up is better than the color of rust. My vote is for jasmine - throw in a 250 stripe if you like them...

wrightgcbuilder Avatar
Dan Wright
North Platte, Nebraska, USA   usa

Thank you Tom. In this case the car will be a quality Driver, not a Trailer Queen, or anything that will be going to Pebble Beach.

Both you and Dave have valid points, and I have a little time yet to make a decision. It is not numbers matching, (a TR6 OD transmission was installed in place of its original non OD unit), and the car originally had leather seats, that are now being replaced with new Vinylhide. So strictly speaking, I've strayed from the path of 100% originality already.

I guess I'd prefer to please a Triumph Enthusist, rather than go with my own personal tastes. Since I plan on offering it For Sale, the Enthusist's opinion comes first.

carChips Avatar
Victor Harnish
Kelowna, BC, Canada   can
1933 MG Magnette
1973 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Chip"
1989 GMC Sierra 1500 "Bush Truck"

Original white makes it a lot easier to hide any imperfections in the body. A triumph purist would look for originality. And that is who you are looking to sell it to, so my vote is white.

'S all for now

t.lay Avatar
Tom Lay
Grayslake, IL, USA   usa

With the emphasis on resale rather than swmbo I'll change my thought to white. On the racing side - I prefer a white car - easy to add stripes, graphics or sponsor stickers, stays cooler to drive, hides imperfections (as the old bodyman quote goes - "if it ain't right, paint it white"winking smiley and easier to spot leaks and problems (same would be true of jasmine though). Mine (signal red/matador) will probably end up white - although I'm intrigued by velasquez cream as an unusual TR4 color.

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grubscrew Avatar
grub screw
The suburbs of, Winfield, Maryland, USA   usa

Dan, I too tended to think of white as mundane or plain Jane until I saw the member's car that I pictured. To borrow a phrase (from myself!): it is stunning.

The whole discussion of originality and correctness versus updated/modified is one that is open ended and can go on forever!

As mentioned earlier, you'll find compelling arguments on both sides and it ultimately comes down to what any given individual likes.

In your case in which you're wanting to find the most pleasing setup to a perspective range of buyers, I would go with a color that is correct for the model year, stripes and trim that are correct, and of course, the best quality you can afford to put into the work.

Originality buyers will appreciate it, and modifiers will still be able to adjust minor things like stripes and trim!

JMO, of course.


1970 Spitfire Mk3
FDU 78359L
34/11 (Jasmine yellow/Black interior)

wrightgcbuilder Avatar
Dan Wright
North Platte, Nebraska, USA   usa

In this case, the car is unusually straight on all panels. So trying to hide any imperfections is not needed. I wish my black 66 MGBGT were this straight!

I had one shop tell me that white was a difficult color to go with, as it showed imperfections such as dirt etc. in the paint. Dirt in the finish on any color would show in my opinion. They obviousily will not be doing the work on this car.

Although there are other paint colors I would prefer, I think most of you are correct in urging me to leave it's original color. Perhaps a black Sunfast Cloth soft top would set it off a little better.

Another consideration was just dicussed with my bodyman. I had planned on having it painted with a single stage urethane. With the addition of a racing stripe, he prefered to do it in a base/clear coat paint. With the $$ saved on a single stage, I could have that Sunfast Cloth top installed for the difference in cost.

John Naitove
USA   usa

I painted mine Porsche blutorange (blood orange in 1967). Here is a picture of my friend in front of it. The wheels were American Racing Silverstone mags with painted spokes (NH winters weren't kind to magnesium) and hand made caps.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2012-02-18 02:37 PM by rs6er.

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