This post is one in a series of twelve posts depcting the build of my Hollowpoint MkIII.
Link to MkIII / Speedhub bike build post.
|I swear, I didn't know what I was getting into, and I'll probably never do it again considering how much time it took. But that doesn't mean I'm not pleased with the outcome, and I'd like to share the results with everybody.|
While waiting for some parts to arrive for my new bike, I decided I would strip and polish the rear triangle for that custom look. The criteria were simple: Make it a do-it-at-home project, meaning no powdercoat, no anodizing, and it had to be a brush-on finish.
My materials list:
+ Paint Stripper (Jasco Premium, Safety Kleen Aircraft Remover)
+ Purple Scotchbrite Pad
+ Aluminum Polish
+ Glisten PC 2-part Clearcoat (www.Por15.com)
+ AP-120 Metal Prep (Por15)
+ High Evaporative Lacquer Thinner
This is what I began with (kind of a shame to touch it, ain't it?):
|Since the frame was brand new, and I really didn't want to press out the bearings, I removed the bearing seals with a razorblade and set them aside for the duration of the project.|
|This paint stripper is toxic, so I was sure to wear sleeves, gloves and eye protection for this stage.|
Brush it on and stand back.
|The clearcoat, decals, and paint begin to blister almost immediately, and within minutes begin to flake.|
|The following are pictures of the frame after the first and third applications of paint stripper. Smooth sailing, except that the primer coat seemed to be impervious. The shiny spot along the right shockstay was done with the Scotchbrite pad.|
|This is when I brought in (what I thought were) the heavy hitters, the Jasco Premium and later the Aircraft Remover (it must work -- I haven't seen any L-1011s lately!).|
This is when I realized I was in for a long project. I applied over a dozen coats of paint stripper to the epoxy primer, letting it sit for periods as long as 90 minutes, and it never softened.
|I finally bottled up all the toxic chemicals and grabbed my Dremel. Using a variety of brushes, hours of patience, and the occasional Scotchbrite touch-up, I eventually got most of the primer off.|
Again, proper protection is in order. In this case a breathing mask is highly recommended because the Dremel turns the epoxy into a very fine dust which is dispersed everywhere.
|I finally got to a point where I could polish the frame, which was almost anti-climatic following the primer removal. The internet favorite aluminum polish is "Mother's Polish", but I stuck with some generic stuff in a green bottle that was on the shelf of my local hardware store. Good enough.|
Here I am early in the morning on Paint Day, giving the frame a final buff before prepping it for the clearcoat.
|The Glisten PC Instruction are very specific about the final prep, and a few emails to the company inquiring about substitutions for AP-120 metal prep and fast-evaporating lacquer thinner were answered with "No Substitutions."|
So the order of application is:
- Wipe down the polished frame with high-evaporative lacquer thinner.
- Spray the frame down with AP-120 metal prep. Let is sit for 2 minutes ("exactly"), then hose it off.
- Dry the frame (I went at it with a heat gun).
- Begin applying the Glisten PC. Three to four coats, spaced out at approximately 3 hours, are required.
The Glisten PC is a 2-part mix. It takes a few tablespoons of the product for one coat. Coats subsequent to the first should be thinned with up to 30% Xylene to help it "flow" and prevent brush strokes from forming.
|The stuff brushes out pretty smoothly, when I worked it, but I ended up with more than a few runs, drips and errors in locations where I wasn't paying particular attention.|
All in all, this process took about 14 hours to complete.
|Once the frame was painted, I had to set it aside in a dust-free location to let it cure for four days. I ended up hanging it from the bearings, supported by a wood dowel pierced through a large cardboard box.|
In the end, I think you'll agree the triangle came out in fairly good shape. The flaws are less obvious from an arm's length, and completely disappear when the frame is covered in trail dust.
|Index of MkIII Build Posts|
MAIN: MkIII / Speedhub Build Pics
Iron Horse MkIII Naked Frame (March 2005)
Hollowpoint Speedhub Build Pictures (April 2003)
Cane Creek AD-12 Air Chamber Volume Adjustment
White Brothers 2006 Technology [/TD]
[TD] White Brothers DT 1.2 Fork Porn
Bottom Bracket Drain Hole Drilling & Installation
Drilling Out Cable Stops (Full Length Cable Run)
Dremel Cut & Prep of Cable & Housing [/TD][TD] Hopey Steering Damper Installation
Stripping & Polishing an Aluminum Frame
Homemade Headset Removal & Installation Tools
Star Fangled Nut Removal (Drilling out the Star Nut) [/TD][/TD]