Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

Powdercoating Vintage Steel

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

Powdercoating Vintage Steel

Old 07-24-17, 09:19 PM
  #1  
Bigrig8600
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Slightly to the left
Posts: 11

Bikes: '72 Peugeot UO-8, '83 Univega Gran Preimo, '85 Nishiki Sport restomod

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Powdercoating Vintage Steel

I just purchased a Japanese Chromoly steel bike, a Univega Gran Preimo. It has some rust issues, enough rust to consider getting it sand blasted just to be safe. I have considered going with a powdercoat and applying new decals. Does anyone have any experience taking this route with vintage steel? Any tips to get the best final product? Any suggestions where I can find the reproduction decals?

Thanks,
-C.J.
Bigrig8600 is offline  
Old 07-24-17, 09:21 PM
  #2  
bikemig 
Senior Member
 
bikemig's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Middle Earth (aka IA)
Posts: 18,296

Bikes: A bunch of old bikes and a few new ones

Mentioned: 156 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5027 Post(s)
Liked 1,547 Times in 1,016 Posts
A lot of us have done that and there is a thread here on powdercoated vintage bikes. Velocals is likely your best bet for replacement decals. Take good pics before you sandblast the bike.

I just powdercoated a 1978 Trek TX 900 and I'm very happy with the final result.

https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vi...-tx-900-a.html
bikemig is offline  
Old 07-24-17, 09:26 PM
  #3  
Lovenutz
kVp & m*s
 
Lovenutz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 316

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount... someday

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 101 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Velocals for the decals. Here the link -- U - V - W - Univega - VeloCals

I have never powder coated a frame, but I have powder coated many of motorcycle parts. Just go to a reputable Powder coater in your area, ask if he's done bike frames before. I think chances are that they have.
Lovenutz is offline  
Old 07-24-17, 09:29 PM
  #4  
Bigrig8600
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Slightly to the left
Posts: 11

Bikes: '72 Peugeot UO-8, '83 Univega Gran Preimo, '85 Nishiki Sport restomod

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by bikemig View Post
A lot of us have done that and there is a thread here on powdercoated vintage bikes. Velocals is likely your best bet for replacement decals. Take good pics before you sandblast the bike.

I just powdercoated a 1978 Trek TX 900 and I'm very happy with the final result.
Thanks for letting me know about that thread and your Trek came out beautiful.

-C.J.
Bigrig8600 is offline  
Old 07-24-17, 09:32 PM
  #5  
Bigrig8600
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Slightly to the left
Posts: 11

Bikes: '72 Peugeot UO-8, '83 Univega Gran Preimo, '85 Nishiki Sport restomod

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
@Lovenutz Sweet! Thanks for the link. I haven't been able to find any for my model of Univega.
Bigrig8600 is offline  
Old 07-24-17, 09:42 PM
  #6  
Lovenutz
kVp & m*s
 
Lovenutz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 316

Bikes: Schwinn Paramount... someday

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 101 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Bigrig8600 View Post
@Lovenutz Sweet! Thanks for the link. I haven't been able to find any for my model of Univega.
It's there. The pic only shows Gran Rally, but if you click on it they have a list with all the models. I saw they have the Premio.
Lovenutz is offline  
Old 07-24-17, 11:26 PM
  #7  
gugie 
Dilberteur at large
 
gugie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 9,126

Bikes: It's complicated.

Mentioned: 996 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3214 Post(s)
Liked 1,490 Times in 761 Posts
My ultimate answer to "can powder coat look good" right now is @Andy_K's Motobecane Grand Record. It's the rare frame that actually looks better pre-build, IMO:



It was in my shop pre-powder coat. It wasn't bad, but there was some rust.

The other bike I like to show off is @Bug_a_bear's Raleigh. Here's a close up of the rust:


And after:
__________________
If someone tells you that you have enough bicycles and you don't need any more, stop talking to them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.

