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  1. #1
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    PAINTING a Bike!!!???

    I tried to search but didn't find anything or don't know how to use the search correctly here yet.

    I got me a 29" Big Ripper and would like to make it totally custom, the way I want it. I'm wondering if someone has the knowledge or maybe can link me somewhere to give me step by step instructions on how to repaint everything doing it the right way. I have a VERY small budget, but don't know exactly the grade of paint I should use. Spray paint and spray clear coat? Automotive type paint? I want to do a Blue but in a flat style for the frame, forks, handle bars, rims white and spokes blue. Blue hubs and sprockets and possible pedals.

    Any guidance would be wonderful!!!!!

  2. #2
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    There are actually a lot of threads about this. From what I've read, most DIY paint jobs aren't going to be durable, and you'll be recommended to use etching primer, depending on the frame material.

    If you do spray paint the frame, your "totally custom" paint job will be chipped, scratched, scraped, and otherwise torn up in no time especially if you ride off road or through any sort of debris.

    Most people recommend powder coating or at least a professional paint job, and making sure you find someone who knows what they're doing with a bicycle frame and fork.
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  3. #3
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    Maybe 10Wheels can throw in on this, but down here on the island there isn't anyone I don't think. I def don't want to ruin it or make it ghetto or homemade looking, but I doubt I could afford to powdercoat it. I honestly have just considered selling it and buying 2013 model and its close to what I wanted to do. I will not do anything to cut the $$. If I can't do it and make it nice, then I won't bother!

    What is the trick to searching the forum?? I tried everyone word combo I could think of and Nothing?????

  4. #4
    Senior Member mrrabbit's Avatar
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    Here's what I do for cheap halfway decent looking paint using rattle cans:

    1. Get the frame complete sanded or fine bead blasted down to #400.
    2. Clean thoroughly with a rag soaked in Paint Thinner.
    3. Let dry - don't touch.
    4. Spray one coast of self-etching primer (Krylon is fine). Come back 10 minutes later or when the can label specifies - touch up or do another coat.
    5. Let dry for the required time.
    6. Lightly wet sand with #400. No pressure is really need. The moisture will suck the paper to the tubes - light finger pressure will do the job. Light sanding that's it...do not remove the primer.
    7. Once again wipe clean.
    8. One coat of Belton Molotow in color of choice. Be sure to hold can 6-7 inches away - do in the cool mornings or late evenings. Work top to bottom.
    9. 10 minutes later, another coat in color of choice.
    10. Let dry overnight.

    Now here the downside part - even rattle can clearcoat can have a little hardner in them - but nowhere whatsoever near what you get in an automotive application. Like Binkie said...

    11. Wet sand the base paint coat very lightly at #800. Once again, the wet will suck the paper to the paint - light finger pressure.
    12. Wipe clean.
    13. Spray a single light coat of clearcoat - once again hold can 6-7 inches away - on a cool morning or cool evening.
    14. Let dry overnight. You want the thin coat to out gas before applying decals and final coats.

    14a. Oops forgot this one...lightly wet sand this first light coat of clearcoat at #800 and wiping clean before continuing on to #15. <<< Ooops!

    15. Apply any decals you may have - even vinyl. (That's what I did.)
    16. Spray one complete and thorough coat of clearcoat - top to bottom - 6-7 inches away.
    17. Come back ten minutes later - spray another thorough coat of clearcoat. Make sure you get everything. Look everywhere 3-4 times if you have to.
    18. Let dry for at least 3 days. Even after 3 days, it'll still smell meaning its still out gassing and drying.

    Here's the drawbacks....

    1. If you get the primer part wrong - your paint job will literally peel right off.
    2. No matter what, just touching the paint job with a finger nail, drawing a smooth brake cable over the finish, etc. will leave behind scratches and etches....once again, this is not automotive clearcoat with quality hardening agents in it.

    Mine on my single speed already has a scratch from a party popper string.

    It's what I do, not professional or quality in any sense. Does look good when done though.

    =8-)
    Last edited by mrrabbit; 09-11-12 at 12:28 AM.
    4000+ wheels built since 1984...

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    2. I like anyone will comment in other areas.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by porkchop550 View Post
    Maybe 10Wheels can throw in on this, but down here on the island there isn't anyone I don't think. I def don't want to ruin it or make it ghetto or homemade looking, but I doubt I could afford to powdercoat it. I honestly have just considered selling it and buying 2013 model and its close to what I wanted to do. I will not do anything to cut the $$. If I can't do it and make it nice, then I won't bother!

