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spraypainting a frame

Old 10-04-06, 08:51 AM
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spraypainting a frame

I am on the fence.

I have an older frame (not all that special) that I want to build into a Fixie. It is pretty scratched up and sitting completely disassembled.

Should I spray paint it? Is there any chance it will look decent? I don't need it to look spectacular, but I do not want it to look cobbled together either.

I have already bought the paint. Sandpaper is sitting waiting for me at home. Unless you talk me out of it, I will do it tonight.

j
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Old 10-04-06, 08:55 AM
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go for it!!!
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Old 10-04-06, 09:00 AM
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The paintjob will only be as good as the prepwork. Sandpaper is good, but you'll also want primer to help the new paint adhere to the frame as well. A very careful job of degreasing the frame is also important.

1) what type of paint (brand and paint base type (enamel, etc)) are you using?

2) what grits of sandpaper are you using?

3) how much time are you willing to put into it for a quality job.

Since I never tire of putting up pictures of my paintjob - here's one I did with just a few rattle cans (well, like 6 cans) and plenty of time and effort:



Rough sanded the frame down to smooth out scratches in the original paint, and help the primer adhere. Then did a first coat of primer, let it dry, then a second coat. I then wet sanded the primer before shooting one more coat of primer to fill in any thin spots. Final very light wet sand on the new areas. Then put down 2 coats of color before another wetsand. Then 2 coats of clear.



The paint I used isn't the most durable finish out there, enamel is probably better, but takes longer to dry and cure. Best last bit of advise I can give you, after finish painting it, let it sit for a week at least. Don't even think about putting stuff on it till a good 7-10 days, more if its cold or damp.



More pictures and such on my website (Barracuda Mk.I link in sig). Here's also the link to the thread I had going when I was doing this build: https://www.bikeforums.net/classic-vintage/148985-project-centurian-barracuda-mk-i-official-progress-thread.html
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Old 10-04-06, 09:07 AM
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What paint? Only the finest Rustoleum? I would gladly take other recommendations. And any help about where to get it. I took a gander in a few auto parts stores and was not impressed with what they had.

What grit sandpaper? I think I have small-grit stuff hanging around. Again, any recommendations?


How much time? No real rush. I would be glad to spend any number of evenings playing with this.

Beautiful bike, by the way.

j
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Old 10-04-06, 09:13 AM
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Wet sanding I think I used 1500grit but for knocking down scratches and such I used something heavier. I just bumped the thread I linked to above which has more of a blow-by-blow of the paint job through all the updates. Rustoleum brand has a primer as well I believe, get it and use it. Believe that it makes a difference. There's also been a fair few paint related threads here over the years. Search the Classic and Vintage forum for some of these to get more advice.
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Old 10-04-06, 09:37 AM
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Whatever you do dont do it

I have an 89 fuji that i felt the same way about. I took the bike down to its frame and stripped all the original enamel paint off. that part was horrendous. lots of work to get it right. if you do this, then take it to a sandblasting company. what you spend will pay for itself in time and energy. If you do not heed my advice then do me one favor, throw that spray paint away, go to an automotive store and get automotive enamel. its much harder and will wear better. i finished my paint job about a month ago and i already have huge chunks taken out of the paint. I will admit that i was pretty satisfied with how the bike originally looked after the painting, but a few months in and it doesnt look so good. just some advice from a guy who did not heed the advice of others.

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Old 10-04-06, 09:50 AM
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Anyone else had better luck with auto enamel? Cuda2k?

Let me ask a completely naive question: other than scuffing the surface so new paint adheres, and also to smooth out scratches, why do I have to get all the original paint off?

j
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Old 10-04-06, 09:53 AM
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You don't have to get all of the original paint off. I didn't on my build. However I did sand the entire frame to roughen the paint, get the surface layer of paint off, and get rid of any wax, grease, etc on the frame. Then started laying down the primer.