Last edited by gugie; 07-25-17 at 08:26 AM.
gugie is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 12:55 AM
  #8  
ronak123
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 16
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Bigrig8600 View Post
I just purchased a Japanese Chromoly steel bike, a Univega Gran Preimo. It has some rust issues, enough rust to consider getting it sand blasted just to be safe. I have considered going with a powdercoat and applying new decals. Does anyone have any experience taking this route with vintage steel? Any tips to get the best final product? Any suggestions where I can find the reproduction decals?

Thanks,
-C.J.
I think it is best to remove the rust with sandpaper! Afterwards just paint the surface with primer! Let the primer dry and the apply top coat paint! Top coat paint should be rust preventive!
ronak123 is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 05:27 AM
  #9  
KDTX
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 221
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Liked 6 Times in 5 Posts
Here is mine. Very happy with the results!
https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vi...t-colnago.html
KDTX is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 06:13 AM
  #10  
jlax2485
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 136
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 60 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I had my trek powder-coated and replacement decals from velocals. I had the shop color match the original as closely as possible and they did a great job- I am super pleased at how it turned out. Basically I spent weeks trying to sand out some of the rust spots and touch up the paint but I wasn't having great luck color matching the original finish. I am so glad I decided to strip and powder-coat.
jlax2485 is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 06:25 AM
  #11  
bear_a_bug 
Senior Member
 
bear_a_bug's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Logan Square, Chicago
Posts: 288

Bikes: 650b'd '74 Raleigh Super Tourer and '83 Trek 620, 2018 Rawland xSogn

Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 98 Post(s)
Liked 56 Times in 28 Posts
Originally Posted by gugie View Post
My ultimate answer to "can powder coat look good" right now is @Andy_K's Motobecane Grand Record. It's the rare frame that actually looks better pre-build, IMO:



It was in my shop pre-powder coat. It wasn't bad, but there was some rust.

The other bike I like to show off is @Bug_a_bear's Raleigh. Here's a close up of the rust:


And after:

And just had it decaled a few months ago (courtesy of Cyclomondo), so now it looks like this:

bear_a_bug is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 06:26 AM
  #12  
Kevindale
Senior Member
 
Kevindale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Amsterdam
Posts: 1,683

Bikes: 1980 Koga-Miyata Gentsluxe-S, 1998 Eddy Merckx Corsa 01, 1983 Tommasini Racing, 2012 Gulf Western CAAD10, 1980 Univega Gran Premio

Mentioned: 49 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 599 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 9 Times in 9 Posts
Univega made some nice colors, and some blah ones. A Gran Premio is worth fixing up - it's a nice frame - but not so collectible that you should worry about doing it just so. If you don't love the current color, PC it something you do love. You might also search on the 'oxalic acid' in the C&V forum (use advanced search, and set it to show 'posts' and only search the C&V forum) and you'll get a lot of different ways to deal with the rust. However you deal with that, check inside the frame to make sure there's no mischief there.
Kevindale is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 07:19 AM
  #13  
3alarmer
Friendship is Magic
 
3alarmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: The Big Tomato
Posts: 19,456

Bikes: old ones

Mentioned: 275 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20839 Post(s)
Liked 3,823 Times in 2,811 Posts
.
...a lot of people see some rust and go overkill, so without photos of how bad yours is, it's difficult to judge whether bead blasting and replacement of the paint is the preferred option. But if you do go with this, find a powdercoating business that has some experience already with bike frames.

Mark or mask out all the problematic areas like BB threads, crown race seat, fork threads, etc. Then expect to do some cleaning up of these areas when the PC gets baked onto them anyway. In general my biggest problems here in doing a couple of rust bucket bikes with powder coat have been in those areas.

There's one bike listed on the local CL right now, a Raleigh SBDU frame, that is ridiculously cheap because when it got powdercoated, the coater bead blasted the interior surfaces of the head tube so much it no longer holds the headset races firmly without shimming.

