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View Poll Results: Should I paint the top half of the fork?
Leave it as is. Why make more work for yourself? 2 12.50%
Paint it so it matches the rest of the bike. 14 87.50%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 16. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-17-12, 01:51 PM   #1
himespau 
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Chrome replacement fork: Leave as is or give it "socks"

Going to replace my fork. I found one that should work that's all chrome. My thing with chrome replacement forks is that they often look like obvious replacements. I'm currently in the middle of painting my frame, so I have the primer and the right paint color. If I go with this fork, should I leave it as is, or should I paint the top half so it has chrome "socks" and looks like it matches the bike?

Note: This is not a frame of any value, just my commuter. And as such, I do not plan on selling it. Adding to the stable yes, but not selling this bike. The only logo the painted frame will be getting will be my first initial and last name on the top tube (because a completely logo-less frame looks odd to me).

Last edited by himespau; 08-17-12 at 02:04 PM.
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Old 08-17-12, 02:07 PM   #2
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"Socks" are so classy, and the full chrome underneath will give corrosion protection beyond what the paint alone could.
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Old 08-17-12, 02:11 PM   #3
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it depends on the era of the bike
I like socks, never had a set, but it has to match the frame.

my last restoration I left the drops chrome.
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Old 08-17-12, 03:49 PM   #4
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Oh, I didn't consider painting the whole fork. I don't think I want to do that because, well, I'm wet painting and it's just easier if I don't paint the dropouts so I have something I can rest the fork up against to dry.
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Old 08-17-12, 06:57 PM   #5
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If the bike is an obvious repaint, and a regular commuter rather than anything fancy, why worry about whether the fork looks like a replacement? Plenty of bikes with original all-chrome forks, in any case, and it often looks just fine (if not downright attractive in some cases). If you're particularly keen on matching paint for frame and fork, go for it, sure. But I'm not convinced that it's worth the trouble. How about throwing the bike together for a few rides and seeing whether the work continues to look like something that really needs to be done when it's all put into practice - the paint will keep, and you can pull the fork and give it some color at a later date if it strikes you a truly undesirable contrast. 'Socks' look good, but an all-chrome fork can, too.
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Old 08-17-12, 07:39 PM   #6
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Your painting the frame....can't think of any reason why you wouldn't paint the fork.....if the bike and repair are just for utility purposes...well there's a forum for that too, but this aint it! Give it a paint job to be proud of!!
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Old 08-17-12, 08:57 PM   #7
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socks ala Somec
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Last edited by toytech; 08-17-12 at 08:58 PM. Reason: picture added
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Old 08-17-12, 09:03 PM   #8
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What's the bike? What's the color?
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Old 08-17-12, 09:12 PM   #9
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What's the bike? What's the color?
+1

A poll about bike appearance without any pictures of said bike? For shame.
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Old 08-18-12, 07:36 AM   #10
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Pictures are not helpful as bike is primed and half sanded. Eventually it'll be hunter green with white accents, but painting is taking forever as I'm a bit of a perfectionist, but not that great of a painter, so I got this far and have a hard time getting started in going further. Also, we just moved and I'm still trying to find a place to paint. Have a great workbench in the basement, but we don't have a dryer at the moment so all our clothes are hanging dry down there, so I can't sand/paint when we've got stuff hanging.
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Old 08-18-12, 07:38 AM   #11
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socks ala Somec
That is sweet.
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Old 08-18-12, 07:39 AM   #12
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I vote for chrome socks.
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Old 08-18-12, 07:51 AM   #13
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Chrome socks here too, looks classy and I agree that the solid chrome fork just looks like a replacement, even on the bikes that came with them from the factory.

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Old 08-18-12, 08:17 AM   #14
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Simple as pie to do.

I did it to a cheap Sunlite replacement fork and it turned out very well. Roughly tape the fork crown, carefully cut the tape with a sharp X-acto knife following the lug brazing -being careful not to scratch the chrome (it'll rust there if you do.) Tape off the lower end at what ever height you want the "sock" to rise to. Then just shoot it. I like to use Duplicolor Hi-Heat rattle-can paint and then "cook" it in the oven. The end result is just as tough as powder-coat, if not tougher.

Here is the result of my labor.



The decal is something I whipped up at Doityourselflettering.com

Last edited by Amesja; 08-18-12 at 08:24 AM.
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Old 08-18-12, 10:14 AM   #15
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The problem is getting the paint to stick to the chrome.
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Old 08-18-12, 10:20 AM   #16
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Chrome socks here too, looks classy and I agree that the solid chrome fork just looks like a replacement, even on the bikes that came with them from the factory.

Bill
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Old 08-18-12, 10:22 AM   #17
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Prepping is important. I should have mentioned that above.

I cleaned the chrome first with a bath in soap & water and rinsed well, then I cleaned the area to be painted with alcohol to get all traces of oil or other residue off of it. Chrome isn't really all that hard to get paint to stick to. It's more porous than most people think -especially the cheaper chrome-jobs that most of these replacement forks get.
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Old 08-18-12, 10:22 AM   #18
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The problem is getting the paint to stick to the chrome.
in my experience, this is totally overblown. i've used epoxy paint that stuck to chrome very well. you can also buy an adhesion promotor (duplicolor) that will help.

i cleared over a polished steel bike and it has stuck very well.
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