I used DupliColor paints which can be found in just about any WalMart's automotive section. I used their "Metal Specks" or what ever it was called line which has a LOT of metal flake in it. I was happy with the results, but as other more knowledgeable painters stated later, the paint type (polyurithane I think?) isn't super durable of a finish. Also, I learned the hard way, that the DupliColor Metal Flakes will come RIGHT OFF with products like Goo-Gone, etc.
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Old 10-04-06, 10:19 AM
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Tangerine Rustoleum rattle can applied over well "scuffed" original black paint. Holding up well although a bit brittle.
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Old 10-04-06, 10:28 AM
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I like using duPont centarian auto paint over epoxy primer.

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Old 10-04-06, 10:47 AM
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I just painted one sorry no camera no photos. I used a spray can paint striper to take the old paint off, it worked great, 98 % came off no problem the other 2 percent was in the the ceases and needed a little wire brushing. Walmart has a line of candy or pearl colors. primer color clear coat . It turned out very nice. too early to tell how durable it will be. I think striping to bare metal will give you a nicer longer lasting finish and it is so easy to do .
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Old 10-04-06, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by tolfan
I just painted one sorry no camera no photos. I used a spray can paint striper to take the old paint off, it worked great, 98 % came off no problem the other 2 percent was in the the ceases and needed a little wire brushing. Walmart has a line of candy or pearl colors. primer color clear coat . It turned out very nice. too early to tell how durable it will be. I think striping to bare metal will give you a nicer longer lasting finish and it is so easy to do .
+1 on using stripper instead of sandpaper. I just stripped a frame to 100% bare metal in about a half an hour.
As far as paint I also like Duplicolor with clearcoat over the top after decals.
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Old 10-04-06, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by frameteam2003
I like using duPont centarian auto paint over epoxy primer.
That would be Centary! And of course catalysed primers/colors are much more durable than what's available in rattlecans! But then if you don't have a supplied air respirator, you will be exposing yourself to isocyanates. (read CYANIDE!) And those carbon filter masks don't really filter isocyanates, they just make it so you can't smell it as much. some may argue this, but hey it's YOUR life!
Good luck with that & I'll reply more later,
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Old 10-04-06, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by cyclotoine
I used spray can stripper with poor results. I later learned that you need to cover the frame with a grabage bag or tarp so that it doesn't evaporate. I don't think anyone has mentioned that and it is important... I spent was too much time painting a frame and the metallic paint looked 100 times better than the solid colour which ran easily and did not look very even. I never wet sanded though, maybe I should have. My next job I am simply sanding the frame and usuing a textured enamel that is not supposed to require primer or clear coat. I thought about how I was going to treat the frame for a long time but now that I have found one of the drop outs had cracked and been welded and I have butchered the shimano 600 propriety shifter braze-ons to fit DT adapters for bar mounted shifters I am not too concerned how it turns out.
The stripper I used is called Zip Strip Trigger Spray. It is a semi paste that you put in a supplied spray bottle that comes with it. It is a liquid when you pour it in the bottle, and when you spray it on the frame it turns into a gel. No problems what so ever with drying or evaporating Ate the paint very rapidly. It took two or three coats in most spots, but was way faster and easier than sanding.
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Old 10-04-06, 11:52 AM
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Rustoleum also makes a Metallic spray paint that dries much faster than their regular products. In fact they want you to apply the color coat over the primer within 10 minutes to achieve maximum bonding. It works very well and looks great. I redid my kite buggy with their Cobalt Blue with a clear coat layer and it is holding up well in spite of the greater abuse the buggy sees over what a bike does. Only drawbacks I've seen are it only comes in 4 colors - black, blue, silver, and gold, and you do still need to let it dry for at least a week.

Update 01/'08: They have many more colors than the original four now. I am still very pleased with how it's holding up on my kite buggy, which sees regular beach duty, including contact with salt water. Will be doing a bike as soon as the weather warms up.

