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Human Test Subject
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So this winter was especially rough on my Moonlander and it's beautiful paint is cracking and the frame is rusting around every braze on. I'm kinda disappointed that it only lasted 3 years (including the original 2011/2012 winter which never happened.)

These are some pics I took just over a month ago and it's gotten a lot worse since then (each rust section has about doubled). I emailed Surly and they said it's to be expected around the braze ons where the PC is the thinnest, especially after winters like this most previous one.

IMG_20140310_152607958_HDR.jpg IMG_20140310_152559901_HDR.jpg

So I'm wondering what my options are.

Are aftermarket powder coat jobs generally more durable or could be they made more durable with extra clear coat?

Is ED coating, like the new frames have, an option if I were to remove the current cracking paint?

Also considering suggestions on new color.
 

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Hybrid Leftys aren't real
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Me? I would rub it out with a rag, maybe spritz a bit of oil there from time to time (and simply wipe off the excess), and ignore it till the PC started to disfigure a little bit.

At that point, the roundabout $500 frame would be at least several more years old than the three it is now, making it money well spent enough to throw a ~$100 PC job at it, cover all those slight frame defects for at least another several years, making it nearly 8 to 10.

At which point I'd argue, if the frame broke beyond that date, you kinda got your dimes worth, buy another one based on a near decade (perhaps plus) of grins provided, alone.

But who knows what cool stuff might be lurking by then, to lure you forward.... :)

As for colors, consider doing other things at the same time. Rims, cranks, etc can be done too. Assuming you want to have some fun, and have a few extra bucks.

I've seen a chrome like finish that was stunning. I thought it was a polished frame. These guys went from bright silver (pretty much what I saw), to a dark, smoked chrome in terms of what they could provide. Cool stuff.
 

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Paint or powder coat durability is largely dependent on the surface preparation prior to painting. All grease and dirt must be removed is a given but if you really want the paint to stay put, you need to rough up the surface. This is done by beed blasting. Most powdercoat places I have been to and talked with do not do this step! Many do an chemical cleaning process which is good but can be improved on. Hunt around and find a place that will beed blast the bike. Steel beeds are fine as the material is steel anyway (if the frame was Stainless steel, then blasting with steel would be a big no no). Once blasted (which will strip away all of the old paint and leave the surface dull, paint of powder coat within 4 hours. Leaving the frame longer than 4 hours will allow moisture to start the rusting process again which will continue under the nice new paint job. If you use paint, make sure you use a good undercoat. Generally speaking, the fancier your coating looks (metalics and pearl etc) the less durable it will be.

As a side note, the amount of rust in the pics shown is absolutely nothing to worry about structurally.
 

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I had the same problem with my Pugs, but much worse, and it occurred within a year. I found a local place (NJ) that was recommended by cyclists on a local forum and they did a great job. The new PC was noticeably thicker than the original. So thick that I had to get the BB shell threads chased because some got in there. (You may want to take steps to prevent that if you can.)

Geek is correct about the prep work. Blasting etches the metal which creates a better bond for the paint. My PC job cost $120 and looks awesome. I never liked the old color anyway. I sold the bike to a friend, so I can keep an eye on it. So far, no recurrence of the rust.

P1000927.jpg Pugs_New_3.jpg
 

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Human Test Subject
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yeah the amount shown isn't bad, but it's already worse. It snuck up fast like herpes and is spreading like some sort of super herp. It should be fine in the summer, but by the time next winter comes it will probably need it.

Anyone know about aftermarket ED coating?
 

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I'd say anodizing or PC is your best bet. To be honest I'd just ride unless you want a new fancy color.

Unless you have another bike to ride its a huge pain in the ass to strip the frame. Clean it. Then have it prepped stripped and cleaned again the pc. Then chase the bb and rebuild.

I've had a few frames done for friends and it only works if its a spare ride. Most coating shops don't follow schedules well. One week become 3-4 pretty quick.

If you are gonna go. Please go big and get a fancy slick color that you love. And don't be scared to walk on a shop. A lot of shops don't coat parts that deal with the kind of abuse that a bike frame does. A valve cover sees no rocks or wires rubbing.

Just something to consider. And if you decide to go forward post tons of pics!!!!

I'm building a new bike so my old yelli screams might see a man about a color change.
 