A lot of PC colors are pretty glossy.......which some people like, others think looks too "plasticky". There are some options for a less glossy finish, which you might want to ask about if it's a concern.
3alarmer is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 07:34 AM
  #14  
exmechanic89
Senior Member
 
exmechanic89's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Richmond VA area
Posts: 2,713

Bikes: '00 Koga Miyata Full Pro Oval Road bike.

Mentioned: 17 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 475 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 4 Posts
I'm not a fan of powdercoating at all. I'll admit the bikes shown in this thread look pretty darn good, but most I've seen look plastic-y and just plain bad. If I were a doing a frame I'd either rattle-can it myself - which I believe can achieve really nice results if done properly, or have it painted somewhere else. I'm sure I'm in the minority with this view.

The GP is a sweet bike though, good luck with it.
exmechanic89 is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 08:27 AM
  #15  
gugie 
Dilberteur at large
 
gugie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 9,126

Bikes: It's complicated.

Mentioned: 996 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3214 Post(s)
Liked 1,490 Times in 761 Posts
Originally Posted by bear_a_bug View Post
And just had it decaled a few months ago (courtesy of Cyclomondo), so now it looks like this:

Nice! It looks complete now.
__________________
If someone tells you that you have enough bicycles and you don't need any more, stop talking to them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.
gugie is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 08:30 AM
  #16  
3alarmer
Friendship is Magic
 
3alarmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: The Big Tomato
Posts: 19,456

Bikes: old ones

Mentioned: 275 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20839 Post(s)
Liked 3,823 Times in 2,811 Posts
An old Falcon powdercoat project.

.
...in the ones I've done, I chose with black or white as the color in hope of avoiding the "plastic-y" look.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg
Falcon 010.jpg (97.5 KB, 275 views)
File Type: jpg
005.jpg (101.3 KB, 277 views)
3alarmer is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 08:39 AM
  #17  
Wileyone 
Senior Member
 
Wileyone's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: GWN
Posts: 2,451
Mentioned: 27 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1568 Post(s)
Liked 363 Times in 250 Posts
Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
.
...a lot of people see some rust and go overkill, so without photos of how bad yours is, it's difficult to judge whether bead blasting and replacement of the paint is the preferred option. But if you do go with this, find a powdercoating business that has some experience already with bike frames.

Mark or mask out all the problematic areas like BB threads, crown race seat, fork threads, etc. Then expect to do some cleaning up of these areas when the PC gets baked onto them anyway. In general my biggest problems here in doing a couple of rust bucket bikes with powder coat have been in those areas.

There's one bike listed on the local CL right now, a Raleigh SBDU frame, that is ridiculously cheap because when it got powdercoated, the coater bead blasted the interior surfaces of the head tube so much it no longer holds the headset races firmly without shimming.

A lot of PC colors are pretty glossy.......which some people like, others think looks too "plasticky". There are some options for a less glossy finish, which you might want to ask about if it's a concern.
Bead Blasting is expensive the only Time I've used it was to remove Powder Coat. Chemical stripping requires a bit of Elbow Grease but works very well for removing Paint.
Wileyone is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 08:59 AM
  #18  
artclone
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 1,272

Bikes: '68 Raleigh Suberbe, '92 (German) Centurion Equipe, '85 Schwinn Peloton, 1983ish Zunow Road Racer project, '69 Squanch Super Tourer, 1980 Bianchi Super Corsa, '82 Austro-Daimler Vent Noir, '89 Miyata 914 project, 1982ish Bianchi Rallye

Mentioned: 25 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 293 Post(s)
Liked 7 Times in 7 Posts
I powdercoated one frame and am happy with the results, although it did make some of the more complicated lugwork detail become less defined. The shop I took it to does lots of bikes and knew what to mask, how to handle lugs, etc. I had the base coat powdercoat and then painted my own contrasting panels and applied decals.

