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  1. #1
    Senior Member Guitarrick's Avatar
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    Custom paint in an aerosol can?

    I just bought a Raleigh Sojourn. It comes with a rear rack that's painted to match the bike. I just bought another Tubus rack for the front, and of course I want to spray it to match the rest of the bike.

    I've called Raleigh, they don't sell touch up paint. I've looked at websites that paint scan and make custom color aerosol cans, but everybody's minimum order is huge. I won't be needing 24 cans! I've even called Lowe's & Home Depot, both said they can't scan the stock rack.

    I'd take it to a body shop, but they'd probably charge me close to the price of the rack just for their time, which they should. That's a lot of screwing around just to paint a bike rack. There's one across the street from my work, I'll swing by on Monday just for the hell of it.

    Anybody know where I can go to have an aerosol can made?
    Quote Originally Posted by cs1 View Post
    You could always pick up a goat head from one of middle eastern vendors. Just strap that on your bike and ride it home.

    2011 Raleigh Sojourn

  2. #2
    Randomhead
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    I have heard you can go to auto parts stores and get this done, but I don't know about that. NAPA stores apparently will make one can, but I've never tried it.

  3. #3
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    My local auto paint dealer has a device that will scan a painted surface and match it. Unfortunately when I took a frame in, there wasn't sufficient flat surface to get a match.

    If you do find a match there's a small aerosol spray unit called "Preval" or something like that where you pour in your thinned paint and you can spray. That's what they say.
    Last edited by satbuilder; 03-04-11 at 07:24 PM. Reason: addition

  4. #4
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    I have used preval several times and works fine, i mean if you do not have a *** and compressor the preval does the work but there is a learning curve also. The atomizer is similar to a regular ***, basically is a bottle attached to a compress air can and the tip at the top. Pretty straight forward, put the paint mixed with the thinner in the bottle, attach it to the spray can and press the tip, easy to use and CHEAP!!! I have shoot base coat, clear coats and experiments putting some medium size sparkles particles and the thing have shoot just fine. Have not tried shooting primers because i have not found primer in quarts so I use u-pol primer surfacer that is a large can, u-pol is a professional line of paints and the primer is the same u put in a car, good stuff, 15 bucks a can, for a whole bike 2 cans.

    In paints find somebody who sells you PINTS of paint, some places only sells you gallons, for a bike you don't need a full quart because u have to thin it also, u can ask for half pints also then fill up the can with thinner/reducer and u will have a full pint ready to go, all depends of the paint and brands I use omni plus and that one is 1:1 ratio with the reducer, other brands use paint, reducer and harderner (thats too expensive). As for the clear coat the easiest to work with is nason, nason sells one that is a quart for panels plus a little can of activator, does not use reducer, that one is 1:3 and goes total with the activator for about 50 bucks. A pint of paint can be 15 to 100 bucks depeding of the brand, quality and color (reds are the most expensive). A pint diluted is more than enough for a bike, in a matter of fact you will use maybe half of it.

    If you look at the internet there are some places that sells you polyurethane car paint in cans, are made for retouch and stuff, those ones last 48 hours because use an activator inside so once the chemical process started u have 48 hours to paint, after than the paint started to get hard and u can spray no more. The cans are small so I really can't even imagine how many cans you might need for a bike. Preval is the way to go if you want to do it yourself.

    This was painted with preval, omni plus paint and nason clear coat... and after sanding and polishing this is what u get...






  5. #5
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    Also, if you or anyone you know has a compressor, the *** part is very cheap, 20 dollars or less in all sorts of different configurations, airbrush, badger, HPLV, etc...

    Also, if you have a high pressure can, it ought to be possible to go to a gas station, or even use a hand pump (tough guy right), and take on enough air to spray with a regular ***. I am thinking of the kinds of thing used to fix flats or as ballasts, I mean you probably don't have one... Maybe even a scuba tank, no idea how stupid that idea is. The problem with either would be getting dry air... But you never know what people do or don't have. I have had the air cleaner around for 20 years and have never bothered with it...

    Also, while the spray guns tend to then be expensice you can HPLV with various squirrel cage set-ups.

    Nice work up there 6970

  6. #6
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    I know hobby people use regular oxygen tanks and a regulator attached to the airbrush, there is an airbrush that has a tip of around .5 to 1 mm that could work fine for a bike for example but a good airbrush is f... expensive. Never thought in filling back up the preval cans using my bike pump, that would be an interesting experiment, but the question is how. Need something like a needle maybe hmm...

    Air cleaner? well the main problem is that u need pressure, and a tank to store the air, it would be cool to use a car air pump but those ones get hot after 10 minutes and do not have a single tank. In my case I have spent enough money to buy a compressor already and probably I'll do it one day.

    Thanks for the compliments, like a designer sucks but the painting is getting better now with practice, I have painted that fork and the frame maybe 6 times to practice, paint tubes is hard thats why car repair shops do not take the job, specially if you have to sand and polish to get it right. That paint job has 2 coats of electric blue, then 2 coats of metallic silver, then sanded all together, then 3 or 4 coats of clear. Sanded again and polished, all by hand. That's the reason bike painters ask a lot of money for a work, to leave it like i did is a lot of work. You can just skip the sanding and polishing but the paint wont get a flat,deep and shiny finished color. It will look like regular car paint, with orange peel and a wavy reflexion like a stock car paints (look at your car you will see the orange peel big time)

  7. #7
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    Nice paint job there! I have not used one of those preval units in over 30 years. All I can remember is back then they weren't so user friendly for painting auto body panels.

    For the price it's definitely worth looking into again.

  8. #8
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    If you are in budget and you dont have enough to spend in a compressor and the *** the preval is your friend big time, the recharges are like 5 bucks, wish they had different tips tho because this thing is more made for panels than for a bike. Too much waste in my opinion but it works.

  9. #9
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    If I remember rightly, it is possible to buy an attachment which allows you to 'spray' the paint you want into a can through a tube into another one. It's useful when you have a few cans that are almost empty and put them into one. You can use this to put a certain amount of each colour from each can you want into a single can, shake and spray. I can't be sure but I do remember friends doing this with Montana spray cans.

  10. #10
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Wouldn't an Airbrush rig let you spray a small area with a small amount of paint?

    Given : side of a bike frame tube is a pretty small area.

  11. #11
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    The problem with airbush (i have one) is that the surface is too big, the paint container is too small also. For really small stuff is fine but not for bike, maybe a lug but not the whole bike. There are some airbrushes with a 1 mm tip, thats kind;a the right size for the job and detailing sprays guns also.

  12. #12
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    DON'T FORGET to wear a mask, whatever you do

  13. #13
    Senior Member squirtdad's Avatar
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    I have had good luck with the preval, way better than a rattle can...but that is because of the auto paint. Unless you can talk a paint dealer or body shop into mixing a small amount (get a preval for color and one for clear....but the good clear is catayzed which means your pot time is lilmited), by the time you get primer, color, clear and thinner even in the smallest quanties you are way over $100.
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    looking for: De Rosa 58cm ELOS frame and fork internal cable routing

  14. #14
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    Agree, I have spend so much money learning to paint using the preval during all this time that probably I had spend enough for a so so detail *** and a small compressor and tank.


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