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Kane Coburn has been a technician at Tint Shop Auto Sports on Wrightsboro Road for about a year.

Auto technician Kane Coburn applies a tint to a Pontiac Grand Prix at Tint Shop Auto Sports on Wrightsboro Road.  Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Auto technician Kane Coburn applies a tint to a Pontiac Grand Prix at Tint Shop Auto Sports on Wrightsboro Road.

Although he mainly installs audio systems in cars and trucks, he'll do whatever needs to be done around the shop, including tinting and performance modifications.

Today's job is tinting a black Pontiac Grand Prix.

Mr. Coburn starts by thoroughly cleaning the windows and cutting out the tint to fit the shape of the glass. The tint comes with a backing that will adhere to the glass forever if maintained and cleaned properly.

He uses soap and water to keep the backing from sticking immediately and to allow time for a perfect fit before using a squeegee to remove the excess water.

Mr. Coburn says the hardest cars to apply tinting to are Tauruses, Beetles and Corvettes.

"Some of them will whoop you," he said. "Because of the shape of the windows and rubber gasket, just when you think you've got it down good, it'll pop right back up.

"If you can't slide that tint behind the rubber gasket, it kills you," he said.

Store owner Michael White says he will do whatever the customer wants, as long as it's legal and his technicians are certified to perform the work.

"You'd be surprised what people will ask you to do, like lowering a luxury car. It's for looks rather than the ride," Mr. White said.

But not all modifications are only for looks. Though tinting windows is a relatively inexpensive way to improve a vehicle's allure, it can also help with keeping out heat and harmful UV rays from the sun.

"When my mom was diagnosed with skin cancer, I immediately tinted her windows," Mr. White said. He said quality tinting will block out 99 percent of UV rays and, depending on the thickness of the glass, will keep 75 to 85 percent of the heat out.

Mr. Coburn says there is definitely a culture of modifying and personalizing vehicles.

"It's something I've been into for so long, then when you're around guys who like the same stuff, it's addicting," he said.

"I've got a 1989 Honda CRX that's going to have a motor-swap," he said. A new 1.8-liter engine will replace the old 1.6-liter, adding horsepower and performance.


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