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Is it worth it to paint your bike?

Old 11-01-22, 01:58 PM
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mawn
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Is it worth it to paint your bike?

I just bought a used bike and I'm thinking of painting it.. it looks okay but I don't like the white color.
(This is my first time doing this)

(old pic, I replaced some parts like the seat)
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Old 11-01-22, 02:11 PM
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If resale value means anything to you, don't do it. If not, go nuts. It's your bike.
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Old 11-01-22, 03:31 PM
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+1 it's your bike, and you have to decide whether potential resale value is worth living with a color you don't like. OTOH- you can't see the color when riding, so maybe ride it more instead of painting.

If you decide to paint, the next step is deciding how much you're willing to spend vs. a DIY rattle can spray job.

Other than giving things to factor in YOUR decision, there's no way anyone can really help.
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Old 11-01-22, 03:42 PM
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I doubt repainting will affect the value of your bike. I say get the best repaint you can afford.
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Old 11-01-22, 03:43 PM
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I ruined a bunch of bikes as a Kid. Painting is a real skill. Requires lots of practice a prep. Some things you just have to pay up and have a pro do it right.
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Old 11-01-22, 04:11 PM
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If you have the talent, I say go for it.



I think you'll find both the effort and the result to be very satisfying.

Last edited by tcs; 11-05-22 at 06:52 AM.
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Old 11-01-22, 05:08 PM
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IIRC GCN did a video a few years ago about a line of spray paint specifically for repainting bicycles.
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Old 11-01-22, 05:10 PM
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My rando bike is really pretty. Everyone told me that as they passed me at LEL. Pretty red color, matchy fenders, classic lines.

They mostly finished, I DNF'd. I like my pretty bike, but I'd rather have finished.
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Old 11-01-22, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Ghazmh View Post
IIRC GCN did a video a few years ago about a line of spray paint specifically for repainting bicycles.
^THIS^ Until recently, "rattle can" jobs were so lame I never felt it's worth it. But today's "two-part" paints are much much better - from what I understand. "Old Shovel" on YouTube has done a lot of good home paint jobs. He may use what you're referring to.

And to the OP:

YES! I've had five bikes painted over the years, and another came in custom team colors. So that's six bikes I've had unique paint jobs on. I realize I should have been a high-end painter. I just LOVE the creativity and what can be done. Especially when you can match the fork, stem & frame. It looks so good. Nothing like a personal paint job to match your taste.

Oh and I happened to pick up a 3-color fade Co-Motion tandem that's also gorgeous. Not custom, but an upcharge from Co-Motion. Makes me happy

Oh and I must say I really, really dislike the whole flat black and "murdered out" look on bikes (and cars). Man, you get the FINEST carbon bike you can and you cover it in primer??? (That's what most black looks like to me. Even gloss looks like crap IMHO.)

That said, many bike companies have really branched out with nice colors. Love natural/desert/aggro looking paint jobs.

My wife's commuter bike is BEYOND ugly. A late-80s monstrosity that annoys me it's so ugly. But it's utilitarian and has served her well. But man I've been tempted to pull it apart and put a NICE paint scheme on it for SO long!
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Old 11-01-22, 05:44 PM
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Personally, I don't think it's "worth it" to go through the process of painting a bike. I'm assuming you mean to DIY, which involves taking everything apart, getting the existing paint off, then repainting, then putting everything back together.

It can be a fun and therapeutic process, with rewarding results, but for me it would require me to set up a dedicated space for the project, which alone would not be worth the effort given my living situation.
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Old 11-01-22, 05:47 PM
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I don't know if these brands are available in Morocco but Dupli-Color and Rustoleum offer a peel off automotive coating that is easy to use and touch up or just change the color at some point. Not much preparation needed either. I would be surprised if versions of this are not also made by various other companies around the world. Example here. Dupli-Color Custom Wrap Removable Coating (11 oz) - DUPCWRCXXX-SERIES (autobarn.net)
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Old 11-01-22, 08:06 PM
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Personally It's rarely "worth it" for an average bike.

