The Bike Paint Thread!

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2:59 AM
Jan 22, 2008
Well, I just got my hands on a 1962 Schwinn and the condition of the paint is pretty bad. It's been sprayed over with some crappy wretched orange spray paint, but I can see it chipping off and the original paint underneath.

How can I remove the spray paint without destroying the paint underneath?

And if the paint underneath is too mashed up to save, then I'm willing to strip it down and figure out where to go from there. I would strip it down using aircraft stripper. I figure my options from there would be.

1. Rustoleum primer, paint, and topcoat. (Cheapest and shoddiest).
2. Car primer, paint, and topcoat. (A step up?)
3. Getting it powdercoated by a friend of a friend (probably the best).

Anybody have any good experience or advice for somebody who's never done this before?

Edit: Attach picture.


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Well, I'm no expert here but I have taken rattle can off of original paint to some degree of success. The old paint, though it looks good, is still old paint with patina, chips, etc.
This is a very slow and time consuming process, but if you are patient, it can be done. Honestly, If you're looking to make it look all shiney and new I would recommend powder coat- it is relatively cheap, and hard as nails when done properly. I can go through the process I used to save the original paint (with ball and claw points and pinstriping) on the 1950 Columbia, if you really want to save the paint on the Schwinn...
Which, by the way, is pretty darn sweet- a great base to start a motoredBike project!!!
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A paint job with Rustoleum is only shoddy if one does shoddy work. Done correctly, it can produce very nice results. The main thing that causes problems is laziness and hurrying. If you do a complete repaint- sand, sand, sand- prime, sand, prime many times? Good question- as many times as it takes to get a perfect surface (spot putty won't hurt). Before top coat, make sure the primer is completely cured- notice I did not say "dried" something may be dry in hours, but it may not have cured for days or weeks. When you topcoat- coat, let cure, wet sand coat...repeat until perfect. The Rustoleum is not the problem.
I've sprayed my bikes flat black with some rustoleum. I touch it up as needed but usually all the dirt and sht from the road has done a decent enough job concealing my sub par painting skills.
You could try the spray on oven cleaner,it will remove the paint but you would have to time everything so that you don't also soften up the original paint. This would be messy and very hard to do and in the end you may end up with spots needing touch up. It could be that the bike was not sanded before it was painted and you could get lucky.
On the other hand if you were to sandblast and powder coat, you would have a bike with a paintjob that will outlast you.
powdercoat is the wayto go. i just took my frame over to them and they sandblasted it and powdercoated it for about 100 bucks expensive but it comes out real nice check into it in your area see what you can find out . also they have diffrent colors not just black ! larry ca


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my 2Cents on painting.


I like the idea of a proper spray job, and have read through the above.

I attacked my bike with Black Metal paint, which was the worst idea.

Two months later in the middle of Australian summer, and the paint had still
not dried in places. Every time I rode it, I would end up with black paint on
myself somewhere.

I liked the idea of making parts of the engine/bike shiny like chrome,
( I like shiny)
so I bought chrome paint, which I applied here and there.
Only to have it flake off or look grimy, dull and never shiny.

Watch those degreasers too they'll remove paint...

I then went for some artists gold paint for wheels and back end of frame.

And Hi-Temp black for the motor.
the wheel wore off the gold, but it look interestings.

Its a work in progress, and when I get bored, I add a bit
more paint here and there.