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First time cleaning a bike...idiot mistake...

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First time cleaning a bike...idiot mistake...

Old 06-04-16, 12:39 PM
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rjschutt
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First time cleaning a bike...idiot mistake...

So I was all eager to clean my new-to-me bike this morning. I had a recommended cleaner from the LBS owner. I had some new lube for the chain. Got it all set up and started to use a Scotchbrite sponge with the green pad on the back. Thought that it wouldn't be an issue with the finish. Wrong.

After wiping (NOT SCRUBBING) the bike with the green pad on the sponge, and rinsing and drying, I saw that i had just scuffed up the entire frame. I was so upset! I feel like such an idiot and it is very frustrating since I worked hard to get this bike and I want to take extra good care of it. The frame has a couple of scratches from the previous owner, so it's not necessarily immaculate, but now the bike has this dull look from a distance and when you get up close, you can see the "damage" I've done to the finish.

I did a search through the forums and have found a few recommended products, however, I have never used polish or wax on a car, so I don't know what the best product would be for my situation. Can anyone with car/bike waxing or polishing experience lend me a hand? I just want to make sure I'm not going to screw more up by using the wrong product.

I have seen Meigaur's and Mother's recommended...but again, I don't know if I should wax, polish, or both to get these little scuffs out.

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Old 06-04-16, 01:47 PM
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sch
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Best bet is to strip the bike to the frame, at least get all the cables, chain, chain wheel and wheels off, use auto polishing compound per directions and then
wax the frame. Likely you will recover most of its shine that way. Alternative would be to recoat with clear coat for a more permanent solution.
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Old 06-04-16, 01:54 PM
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Looigi
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Bummer. If you had previous experience using the green Scotchbrite pad you'd have known how abrasive it is. I don't use sponges because even though a sponge is soft it can trap and rub grit on the frame causing scratching and scuffing. I generally use brushes to clean my bikes, cars, etc..
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Old 06-04-16, 01:56 PM
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Thats a lot of scratches but you may have luck trying to buff them out like the above poster suggested. I think we've all made mistakes that cost us when we first started tinkering with our own bikes. I know I destroyed the threads in a Bottom Bracket shell by trying to thread the left side portion into the right side. Its all part of the process of becoming more familiar with your new hobby.

If you do decide that you need to respray the clearcoat use a high quality 2 part 2K clearcoat like this one Eastwood 2K AeroSpray? High-Gloss Clear The quality of the clearcoat will make all the difference in the world.
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Old 06-04-16, 02:59 PM
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Bummer. Brings back memories of my screw-ups. It doesn't look like you abraded through the clear coat. Try some automobile polish first. Might just do the trick. If not, you may have to wet sand with 1000 then 1500 then 2000 grit, followed by a polishing compound.
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Old 06-04-16, 03:03 PM
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Originally Posted by eastbay71 View Post
Thats a lot of scratches but you may have luck trying to buff them out like the above poster suggested. I think we've all made mistakes that cost us when we first started tinkering with our own bikes. I know I destroyed the threads in a Bottom Bracket shell by trying to thread the left side portion into the right side. Its all part of the process of becoming more familiar with your new hobby.

If you do decide that you need to respray the clearcoat use a high quality 2 part 2K clearcoat like this one Eastwood 2K AeroSpray? High-Gloss Clear The quality of the clearcoat will make all the difference in the world.

Thanks for the info...yikes...that seems like a big job! I have worked in a cabinet shop before and have sprayed clear coat on wood and such. Never any sort of metal work (e.g. cars). How much prep would need to go into getting the surface ready to spray. I like the sounds of the clear coat from a can rather than having to mix it all up and then get an spray gun.

Would I need to get a super fine grit sanding pad from an auto body shop (like 2200) rub the frame down before spraying? Or could I just spray directly on it as is, having the clear coat fill up the scuffs.

I am thinking I'm going to try for a Meigaur polish first (if I can find a non-abrasive) and see how that goes on.

Sigh...
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Old 06-04-16, 03:03 PM
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That'll buff right out!

But seriously, if you decide to try and buff the scratches out, go easy especially if you use a power buffer. It is easy to either go right through the paint, especially on outside corners, or to overheat and damage it; don't ask how I know this. It takes a certain amount of talent and experience to buff paint correctly, and perhaps more important to know when to quit.

It might be worthwhile to find and ask/bribe a friendly auto body worker to help you out rather than risk making the situation worse than it is, before going to the considerable trouble of respraying the bike as has been suggested.
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Old 06-04-16, 03:16 PM
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eastbay71
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Originally Posted by rjschutt View Post
Thanks for the info...yikes...that seems like a big job! I have worked in a cabinet shop before and have sprayed clear coat on wood and such. Never any sort of metal work (e.g. cars). How much prep would need to go into getting the surface ready to spray. I like the sounds of the clear coat from a can rather than having to mix it all up and then get an spray gun.

Would I need to get a super fine grit sanding pad from an auto body shop (like 2200) rub the frame down before spraying? Or could I just spray directly on it as is, having the clear coat fill up the scuffs.

I am thinking I'm going to try for a Meigaur polish first (if I can find a non-abrasive) and see how that goes on.

Sigh...
I don't think I've ever used anything finer than 1000 grit on a bike project. I'm no pro painter but have painted 5 or 6 bikes. I would wet sand with a fine grit paper being careful not to take too much paint off as @dsbrantjr warned and then shoot it with the clear. When it's ready to handle wet sand and shoot it again then let it cure, re-assemble the bike and give it a good wax. If you decide to use a off the shelf clearcoat available at your big box store be prepared to wait two weeks for the clear to fully cure.

Here is a bike I did a full repaint on finishing with the Eastwood 2K clear.
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