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Giddy Up!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Should I clear coat this frame to maintain the 'luster' of the alloy?

If so, how should I go about it. I'd like to DIY it.

I will be building the frame up as a single speed for light off road and commuting.

Should I put some stickers on it or leave it totally RAW? :thumbsup:

Any advice appreciated.

 

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Clear coat wont stick too well to bare un prepped aluminum .
If you like the "RAW" look I suggest just going at the bike with some mothers billet polish.
It has something in the polish that will help protect the frame from coroading , given you will have to polish this every few rides but the bike will look like liquid metal and there will be no need for a liquid or powdercoat finish after that .
 

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Evil4bc said:
Clear coat wont stick too well to bare un prepped aluminum .
If you like the "RAW" look I suggest just going at the bike with some mothers billet polish.
It has something in the polish that will help protect the frame from coroading , given you will have to polish this every few rides but the bike will look like liquid metal and there will be no need for a liquid or powdercoat finish after that .
I have some raw aluminum tubes on my tandem, and I'll second the mothers polish if you go that way. I've tried a bunch of different polish products, and mothers was the best of them. you can apply wax over the aluminum after polishing, and that will help it last a little longer before you need to polish again.

if you just like the look, I'd say it really is worth painting it a color close to raw aluminum instead. I for one get lazy, and then a few fingerprints start showing up as dull spots..... that turn into chalky spots.... Clear coat over raw aluminum looks terrible in short order (milky edges start showing up in random places, and it gets worse from there).
 

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If you want to keep the raw alu looking good, have it clear anodized.

Just the normal anodizing process, without adding any dye before sealling. Any ano shop should be able to do it for you for cheap, as they can add it to any batch they are prepping.
 

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zahgurim said:
If you want to keep the raw alu looking good, have it clear anodized.

Just the normal anodizing process, without adding any dye before sealling. Any ano shop should be able to do it for you for cheap, as they can add it to any batch they are prepping.
the clear anodizing I have seen is extremely sensitive to surface roughness, and does not shine like a polished surface.... these were industrial parts though, so maybe if the goal is shiny, it can be done better....

have you personally seen clear anodizing that was shiny like a polished, waxed, raw aluminum surface?
 

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rocwandrer said:
have you personally seen clear anodizing that was shiny like a polished, waxed, raw aluminum surface?
Silver Thomson stems and seat posts come to mind for shiny silver ano

I am in the process of getting some parts anodized blue and the shop told me if I wanted a shiny look than I would have to get them polished before they ano the blue.

I would stop by your local anodizer and ask a few questions,

first ask if the frame will fit in their tanks

than ask what you need to do to prep the frame.

the only problem I would see is that the H20 bottle bosses are riveted steel slugs, when steel is involved with anodizing it can burn out, resulting in 4 big holes where the bosses were
 
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