**Note that if you do a metallic coat, it will necessitate a second clear coat. This increases the price and the thickness of the coating.

Powdercoating is cheaper ($100-200), better for the environment, and turnaround time is usually faster.

I don't recommend it for restoring to original looks, but it is a good option in other cases.

Take your time matching up the color you want. I was a little cavalier and got a much different color than I was expecting.
artclone is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 09:08 AM
  #19  
SamSpade1941 
Senior Member
 
SamSpade1941's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 843
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 486 Post(s)
Liked 55 Times in 48 Posts
Some of these powder coated bikes look really nice. Most of the ones I've seen in person look like they were dunked in tool dip. That's what stopped me from powder coating a bike. I know it's not paint and probably should not expect it to look like paint but I'd hate to get it done and it have that rubbery appearance.
SamSpade1941 is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 10:55 AM
  #20  
gugie 
Dilberteur at large
 
gugie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 9,126

Bikes: It's complicated.

Mentioned: 996 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3214 Post(s)
Liked 1,490 Times in 761 Posts
Originally Posted by SamSpade1941 View Post
Some of these powder coated bikes look really nice. Most of the ones I've seen in person look like they were dunked in tool dip. That's what stopped me from powder coating a bike. I know it's not paint and probably should not expect it to look like paint but I'd hate to get it done and it have that rubbery appearance.
Choose your powder coater well. Look at some finished product. Ask around from others. Not all powder coaters are alike, of course.

Here's a pic of one of mine that shows you can still get good lug detail:


Class Act in Portland


The best of the bunch can be nearly indistinguishable from wet paint:

Forever Powder Coating, Olympia WA

Most people choose powder coat because you can find good work for around $150. Wet paint jobs are anywhere from 3-6X. Color choice is important as well. Deep, rich colors will look better with wet paint. If you're going for metallic grey, powder coat will come out just fine.

Add to the fact that powder coat is much more durable than even the best wet paint jobs and it's hard to justify paying someone for wet paint. I'd save wet paint for restorations or that special custom frame.

Here's my one wet painted frame:



It's beautiful, gorgeous, head turning. I get compliments all the time riding it. $750 including decals and clear coat. It has a couple of paint chips from riding in some gravel. I built another bike up that's very similar, had it powder coated, and use that for rain days and gravel. Something to think about...
__________________
If someone tells you that you have enough bicycles and you don't need any more, stop talking to them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.
gugie is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 11:11 AM
  #21  
sdn40
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Green Bay, WI
Posts: 555

Bikes: 88 Cannondale Criterium

Mentioned: 14 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 247 Post(s)
Liked 80 Times in 52 Posts
I went with a flat black on mine. It was a one coat process. At $115 (media blasting included) it was a budget friendly, no hassle way to transform a bike that had seen better days (and maybe it's final days) and give it new life. It also allows you to create something that may not have otherwise existed. At the end of the day its all about value or bang for the buck for me. An expensive paint job may have one paranoid about every chip and a rattle can job is very labor intensive and longevity is suspect at best. To each their own of course but I would do it again. Make sure your powdercoater not only promises a good masking, but follows thru. Other than that. dare I say it's bombproof



Last edited by sdn40; 07-25-17 at 11:38 AM.
sdn40 is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 01:02 PM
  #22  
noobinsf 
Senior Member
 
noobinsf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 2,398

Bikes: CURRENT: '82 Univega Competizione, '72 Motobecane Grand Record, '74 Campania Professional, '83 Mercian KOM Touring, '91 Univega Alpina Comp PAST: '72 Puch Bergmeister, '72ish Peugeot UO-8, '86 Univega Gran Premio, '85 Univega Viva Touring

Mentioned: 47 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 754 Post(s)
Liked 534 Times in 352 Posts
Others have more experience -- I've never PC'd a frame, but have been reading up since I'm planning to. However, I've noticed a lot of discussion about rust spidering under the coat in the long term. I've read that if a primer coat is used, it can greatly increase the corrosion resistance, and the one powder coater I contacted about a quote said it would add $25 to the price (for a total of $150).