    What is the trick to searching the forum?? I tried everyone word combo I could think of and Nothing?????
    I searched 'painting' in advanced search, titles only.
    http://www.bikeforums.net/search.php?searchid=6312366 (if that works) ... forum search engines can be a bit tricky.
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  6. #6
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    THanks for all the input!!!!! I kinda found a way to google for the searches, and w/o having a pro tackle this, I think I'm going to hit a couple local shops up or Craigslist and see if I cant get an old frame to practice on, maybe figure out what works for me, and the color/look that I have in my head. I figure spending $50 on supplies to practice might be better then hacking up this gorgous bike already! Its the mat-black color and its an aluminum frame if I remember correctly.

    If anyone is in or near Houston/Galveston with a spare parts bucket that you'd like to donate to my cause, feel free to let me know! lol.

    Thanks again for all the input so far, really glad I jumped on here and asked before hacking this new ride to pieces!

    CHop

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    Quote Originally Posted by porkchop550 View Post
    THanks for all the input!!!!! I kinda found a way to google for the searches, and w/o having a pro tackle this, I think I'm going to hit a couple local shops up or Craigslist and see if I cant get an old frame to practice on, maybe figure out what works for me, and the color/look that I have in my head. I figure spending $50 on supplies to practice might be better then hacking up this gorgous bike already! Its the mat-black color and its an aluminum frame if I remember correctly.

    If anyone is in or near Houston/Galveston with a spare parts bucket that you'd like to donate to my cause, feel free to let me know! lol.

    Thanks again for all the input so far, really glad I jumped on here and asked before hacking this new ride to pieces!

    CHop
    Perhaps call some shops in your area. People on this forum are claiming some fairly decent powder coating prices (in the $150 range in most cases). I'd hate to know you spent $50 on some practice bike, plus paint, and the valuable time with it, for a soft end product. It may be worth the effort for the experience, but not for spray paint durability.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member mrrabbit's Avatar
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    Note correction in my original post...

    =8-)
    4000+ wheels built since 1984...

    Disclaimer:

    1. I do not claim to be an expert in bicycle mechanics despite my experience.
    2. I like anyone will comment in other areas.
    3. I do not own the preexisting concepts of DISH and ERD.
    4. I will provide information as I always have to others that I believe will help them protect themselves from unscrupulous mechanics.
    5. My all time favorite book is:

    Kahane, Howard. Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric: The Use of Reason in Everyday Life

  9. #9
    Senior Member SHOFINE's Avatar
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    I was looking into painting myself and just can justify the labor and material cost. I did some searches in my area and found several powder coating businesses. One place has prices $40 for small bikes to $75 for large...kinda cured me from DIY. I found one in Galveston http://www.galvestonpowderworks.com/ there may be others.

  10. #10
    Senior Member mrrabbit's Avatar
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    There's also the added cost of just setting up space/room for painting - takes time as well. Too much hassle at times. The Pros are already setup for it.

    =8-)
    4000+ wheels built since 1984...

    Disclaimer:

    1. I do not claim to be an expert in bicycle mechanics despite my experience.
    2. I like anyone will comment in other areas.
    3. I do not own the preexisting concepts of DISH and ERD.
    4. I will provide information as I always have to others that I believe will help them protect themselves from unscrupulous mechanics.
    5. My all time favorite book is:

    Kahane, Howard. Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric: The Use of Reason in Everyday Life

  11. #11
    Kittery Maine / NC
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    ok what is powder coating? I want to tear down and re paint mine this winter.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member Flying Merkel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blinkie View Post
    Perhaps call some shops in your area. People on this forum are claiming some fairly decent powder coating prices (in the $150 range in most cases). I'd hate to know you spent $50 on some practice bike, plus paint, and the valuable time with it, for a soft end product. It may be worth the effort for the experience, but not for spray paint durability.
    I tried painting one bike frame. Took a long time to prep properly. The results look OK from 10 feet away. It's chipping here & there. Had one bike sandblasted & powdercoated for $115- and the result is very durable & looks good from 10 inches away.
    Pronounced "Murkle"

  13. #13
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    badger john,
    Powder coating is a method of finishing metal where an electrically charged pigment powder is sprayed onto the surface and then baked on for hardness. It is very durable and a lot quicker than waiting for spray on coats to dry. Almost every time you see an automotive part in a colour that isn't raw metal (callipers, rims, etc) it has been powder coated. I used to build custom drums and I had a guy that would powder coat a whole drum kit worth of hardware for $100. It's very strong and totally worth it if you can get the price where you want it. Lots of places will sand blast for you. When I would drop off the hardware there were a few times that he wouldn't even strip the chrome, just go right over it. Years down the road and nothing has come off.

