Frequently Asked Questions
For Automotive Applications
What is the difference between Rust Bullet® standard formula (Gold
Label) and Rust Bullet® Automotive formula (Silver
Both Rust Bullet® and Rust Bullet® Automotive are industrial
strength protective coatings. They have the same patented anti-corrosive
properties and will out perform any other rust inhibitive, protective
coating on the market.
Rust Bullet Automotive is formulated a bit thinner than the
Rust Bullet standard formula to easily flow through an HVLP auto finishing
spray system. Rust Bullet Automotive has more metal and will produce
a smoother finish typically desired for automotive projects.
I Apply Rust Bullet only where Rust is Apparent?
Rust Bullet is designed to protect rusted and clean metal.
It is always advantageous to protect metal, even when there are no
visible signs of corrosion. The automobile industry uses steel in
its manufacturing wherever structural strength is needed. Ideally
this steel should be protected before it starts to rust and corrode;
thus preserving the strength and integrity it was originally designed
to provide. Rust Bullet not only kills existing rust, it seals and
protects surfaces that have not yet started to rust, providing years
of prevention. Rust Bullet should be applied even where rust is not
apparent to prevent the occurrence of future corrosion. If it is made
of iron or steel, it will rust and corrode if left unprotected; start
protecting your investment today.
I Apply Rust Bullet Automotive with a Brush?
Yes. All Rust Bullet coatings may be applied by brush, roller,
or spray equipment. A brush coat should be applied evenly without
buildup in a crosshatch method (up and down and side to side) using
continuous motion. Thin even coats using the crosshatch application
method will produce the best results. Always keep a wet edge on the
tip of your paint brush. A three to four coat brush application generally
achieves a dft (dry film thickness) of 6 mils. Additional coats may
be necessary to achieve the appropriate dft for your project to maintain
the Rust Bullet Warranty. Roller applications result in an approximate
dft of 1.5 – 2 mils per coat. An HVLP spray system applies approximately
1.5 - 2 mils with one coat, while the Airless sprayer application
averages a minimum of 3 to 4 mils per coat. One gallon of Rust Bullet
or Rust Bullet Automotive covers approximately 400 sq. ft. with one
do I Apply Rust Bullet Automotive with an HVLP Spray System?
Rust Bullet Automotive applied through HVLP spray equipment
using a 1.7 to 2.0 tip with 40- 60 psi will achieve a dft of approximately
1.5 - 2.0 mils per coat. It is important to run Xylene through the
spray equipment prior to spraying the first coat of Rust Bullet Automotive
to remove any moisture that may be trapped in the equipment. After
the application of each coat of Rust Bullet Automotive, flush the
gun or submerge the tip in Xylene. It is important to keep the equipment
and sprayer clean. If the spray gun has a filter, it must also be
cleaned. Toluene may be used if Xylene is not available.
equipment must be cleaned immediately after use to avoid damage.
Do I Need to Apply Multiple Coats of Rust Bullet?
As Rust Bullet cures it expels solvents and releases a carbon
dioxide gas while dehydrating the rust. The first coat of Rust Bullet
soaks through the rust down to the metal below, encapsulates the rust,
and dehydrates it. The first coat must be applied generously enough
over the rust for this process to take place. As the first coat dries
and gases off, tiny pin holes may form in the coating. The second
coat is critical to fill any pin holes and seal the surface with an
air tight, armor like shield of protection. If the pin holes are not
sealed after the first coat, air and moisture may penetrate the coating
exposing the surface to further damage. Apply additional coats to
achieve the desired dft for the appropriate protection for the project.
When Do I Apply the Next Coat of Rust Bullet or Rust Bullet
When applying additional coats of a Rust Bullet coating,
the previous coat should not be wet or tacky; if you are unable to
transfer the coating to a gloved finger, the surface is ready for
an additional coat. Approximate drying time between coats is two (2)
to four (4) hours for Rust Bullet, and six (6) to ten (10) hours for
BlackShell, depending on humidity levels. When excessive wet film
is applied, additional cure time will be necessary. Rust Bullet Coatings
are moisture sensitive; in high humid conditions of 80%+, Rust Bullet
will cure much faster than it will in lower humidity. When applying
additional coats from one day to the next, especially in the morning,
make sure there is no dew or condensation on the previous coat. The
surface to be coated must be completely dry. It is important that
corners, edges, and heavily pitted areas are adequately covered. When
Rust Bullet cures, it pulls tight to the center; therefore, it is
particularly important that edges and corners are sufficiently coated.
Rust Bullet® Rapid Fire Accelerator can be added to
the Rust Bullet Standard and Rust Bullet Automotive formulas to decrease
the normal recoat time of 2 to 4 hrs to approximately 30 to 40 minutes
per coat; and to Rust Bullet BlackShell to decrease the normal recoat
time of 6 to 10 hours to approximately 1 hour. Rapid Fire makes
it possible to apply multiple coats of Rust Bullet in a single day
and reduces project completion time by as much as 80%. Rust Bullet
coatings accelerated with Rapid Fire are
designed for spray applications and can be applied with either an HVLP
Spray System or an Airless Spray System.
