Classic & Vintage - Paint chips and airbrush money well spend or not
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Like so many i too suffer the paint chips and rust spots and how to get a near invisible fix.
Despite having put my q'n on several forums like an airbrush forum these people just don't seem to understand the reason of why i want to keep the 1st paint and just want to have the problem areas fixed.
So knowing that the last part is no problem here i would like to hear from the people who have done this kind of repair to there bike frame which requires a different approach than a car where a paint chip area is being enlarged to a A4. Try that on your bike frame.
So are there any members who have actually done this kind of fix with a AB and is the result pleasing.
If not was it the operator of the AB that was the weakest link or is the Ab approach that is not the ideal way in fixing.
I have done my effort in using a brush, but it's too rough and sanding is near impossible regarding the location of the problem areas on the frame.
Lets read your experiences with the AB
08-19-12, 05:00 AM
Surface prep, and getting the correct paint code are the tough parts. After that blending in a paint repair is not that tough, metallics are very hard to match.
08-19-12, 05:09 AM
You MUST get the rust taken care of and prepped before attempting to paint. If it's nearly impossible to sand the rust, look at having the frame sand blasted. Is there a reason you don't get the entire frame painted? If it's a matter of cost, it may be more costly to have someone attempt to bend in paint with a airbush than for them to just respray the entire frame. You have to consider that time is money, and blending paint takes more time and skill than just spraying the entire thing.
With that said, you CAN airbush the problems, but more than likely the work will look like crap because your blending old and new paint, you have to get an EXACT paint match (one slight shade off and it will pop out), and then blend it well which takes a lot of skill to make it look good. It can be done, but it's either going to be cheap and look like crap or expensive and look ok...
If you want it to look great your going to have to spend the $ to have it painted properly. It's about $50-$75 to have the frame blasted, and I was quoted $200 for my frame to be primed and painted with 3 coats of PPG paint plus clearcoat then baked in their oven by a local VW/Audi dealership (the paint/primer is provided in the cost). I was told they would charge me $125 if I provided my paint. You can always get quotes and they may be less or more than mine. I suspect mine was a little higher because it is the VW dealership that is going to paint the frame using all their tools, paints, and man power. I was also told that if any of the metal needs worked on due to rust it would cost more (so keep that in mind if your bike needs bondo for rust repair). Most places will be able to give you a ballpark quote if you take them the bike or photos.
Best of luck to you!!!!
I can't offer much in the way of experience using an airbrush to retouch paint chips, but I'm also interested in hearing the responses (if any.) In my former life as an illustrator/designer (in the days before Adobe made doing such things by hand obsolete), I used an airbrush extensively. The kind of airbrush one needs to do the very finely detailed work of both illustration and tiny paint chip repair can be a bit finicky, and there is a learning curve: paint must be thinned down substantially - globby stuff won't flow through the airbrush (and no one likes to see spicules of paint literally spit out in clumps onto a surface!) I'd recommend a LOT of practice first, on sample surfaces that are suspended in the air to mimic a frame's position for painting. It's very difficult to learn the freehand control of an airbrush as it is; when you need to spray freehand with your hand in the air and not supported by any surface then a quality job becomes all about a very steady hand and hand/eye control. I've thought about digging my old airbrush equipment out and attempting a touch up on a fade... would seem a natural solution at first blush, but let me assure you that matching color, value, and gradation to an existing paint job would be one of the most challenging of projects! I would totally love to see what others might have accomplished in this regard, btw.
Is there a reason you don't get the entire frame painted?
Because it's only original once.
08-19-12, 05:40 AM
I think it is reasonably acceptable that touch-up work on an original finish will never completely disappear. I used to have the same mentality in which I wanted paint repair to be invisible. There are many methods for doing touch up work, but I think for chips and scratches, you are better off using a fine, quality paint brush after proper surface prep. You can always go back and wet sand to cut the repair area down to the level of existing paint. After that, scuff the surface and use a quality two part clear urethane to seal, protect and restore integrity to the surface.
08-19-12, 06:31 AM
I have a fairly high end airbrush, but can't say I've used it for this application, though I was tempted when doing touch up on my Gitane.
It would be a lot of work, and much practice, as Azorch has pointed out. I think the main challenge will be prep, blending and "filling" the chips to an acceptable degree. And of course, matching the paint. You'll need a high end airbrush to push paints of this type.
08-19-12, 06:36 AM
I have had some truly amazing results using the local Sanel auto parts store. They have a paint mixing service and they are able to do a pretty good job matching 80% of the time. I buy a product in a small 2 oz bottle that is mixed to be very thick to be applied with a small brush (in the bottle)
The paint fills the chip and can be leveled and polished to match. You can repair large areas if you have a good color match. Ditto on the metalflake or poly finishes. No real luck here.
A respray is very difficult to decide (for me that is) as A the rest of the frame is really nice looking and B it's only original once
Metallics is not the problem as this is a regular color applying it in a decent way with a decent result though is a problem (for the moment)
Paint has been supplied by the car body shop as they have matched the paint so there is little to desire the problem is how to apply it the best way (least visible)
I have very fine brushes from just a few hairs thick/thin and it's just not up to what i feel is possible regarding the result.
When i make the paint even more thin it's not covering up anymore and more layers are needed and with the experience if have one layer flowing out the the corners gives me the best result as sanding is near impossible.
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