Last edited by McDave; 01-25-08 at 09:58 AM.
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Old 10-04-06, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Dr.Deltron
That would be Centary! And of course catalysed primers/colors are much more durable than what's available in rattlecans! But then if you don't have a supplied air respirator, you will be exposing yourself to isocyanates. (read CYANIDE!) And those carbon filter masks don't really filter isocyanates, they just make it so you can't smell it as much. some may argue this, but hey it's YOUR life!
Good luck with that & I'll reply more later,
Dr. D
How about some recommendations for products that are relatively safe, easy to use and that yield durable results for the person that has suitable spray painting equipment and knows how to use it, but has no knowlege of the products that are on the market today?
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Old 10-04-06, 12:13 PM
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If using stripper,before painting,give the frame a coat of EasyOff oven cleaner,let stand about an hour then wash off.This will chemical etch the metal so the paint will stick better.Auto paint suppliers sell a metal prep that does the same thing---sam
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Old 10-04-06, 12:52 PM
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As far as paint I also like Duplicolor with clearcoat over the top after decals.
I like Duplicolor's spray nozzle. It is easier to control. The spray pattern is finer, too.
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Old 10-04-06, 12:55 PM
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I used spray can stripper with poor results. I later learned that you need to cover the frame with a grabage bag or tarp so that it doesn't evaporate. I don't think anyone has mentioned that and it is important... I spent was too much time painting a frame and the metallic paint looked 100 times better than the solid colour which ran easily and did not look very even. I never wet sanded though, maybe I should have. My next job I am simply sanding the frame and usuing a textured enamel that is not supposed to require primer or clear coat. I thought about how I was going to treat the frame for a long time but now that I have found one of the drop outs had cracked and been welded and I have butchered the shimano 600 propriety shifter braze-ons to fit DT adapters for bar mounted shifters I am not too concerned how it turns out.
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Old 10-05-06, 06:48 AM
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Past the point of no return; I have started the sanding process, so here I go.

Thanks everyone for all the advice.

If I make a mess of this, I will choose to blame each and every one of you!

j
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Old 10-05-06, 07:56 AM
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Oh man, it's funny watching you guys try to spell CENTARI, haha.

I just stripped an ol cheapy lugged frame to bare metal, and painted it with enamel mixed at an auto paint store. They put it into a spray can for me. On the frame I used spray can etching primer, followed by high build orange primer. I wet sanded the high build with wet or dry 800 grit and soapy water. It is still soft, and was shot yesterday evening. I may get it baked at a local bodyshop today. I could tell the first time I pushed the nozzle down, this wasn't krylon crap.
It even smells like acrylic enamel single stage, since that's what it probably is. The best part? You can pick any color that came on a car as far back as their books go. That's quite a selection if you ask me, hehe.,,,,BD

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Old 10-05-06, 08:06 AM
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I've used Rustoleum rattle can paint on bike frames. Works OK if you don't try to put it on too thick. Do several thin coats. I used Rustoleum primer and only sanded the rusty parts. The result is kind of easily scratched, but I can touch it up if I want. I cut out a slot in some cardboard to shield the parts near the scratch I want to touch up.

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Old 10-05-06, 09:41 AM
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I just took my frame to a bodyshop, to ask if they would bake it for me. He started making all kinds of excuses why it wouldn't make the paint harden. All of which I knew to be false from previous experience.
He says in a really Southern accent "You can put it out in the sun.....?" About that time I knew it was hopeless. I thanked him and left.,,,,BD
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Old 10-05-06, 09:44 AM
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I've used Martin Senour paints in a HVLP (High Volume Low Pressure) touch-up gun...small compressor, combo filter-regulator...not professional by any means, but MUCH better than the rattle-can jobs i've done in the past.
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Old 10-05-06, 12:14 PM
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I recently did a quick spray of my Fuji after brazing on some downtube shifter bosses.


I did it in the garage and had a couple of gnats tick me off when they launched kamikaze attacks on the wet paint!
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