How to repaint a bike frame

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle Welding, Fabrication and Paintin' started by OrangeBrian, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. rustycase

    rustycase Gutter Rider

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    I'm using rattle cans for a quickie color change, right now... hard to beat 'em.

    Much better quality is possible with an inexpensive airbrush, but you will need to check the orifice size. many airbrushes will not spray heavy bodied paint.

    Same thing with the cheapo touch-up guns. gotta check the orifice size.

    An airbrush can be operated from a large pickup truck tire, filled elsewhere, or even with a cigarette lighter powered compressor! Just can't do large volume areas and stuff like that.

    BA is correct, that tube is difficult to paint, especially with all kinds of intersections!
    Saving grace is that you can never see all surfaces at the same time...

    Overspray...
    Yah gotta watch your overspray!

    Best
    rc
     
  2. fugit

    fugit New Member

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    I brought an old messy bike frame to the powder coating place here in town. I think they charged me 40 dollars. It came out like new :) I saved money by letting them use a color that they had set up for another job so they didnt miss abeat settin it all up and painted it when they were on the other job.
     
  3. rustycase

    rustycase Gutter Rider

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    WoW !

    $40 to powder coat a bicycle is a Major bargain!

    Congrats on such a good deal.
    rc
     
  4. thegnu

    thegnu New Member

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    wow your right ! shoot at that price it doesnt even pay for me to mix the color .
     
  5. fugit

    fugit New Member

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    Well like I said I told him to use whatever color he had mixed up for any job he was already doing. It also helped I had my 12 year old there and it was his BMX bike and the owner was an old BMX guy. It was some classic BMX frame we were restoring so the owner had a soft spot on two accounts.
     
  6. young grease monkey

    young grease monkey New Member

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    What is the best type of paint to use? Enamel is soft, so can I get epoxy or some kind of tougher paint? All I want is black and blue, maybe silver. Will those be hard to find? And I need them to be fuel resistant or a fuel resistant clear coat. Any advice? Also, is there any way I can take advantage of a power washer for stripping? It is 1500 psi electric. Maybe chemical strip, power wash, repeat a couple times?
     
  7. thegnu

    thegnu New Member

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    YGM, paint can be a tought choice it depends on the equipment you have available , I would say its best to use a polyester base or a urethane base an clear , but best possible paint or similar system you can get is powder coating . as far as stripping your idea can work but at any rate you will need to prep the steel prior to even priming . I hope to not have created more questions for ya , but I fear I have . so gimme some more specific questions an I will give ya my best answers.
    Gary
     
  8. Joe_Knesek

    Joe_Knesek New Member

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    Sorry for the late response. Yes latex gloves work fine. I like to use rubber coated cotton gloves.
     
  9. silverbear

    silverbear The Boy Who Never Grew Up

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    You didn't mention how you'll be painting. Are you using a compressor and gun or rattle can or what? Most of us don't have resources beyond rattle can paint jobs, which can look quite good or pretty bad. I've done both, ha!

    I've tried cheap paint, expensive paint, Dupli color from NAPA and the best I have found in rattle cans is tractor paint made be Van Sickles. It is very good quality enamel, which covers well and does not tend to run unless you really overload it. They also have clear coat.

    It also depends I think on what your intentions are for the bike. Is it going to be a daily rider, commuting to work in different kinds of weather? Garage kept or just under a tarp? Hauled around on a carrier or in the back of a pickup? Will you ride on nice asphalt or gravel roads or even off road?

    My point is that it seems like no matter how hard you try, the paint gets screwed up during assembly and from just riding the bike. I try to prep the bike well and lay down a good paint job, then expect to have to touch up the scrapes and scratches later on as they occur. And if the bike is ridden a lot then at some point it is going to need a makeover. If you can have it powder coated it will last best, but if you do it yourself then you can figure on redoing it yourself, so best not to get your pants in a bundle when it gets scratched.

    Gnu is an auto body guy and paints cars. And his skill shows in his builds. I use a rattle can, paint outdoors and there is a world of difference in approaches. You need to know your resources in skill, equipment and money and go from there. Then you also know what questions to ask. Some guys do amazing paint jobs with a rattle can and can give you valuable tips.

    No matter how you paint your bike, heres a little tip for dealing with the scratches later on. Unless it is Gloss black (black is black and not hard to match), paint a washer or bolt or something while painting your bike. Later on ask a girlfriend, sister or whoever to take the painted washer to a place that sells fingernail polish. I go myself. Who cares? I'm old and eccentric. Match it up as close as you can in color. Black, reds and whites are easy to find. And some places sell a whole lot of colors in different shades. Now you have a touch up paint bottle with it's own little brush. I do this now whenever I can. I got the tip from Mike Simpson (thanks, bud).
    SB
     
  10. phoobarnvaz

    phoobarnvaz New Member

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    Another option you may have available to you is whoever is in your social circle...such as a church/club/school or whatever. I can count of one hand the people I know who have access to a compressor in a shop they use for their hobbies or even own for a business. Going this route...you could buy the paint and they may have hardware to get you going. If you have a talent or ability they need...do a barter. You don't...may cost you a few dollars...but most people are pretty nice and will help you out as long as you're not going to burn their place down and they have the time to help you.

