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How to Paint a Bike

Tulika Nair
Do you want to give a new look to that bike you have owned for years? Painting it would be the easiest way to give it a makeover. We tell you exactly how to do that.
So you just bought off your friend's bike for less than half its actual price but you have to paint it to get rid of the chips and scratches? What you need is a dummy's guide to painting a bicycle that will allow you to be the owner of the most unique wheels in town. The process is time taking but definitely not difficult. You just need to decide how you want your wheels to look and refer to this article which gives you a step-by-step breakdown.

Painting a Road Bike

Learning to paint a bike will take some effort on your part as to make it look as if a professional has redone it, you will need to have patience. It is also important that you pay attention to the details.
Things you Need
  • Handyman kit
  • Sandpaper
  • Glass cleaner
  • Blade
  • Masking tape
  • Wire
  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Lacquer
Once you have everything that you need in order to start the process, place everything (including the bike) in an area that is well lit and has a lot of space. You also need to understand the mechanism of the bike as you will need to take it apart and put it back together during the process.
  • The first thing that you will need to do is to stick masking tape over all those parts that you do not want to paint. This is important especially for bolts as after painting it may block the process of putting it back together.
  • The next step is to remove any sign of grease. For this you can either use a degreaser of some sort of a car wipe.
  • Now comes the difficult part; removing all the paint so as to smoothen the surface of the bike. Use 80 grit sandpaper for this purpose.
  • Hang the cycle so that process becomes easy. When you do so use the wire and tie it by the head tube so that the bottom bracket of the bike is not blocked by the paint.
  • Now start applying the primer according to the instructions given on the can of the primer. Use proper spray painting tips and techniques to spray the primer in thin coats in gaps of fifteen minutes. When you buy the primer, remember to match it to the color that you have chosen. Also look for a primer that is rust resistant.
  • After you apply the primer, it is important to allow it dry for at least 24 hours. After that use a 220 grit sandpaper to sand the primer-coated surface of the cycle.
  • Now apply the paint you have chosen. Remember that according to the type of paint chosen, metallic spray, glow in the dark, neon colors, or any other kind, there are certain specific instructions you will have to follow. Also it is important to follow the same spray-painting tips you followed with the primer.
  • Once again sand the paint-coated bike with the 1200 grit sandpaper. After this you will have to wet sand it. This is a process where you will take the glass cleaner, spray it, and then use the sandpaper on it. Keep spraying your cycle with glass cleaner so that the surface is never dry.
  • Once this is done apply a lacquer coat to get the shine you want. Spray at least two to three coats of the lacquer to ensure that the glossy effect stays.
Before putting the bicycle together you will need to wait for at least a week so that the lacquer dries properly. When you are spray painting the bike remember to always wear gloves and a mask so that you do not inhale toxic fumes.
Also the primer, paint, and lacquer should be from the same company so that they do not react violently with each other. You can easily follow these steps to give your bike a completely new look.