Rust Bullet be used as a Primer?
Yes. Rust Bullet can be used as an automotive primer. Before
applying a finish color to a surface coated with Rust Bullet, we recommend
wet sanding the surface. Wet sanding may be achieved by using 150
to 400 grit sandpaper. After wet sanding, apply an additional coat
of Rust Bullet, wet sanding again to a very smooth surface; wait 6
- 7 hours before applying a topcoat (time may vary depending on weather
conditions). Rust Bullet produces a very hard surface when curing.
An alternate method to wet sanding Rust Bullet is to apply a sandable
primer to the final coat of Rust Bullet. This will accomplish two
things: remove any imperfections in the coated surface and provide
a surface that is easier to sand smooth. It will also allow you the
luxury of applying the final color whenever you choose to do so. Many
Body Shops use this method to save time and work.
Rust Bullet Compatible with Automotive Fillers, Fiberglass, and Primers?
Yes. Body fillers, fiberglass, and automotive primers may
be applied directly over Rust Bullet. Two coats of Rust Bullet should
be applied to the metal surface. The body filler, fiberglass, or primer
should be applied directly over the second coat of Rust Bullet between
24 to 48 hours. If more than 72 hours have lapsed, the Rust Bullet
coating should be etched with Rust Bullet® Metal Blast (simply spray
it on, wait 15-30 minutes, either hose it off or wipe it off with
warm water and a shop towel, and let dry completely), or sanded with
100-150 grit sandpaper, before applying the filler, fiberglass, or
primer, to ensure proper adhesion. This 72 hour period is decreased
in areas with higher humidity levels. After the application of the
filler, fiberglass, or primer, an additional coat of Rust Bullet should
be applied to seal and protect the entire surface.
Rust Bullet can be applied over existing fillers, fiberglass,
or primers after scuffing the surface with 100-150 grit sandpaper or
sanding block. Fillers have a tendency to absorb moisture which will
cause further rusting of the metal and bubbling of the filler if applied
directly to a rusted area that has not been protected with Rust Bullet.
Rust Bullet works best when it is in direct contact with the metal.
Can a surface coated with Rust Bullet be welded?
To ensure the welded metals are properly bonded, the Rust
Bullet coating should be removed to expose the bare metal. It is possible
to join two Rust Bullet coated metals by welding without removing
Rust Bullet; the metal will join together but may not achieve the
strong bond expected by the welding process. If metal coated with
Rust Bullet, or another coating, is welded without removing the existing
coating, the extreme heat involved in the welding process will disintegrate
the coating possibly releasing harmful gases; therefore, the appropriate
safety precautions, such as wearing a gas mask and safety goggles,
must be followed. After welding, Rust Bullet must be reapplied over
the welded area to ensure complete protection of the entire surface.
What should I do if I waited too long before applying the next coat
of Rust Bullet?
Drying time between coats of Rust Bullet is approximately
two (2) to four (4) hours. Drying time between coats of BlackShell
is approximately six (6) to ten (10) hours. Drying time varies depending
on humidity levels. If more than 72 hours have lapsed since the previous
coat of Rust Bullet, the coated surface should be etched with Rust
Bullet Metal Blast (simply spray it on, wait 15-30 minutes,
either hose it off or wipe it off with warm water and a shop towel,
and let dry completely), or scuffed up with a 100 to 150 grit sandpaper
or sanding block to allow proper adhesion of an additional coat of
Rust Bullet. This 72 hour period is decreased in areas with higher
humidity levels. Remember, the surface to be coated must be completely
What Steps are Required when Applying a Top Coat over Rust Bullet?
Ideally, a topcoat should be applied between 24 to 48 hours
after the final coat of Rust Bullet. It is necessary to allow enough
time for the curing or gassing off process to complete. The application
of a top coat before this process is complete, may result in dimpling
of the surface and an undesirable finish. If more than 72 hours have
lapsed, the Rust Bullet coating should be etched with Rust
Bullet Metal Blast (simply spray it on, wait 15-30 minutes, either hose it
off or wipe it off with warm water and a shop towel, and let dry completely),
or lightly sanded with 100-150 grit sandpaper, before applying the
topcoat, to ensure proper adhesion. This 72 hour period is decreased
in areas with higher humidity levels.
If a spray application of Rust Bullet has been accelerated
by adding Rust Bullet® Rapid Fire Accelerator, a topcoat may be applied
approximately one hour after the final coat of the accelerated Rust
Bullet coating has been applied.
If you are using a premium finishing paint and the manufacturer
has specific primer requirements, it is recommended you apply the primer
over Rust Bullet after the surface has been scuffed up and wet sanded.
Rust Bullet is an excellent adhesion promoter and enhances the adhesive
properties of almost any topcoat paint.
