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Discussion Starter #1
I started this thread because I, almost, inadvertently hijacked 97GRNRS's, thread.
https://www.zx-10r.net/forum/f32/color-better-351243.html

Basically, I'm just trying to educate myself so as to get my ducks in a row for when I paint my fairings sometime in the not incredibly far future. I've never done it before, but my buddy whom paints houses professionally said his air guns should work. I have another buddy who owns a body shop, and he said I would need a product called Bulldog Adhesion Promoter.

So 97GRNRS, suggests a product called 2k if I'm painting over painted fairings.
...And I use regular 2k sealer/primer on all my plastic, if your just scuffing the paint that's already there you don't need anything special
I got my bike off the track, and have since purchased & installed Chinese ABS fairings in raw white. Thus, his suggestion may not apply. To 97GRNRS & everyone else, what would your progression be on raw white plastic? Any tips/pointers... things to look out for? Brand paint? How many coats of the paint? Do I finish w/a clear coat, and if so, can I apply stickers to then clear coat over them?

I'm totally ignorant on this subject, but excited to learn!
 

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2k is just two part urethane paint, even over bare plastic you can scuff with a 3m pad and shoot normal urethane primer then your base clear, I've painted alot of show quality bikes and never used anything special, good urethane paint will flex a little without issues, i use specialistpaints.com for my paint, seems to be best quality compared to most others
 

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Also house guns will give you bad results, 15$ harbor freight purple hvlp guns work fine, I get glass like finishes using them and would rate my paint jobs better than any local body shop, it's more about the painter than the tool, setup your pieces on jigs so you can spray front and partially wrap around back to avoid peeling edges, one decent coat of primer, 2/3 base, 2/3 clear. Lay the clear decently thick to avoid orange peel, better to sand off then have rough paint. Let dry 48 hours then wet sand/buff. I normally have 30 hours into a single color paint job on a sportbike from start to finish.
 

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A paint job is only as good as it's prep work (cleaning and sanding). Make sure you thoroughly wet sand and clean your fairings pre-application. A DIY paint booth will also help greatly. The more filtrated and vented the environment the better your paint is going to apply and cure. If you're painting in the same spot you're sanding then you're going to blow sand particles everywhere and get a sandpaper finish. Look for additives for your paint too to make it more flexible (good for Chinese fairings which are more flexible than OEM). Stick with the good stuff like DuPont. Good paint can make a bad paint job better looking from a distance and in pictures. If your fairings are truly unpainted then 2 layers of primer will do. If they're basecoated with something then maybe liberally sand and apply 3 layers. I usually apply 2 thick layers of color as well. and then 2-3 layers of clear depending on the application. The clear matters more than the color because that's what actually make the color pop and sheen. Again you should be wet-sanding every single layer even the colored ones. Your last coat is then going to need some abrasive polish and good high quality wax. Depending on the thickness of your graphics, it will take several clear coats to make the surface flush. If you're doing a basic 2-3 layer clear coat you might still be able to feel the edge of the stickers.

Honestly, paint is an art. I personally just let a professionals do it. They see things the novice eye could never depict or call out. It's also pretty expensive to get set up if you consider your labor worth something. It could take you 8+ sanding hours and 2 hours in the booth not including set-up, cleaning, and dry time... and for your first time it might take more like 12-15 labor hours. So if you figure your time is worth what... $50 an hour, you're looking at like $800-1000 labor and material... or you could pay someone recommended on your local FB page the same or less while you go make $$$ or have fun.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
DIDIPAOLA <> Thank you, kind sir. Your input was exactly what I was looking for & very informative. Couple questions: What paper grit progression do you suggest wet sanding with? What cleaner (e.g., denatured alcohol, acetone, mineral spirits, etc.) do you use to clean between every step? The DIY paint booth is a great idea.

As for the opportunity cost of time spent, all my clients are still out of town summering so keeping myself busy is a necessary precaution to keep me sane. Plus, I find an undeniable feeling of accomplishment when engaging & completing projects like this... it's a labor of love.

97GRNRS <> I already thanked you privately, but I did wanna thank you again for the website. Also, just like queried above - what progression do you wet sand with?

Side bar: You know I prefer your matte black on your Gen 4, but man, that "mystic blue" does still look phenomenal.:notworthy:
 

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I only wet sand after final clear coat, no reason to sand between every layer of paint, if your spraying it properly it will lay flat and no sanding is needed. For the clear i do 1500,2000,2500,3000,5000, buff then polish. I lay the clear thick so minimal wet sanding is needed.
 
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