Painting my bike

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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So, since I'm waiting on my new motor to arrive, I figured I'd take some time and paint the bike. Probably should've started sooner since the motor should be here tomorrow :)

Here was the bike before:


After I got the bike all disassembled I cleaned it up and removed the stickers and cleaned it again (boy was it dirty). unfortunately the stickers were under the clearcoat on the bike, so I had to remove them with a razor blade. I used gasoline to get the sticky gunk off that was left by the stickers.



After cleaning, I busted out the random orbit sander with some 220 grit paper. Everywhere there was a scratch or nick, I sanded down to the metal. Then using 320 grit I hand sanded the whole bike.



Shot the bike with a quick coat of primer to avoid any bare metal. Had a few drips and runs accidentally, but I'll be sanding and doing a second primer coat anyway, followed by a 600grit wetsand



Unfortunately I don't have the tools to remove the cranks or spindle. I really need to though, as the bearings need replaced - sounds like sand when you rotate the cranks...Not to mention how hard it is to get paint in certain spots with the gears on. Not sure if I'll break down and take it to the bike shop to have them removed, or just get the tools for myself or what.

I'll be using a dark gray/charcoal paint that has metalflake in it, and metal flake silver for accents. Should look pretty nice. Just realized I should start on the tank as well. Think I might use the charcoal as a base, then do some graphics with the silver.

I've never worked with metalflake paint before - you can't sand the paint without it looking bad, am I right? So I guess I'll have to do a couple smooth coats, followed by the clear, and then just do a high grit wetsand on the clear.

Well that's all for now. Hope to make some more progress this week. Pretty busy though, so I may have to put it off till the weekend :(
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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I want to do some type of graphic on the gas tank. After searching around for some stuff yesterday, I found a few possible things, but I decided I could just come up with something of my own. So here's what I've come up with:



The white areas will be the metallic silver, the rest of the tank will be the metallic charcoal.

Hopefully I can get out there and sand/prime the tank tonight. My new motor should be here today, so I'd like to have the bike all buttoned up by the end of the weekend.
 

brisbane_boy

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Oct 26, 2008
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looking good mate. yer i coudent get the cranks and stuff off my bike wen i paitned it. so i took it to the bike shop the guy took 2 min and got it off. its easy to put bak u dont need the tools. but yer probly best if u go to the bike shop and then u can get new bearing.

Nice work
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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Well I did 2 coats of color on the bike last night. I'll tell you what, that metallic charcoal is dead sexy. I want to paint my car with that stuff, lol. I also did a couple coats of the silver on the gas tank. It turned out a little more chrome-ish than I though it would, but I think it'll look good. Got a few bubbles/drips unfortunately, but I'm not worried since I'd like to make a new gas tank during my 2 weeks off of work around Christmas (we'll see how that works out).

Realized I forgot all about the handlebars. So I primed those last night as well. Not even bothering to take them apart. They're set the way I want them, so I just sprayed the bar/stem combo as one. They'll get the charcoal, and maybe a silver accent or two on the stem.

I was planning on using a couple cans of clear that I had leftover from a previous project, but I'm glad I checked last night. Turns out it is a matte clear. Guess I'll have to go buy a nice glossy clear today or tomorrow. I'm hoping to find a super tough clear, almost like a lacquer or epoxy or something. Not sure what my options are for clears though, so we'll see.

haven't taken the cranks off yet. Still wishy washy on whether or not I want to buy the tool (I know I should). I should probably get them off before I do the clear.

Sorry, forgot to take pics last night. I'll have to take some tonight and post them up tomorrow. I'm seriously in love with this color though. Rustoleum metallic charcoal. Holey moley it's pretty.

Thanks for the compliments guys.
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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It's been too cold after work to paint the last few days (low to mid 40's), so I haven't gotten much done.

I did pick up some clear the other day though. I decided on a lacquer. Should hopefully be more durable than your standard clear spray paint.

Last night I went ahead and masked out the graphics for the tank. I did one side one way, and did the other side another way. I liked #2 better, so I redid the first side. That was a lot of masking and cutting. Unfortunately I was a little too heavy-handed with the razor blade, so it kinda dug into the paint a bit. Hopefully it won't look too bad. I can tell I'm going to need to pin-stripe the outline though to cut down on jagged edges and such...too bad I suck with a paint brush.

I'm working a short day today, so I should hopefully be able to paint this afternoon.

I also broke down and bought the crank puller tool. $20 for 2 min of work...sheesh. Also got some lube for all the bike's bearings.

 

jasonh

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yeah, I think something like that would work much better than just plain masking tape. There is always next time :) (might try making a fiberglass gas tank during my 12 days off of work over the holiday)

I wish I had photos to share right now, but I forgot the dang camera at home.

I sprayed the tank with the charcoal last night, then peeled up the tape. Looks good from a distance. up close it's not so hot. The edges of the graphic are all ragged. I will definitely need to pinstripe the thing. Not sure what color to use though. I have some dark green laying around, but idunno.

I also sprayed about 3 or 4 coats of the lacquer on the frame, fork, and handlebars. Looks like it's going to leave that nice hard glossy finish I was after. it actually seemed to dry much smoother than I had anticipated. Probably don't need to worry about a high grit wetsand and polish, which is nice. Didn't clear the tank obviously, since it still needs some paint work.

