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  1. #1
    Senior Member iBarna's Avatar
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    Painting or Powder coating (chrome) in SF?

    My bike is based on a Bottecchia steel frame from the 60's. The frame seems chromed, and it's painted over with a blue paint, except the fork ends and the chain-/seatstay ends. The bike is great, but the frame is pretty beat up, and I see rust in places.

    I would like to strip the frame and repaint it to a non-glossy black. I have no time or place to do any of the work myself. I have heard the praises of powder coating, which is what I would like to do, but I also have heard that stripping chrome is problematic. Anyone has experience with this?

    And what are good places in San Francisco to get a bike frame powder coated or painted?

    Your input is appreciated.

  2. #2
    hullo. drac_vamp's Avatar
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    i don't have much input other than you might wanna look outside of sf proper. perhaps towards south city, or oakland? i think people were finding more luck out that-a way.
    t.h.r.

  3. #3
    Senior Member iBarna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drac_vamp
    i don't have much input other than you might wanna look outside of sf proper. perhaps towards south city, or oakland? i think people were finding more luck out that-a way.
    Yes, I work in the East Bay and see powder coating places from BART. That would certainly be possible. The thing is, I don't know much about PC'ing or painting for that matter, so I would like to find a place that is known to do a good job with bike frames (ie. proper care is exercised around threads, etc), so that I can leave the frame in good hands, and get it back quickly, in a usable form. I am totally dependent on my bike, and can't have her screwed up by a shop that does not usually do frames. That's why I was always hesitant to just walk in to any random place. Thanks for your reply.

  4. #4
    hullo. drac_vamp's Avatar
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    hm.. maybe call bernie mikklensen? or wait for more people to respond here. he's in the east bay and should provide help, plus he's nice as can be.
    t.h.r.

  5. #5
    information sponge
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    call around. Ask if taping it yourself will help any.

    I just spray painted my summer bike with BBQ black spraypaint after taping the parts I didn't want painted. It turned out pretty well, all things considered.
    Philosophy and feelings don't change the laws of physics

  6. #6
    blah onetwentyeight's Avatar
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    Travis at freewheel has a connection with a guy, as do the folks at montanovelo. Names escape me though. Talk to them.

  7. #7
    awesome muftek's Avatar
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    yeah, one of my bikes used to be metallic silver, so i taped off the head tube lugs and a few stripes on the fork and seat stays, then sanded, primed, and painted with metallic black. it looks pretty rad.

  8. #8
    Senior Member concernicus's Avatar
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    if you prep the frame yourself, santa cruz cycles will put your bike on the line and powdercoat it for 35 bucks, just as long as you dont mind the colors they have (they have black, i believe).

  9. #9
    likes avocadoes
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    heh, like that info would fit here...
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    I've used four different Oakland/San Leandro/Hayward powder coaters. Can't remember all the names/details, but quality and attention to detail vary widely, even though all were around $75 for bead blast and powder coat. My favorite was East Bay Powdercoat, but they seem to have gone out of business or changed numbers because I can no longer reach the guy who used to do all the bikes (he taped off every hole (including rack and fender mounts) perfectly on an old touring bike (lots of work!)

    I second the idea of talking with Bernie or one of the shops that has stuff pc'd. They deal in large enough volumes to have a good understanding of how careful a powder coater is. In talking with the pc'ers, make sure that they know they'll have to remove chrome (much harder than just paint.) And that it's a cr-mo frame (some blasting techniques will damage the steel.)

  10. #10
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    Dude, I can't believe you're going to powdercoat a chromed 1960's Bottechia. angels are weeping.

    How rusty is it anyway? If it's just little spots, don't sweat it.

  11. #11
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    Here's one that posted on Craigslist a year ago. I don't know if they're any good though. MattyO may have used them.
    Original URL: http://www.craigslist.org/eby/bik/54807626.html
    Posted by: anon-54807626@craigslist.org
    Posted on: 2005-01-07, 12:21PM

    I have a powder coating shop in Hayward.Frmee and Forks solid color $75 includes bead blasting. Candies and other colors more.