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The last place I worked for utilized a PC system that had a chemical dip for all our metal parts. We could go right from the laser to the presses, then directly into the PC system. ZERO worries about rust or contamination, as the chemical dipping took care of all impurities.

We made stuff for the government and school systems, so don't get all huffy about quality.
 

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Classic weekend warrior
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SmooveP, what shop did you go to? I have a frame that needs coating... already blasted and ready to go
 

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I own a company that manufacturers a lot of aluminum products for the Caribbean islands where the installation is often by the sea. We use a powder coater that sprays on a special rust inhibiting primer for our applications. I have never really asked him about it, but would if you want more info.
 

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So this winter was especially rough on my Moonlander and it's beautiful paint is cracking and the frame is rusting around every braze on. I'm kinda disappointed that it only lasted 3 years...
What polish are you using? I use a silicon car wax once a year and it keeps my frames from rusting quite well.
 

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Me? I would rub it out with a rag, maybe spritz a bit of oil there from time to time (and simply wipe off the excess), and ignore it till the PC started to disfigure a little bit.
+1 - it's not doing any real damage. I'd keep rolling and when you have some serious PC damage you can decide to powder coat it or get a new 250mm wide fatbike with 8" tires or whatever is the hot ticket by then. :)
 

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Surprised to see how quickly your bike has started to rust. I've never owned a steel bike, but considering that I will use a fat bike in the snow and beach areas I will make sure to stick with an aluminum frameset for sure. I'd be a bit depressed with a fairly new Moonlander rusting like that.
Good luck on your restoration project.
 

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Surprised to see how quickly your bike has started to rust. I've never owned a steel bike, but considering that I will use a fat bike in the snow and beach areas I will make sure to stick with an aluminum frameset for sure. I'd be a bit depressed with a fairly new Moonlander rusting like that.
Good luck on your restoration project.
I've owned lots of steel bikes. I don't think rust that quickly is the norm. I'm not familiar enough with Surly to know if this is a common issue with them, but in general this is not a common issue for steel bikes.
 

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Old, Slow and now FAT! :)
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I've owned lots of steel bikes. I don't think rust that quickly is the norm. I'm not familiar enough with Surly to know if this is a common issue with them, but in general this is not a common issue for steel bikes.
Depends where you ride. If you live in the Midwest where they put down a ton of salt on the roads and you road ride in the winter then the risk of rust is going to be much higher. If you live in Boulder county where they use no salt and just dump grit on the road the risk will be much less.

I have a steel cross bike that I road ride and use as my "wet weather" bike and I have no rust on that, but then again, the few times it does get wet it dries off real quick in our semi-arid location.
 

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AL frame will corrode if exposed to salt it will just look different.

Any fatbike exposed to salt needs some extra love to keep it from having problems like components fused into place.

My Pugsley spent months a frisbee throw from the beach, was ridden on the beach daily and then through 2 Calgary winters. It saw no preventative maintenance: like internal rustproofing or fresh water rinsing. After 3 years the PC was ugly enough that I had it redone. Zero damage to the frame and that frame will last decades with similarly poor maintenance.

If I had bothered to take care of it reasonably I could be rocking the original PC.

I have a number of other Surly and other brand steel frames - none exposed to a lot of salt and none having any PC issues.

Salt is the enemy. ;)
 

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My grey Pugs developed the rust shown above in less than 6 months and it had never been ridden in the snow/salt or on the beach. It actually got much worse than what is shown in that picture, with inches long fingers of bubbling rust branching out from the braze-ons. I'm pretty sure that if I hadn't nipped it in the bud, it would have attacked my family.
 

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Human Test Subject
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I used turtle wax 2 years ago but forgot this last year.

I think the main contributor was that it was below freezing for almost the entire winter so I could never give it a good garden hose shower. I sprayed it with white lightning bike wash about once a week in the heated garage at work, but that's about all the love I could give it.

There are spigots in that garage but the maintenance people who run it said I couldn't use them, even over one of the floor drains. I might do it next winter anyway and see if they notice/write me up.
 
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Yes aftermarket PC will be superior to the OEM as the prep work is where it all happens like any paint job. For me any rust is unsightly so it's gotta go ASAP!
A chemical dip along and media blast with a PC shop will have you grinnin:) big time.
 
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