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Old 06-25-11, 09:40 PM   #1
mtb_man_14
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Painting frame advice

I'm going to paint the frame on my SS 29er here soon. Trouble is... I don't know what color(s) and what kind of paint. I have the equipment (gun, air compressor, thinner and mixing cups) and experience to spray auto paint from my local auto paint shop. They have PPG which is pretty much the best stuff. I can do base/clear or single stage which is easier. Or I can go the aerosol route. I'd sand it down, prep it with alcohol, prime it then do whatever. I just don't know if it's worth the trouble to go the spray gun route. I want to go aerosol but don't know if it'll work out in the end. Any experience doing either way?

As far as colors... I was thinking baby blue frame with a orange fork (look up gulf race car on google), military green with some white stars, a deep purple (maybe a lime green fork?), lime green (maybe a purple fork?), or a flat black. Any suggestions? Or opinions?
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Old 06-25-11, 09:44 PM   #2
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Why would you ask other people what color to paint your bike?
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Old 06-25-11, 09:49 PM   #3
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Because I cant make up my own mind. Every color I listed sounds equally pleasing.
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Old 06-25-11, 10:03 PM   #4
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Plus some colors are harder to spray than others. Or some won't turn out right with aerosol.
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Old 06-25-11, 11:57 PM   #5
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Paint it to look just like that.
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Old 06-26-11, 01:29 AM   #6
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The gulf racing scheme looks well, "racy". Baby blue base with orange panels on down and seat tubes. Throw in a a round "6" number plate and you'll have racy goodness.

Sorry, don't have any technical painting comments. I let professionals powdercoat my last frame.
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Old 06-26-11, 06:49 AM   #7
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I see no problem with the rattle can approach, I've done it before and as long as you use a good primer it seems to hold up ok.
Purple and black sounds good.
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Old 06-26-11, 07:57 AM   #8
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I see no problem with the rattle can approach, I've done it before and as long as you use a good primer it seems to hold up ok.
Even if it does start to chip, it should be simple enough to fix. Don't have to re-mix the paint and I'd hope colors in the rattle cans are rather consistant. I guess I'll go raid the duplicolor department >
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Old 06-26-11, 08:44 AM   #9
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IME the secret to a good rattle-can result is to let it cure for about a week before you start the build.
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Old 06-26-11, 08:57 AM   #10
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Cool. The other thing I wanted to ask you is what brand of spray did you use and many cans did you go through? I have a 17" 29er frame and fork to do.
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Old 06-26-11, 09:16 AM   #11
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IIRC I used 1 can of primer and less than 2 cans of finish (large 26" frame only).
I used Rustoleum, but any premium paint (not the $2/can stuff) should give you a nice result. Automotive rattle can paint will give you a much harder, more durable finish, but it's more prone to drips so you have to be more careful with it.
Satin finish paint is my preference over gloss, it's more forgiving to surface imperfections and doesn't show the seemingly inevitable spray marks that you get with gloss (plus I just like the look of it better), but it may limit your color selection.

Last edited by scyclops; 06-26-11 at 09:38 AM.
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Old 06-26-11, 09:16 AM   #12
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If it is an aluminum frame and you want the paint to last I will refer you to here http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=457159 where an expert explains the proper chemicals and aluminum prep. Actually regardless of what you use........ it is ALL in the prep.
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Old 06-26-11, 09:30 AM   #13
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This is just me, but I wouldn't strip it to bare aluminum unless the existing finish is badly dinged up. TSP or your choice of cleaner/solvent, combined with steel wool or fine SP and a decent primer will get you a more than sufficient bond.
BTW, I'm no paint expert, this is based on my own limited experience, so people who know more about it than I may disagree.
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Old 06-26-11, 11:42 AM   #14
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Definitely keep the og finish if it's in decent shape. It's way stronger than anything that;ll come out of a can.... and definitely let it cure as long as possible before assembling.

I rattle canned my Pista over the winter and it cured for a few weeks before I put it together. I scuffed the original finish and went right over it with Rustoleum Appliance Epoxy. No chips yet and I ride every day. Even the drop outs are holding up!
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Old 06-26-11, 11:43 AM   #15
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Definitely keep the og finish if it's in decent shape. It's way stronger than anything that'll come out of a can.... and definitely let it cure as long as possible before assembling.
+1

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I scuffed the original finish and went right over it with Rustoleum Appliance Epoxy.
Please tell me it's not almond color.

Last edited by scyclops; 06-26-11 at 11:50 AM.
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Old 06-26-11, 03:24 PM   #16
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Please tell me it's not almond color.
LOL, no, just black.
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Old 06-27-11, 12:03 AM   #17
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I'd just load your gun up (it is an HVLP, right?) and do it right. If LubriTech M/C colors were still around I'd say rattle-can it, but . . . .

Shoot it Corvette white; turn it upside-down and shoot all the undersides black angled from the rear forward, frisket off lime gold flames from the head tube back; then shoot it all pearlescent topcoat + three or four coats of clear.
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Old 06-27-11, 01:14 AM   #18
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combined with steel wool or fine SP and a decent primer will get you a more than sufficient bond.
That's good advice. Use a wax and grease remover, and then a Scotchbrite pad which is as good as fine sandpaper but easier to use and conforms to the shape of the tubes so gets in the nooks and crannies
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Old 06-30-11, 04:14 PM   #19
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Purple with lime green fork, definitely. That would be sweet.

Since you've got the equipment, I'd do as nice of a paint job as you have time for. When I bought my current frame, the previous owner had sanded all the paint off for some reason and left it bare, so I did the spray can approach. It chips pretty easy. Since it's a mountain bike, I don't care that much--they're made to get beat around IMHO. But if nothing else, paint is a good rust preventer so a good paint job will increase the longevity of your frame.
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Old 06-30-11, 09:18 PM   #20
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I painted mine using the auto rattle cans for engine enamel. If the bike frame you're starting with is not chrome, then you can use a regular auto primer, otherwise self etching primer will be needed. To cure it, I accelerated that process after painting the frame and handle bars by allowing it to dry first and then locked it up inside the suv for a day or two at the hottest times of the day. Basically using the car as a solar oven. I went with New Ford Gray for the frame, handlebars & 1 piece crank arms, then painted the crank gear universal gloss black. It's not perfect but it's nice enough for a bike frame. I really had no problems with runs or drips, and I really did this outdoors with no paint bay. I did a 2003 Haro bmx bike and posted the thread & pics in the bmx forum

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...ight=2003+haro

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Old 06-30-11, 09:42 PM   #21
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As for color, the blue and orange go well. Just me, I went with the all gray so that I knew I could get the color, Ford isn't going anywhere in my lifetime, it's one color not two so I don't have to worry about touching it up and having to take things apart again, just throw some news paper on some surrounding parts and spray it some more.
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