  14. #14
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    To the OP, if your factory paint is in good shape and not all ratty looking, I strongly recommend that you just leave it or if you insist, get it powder coated. After a couple of months on a rattle can paint job, you will look at your bike and think, "good grief, why did I cover up all that nice factory paint and paint it and now it looks so horrible from all the scratches and chips, I should have just left it alone in the first place". I say that since the bike is a 29er so I imagine it will get ridden somewhat hard, quite a bit harder than say a road bike.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobotech View Post
    To the OP, if your factory paint is in good shape and not all ratty looking, I strongly recommend that you just leave it or if you insist, get it powder coated. After a couple of months on a rattle can paint job, you will look at your bike and think, "good grief, why did I cover up all that nice factory paint and paint it and now it looks so horrible from all the scratches and chips, I should have just left it alone in the first place". I say that since the bike is a 29er so I imagine it will get ridden somewhat hard, quite a bit harder than say a road bike.
    Actually no!! I got this bike just to tool around town and get exercise on. I'm a LARGE fella and don't ride but on the streets/sidewalks and seawall down here in Galveston. My real concern for the rattle can paint it being on the coast with all the humidity and or sea spray that I get from just riding around. I wipe it down when I come home and I'm always amazed how much crap is in the sea air!! It's a 29" but its a bmx style frame.

    After thinking things over last night I think I want to go with a black/white skeme. That would allow me to keep the factory paint on the black, but was thinking this and anyone can fill in and guide me from here.

    Frame and Forks - Factory mat Black
    Hubs - white
    Spokes- Factory black
    Rims - White
    Seat post - white
    Front Sprocket- white

    Those are my thoughts right now. I really would like to find decent price white hubs, I have only tried the SE site and they don't offer that color. So the only thing I would need to "paint" would be those listed. I'll check that galveston link from the other poster and see what they would charge to powder coat those small pieces for me. I think the powder coat is my best option being that the factory black is a dull/mat color and I love non shiny colors. Now I just need to do my research about taking off and replacing the spokes. Never done it before and don't have the proper spoke wrench yet, so I'll see about all that. Thanks very much to every for their ideas, I know there have been tons of posting about painting but again, I havent owned a bike since I was 14 and I really want to make this one unique for myself.

  16. #16
    Senior Member mrrabbit's Avatar
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    Are you talking mutli-speed hubs, or singe-speed/track hubs in white.

    =8-)
    4000+ wheels built since 1984...

    Disclaimer:

    1. I do not claim to be an expert in bicycle mechanics despite my experience.
    2. I like anyone will comment in other areas.
    3. I do not own the preexisting concepts of DISH and ERD.
    4. I will provide information as I always have to others that I believe will help them protect themselves from unscrupulous mechanics.
    5. My all time favorite book is:

    Kahane, Howard. Logic and Contemporary Rhetoric: The Use of Reason in Everyday Life

  17. #17
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    Take that this is the Big Ripper you have http://www.sebikes.com/2012_29bigripper.php

    As it is, there isn't too much to corrode due to sea air, as the frame & seatpost are Alu, there is nothing you can do apart from lubricating the drive train.

    For the rims, painting them will require a lot of masking, unless you intend to dis-assemble them, which would then require them to be re-built, in addition, you would nede to leave the braking surface of the rear wheel unpainted.

    For the sprocket, can't see paint lasting too long on the surfaces that the chain contact.

    As others have mentioned, powder coating is the best way to get a durable finish, but for a lot of the parts you have mentioned, would look at the possibility of buying those parts pre-painted, although your small budget probably prevents this.

  18. #18
    Junior Member the painter's Avatar
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    the best primer for aluminum is zink cromate .the paint you are talking about is automotive paint it is called hot rod black & white the clear coat sprayed on top is flat you can buy a cheep spray *** at harbor freight tools .com thay work pretty good for the price .you will need a small compressor maybe you can barrow one take your time & good luck.

  19. #19
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    Always the guy can paint using a preval unit. Probably he is better getting a 200 bucks Powder coating job because between paint and materials will be like 150 counting the clear coat also.

  20. #20
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    I made a video a while back on everything you'll need.. although this is with using a spray ***, which is more expensive than the rattle can method. Still, food for thought for other people searching. I have a few other videos listed as well.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sc3yM5tfCas

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