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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 05-18-07, 08:46 AM   #1
pathdoc
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Anyone have a stripped unpainted Al frame?

I was thinking of using paint remover on one of my aluminun frames. Is there any reason this is a bad idea?
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Old 05-18-07, 08:48 AM   #2
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Besides oxidation, no.
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Old 05-18-07, 09:54 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by pathdoc
I was thinking of using paint remover on one of my aluminun frames. Is there any reason this is a bad idea?
GO FOR IT!

(CONNECT FOUR)


But seriously... Buy the stuff called "Aircraft Stripper" at the local auto parts store, and either use a ventilator, or be outside and don't breathe too much. Wear real gloves, follow the labels, etc.

Also, throw a few coats of clear on afterwards.
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Old 05-18-07, 11:37 AM   #4
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I've seen pics of some that look great to me, but I can't find them. I came very close to doing it to a Trek aluminum road bike of mine, but decided it'd be easier to sell it...I did.
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Old 05-18-07, 05:21 PM   #5
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You really shouldn't have too much trouble with oxidation. I've had mtn bikes with bare aluminum and just hit it with a little metal polish now and then to keep it shiny
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Old 05-18-07, 05:56 PM   #6
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rub it down with some mercury. you know that liquid metal you find in thermometers
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Old 05-19-07, 02:21 AM   #7
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+1 on "Aircraft Stripper" it's good stuff, just follow the directions and don't use it near any paint you don't want absolutely destroyed.

aluminum oxidizes instantly with air and the aluminum oxide forms a clear hard coating that protects the rest of the metal, if you store the frame somewhere sane you should have no worries. there are some alloys that are best left painted or coated somehow but I don't know if they are in common use on bikes since they can't be welded conventionaly.
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Old 05-19-07, 09:51 AM   #8
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Somebody post the tsunami the kid stripped and hand painted the weird topless ninja on, I can't find it on FGG. It shows you what bare Al is going to look like, it will initially oxidize pretty evenly as someone said above, but over time water and other factors will sometimes cause additional powdery white oxidation that you'll want to take care of. This does lead to pitting, but you probably won't die. Could look cool if you're willing to keep it up, but they do paint frames for a reason
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Old 05-19-07, 11:31 AM   #9
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After stripping the paint you can clean, sand and then apply a clear coat paint. There is a clear made especially for this available at auto supply stores. {made for refinishing aluminium auto wheels**
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Old 05-19-07, 04:07 PM   #10
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Ever see alloy rims that weren't clearcoated properly? They're pitted and fugly. Clearcoat it, otherwise solvents and road salt are going to eat your bike.
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Old 05-25-07, 10:21 AM   #11
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Am I imagining things, or does that cervelo have a pinkish cast, possibly from the red paint? It's in the in-progress shots.

I'm thinking of doing this to my TK2, and if it looks like ass just rattle-canning it. A polished bike would be a trip.
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Old 05-25-07, 11:50 AM   #12
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Used to own a polished AL cannondale (R900), was pretty, took some work to keep it shining.
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Old 05-25-07, 11:52 AM   #13
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<arnold voice> The T-1000 is a Liquid Metal PolyAlloy, it can form knives and other stabbing weapons... and bikes. It is a learning computer. </arnold voice>
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Old 05-25-07, 02:42 PM   #14
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It's pretty easy. Go to the hardware store and get a paint stripper by the name of Zep (I think). Or just ask the dude at the counter. Buy a bunch of steel wool pads while you're there. The paint remover will ripple the paint and primer off the aluminum like bacon fat, then you just scrub off the areas that are difficult to access and leave little residual paint specks. Steel wool the crap out of it, clean the crap out of it and if you don't feel like polishing it every week (and who doesn't) clearcoat it with clear acrylic. Acrylic clear will give it a yellowish hue. You can have it media blasted and clear anodized too, if you've got the loot. That's the easy way. I've done this to a few Cannondales and one set of magnesium forks. I think they look absolutely tits when stripped bare.
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