Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Painting the Maiden Ship Pt. 1

The Maiden cleaned and ready to paint
After doing a little research on the possibilities of the different types of spray paints one could use to coat a raw bike frame, here's what I picked:

-[White] Enamel Primer; bonds to porous metal creating a protective base coat for color and outer coats.
-[Black] Color Lacquer; Provides a thick layer of color that hardens into a solid protective layer
-Clear Coat Lacquer; Provides an outer hardened layer to protect from scratches, and protects and seals in multiple colors/decals etc.
 note: I read that lacquer primer sux and you can paint lacquer over enamel but not vise-versa, also that lacquers have been used to paint cars and motorcycles reliably for years. always clear coat the outer layer...

First, I took an old tube, cleaned it up and did some test patches with the paints I picked, let them dry, and did scratch tests. The coating seemed promisingly scratch resistant and durable, so I went for it.

   As instructed; starting with 150 grit sand paper or emery cloth, sand entire frame of rust and debris. Re-sand lightly with 220 grit. Clean entire frame with a lint-free rag wet with rubbing alcohol to remove any chemical and grease debris. let alcohol completely evaporate in a dry area.

The Maiden Ship all primed up
Next, tape the frame. This protects parts that you don't want painted; inside of seat-tube, head-tube, BB, braze-ons, etc. I rolled up little cones made from small pieces of tape to plug the braze-ons.

Now the frame is ready for primer; I simply set the frame on a board on the shelf of a ladder so it was about chest high. that gives a good close-up view of the frame to check for spots that may need more paint.

Keep the can at about a foot away and keep moving while you spray in order to decrease the risk of getting spots that accumulate paint to fast and run. if you do, you can quickly wipe it and recoat more slowly, or sand it later. Let it dry (~10 min) and flip it and cover every visible surface.

I let the primer dry over night to ensure it would be cured and ready for the lacquer topcoats. Next, I used the Black lacquer to paint the used uni-crown fork (after cleaning and priming of course) i picked up at the HUB. It looks so good, I can't wait to get to the frame!

to be continued...