Rust Bullet and Rust Bullet Automotive are metallic gray
in color and UV resistant; it is only necessary to apply a topcoat
if you desire a different color other than metallic gray. Rust Bullet
BlackShell is formulated specifically as a topcoat for both Rust Bullet
Standard and Rust Bullet Automotive formulas if a smooth gloss black
finish is desired.
BlackShell is scratch and chip resistant, UV resistant, as
well as, resistant to Acid Splash and Chemical Solvents. BlackShell
is an excellent protective stand alone coating, requiring no basecoat
or topcoat; however, the combination of BlackShell over Rust Bullet
or Rust Bullet Automotive will provide the ultimate surface protection.
12. What is necessary prior to applying body paint?
The surface should be wet sanded with very fine sandpaper
prior to applying the desired automotive finish paint. Always follow
the finish paint’s manufacturer’s recommendations on primers and sealers.
Recommended primers may be applied directly to a scuffed up Rust Bullet
Is Rust Bullet Appropriate for Undercoating my Vehicle?
Both Rust Bullet and Rust Bullet Automotive are ideal for
undercoating a vehicle and will provide outstanding protection against
corrosives and abrasives. Use the Rust Bullet Automotive formula if
you are using HVLP spray equipment for the application. Rust Bullet
BlackShell is an excellent gloss black topcoat for the undercarriage
of a vehicle. BlackShell is specifically designed as the optimum topcoat
for Rust Bullet or Rust Bullet Automotive.
Is Rust Bullet recommended for use on gasoline tanks?
Rust Bullet is not affected by gas itself. Rust Bullet was
not designed as a tank sealer on the inside of a tank. We have not
tested for this application and can offer no promise as to what the
outcome will be if used as such. Rust Bullet can be used on the exterior,
but it was not designed for internal use on a gas tank.
Is Rust Bullet recommended for use on an exhaust system?
After curing, all Rust Bullet coatings have a service temperature
range of 314°F (157°C) continuous, and can tolerate maximum temperatures
between 617°- 662°F (325°-350°C) for up to 72 hour periods. Rust Bullet
provides excellent protection for most engine components; however,
is not recommended for coating exhaust systems due to the excessive
heat produced on headers, exhaust manifolds, catalytic converter or
Can I apply Rust Bullet under a Truck Bed Liner?
Yes. Rust Bullet provides excellent surface protection under
bed liner material. Apply Rust Bullet according to the application
guidelines. As with the addition of any topcoat or other product,
if 72 hours have lapsed after the final coat of Rust Bullet, the surface
should be etched with Rust Bullet® Metal Blast, or scuffed with 100-150
grit sandpaper or sanding block to ensure proper adhesion of the liner
material. This 72 hour period is decreased in areas with higher humidity
What are the effects of Fuels on a cured Rust Bullet Coating?
Fossil fuels, such as refined oils (gasoline, diesel, jet
fuels, and kerosene) will not affect the integrity of the cured Rust
Bullet Coating. Additionally, renewable fuels such as Biodiesel and
Ethanol will have no adverse affect on substrates coated with Rust
IMPORTANT POINTS TO REMEMBER WHEN USING RUST BULLET PRODUCTS
allow sweat, rain, mist or other contaminates to fall into a Rust
Bullet coating. Even
a drop or two can drastically affect results.
Bullet coatings are ready to use right from the can. Rust
Bullet coatings should be stirred thoroughly for at least 3 minutes or until completely
uniform and homogenous (avoid whipping air into product). Shaking
the container prior to application may cause the formation of bubbles
in the finish of the coating. Never stir the product by mechanical
means; this will trap air molecules containing moisture between the
coating and the surface causing improper curing and possible coating
failure. Pour out of the can what you intend to use in the next 45-60
min. Remember to keep the lid on the remaining product.
allow lacquer thinner, vinyl thinner, epoxy solvent, or
any alcohol or unapproved solvent to enter a Rust Bullet coating.
clean-up use only clean Xylene, Toluene, or MEK.
neglect to purge all paints, moisture, or debris from equipment
before spraying a Rust Bullet coating.
apply a Rust Bullet coating while raining or under threat
Bullet coatings do not require a topcoat. If one is desired,
wait 24 to 48 hours after the application of the final coat of Rust Bullet.
pour out what you intend to use in one hour and replace
the lid immediately. Wipe clean any coating from the rim of the container before resealing.
pour back into the original container; any Rust Bullet
coating that has been exposed to outside air for any length of time, as this will
destroy the remaining product.
should be taken to ensure that new unopened containers
or left-over partial containers are kept sealed. Heavy Duty Plastic Wrap can be
placed over the top of the remaining coating with the excess plastic
exceeding beyond the rim of the container. This will displace as much
air as possible from the remaining coating and will help prevent the
lid from permanently sealing closed.
Please contact our Customer Service Department at 800-245-1600
or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions, concerns or comments.
Rust Bullet, LLC
300 Brinkby Avenue, Suite 200
Reno, NV 89509