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Painting Vintage Bikes

Old 10-24-10, 08:41 AM
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Painting Vintage Bikes

Does anyone have any experience painting vintage bikes? If so, do you have any recommendations on good airbrushes for this purpose?

Thanks,

Max
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Old 10-24-10, 11:18 AM
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I painted this old Peugeot PX10 with a paint brush and some plastic based paint.

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Old 10-24-10, 12:03 PM
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Air brushes don't put out enough paint to do a good job on a bicycle frame. The best tool for the job is a detail gun. I use a Sharpe MGFHVLP. I think they retail for around $250. There are much less expensive guns on the market.

I just found one. I didn't pay that much. I got it used on eBay for $40 and bought a rebuild kit.

https://www.tcpglobal.com/spraygundep...value=SHA+7040

Last edited by Grand Bois; 10-24-10 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 10-24-10, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Grand Bois
Air brushes don't put out enough paint to do a good job on a bicycle frame. The best tool for the job is a detail gun. I use a Sharpe MGFHVLP. I think they retail for around $250. There are much less expensive guns on the market.

I just found one. I didn't pay that much. I got it used on eBay for $40 and bought a rebuild kit.

https://www.tcpglobal.com/spraygundep...value=SHA+7040
Thanks for the help! I will look into a detail gun as well as hand painting.

Thanks!
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Old 10-24-10, 01:55 PM
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I should probably be embarrassed to admit it, but for bikes I use a Craftsman detail gun - yes, one from Sears.

It's the old-timey kind, not an HVLP.
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Old 10-24-10, 02:39 PM
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My big gun is a Devibiss JGA that I bought at Sears. I added a Sharpe cup. I used to have a Sears gun and tankless compressor but I sold it when I bought my new setup. Sometimes I miss it. I did some nice work with that inexpensive setup. I used it mostly for furniture refinishing.
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Old 10-24-10, 04:48 PM
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I'm with randyjawa on handpainting old bikes. I actually followed his example from his website. I've painted several bikes and have had a lot of success.

I use gloss enamel and a 3/4" artist brush. The enamel just flows on. Most people cant tell its done with a brush.

The biggest advantage to brush painting is the thickness of the paint film applied. Spray paint is mostly dusted on in thin coats. Applied by
brush yields a heavier more durable finish. Two coats of gloss enamel is a very nice finish.
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Old 10-24-10, 05:20 PM
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You have complete control over the thickness of the layer of paint you lay down with a spray gun, but a thick layer of paint isn't necessarily more durable. The enamel you're using won't be as durable as modern 2 part urethanes. You may find that your paintjobs have faded, cracked and peeled after a while, but I certainly hope not.
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Old 10-24-10, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by randyjawa
I painted this old Peugeot PX10 with a paint brush and some plastic based paint.

If you don't mind my asking, where did you get the decals?

Gorgeous bike!!
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Old 10-24-10, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by randyjawa
I painted this old with a paint brush and some plastic based paint.

Dang, that looks great! Checked your site, wow!
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Old 10-25-10, 06:15 PM
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Grand Bois,

I got a detail gun as well as an air compressor and some paint. What kind of paint thinner or solvent do you use between colors and between primer and the main coat? Is there any sort of special process I should be aware of when it comes to air brushing?

Thanks,

Max
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Old 10-25-10, 08:12 PM
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Here's an age old question: What is better? Strip it down and repaint, or leave it as is? I have a vintage Peugeot MTB https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...=#post11679467 and it's chipped up and rubbed etc. There's some rust in the chrome and rechroming is out of the question. Should I repaint, touch up, or leave it as-is with a possible clear coat?

Thanks,

eddubal
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Old 10-25-10, 09:15 PM
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If you don't mind my asking, where did you get the decals?
The decal set was purchased from Cyclomondo through Ebay. I cannot speak highly enough about the fellow's product. Good quality. Easy to apply. And available.

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Old 10-26-10, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by mthilen
Grand Bois,

I got a detail gun as well as an air compressor and some paint. What kind of paint thinner or solvent do you use between colors and between primer and the main coat? Is there any sort of special process I should be aware of when it comes to air brushing?

Thanks,

Max
Urethane paint uses reducer, not thinner. You also need hardener. I clean my gun with lacquer thinner. Reducer is too expensive for that.

I get my materials from tcpglobal.com. They sell quart kits.

You could use Rustolium and save money. It can be thinned with mineral spirits or acetone for faster drying.