    Maas Tech Coat
    31010 San Clemente St.
    Hayward,CA 94544
    (510)471-6227
    6am-2:30 M-F

  12. #12
    Senior Member iBarna's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone, keep the ideas coming!


    Quote Originally Posted by moki
    Dude, I can't believe you're going to powdercoat a chromed 1960's Bottechia. angels are weeping.

    How rusty is it anyway? If it's just little spots, don't sweat it.
    The bike itself is not fully chrome. The chrome only shines through at some places. It's mainly painted blue, for which I don't care much personally. The decals are also pretty scratched up... And it's not just tiny spots... they are bigger. No matter how I clean the bike, it still looks beat up. I don't like that... I want something neat and clean, and I also want the steel protected from the elements all around. I hear what you're saying -- but the bike is my daily ride, so it's much more a beater than a classic vintage to me. I think it would look great in black, and with this upgrade, it would last a whole lot longer.

  13. #13
    robots in disguise beppe's Avatar
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    Normally the frames are chromed everywhere, including under the paint.

    On the high end of things, there's Cyclart.

  14. #14
    Happy Cycling HexagonSun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlastRadius
    Here's one that posted on Craigslist a year ago. I don't know if they're any good though. MattyO may have used them.
    i had my gf's schwinn single speed powdercoated at maas tech for $75. i can try to post pics when i get a chance.
    Last edited by HexagonSun; 02-16-06 at 07:09 PM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member TNCLR's Avatar
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    I had some rims powdercoated at A-1 Powerdercoating on Valencia. Nice guys, quick turnaround. I've been told they don't do the best work when it comes to frames...but whatever. They're right on the corner of 19th?? I think. Right across the street from New College. Check 'em out.

  16. #16
    asleep at the wheel fixedpip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TNCLR
    I had some rims powdercoated at A-1 Powerdercoating on Valencia. Nice guys, quick turnaround. I've been told they don't do the best work when it comes to frames...but whatever. They're right on the corner of 19th?? I think. Right across the street from New College. Check 'em out.
    Had a frame done by A-1 and one by Bernie Mikkelsen (after some repair work) and they both turned out about the same in terms of finish.

    Bernie was cheaper and he also faced and tapped the frame when I came to pick it up, but I think he just does powder coats for new builds/repair work. However theres no harm in asking him, plus if you've never been over to Bernie's workshop you're in for a treat

    Thats said A-1 are right there on Valencia and 18th? and they do decent work. Took them about a week to turnaround my frame.

  17. #17
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    What did A-1 charge for a powder coat? Did it include bead blasting?

  18. #18
    Senior Member iBarna's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. I will talk to A-1 and the others mentioned. I was at A-1 once but it turned out they are closed on the weekend? I will have to stop by during the week before work.

  19. #19
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    NRI (650) 589-3966
    436 S Airport Blvd, South San Francisco, CA

    $125 includes bead blast, about 4 day turn around

  20. #20
    Dr.Deltron
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    Quote Originally Posted by moki
    Dude, I can't believe you're going to powdercoat a chromed 1960's Bottechia. angels are weeping.

    How rusty is it anyway? If it's just little spots, don't sweat it.
    STOP, we can't have weeping angels!!! I can help! I'll repaint it to it's original glory! Or any original new glory you want it painted. (sky's the limit..haha) Original chrome far outshines re-chroming. And YES, chrome (and threads, seat tube etc) can be masked before powdercoating. I believe Santa Cruz Powdercoat has experience with bicycles. But, as an old "Retro Grouch", there's nothing more beautiful than shiny paint & shinier chrome!
    Cheers,
    Dr.D

  21. #21
    Senior Member iBarna's Avatar
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    Dr. Deltron.. thanks for your posts in this and the other thread as well. We will be PM'ing soon. I actually wouldn't mind sending the frame down to you to Monterey, if the job is going to be nice and done by an expert. However I need to build up my new bike before that happens, because I can't be without a ride for weeks. But again, I definitely would consider it.

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