The new era of digital paint mixing: How PPG’s latest innovations are improving key-to-key productivity and shop profitability

June 11, 2024

In today’s competitive marketplace, the high-production collision repair center must be relentless in its pursuit of advancements that can improve key-to-key productivity. That holds especially true in the paint operation, where color matching accuracy and throughput performance play such an important role in a shop’s overall performance.   

Taking advantage of emerging digital color tools is proving to be one area where significant gains can be achieved. For example, paint operations that have married the innovative PPG MoonWalk® automated mixing system with the PPG Envirobase® High Performance waterborne system are proof of what improvements can be accomplished. 

As one of the industry’s leading waterborne systems with over 40,000 users worldwide, the Envirobase High Performance refinish system is well-regarded for its easy blending, color match performance and overall efficiency. The PPG MoonWalk® system was designed specifically to take the PPG Envirobase® system to the next level of color match accuracy and performance.  

The process of creating an automated paint mix is simple and straightforward. Once the technician sources the correct formula from PPG’s retrieval software, the technician loads the required toners on a dispensing rack. With one click, the PPG MoonWalk® system is ready to go. It automatically dispenses the exact amount of each toner — at an accuracy 10 times more precise than the standard. To further eliminate waste, the system is designed to ensure all of the toner is used, down to the last drop.  

“One of the most obvious differences is that it mixes to the hundredth — not to the tenth — so it’s much more accurate with the color match,” explains Frank McClosky, owner of Frank’s Collision Repair in Baytown, Texas. “When the painter has full confidence knowing that the color is going to match the first time, there’s no need to mix extra paint that you might need to tint.” 

“This is a great advantage for us,” Carl Garcia, owner of Carl’s Collision Center in Fall River, Massachusetts. “It’s 100% accurate. No waste. And it has increased our efficiency by at least 15%.” 

To date, more than 2,000 shops worldwide are taking advantage of this automated mixing system. 

Going all in with digital tools 

The PPG MoonWalk® mixing system is just one innovation of PPG’s recent efforts to advance color-matching performance beyond paint. Recently, the company introduced the PPG LINQ™ ecosystem to help painters improve their repair processes using a cloud-based platform and interconnected digital hardware, software, and innovative services. 

The innovations provided by the PPG LINQ™ ecosystem are: 

  • PPG DigiMatch™ spectrophotometer, a compact, advanced multi-angle color camera for taking accurate readings of an actual vehicle color  
  • PPG VisualizID™ software, a digital color visualization tool that works with the PPG DigiMatch™ spectrophotometer to enable the technician to compare 3D “virtual sprayout” renderings to determine the best color variant formula 
  • PPG LINQ™ Color cloud-based digital software for easily identifying the best color from PPG’s extensive formula database 
  • PPG MagicBox™ wireless device connects with PPG LINQ™ Color software and sends jobs to the scale, enabling the technician to complete the mix quickly without the need for a separate PC. 

The Envirobase® High Performance paint system is compatible with every tool in the PPG LINQ™ digital ecosystem, making it the perfect solution for modern collision centers.

Learn more or find a PPG distributor by visiting ppgrefinish.com.

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