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Old 10-19-12, 05:10 AM
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RobbieTunes 
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Any decision on repainting, touching up, new decals, etc can be boiled down to your intentions. What do you plan to do with it?

a-Sell?
Then market value is the deciding factor, after costs.
For a generic example:
"As is" value = $300 - $50 rehab costs = $250.
"Restored" value = $300 - $60 powder coat - $50 decals = $190, and that's max.
As the "As is" value goes higher, it's my experience that the "Restored" value goes lower, even if it's professionally re-done.

I'll give you a more specific model:
"As is" 1985 Ironman = $240
"Restored" 1985 Ironman = $300 - $60 powder coat - $50 decals = $190
What would most people rather ride? In this forum, the "As is," and most other people, the "Restored," in my experience. I believe wrk101 would support that the vast majority of the market is shopping based on price, not some deep-seated primal appreciation of the craftsmanship, engineering, and street cred of a 70's or 80's bike.

So, even if the market value is enhanced, the costs involved can easily wipe that out. If you plan to give it away, you can decide if the recipient is a rider, a hanger, etc. Just be sure you're not giving someone a "cool thing" to you that is an "old bike" to them.
Remember the market. If it's not us, the trend is away from "as is."

b-Ride it?
"As is" = $300 investment, current components, and it rides like you want it to. The down side would be the appearance and it's degraded resistance to rust, dings, etc vs. the mitigation of those by already-present rust, dings, etc. Are you happy with the appearance? That's really the only issue on a bike that rides like you want it to, as the "life" of the bike is pretty much the same.

"Repaint" = $300 invesment, current components, complete teardown and re-build plus $110 (min) in powdercoat and decals = $410. The down side is the cost, and labor, vs. the "new" bike that looks good when you ride it, and will for a long time. The "value" is in how you feel when you ride it and your happiness with the appearance. For some, the wrenching is part of the enjoyment, so you can figure that, too. I'd much rather work on bikes than bowl, fish, golf, or go shopping with my wife, so the re-doing has value to me.

Again, if it's a keeper, you'll probably die before the bike, and look about the same without maintenance. I've re-coated and repainted biks for various reasons, but value was never the consideration. Appearance and resistance to wear/tear was the main propellant in those instances, and all of them are regular riders. The more the value of the bike, the more I could rationalize spending.

Upgrades to modern components, stuff like that, a completely different issue, I believe, than OP's questions....

Disclaimer: $60 powder coat and $50 decal costs are determined to be the absolute minimum required. Paint costs and decal costs can easily exceed $500, and if you send it off to a pro, this can go to $1100-$1200. Your results may vary. This ad is paid for by the RobbieTunes for King of the World Election Committee and other mentally deficient supporters.
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Last edited by RobbieTunes; 10-19-12 at 05:15 AM.
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