Professional wet paint job is not cheap.
Powdercoating is generally much cheaper and readily available in most locales with excellent durability

DIY figure time spent prepping and spraying in less than ideal conditions.
Your basic Rustoleum and similar require a very long time to dry properly and tend to not wear well
2K spray paints are much better but more expensive

People also get decent results from brush/roller. Examples can be found in C&V of this method
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Old 11-01-22, 08:22 PM
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How nice a result can you live with? How skilled are you at paint prep (as prep is a big aspect of any paint job whether house or bike)? How skilled are you at applying the paint (the usual thing most will mention)? How durable a result can you live with? Do you have a suitable place to do this smelly and dirty work? What's it's temperature?

Most all home jobs won't have the durability of a factory or pro job. Most home jobs don't have the OEM decals applied.

There's no right answer but a huge range of opinion. Andy
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Old 11-01-22, 09:02 PM
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I've been thinking on this myself. I have a relatively new bike bought earlier this year. But the model I wanted (Trek Checkpoint SL 5) only came in two colors, matte silver/grey and a radioactive red. I like deep reds, but this red was bright red, so I went with the silver/grey. But aside from being quite conservative, the matte finish bugs me. So, I've been thinking, what the heck, I could paint or have it painted.

However, I also have an itch to convert it to Shimano Di2 electronic shifting. So, between a pro paint job and Di2, I'm now thinking of just getting another bike. Maybe go full Trek Project One. If I repaint the existing bike, I would only have an MTB to ride while the work is done (weeks months?). Also, as it is now, any major damage to my Checkpoint and again, I would only have the MTB to ride. So, a second bike more suited for the road avoids being without a road type bike during painting as well as I have a backup if something happens to one bike.

So, my current view has more to do with the big picture rather than whether a given bike is worth repainting. I doubt repainting any bike, for other than a restoration, is worth it in terms of adding value to the bike.

If I had a bike that wasn't especially expensive (worth less than $1,000 used) and I also had another bike to ride while working on the first, I'd give the DIY approach with the high quality spray cans a go. No matter how bad it comes out, you can always strip it down and try, try again.
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Old 11-01-22, 09:42 PM
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Is it? That is a question you must ask yourself. Nobody can answer that for you. Me personally probably not unless I was getting a custom frame or had a bare frame of some value (either monetary or sentimental). I don't like having to take apart an entire frame just to paint it and then put it together unless it is at the point of overhaul time then I might consider it.

I think it also has to have some nice enough parts on it because if not I would rather put that money towards better more functional parts. If everything is worn out or just doesn't work well the paint ain't gonna help.
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Old 11-01-22, 10:29 PM
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https://www.youtube.com/c/ETOE
Fun guy to watch if you want to kill some time with this topic. He does some really high end paint jobs on bikes including some with spray paint.
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Old 11-02-22, 06:21 AM
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Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
Personally It's rarely "worth it" for an average bike.

Professional wet paint job is not cheap.
Powdercoating is generally much cheaper and readily available in most locales with excellent durability

DIY figure time spent prepping and spraying in less than ideal conditions.
Your basic Rustoleum and similar require a very long time to dry properly and tend to not wear well
2K spray paints are much better but more expensive

People also get decent results from brush/roller. Examples can be found in C&V of this method
Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
How nice a result can you live with? How skilled are you at paint prep (as prep is a big aspect of any paint job whether house or bike)? How skilled are you at applying the paint (the usual thing most will mention)? How durable a result can you live with? Do you have a suitable place to do this smelly and dirty work? What's it's temperature?

Most all home jobs won't have the durability of a factory or pro job. Most home jobs don't have the OEM decals applied.

There's no right answer but a huge range of opinion. Andy
Originally Posted by Mtracer View Post
I've been thinking on this myself. I have a relatively new bike bought earlier this year. But the model I wanted (Trek Checkpoint SL 5) only came in two colors, matte silver/grey and a radioactive red. I like deep reds, but this red was bright red, so I went with the silver/grey. But aside from being quite conservative, the matte finish bugs me. So, I've been thinking, what the heck, I could paint or have it painted.

However, I also have an itch to convert it to Shimano Di2 electronic shifting. So, between a pro paint job and Di2, I'm now thinking of just getting another bike. Maybe go full Trek Project One. If I repaint the existing bike, I would only have an MTB to ride while the work is done (weeks months?). Also, as it is now, any major damage to my Checkpoint and again, I would only have the MTB to ride. So, a second bike more suited for the road avoids being without a road type bike during painting as well as I have a backup if something happens to one bike.

So, my current view has more to do with the big picture rather than whether a given bike is worth repainting. I doubt repainting any bike, for other than a restoration, is worth it in terms of adding value to the bike.