Last edited by Grand Bois; 10-26-10 at 07:43 AM.
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Old 10-27-10, 07:26 PM
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Grand Bois,

Thanks for the advice on the detail gun, I just had one more question: When you sand down a frame, does the paint have to be 100% gone or is it enough if it is smooth and sanded down all over the frame but most of the pain is still there?

Regards,

Max
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Old 10-28-10, 07:08 AM
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No, you don't have to remove all of the paint. You do have to prime any spots where you've gone through to bare metal.
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Old 10-28-10, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Grand Bois
No, you don't have to remove all of the paint. You do have to prime any spots where you've gone through to bare metal.
As with any finishing though, surface imperfections will show through the paint unless you take measures between coats to eliminate them. Sometimes it is easier to do all the prep initially. Then again, it comes down to how much of a perfectionist you are.
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Old 10-28-10, 08:40 AM
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Thanks Randyjawa..... Excellent instructions with the beginner in mind. I've been wanting to paint my old Rock Hopper take-apart, and your solution is just what I've been looking for.

https://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/s...d.php?t=215707

Best Regards, Tom

Last edited by werks; 10-28-10 at 09:05 AM.
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Old 10-28-10, 10:01 AM
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Thanks Randyjawa..... Excellent instructions with the beginner in mind. I've been wanting to paint my old Rock Hopper take-apart, and your solution is just what I've been looking for.

https://www.apriliaforum.com/forums/s...d.php?t=215707

Best Regards, Tom
You should have seen the last motorcycle I hand painted with a brush. The bike, a 1943 Harley 45, in civilian trip, turned out just great! I have actually won money from people who did not believe it was hand painted.

Brush work is so much easier and cheaper than spray.
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Old 10-28-10, 05:22 PM
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Not if you already have the spray equipment and know how to use it.
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Old 10-28-10, 06:59 PM
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Ok, masking lugs is a real PITA. I'm finally painting my old Raleigh. I've painted boats, cars, houses, pianos, landscapes. Can't figure out this lugwork.
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Old 10-28-10, 07:03 PM
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How do you prep areas with bubbling from rust underneath that acid can't reach. Do you sand or scrape the paint away? I suppose if your going to repaint it anyway, you don't have to baby it.
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Old 10-28-10, 07:38 PM
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I've only painted frames that were in very bad condition, so I've had to strip them to bare metal, wire wheel the rust and use filler on the dents. The last one took two years. I'd hang it up in the rafters when I got tired of it and go back to it when I was in the right mood. I'm happy with the results, though. It's rattle canned.

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Old 10-28-10, 08:27 PM
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I like the results as well, although I don't think that I would have that much patience. I'm thinking about trying to rehabilitate this junk yard Tange 2 Centurion frame. The photo doesn't show the rather severe rust around the BB and other areas. The rust, although ugly, is superficial and the frame is otherwise straight and dent free. I've never attempted a repaint however. I've had good success with oxy bathing a less rusted frame that I touched up. But if I'm going to repaint the entire frame, I'm not sure it's worth trying to remove all the paint. This bike was a freebee and I'm not looking for perfection but other than removing the rust, I'm not sure what my next step should be?
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Old 10-29-10, 05:28 AM
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Not if you already have the spray equipment and know how to use it.
True,however...

It is not easier to spray paint a bicycle, first time out of the gate,and get good results. Most people have trouble with over-spray. None the less, if you do have the equipment, a place to use the equipment and the skill to use the equipment, then Grand Bois is bang on the dollar. However...

I published MY "TEN SPEEDS", knowing that most people, interested in vintage road bicycles, do not have the equipment, or the facilities, or the skill to use spray equipment. I believe, also, that, because the interest in vintage road bicycles is growing so fast, that there are lots of people, new to the interest, who lack all of the above.

My paint method is for amateurs. It is as simple as that. An amateur can afford twenty bucks to buy paint, brush and thinner. An amateur, with these supplies, can paint a bicycle frame and fork set in his, or her, kitchen. An amateur can learn and develop skill, with each coat of paint applied. It is pretty easy for the amateur to get decent results, first time out of the gate, and I have seen it happen a few times, already.

All that said, Grand Bois is absolutely correct, when he suggests using better equipment and materials, when restoring your bicycles, will produce superior results.

Problem is, I paint in the kitchen and have to use my methods. But they work well enough for me. How do you like my painted by brush Cambio Rino "2000", or my 1958 Carlton "Flyer"? I might add that the art work, on both of these bikes, is hand made also.




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