    Another option is to look at getting a used compressor/paint rig from a pawn shop or a new one from Harbor Freight. (I like using them...but you have to remember their stuff is cheap for a reason.) My roommate got a $70 power saw and a 50' electrical cord for less than $40. They had more than three compressors for sale. You go this route...offer to paint stuff for people after learning on your ride.

    If you believe in karma...help out a family locally who may not have a way to get around by offering to paint a bike for them from what you got from the pawn shop.

    Just an idea. Who knows? Jesse James might come see you to get ideas if you can get going on it.
     
  11. young grease monkey

    young grease monkey New Member

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    Thanks everyone! I don't have a compressor, but my dad runs the diesel mechanic shop for a recycling company so they have air. But no spray gun. I wanted to keep my budget under $40 as well, so I will be using spray cans. Or powder coating if I can get a deal, but it will probably be very expensive because I want more than one color. This will not be an off-road build, mostly just riding around on pavement but I want something that will hold up a little better than enamel because it will serve as a pit bike when I go to motocross races. On a side note, if you ever want to sell a motorbike, a motocross race is the place to do it. Think about 80,000+ rednecks walking past your bike! So ya I want a paint that won't break the bank, be impossible to find, and must be tough. And I need fuel resistance. It would be great of I could find it all at ace or true value. It will be stored in my workshed in the back yard, but it will see snow in the winter cuz I ride in nearly all weather. And what's the deal with clear coat? Sounds like BA doesn't like it, what about the rest of you?
     
  12. phoobarnvaz

    phoobarnvaz New Member

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    Check Harbor Freight online. I've seen an air brush kit from them for about $30. If I remember right...it comes with a mini-air compressor.

    This way...you can paint it whatever colors you want and get as creative as you want to. Of course...you can't do a large area at one time...but as long as you tape off what you want and go slow...you should be able to get a paint job no one else in the world will ever have.

    Just an idea.
     
  13. Joe_Knesek

    Joe_Knesek New Member

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    TPI makes a pretty good HVLP touchup gun that is a knock off of an Iwata. It comes with 3 different tips and needles and sells for under $40.00. I use one to apply ceramic coatings to weapons and high temp applications. They are available on line.
     
  14. rustycase

    rustycase Gutter Rider

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    Even the HF small cup guns and touch-up guns would do a fine job and they go for as little as $15 up.

    The prob is cost of the primer and paint. It's not in your budget mentioned.

    See what kind of rattle can product people might recommend...

    Good luck
    rc
     
  15. OG-Whizzerdude

    OG-Whizzerdude New Member

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    More than 50 years ago power tools weren't all over the place. I stripped all the paint off my first Whizzer frame with a dull flexable linolium knife. It sort of flexed around the tubing as I drew it toward myself, like a spoke shave. The fact that I couldn't find a sharp spot on it was to my advantage. It sort of plowed the paint off without nicking the metal. I did the tough spots with emery cloth and progressivly finer sand paper.
     
  16. young grease monkey

    young grease monkey New Member

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    Thanks for the ideas, but I'm gonna stick with rattle cans for now. I wouldn't want to paint in the shop anyway, not a good place to be if you want to avoid dust on fresh paint. What do you think is the best type of clear coat for durability? Do I need a tough color paint or will a lot of clear coat layers protect it? Sorry to be such a noob about paint stuff...
     
  17. silverbear

    silverbear The Boy Who Never Grew Up

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    I'm going to put in a word once again for the Van sickles tractor paint. This is very high quality, durable paint for less money the Dupli color and holds up better. I have a can of their clear coat I'm going to use on my gas tank when it's done and has it's base coat. It isn't that easy to find unless you have a tractor supply store around, but can be ordered online. That's what I used to paint my Indian Hiawatha. Covers well and doesn't want to run, great shine.
    SB
     
  18. Joe_Knesek

    Joe_Knesek New Member

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  19. young grease monkey

    young grease monkey New Member

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    Forgot to thank all of you. Thanks! Turns out, I can get the frame powder coated black for free! My dad has a lot of connections. In other news, I am a 4 stroker now. 99 cc predator and maybe a cvt! Just gotta sell a lawnmower, sbp pipe and air filter, and maybe my nitro RC car.
     
  20. F_Rod81

    F_Rod81 Dealer

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    Cool(^). The predator 99cc is a whole new ball game compared to a china girl. Post some pictures when your ready to share it with us... :)
     

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