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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently got a steal on a Murray bike for $15. The paint is TERRIBLE on it and I'd like to redo it. I've never painted a bike before, and I've heard that a 'clear coat' is needed to keep the paint from scratching and rusting.
I did a quick search online, and couldn't pinpoint what I exactly needed.

Any help with product names/materials and how I should go about this project? I like the paint scheme, and was thinking of just restoring it, instead of going totally new.

Thanks.
 

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Sandblast or glass bead the frame down to bare metal if you can. Chances are you would need a connection to get this done or possibly take to a machine shop to get it done. Other option is to sand it down by hand. I just used Kryon spray and Krylon clear coat on a frame..... going on 18 yrs ago. Still looks great and has held up well. It was an older road frame for my wife, now my youngest uses it. He tried the rollers last week and had the hang of them in about 3 minutes, he plays travel ice hockey so his sense of balance is incredible. Getting back to the paint, I chose Krylon because of the fast dry time compared to Rust-O-Leum. Take your time and do several lite coats, patience will give you the best look. Nice thing is you can do a bike frame and clear coat it for about 10 to 12 bucks.
 

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The rattle can is your friend. Unless that $15 Murray was a barn find, I wouldn't spend a dime having it media blasted. Just hand sand it.
- Wash the frame
- Sand it; Start with a 220, work your way down to a 1500 grit. Don't get lazy here - the swirls and sanding marks will really show through with shiny new paint

Prep
- Strip and tape (what you couldn't strip) the frame
- Wash it with a degreaser
- Wash off the degreaser with dish soap
- Wash off the dish soap with lots (!) of water
- Dry the frame
- Get ready to paint
- Wipe it down with Acetone
- Start painting...

Painting (hopefully it's warm where you are)
- I've had good luck with most/all of the major brands of paint... I let color and texture dictate the brand
- Two light coats of primer (follow the can's directions)
- Four light coats of color - never start or end a pass on the frame; stay 6-8" from frame; pass should take about 3" for length of frame
- Two coats of clear

Note: If you're putting the decals back on, you could do this between color and clear - gives a cool, OE look.

Rattle cans get a bad wrap. The paint is actually really good. It's the prep and technique that net crappy results. Practice on some trash can lids, trash - anything. Get a feel for the nozzle.

Example of rattle can paint job:
My 1st (now sold) Jeep; was silver:


My Land Cruiser grille was pitted:


A few minuties with sandpaper, tape and paper...


Perfect color match right off the Home Depot shelf (Rustoleum)
 

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Hand sanding will take you a lot of effort. Use gel paint stripper. There are lots of non-caustic options out there. A quart at your local hardware store will run you about $15. You won't use more than a cup. Finish up with sandpaper and wire brush.

I used Motsenbockers to strip an old 853 Reynolds steel frame. It did a great job. You will want to use it when it is 60 degrees or above when you apply.
 

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I agree that media blasting is overkill unless you have access to a large enough unit to throw a bike frame in. There is one where I work and I use it for all sorts of stuff. You won't get any swirl marks and it takes a fraction of the time, also gets those spots that sandpaper cannot. Just suggested it in case you know someone that could do it for you in their "spare time" at work. Suggestions above sound good and hopefully have you pointed in the right direction. Good luck with your project.
 

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I agree that media blasting is overkill unless you have access to a large enough unit to throw a bike frame in.
I'm with ya 100% When it was time to strip and coat this one...


I asked my buddies who do custom powder coating if they "wanted" do a bike frame for their website "sure, bring it by..." It was media blasted to raw metal, then powder coated
Soooo much better in translucent burnt copper ;-)
 
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