Tuesday, January 12, 2010

9. Back from the spray booth.

The bars have returned from the paint shop. You should see the setup I get to work with, an over sized shoe box and a length of old coax cable dangling from a support beam in my carport. At least I do not have to paint between the raindrops that fall here during a Northwest winter.

I ran the coax through the bars, and tied them off to the beam. Next, I began to shake a rattle can vigorously for two minutes before laying down the recommended coats of Duplicolor adhesion promoter. The bars turned out a dull, frosty "color" after applications, and it must be noted that I did not have to rough up my nice shiny bars before applying the primer. In fact it states it can be applied over "shiny metal", and since I am going for a somewhat anodized look, I hoped the mirrored aluminum underneath would come through.

Letting the primer dry gave me time to tackle a few other tasks on the bike, specifically the bar clamps, which I will expound upon at a later date.

Now that the primer had cured I could get out the Smoke top coat. Again, I found myself imitating the paint shaker at Home Despot, and after two minutes of spastic gyrations in the parking area paint was ready to be sprayed. No rain was falling on the day paint was being applied, but a bit of a breeze was blowing, so needless to say I was dashing to and fro trying to prevent stray leaves, bugs and dust from ruining my professional paint job. As soon as the last bit of pigment hit the bars I hurriedly untied the coax and dashed the bars indoors to dry, I wasn't looking for any bug track graphics on these.

I hovered over the drying bars, examining them from all angles, protecting them like a naked newborn in a snowstorm. While the paint was wet the aluminum looked a bit dark and dull, a bit disappointing. Crap, gonna have to strip these again. The color began to deepen and really started to improve as it dried. Hmm, once completely dry, I must say I was amazed. In my opinion, the handlebars turned out great, and really my opinion is the only one that matters, as this is my project.

All in all Duplicolor really came through on this product, and I can't wait to get these back on the bike. Oh, yeah, I have just begun the tear down and rebuild, seems I am a way out from seeing these back on the cycle.

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