If I had a bike that wasn't especially expensive (worth less than $1,000 used) and I also had another bike to ride while working on the first, I'd give the DIY approach with the high quality spray cans a go. No matter how bad it comes out, you can always strip it down and try, try again.
Originally Posted by veganbikes View Post
Is it? That is a question you must ask yourself. Nobody can answer that for you. Me personally probably not unless I was getting a custom frame or had a bare frame of some value (either monetary or sentimental). I don't like having to take apart an entire frame just to paint it and then put it together unless it is at the point of overhaul time then I might consider it.

I think it also has to have some nice enough parts on it because if not I would rather put that money towards better more functional parts. If everything is worn out or just doesn't work well the paint ain't gonna help.
Originally Posted by Canker View Post
https://www.youtube.com/c/ETOE
Fun guy to watch if you want to kill some time with this topic. He does some really high end paint jobs on bikes including some with spray paint.
Thank you everyone for your help, really appreciate it.
This is my first road bike and bought it so cheap so I know as much as I can, before buying a better one in the future (resell value is not a very important factor)
My goal was to see your past experiences with painting your bikes.
I'm not very skilled at this kind of stuff and there are no professional painters in my city (probably the ones who do cars?)
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Old 11-02-22, 06:58 AM
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Is it possible to just mask the white that you don't like, and re-spray over it with a complimentary color? That way, you won't have to disassemble the entire bike, and the existing white paint will provide a good base for the new coat to adhere to.
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Old 11-02-22, 07:55 AM
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I'm not expert enough with a spray system to do it myself.

I have a Miyata tourer that was butt ugly, lavender and pink, I stripped it, took it to a local shop I know that paints frames for $150. Had them do it in a nice green. I like it much better.

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Old 11-02-22, 09:47 AM
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Has anyone used an auto body paint shop to spray a bike? Would it be cheaper if they’re spraying a car in a color you like at the same time?
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Old 11-02-22, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by mawn View Post
I'm not very skilled at this kind of stuff and there are no professional painters in my city (probably the ones who do cars?)
You might find a powder-coater in your city; it's a very popular way to paint car rims, file cabinets, patio furniture, and industrial stuff, so I would think most cities would have such a business, or one nearby.
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Old 11-02-22, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
You might find a powder-coater in your city; it's a very popular way to paint car rims, file cabinets, patio furniture, and industrial stuff, so I would think most cities would have such a business, or one nearby.
FWIW OP is in Morocco, not that there aren't powder coaters and body shops there.
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Old 11-02-22, 10:05 AM
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Auto painting can be an easier/less skilled process compared to bike frames. The surfaces are far less curved and the possibility of drips or missed spots is less. The amount of paint that ends up on the surface is more so calculating how much paint to mix (assuming either a two part paint or having additives to further control the paint application) is more straight forward.

Bike frames are multi sided and need multiple angles of spraying to cover the complete tube but also control the over spray from causing other areas becoming too thick or having orange pealing. Frames have more nooks and crannies to cover. (Look behind and under the seat cluster or between the chain stays on the BB shell for poor coverage). Frames are harder to support and position during the spraying.

I have used over a dozen different painters (including my self) over the years and most that were from the auto world were not those I went back to. They would generally not think much of doing a bike frame and their lack of experience with frames showed. I would suggest seeking a motorcycle shop that does custom work before a auto body shop. Andy
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Old 11-02-22, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by smd4 View Post
Is it possible to just mask the white that you don't like, and re-spray over it with a complimentary color? That way, you won't have to disassemble the entire bike, and the existing white paint will provide a good base for the new coat to adhere to.
Great idea, but i need to find a color similar to the existing one.

Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
I'm not expert enough with a spray system to do it myself.

I have a Miyata tourer that was butt ugly, lavender and pink, I stripped it, took it to a local shop I know that paints frames for $150. Had them do it in a nice green. I like it much better.

I like the color.. a great looking bike!

Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
You might find a powder-coater in your city; it's a very popular way to paint car rims, file cabinets, patio furniture, and industrial stuff, so I would think most cities would have such a business, or one nearby.
Yes there are.. my friends told me I need to check with what we call "Chapista" or Car bodyworker( they paint car frames... )
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Old 11-02-22, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by mawn View Post
Great idea, but i need to find a color similar to the existing one.
Usually black can replace white, and still look good.
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