I was going to do the crank, gears, and cover alternating charcoal and silver, but I said forget it and just sprayed everything charcoal. I'll try to clear them tonight.

When I was doing the clear on the frame, I used an old brake cable, just the metal inner part, and hung the frame. That helped a lot. I wish I had thought of that while I was doing the color, lol.

I'll let the lacquer set for another day or two, then I guess I can start putting the bike back together, woohoo.
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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It's taking quite a long time for the clear to cure, seeing as it gets down to 20F at night, and only up to 50F during the day. Oh well.

So, last night I found that neither my wife nor I are any decent at pinstriping. Tried to use a nice bright orange to outline the flames, but it just wasn't going to work. I ended up using a black sharpie, lol. Didn't come out perfect, but it came out better than the orange paint would have.

I was going to install the bearings and spindle last night, but after I had cleaned and greased the bearings, I found that stupid me got paint and lacquer on the threads of the bottom bracket. Then I dropped the bearing on the dirty floor. Ugh. So tonight I have to try and scrape all that crap off the threads so I can install the spindle. I would like to install the cranks and fork as well if I can.

It's really hard to get a decent pic of the nice sparkle to the paint with my current cheapo camera...



Here is the tank and other pieces soon after being cleared. You can see my crappy Sharpie job, but it's better than the alternatives.

 

xPosTech

The Old Master Motorized Bicycle Builder
Oct 23, 2008
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It's possible you didn't have the right tools. For pinstriping you need a l o n g brush. Really long.

Watch a you tube or instructible on pinstriping.

At speed it will look beautiful! Looks good now.

Ted
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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Yeah, I watched some youtube vids this morning to see what I was doing wrong. Definitely WRONG brush. Oh well.

Thanks for the compliments.
 

jasonh

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Yeah you need a sword brush, even with the correct brush its bloody difficult to do, i would have opted for hitting the auto store and buying a roll of pin striping tape and stuck them on...probably still an option? could then lacquer over the top :)
Wait, what? I didn't even know I could get that stuff, argh. Would it be flexible enough to stripe the flames? Seems like it would be tough to get it neat.

So, I'm an idiot. Seriously.

Last night I decided to put my bottom bracket back together. I KNEW which sides the different pieces went on. I just could NOT get them screwed on all the way, no matter how hard I tried. I even ended up slipping with the wrench and put a nice big gash in the paint.

After an hour and a half, I figured I'd try switching the pieces around as a last resort. Perfect fit, no effort required. :headdesk: At least I was able to touch up the spot I screwed up and leave it looking good.

I also put the fork back on as well. I probably should've got new bearings for the crank and fork, but they were still somewhat decent so what the heck. I used this thick green snotty goo grease from Phil Wood. I like it, except for the smell it leaves on your hands.
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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Oh well, now I know.

So it finally looks like a bike again.



Hopefully I'll have the time over the weekend to get the rest of the bike stuff mounted. Not sure when I'll mount the motor stuff...maybe towards the end of the weekend if I can. Want to give that paint all the time I can to cure since it's so cold.
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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that looks exactly like my bike after i painted it! it that a huffy?
Nope, it's a '98 Nishiki Bravo.

I probably should sneak the bike in to help with the curing process. We don't use our heaters in the house, but 60F is probably way better than 22F, haha.

I'm actually at work today (hey, working holidays is good money), so I hope to work on the bike a bit when I get home. I'm hoping I can find an old belt laying around so I can wrap the frame in leather to protect it from the mounts...they tore it up last time. I'd like to get the gas tank and the rest of the normal bicycle parts installed. I have tomorrow off, so hopefully I can make some good progress on the bike. I would be ecstatic if I could get up and running by the end of the weekend.
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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...I'm still not done. It is 90% back to being a bike though. Got the rear derailer back on and adjusted (not running a front), along with a new cable. Found out that I really need to get my other set of wheels fixed (bent axle on rear wheel, and both need bearings badly). This back wheel has a different spacing and was meant for a different derailer mount, so when I'm on the smallest sprocket, the chain runs over the mount bolt for the derailer. Not a big deal unless I want that top gear. New brake lines and pads and all that jazz as well.

My ambitions of having it all finished up this weekend went out the window. I am going to bite the bullet and finally order a shift kit from SBP on Friday...and hopefully some other goodies (Christmas is coming early this year). So once I get that in, I'll paint the brackets and then put it all together. Woo.
 

xPosTech

The Old Master Motorized Bicycle Builder
Oct 23, 2008
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Nope, it's a '98 Nishiki Bravo.
<snip>
I'm hoping I can find an old belt laying around so I can wrap the frame in leather to protect it from the mounts...they tore it up last time. I'd like to get the gas tank and the rest of the normal bicycle parts installed. I have tomorrow off, so hopefully I can make some good progress on the bike. I would be ecstatic if I could get up and running by the end of the weekend.
Ask your Mom (better luck than your wife) for an old leather purse she doesn't want. The older the better the leather.

Or go to Goodwill and buy one for 99¢.

Ted
 

jasonh

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Jun 23, 2008
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Mom's 1000mi away and doesn't carry leather purses. But the thrift store idea is good. I'll do that if I can't find one of the few old belts I think I have. Really I just need a single wrap under each mount for the motor and shifter kit, and a couple wraps under the gas tank.