Again, I'm just reiterating casual internet research, so someone more knowledgeable might correct me. Also, if you're concerned about lug detail, the primer coat is obviously one more layer. Just something to think about.
noobinsf is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 01:25 PM
  #23  
Salamandrine 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 6,287

Bikes: 78 Masi Criterium, 68 PX10, 2016 Mercian King of Mercia, Rivendell Clem Smith Jr

Mentioned: 120 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2310 Post(s)
Liked 557 Times in 401 Posts
It's the person/company doing the powder coating that matters most. No reason it can't go on thin and look great, as some of the posted photos clearly show. Find someone with experience doing bikes if possible.

I would go for primer, even though it risks a thicker coating.

The plastic look is the result of the coating being too thick. This may be exaggerated by the fact that powder coat is an off the gun finish, not rubbed out and cleared as with (good) wet paint.
Salamandrine is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 03:27 PM
  #24  
Andy_K 
Senior Member
 
Andy_K's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Beaverton, OR
Posts: 13,010

Bikes: Yes

Mentioned: 373 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2187 Post(s)
Liked 789 Times in 418 Posts
Originally Posted by sdn40 View Post
An expensive paint job may have one paranoid about every chip...
This is one of the big points in favor of powder coating, IMO. The stuff is tough. With paint, whether it's surviving original paint or a nice quality re-paint, there's always some concern about damaging the paint while riding. With my powder coated bike I don't really worry about that. Powder coat can be damaged, of course, but it takes a lot and you generally don't have as much invested in it.

The Grand Record that gugie pictured above cost me a lot more than a typical powder coat job because of the two colors and all of the masking required. It was still around a third of the cost of wet paint.

I also like the point about having the freedom to create something new. This is true of paint too, of course, but it's a nice benefit of re-coloring the bike one way or another. In all seriousness, this is the entire reason I bought that Grand Record. I saw it on Craigslist in really rough shape, and normally I'd pass on a bike like that, but then I had the inspiration for that color scheme and I instantly went from "meh" to "I MUST have it!" The cherry on top was that when picking the particular shade of beige I wanted I was able to find SKS fenders in the right color family and picked the base color to match those.



(It's probably because of my choice of new-ish components that gugie thinks it looked better pre-build.)

On the other hand.... I think a frame has to be in pretty bad shape before either new paint or powder coating is the best option. There are an awful lot of cosmetic problems that can be covered up with judicious use of touch up paint or nail polish. There are perhaps even more that can just be lived with as part of the charm of an old bike. As an example in this category, I just acquired a Grand Jubilé from gugie, and I think he was kind of hoping to get a chance to take the torch to it like he did with my Grand Record, but the paint, though flawed, is just too nice for me to be willing to give it up. It's far from pristine, but it still looks good from a few feet away.





And yet, circling back to the point I started with, I'm not going to be concerned at all about riding it in all conditions, because I know that powder coating is always a future option.
__________________
My Bikes
Andy_K is offline  
Old 07-25-17, 04:38 PM
  #25  
3alarmer
Friendship is Magic
 
3alarmer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: The Big Tomato
Posts: 19,456

Bikes: old ones

Mentioned: 275 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20839 Post(s)
Liked 3,823 Times in 2,811 Posts
Originally Posted by Wileyone View Post
Bead Blasting is expensive the only Time I've used it was to remove Powder Coat. Chemical stripping requires a bit of Elbow Grease but works very well for removing Paint.
...the PC guy I use here includes it as part of the process, and will not powdercoat anything he does not prep himself.
Or, what he told me, is that he can't guarantee the results on something that you strip yourself. I think it was 30-40 bucks.
3alarmer is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.