Dave Kindig on GFS Paint Booths: “My equipment has paid for itself 100 times over”

Like so many in the collision repair industry, Kindig-It Design has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. A 20 percent reduction in the workforce has coincided with a spike in new business, leaving the famed custom vehicle builder with an extensive backlog and millions of dollars of vehicles waiting in the wings.

“It’s a good problem to have,” said Dave Kindig, owner of the 27,000-square-foot shop outside Salt Lake City. “Luckily, I have equipment that I don’t have to hope is going to work when I fire it up.”

Reliable equipment from Global Finishing Solutions (GFS) — a pair of Ultra XD Paint Booths, a triple-bay Ultra XD Closed-Top Open-Front (CTOF) Booth and an Ultra XD Paint Mix Room — gives Kindig confidence in his shop’s ability to keep producing the boundary-pushing rides his legion of wide-eyed fans have come to expect.

Kindig’s latest invention is the Kindig CF1 Roadster, built from scratch as a tribute to the 1953 Corvette, with an entirely carbon-fiber body that weighs only 70 pounds. The body was designed “to be a chopped and more slender body. It’s a very modern take but still classic,” said Kindig, who unveiled the first two Kindig CF1s at the 2021 SEMA Show in Las Vegas in October.

All of Kindig’s show-worthy painting is performed in an Ultra XD Paint Booth with a custom carbon filtration chamber specially engineered by GFS to capture solvent vapors and particles before they are released into the atmosphere. The 36-foot-by-24-foot Ultra XD CTOF Booth, featuring divider curtains to create three workstations, also was custom designed, as was the state-of-the-art Ultra XD Paint Mix Room.

My equipment has paid for itself 100 times over, just with the carbon filtration system on my big booth,” Kindig said. “The paint mix room is also beautiful. It’s well-organized. It’s open. It’s big. And it was custom-built for my specifications. It wasn’t just something we had to pick out of a catalog and choose A or B.”

At Kindig-It Design, one-of-a-kind car builds can take more than a year, while the Kindig CF1 can take a fraction of that time — all while working on as many as 20 other cars at the same time. Top-of-the-line equipment is essential to ensure the highest-quality finishes.

“We’re not painting five or six vehicles a week. We’re painting maybe one or two a month,” Kindig said. “But these vehicles cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, consume thousands of hours of work, and have to be done perfectly. We want to be efficient with our time, but more importantly, we’re after quality. When you don’t have to troubleshoot the equipment to make sure you’re getting a good paint job, it’s all about the artist and trusting that the equipment is going to do its job.”

The backing of GFS in recent years has provided added stability for Kindig-It Design. When their painters were struggling to adapt to the rapid changing of Utah’s four seasons, GFS was quick to offer on-site support in adjusting the settings on their booths.

“It was like lightbulbs went on all over the place,” Kindig said. “Being as large of a company as GFS is, once you’re working with them, it seems like they’re a much smaller company in the sense that they’re able to do stuff very quickly, very much to the point and very personalized to our needs.”

After 22 years in business, and countless custom builds under his belt, Kindig is determined to keep “bending and moving in the right direction to make sure we’re still relevant and still doing the top-notch vehicles that we do,” he said. “You have to have the best people. You also have to have the best equipment. And we’ve got both.”

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