Re: [CR]Protecting new paint jobs

Date: Mon, 01 Apr 2002 10:59:34 -0800
From: Brian Baylis <>
To: M4Campy <>
Subject: Re: [CR]Protecting new paint jobs
References: <002a01c1d742$ed4c52a0$4f42510c@gateway> <> <>


Like I said, paint can be tricky stuff especially on bike frames. There are lots of chemical reactions that can produce a multitude of problems. I am lucky in that I never learned to paint in the "traditional" way of your typical car painter using the guidelines they use; probably save lots of trouble by learning to paint bikes from the beginning.

The paint chipping from the under layer is another prep problem most likely; but could also be a compatibility or application problem as well. Sometimes sanding too smooth is not good for topcoating situations; you just have to learn the tricks the hard way.

Not long ago I experienced the first paint failier I have had in 30 years. For some reason the clearcoat just didn't stick to the color coat. The clear began to peel in sheets leaving a perfectly good color coat underneith. Never seen this happen before or since; I have to assume I did something wrong on that occassion which caused the lack of bonding between the color and clear. I had to warrenty the entire paint job even though the color was fine; I could not get all of the clear off so I just started over. Painful, but one warrenty in 30 years isn't enough to get me worrying; I just take an extra step in similar cases to insure that there will not be a repeat performance. I actually suspect I may have left out one of the components when I mixed that batch of clear so I pay extra attention to mixing and won't answer the phone anymore if I'm in the middle of mixing paint.

It's really a bummer to get back a fresh (expensive) paint job and have the paint jump off like the frame has the plague or something. Bike painting is a specialized art and there many ways to go about it and hundreds, if not thousands, of combinations of materials to use. My most valuable tool is to continue to use what I know works and that I have 30 years experience using. You end up with very few surprises that way. The other best weapon is to hone your skills specifically to produce consistant results that give the best performance under the application intended. Durability is the number one goal; expert application and artistict interpetation are a close second. Obviously a beautiful job is of no value unless it stays on a frame as opposed to decorating your garage floor.

Gotta paint 3 bikes, better get to it!

Brian Baylis La Mesa, CA P.S. I'm fine and am making progress towards getting my framebuilding/painting duties in balance.
> wrote:
> > Thomas,
> >
> > There are lots of ins and outs regarding paints and durability.
> Hey Brian,
> How are you? Thanks for the post. I just recently had a local painter
> respray a Merckx and have not even got the thing assembled yet and it
> already has a couple of chips:(
> I think this was due to the adhesion and application method. I had it
> sprayed with a pearl white with Molteni orange headtube.
> It look like they primered, then sprayed the orange on the head tube,
> then masked and sprayed pearl white over the entire bike.
> The way it chiped at the head tube was that only the pearl white was
> flaked always revealing orange underneath.
> Mike Wilkinson