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  1. #1
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    Need Help Stripping Off Paint from BMX Bike


    Hello Everybody , I've been having some trouble stripping off the paint from my BMX Bike Frame . I Tired It Once and it was not a success . The outcome didn't look like what i expected . I Used A Ordinary Paint Stripper [Gel/Liquid Type] and A Chisel to remove the paint .
    Here's what i did ,
    I Apply the paint stripper all over my bike frame and waited for about 5 mins ? And started using the chisel and scrape off the paint . When i scrape , the metal of the bike frame turned greyish black . I have no idea what to do but to scrape the rest . I Had a hard time scraping off as i do not know what is the suitable tools to scrape off . It took me about 20 mins to scrape a little bit of the frame . I Really need help to what tools i should use and some cautions to take note off . Thanks

  2. #2
    Home School Valedictorian 02Giant's Avatar
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    It could be a powder coat, it would take a lot more work than if it was paint. Media stripping may be better if it's powder. Paint will generally blister and come off pretty easy with a bondo spreader, steel wool, picks to get into the tight spots, etc. I would wear gloves, a good stripper will burn the crap out of your skin. Safety glasses or shield would be a good idea.
    My brother stripped a Cove Handjob that was a *****, took a lot of patience.
    Last edited by 02Giant; 01-29-14 at 08:04 PM.
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  3. #3
    Member Evil D's Avatar
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    The best thing I've ever used to remove powdercoat was Permatex Gasket Remover. I used to restore vintage car rims as a hobby, and this stuff would eat off 20 year old powder coat better than any commercially available paint stripper I could get my hands on. It's getting hard to find though. I wouldn't pay $20 a can, but this is the stuff you want. http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-PERMATEX...-/121258191645

    Permatex has recently started making a 4oz spray bottle version instead of the aerosol can, and I'm not sure if that stuff works as well as the can. You may have to search around for it, but that's what I would use. As for the gel type strippers, you need to leave it on for longer than 5 minutes, and you MUST make sure the stuff stays wet. Once it dries out, it's useless. This might mean you need to keep reapplying it as you wait. You should see the coating ripple and lift off the metal as it works, like this:


  4. #4
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    I just got done doing my first raw. My LBS mechanic suggested that I use Aircraft Stripper in an aerosol can, and that I scuff the paint before hand. I couldn't find Aircraft Stripper at first, so I used CitrusStrip. It worked okay on the fork and bars, but it was still a chore to get the paint off. I put it on the rear triangle of the frame, and after a day of sitting on the frame, it looked like this:
    2HPB Raw 01.jpg
    The paint came off with a scraper, a steel wool scrubbie and a lot of elbow grease. The abrasive stuff I hit the back triangle with blew right through the ED finish. Also, I failed to mask the front triangle sufficiently, so the stripper took some of that paint off. It looked like this:
    2HPB Raw 02.jpg
    Once I realized that I need to strip the front half, I scuffed the front triangle with a 60 grit sanding sponge and applied Aircraft Stripper, (Finally found it at an auto parts store.) Within minutes of applying the A/C Stripper, the frame looked like this:
    2HPB Raw 03.jpg 2HPB Raw 04.jpg
    I didn't even use the scraper, I took all of that off with paper towels. It did a pretty good job of leaving the ED finish intact. (The ED is a finish between the paint and the bare metal.)
    Here is the frame, fork and bars mocked up:
    2HPB Raw 05.jpg
    Here is a pic with some parts installed. You can see the back triangle with the ED removed and the front triangle with the ED intact.
    2HPB Raw 06.jpg

    If you want to remove the ED, use sand paper, steel wool, or Rust Remover. I accidentally let a stream of rust remover run along the down tube, and it went straight through the ED. I am thinking of making my own sticker stencils and spraying the rust remover on there for a stealth decal look.

    If the OP has powdercoating, that is a real pain to get through, (From what I hear.) If it is just a standard BMX frame, it probably isn't that hard if you prep it right and use the right stuff.

    I am actually looking forward to doing another frame raw.

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    How long does this method of gasket remover take and does it work faster than the a/c stripper? I use the a/c stripper quite a bit but sometimes its a pain to wait and have to reapply.

  6. #6
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    scuff the paint up with some sandpaper then use a gel type stripper. my favorite is trigger spray. get a paint brush you dont care about and smother the frame with it. leave it on for 24 hours and a hose will be strong enough to blast all the paint off. if you are scrapping a bunch you didn't wait long enough or did not use the product in the right temperature. temperature plays a big deal on how chemicals work. if you tried to use a gel outside right now in most areas it wouldnt fly because the chemicals inside seperate and some freeze etc im not a scientist

  7. #7
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    Some strippers work better than others. (Sorry for the double entendre. I can't think how else to word it.)

    I have never had luck with aircraft stripper or anything with the word "citrus" in it. I care about the environment as much as anyone, but for removing paint/powdercoat from bicycle frames you need the nastiest stuff you can get. I use Jasco gel, which burns skin with a few seconds of contact and will even start to irritate your hands through heavy gloves after 15 minutes or so. Spread it evenly onto the frame with a brush, wait 15 minutes, and then use a wire brush to scrub it off. I would never use anything sharp, like a chisel, for fear of putting nicks into the metal.

    It's still a nasty, unpleasant job, and it may take several coats to get all of the paint off. As noted previously, anything you use needs to stay wet, so work in the shade. And the Permatex looks good enough to me that I will try it myself, next time. Finally, media blasting is the easiest solution. It normally costs less than $50 and leaves behind a surface ideal for repainting or powdercoating. Be advised, though, that it does remove metal. On a very thinwall frame (or one that gets repainted on a regular basis) this is cause for concern.

  8. #8
    Member Evil D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MATPatterson View Post
    How long does this method of gasket remover take and does it work faster than the a/c stripper? I use the a/c stripper quite a bit but sometimes its a pain to wait and have to reapply.
    When I was restoring rims as a hobby, I went through every available stripping product I could get my hands on, and found that for powder coat, the gasket remover stuff worked faster and stronger than anything else, and I tried aircraft stripper, gel strippers, you name it. It was also MUCH cheaper. The problem I've found now is that most auto parts stores no longer carry it, so it may not be available anymore.

    This is what the can looks like.



    Some areas, like the small diamond shaped pits in that rim, took a few sprayings to get out. Any stripper you use will only be effective while it's wet. Once they dry, they're less effective if not completely ineffective. What you see in that pic didn't take 5 minutes to wrinkle up, and that's 20+ year old factory powder coat.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evil D View Post
    When I was restoring rims as a hobby, I went through every available stripping product I could get my hands on, and found that for powder coat, the gasket remover stuff worked faster and stronger than anything else, and I tried aircraft stripper, gel strippers, you name it. It was also MUCH cheaper. The problem I've found now is that most auto parts stores no longer carry it, so it may not be available anymore.

    This is what the can looks like.



    Some areas, like the small diamond shaped pits in that rim, took a few sprayings to get out. Any stripper you use will only be effective while it's wet. Once they dry, they're less effective if not completely ineffective. What you see in that pic didn't take 5 minutes to wrinkle up, and that's 20+ year old factory powder coat.
    Thanks Evil D

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