Friday, May 12, 2006

Painted my white S Works black

So, I had this 2000 era Specialized cyclocross bike that was a little beaten up. The chain had dropped mid race on a number of occasions, the paint was nicked, scratched, scuffed...the paint wasnt good. So I painted it, and the following is what I did.

First I had to choose what color I wanted to paint it. I chose matte/flat black and I wanted to put glossy black decals back on it. I went to my local hardware store and purchased one can of primer black and one can of flat black. My flat black enamel had a dry time of 4-5 hours, if I were going to do this again, make sure you get the fast
drying stuff (like 13 mins) if youre anywhere as impatient as myself.

Then, I got out the electric hand sander. If you dont have an electric hand sander, stop now and go buy one. Seriously, this project would not be good without one, almost impossible. The Specialized decals on the bike were really on there (who knew plastic decals turn into titanium after 5 years?). This was the most difficult part of the job. I spent about 2 hours with an electric sander removing the decals (note: for the "dont laugh" bike project, I learned that burning off the decals is much faster and produces better results and as a result you could get by without an electric sander). Also, from those several chain drops, the metal had been nicked a few times itself, I was able to get most of those nicks out of the frame as well, which was cool.

After the frame was sanded, I took some alcohol to it to remove the dust, oils and any dirt left on the frame. Next, I taped off the headset, BB, canti brake posts and stuffed newspaper down the seat tube. Then, I sprayed it all with the primer. Since, my final color was black, I went with a black primer. If you choose a final color thats lighter (yellow, orange, green,etc) go with a white primer, even grey primer will peek through the final paint color and alter the color you want the bike to be---ie it'll be a greyish yellow or green.

After that dried, I sprayed on the flat black enamel. The key with any spray jobs is to do a lot of light coats. With a fast drying spray paint, you can work from front to back and by the time you get done with the back you can usually go back to the front and repeat the process.

Next, I took some fishing line and tied it through the head tube, and hung the bike to dry. Letting it fully cure is a key step in the process so that it comes out looking pretty good. It's easy to chip, and leave finger prints if you start handling it or bolting parts on and the paint hasnt fully cured yet. Dont touch it until about 3 days after it stops smelling like wet paint. A week is probably a good bet.

BTW the pre paint weight was 1628 grams, after it was 1605 grams.

Im not done getting it built up but this is what I got so far:


Josh and Barb said...

Wow, it's amazing that you somehow shed some grams by painting the bike...

jeremyb said...

yeah im no metalurgist, but those decals really do turn into metal after a few years. Thats the only way I can imagine that I dropped some weight on the bike...cause as you can see on the pics I didnt take the frame down to bare metal on the whole frame.


erikv said...

Now that it's been a year and a half, how's the paint job holding up? Any lessons learned?