Quotes from another site below which is a good description especially of the early style DB 735 astral silver.
If you go to the Glasurit site you can probably figure out which the mix for the early astral is if you can get a painter to decode what the metal flake codes are.
When I painted my Ducati 750 SS I actually looked at the different formulae and the early one had two sizes of metal flake in it, one of them ultrafine the other slightly more coarse, probably fine. The later 735 has only one size of metal flake in it but slightly coarser. This is from emory - I discarded the formulas. I may have a chance of getting a look at my old Glasurit books that I gave to a friend.
The earlier 735 gives an almost pearlescent look but not as bright and jarring as modern paints - one dimensional is a good description as below. IIRC it also has some candy apple tint in it which gives the impression of the aging clear coat as on old silver Ferrari SWB and Ducati 750SS - not that dissimilar then the pictures earlier in the thread.
There is also a silver used on early Mercedes Ponton, the color code being DB 180. It is slightly darker and more grey than DB 735 and was commonly used on 300SL Gullwing. It may be more suitable to some wheels. I tmay be interesting to look at the formula of that one.
And if you need it less glossy just add a little bit of flattener in the clear coat.
In terms of modern looks I would rate the three this way
Mercedes Astral silver = old style smooth silver
Mercedes brilliant silver = old style with more life (high points show brighter)
If this analogy works:
735 = 1 dimensional
744 = 2D
modern Porsche colours = 3D
I think you are right. I painted with a single stage 735 Astral, and probably got near exactly the right color and replica finish for an original of the period (not many 2-stage paint jobs in '60, certainly not on race cars).
I'm "OK" with the choice -- until I park next to you other guys with the pretty 2-stage paint jobs and more modern metallics. Then, the older color looks flat in comparison. Like Wayne says, it's smoother, 1 dimensional. (If I parked next to Greenie's car, mine would seriously look like primer! [xx(] )
Back when I made my paint choice I was 50/50 between the Astral and Brilliant silvers. If I had to make the choice again today I think I'd still be 50/50. The single stage Astral is more authentic, but the 2-stage Brilliant is more pretty.
Mercedes Astral Silver, as mentioned by Alleggerita, seems to be an alternative but is obviously brighter than Chuck's original wheel finish (which may have slightly yellowed with age, admittedly). Is #735 the 'earlier code' of Astral Silver? Whose code is that? If a Mercedes-Benz code, what are the commercial equivalents?
How does #735 compare to Glasurit 060?
Superfine flake or no flake?
Lacquer? If so, is a satin coat or a gloss coat more original? Or a gloss coat with a % of matting agent? I'm guessing these were originally a single-stage baked finish with no top coat applied?
I have also been reading about Wurth silver wheel paint, which is more of a DIY approach but apparently the quality of the spray nozzle is superb. Anyone used this? Which lacquer did you use afterwards?
All good information, advice and tips would be welcomed!