Saturday, April 26, 2008

Vik's Xtra Dumb Painting Tips

I love the army green of my Big Dummy. It sort of reminds of my youth watching MASH. The Xtracycle long tail kit looks good, but its silver and wood accents make me think SoCal skateboarding - not mobile army field naturally I had to paint my long tail kit to be more bad ass.!...=-)

Here is what I did:

  • automotive metal primer
  • rubberized automotive undercoating
  • exterior black paint
  • polyurethane
  • solvent

Remove all hardware and put aside.

  • sand v-racks with coarse sand paper
  • clean with solvent [paint thinner]
  • hang up with coat hanger
  • spray 3-4 coats of primer [allow to dry between]
  • spray 3-4 coats of undercoating [allow to dry between]
  • note: the undercoating takes a long time to dry so don't rush it
Snap Deck:
  • sand snap deck down to wood [coarse sand paper]
  • remove scratches with fine sand paper
  • clean with solvent
  • apply black paint in 5-6 light coats [allow to dry between]
  • apply polyurethane in 5-6 light coats [allow to dry between]
  • once dry buff snap deck with clean cloth and Pledge furniture polish
  • note: for a more durable matte finish follow directions for footsies below

  • paint metal supports as per v-racks above
  • sand footsies down to wood [coarse sand paper]
  • clean with solvent
  • apply 2-3 coats of black paint as primer [allow to dry between]
  • apply 3-4 coats of undercoating [allow to dry between]

The result is a stealth black long tail kit. The finish isn't "classic car show" ready, but this is a work bike so I don't want to cry when I scratch it up. With lots of layers of primer and paint I should be able to keep it looking decent with a touch up spray every few months.

Update: I'm not super happy with the under coat as it wants to come off far more easily than I would have anticipated. I'll run with it through the summer, but when the snow flies I'll strip down the v-racks and get them powder coated or I'll find some more durable paint and do it myself. Other folks have had success with different brands of undercoat so I'd suggest testing some out first before you paint your parts.

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