Paint or Powder coat?

Cardy George

Piercing rural members since 1981
I want to tidy up my fork lowers. Reckon I'll get a better finish with powder coating but don't know the process well enough, I know there's heat involved, but other than that, I dunno.

Can anyone think of any issues I'll have with putting magnesium alloy in an oven? Melted bushings maybe?
 

ozzybmx

call me Cáitín
I want to tidy up my fork lowers. Reckon I'll get a better finish with powder coating but don't know the process well enough, I know there's heat involved, but other than that, I dunno.

Can anyone think of any issues I'll have with putting magnesium alloy in an oven? Melted bushings maybe?

Around 300°C IIRC.

My only issue with powder is over spray. Some do a treatment before shooting the powder, then you rely on them to mask all threads and inside the stanchions with their high temp paper balls.

Its pretty precise masking around the seal faces.

Just my experience with about 5-6 powdercoaters here in Adelaide, they are an unsympathetic lot who are used to shooting fences and large items.

Have a chat to the powdercoater and sound him out... personally for a fork, I would go paint.

To be honest, I would have a go myself.

Primer, paint and clear lacquer, a good rub down with fine sandpaper.
 

Mr Crudley

Wheel size expert
Also, if you have a sticker kit finish that is glossy and made to match with a clear coat then you won't get a clear coat with a powdercoat.

As @ozzybmx mentioned, mask those threads and try to find a soda blaster and powdercoater that is familiar with working on bikes before.

It sounds pretty important to strip or soda blast the old paint with a minimal delay before it is painted to avoid any surface impurities, like dampness from humidity or body oil oozing from our manky bodies, that could mess up the final finish. They seemed pretty keen on this one and needed to seal any bare metal sooner. Then I thought of all of the naked finish alloy bikes I have seen in my time that seemed fine, but I digress.

You also don't seem to have the wide range of paint colours with powdercoating compared to spraying. More like primary colours and not 15 shades of everything that most non powdercoaters seem to be able to blend up.

I also have to do this soon but put it off due to the humidity here and unfortunately finding other things to do :oops:
 

komdotkom

Likes Dirt
2k paint is just as tough these days. Get some Valspar VIM540 and paint straight onto the lowers after you've stripped them. One coat colour, clear if you think you need it.
 

Cardy George

Piercing rural members since 1981
Yep yep, getting the paint vibe. Limited on Powder Coating options up here so I'm not holding much hope on finding someone who knows the finer details. And kinda limited on how much time I can be forkless. Was planning on pinching the Vice Captain's new bike, but it's now not arriving until May. But painting means I can also touch up the crown.

@komdotkom the Valspar stuff sounds like the way to go. There's a couple of automotive paint supply shops here, I'll pay them a visit on Monday.
 

Dales Cannon

The Olden Dazed
Staff member
Yep yep, getting the paint vibe. Limited on Powder Coating options up here so I'm not holding much hope on finding someone who knows the finer details. And kinda limited on how much time I can be forkless. Was planning on pinching the Vice Captain's new bike, but it's now not arriving until May. But painting means I can also touch up the crown.

@komdotkom the Valspar stuff sounds like the way to go. There's a couple of automotive paint supply shops here, I'll pay them a visit on Monday.
Can you borrow a fork from some generous burner for a finite period of doubt and uncertainty?
 

Cardy George

Piercing rural members since 1981
Well, appears I invoked the spirit of hambo :rolleyes:


TL;DR a long time ago @Grip said paint don't powder. Original leg castings aren't always silky smooth and it shows through the coating.
 

silentbutdeadly

Eats Squid
I want to tidy up my fork lowers. Reckon I'll get a better finish with powder coating but don't know the process well enough, I know there's heat involved, but other than that, I dunno.

Can anyone think of any issues I'll have with putting magnesium alloy in an oven? Melted bushings maybe?
The powder coater at Irymple is as good as any I've used but unless your 'product to be painted' is either ferrous or already powdercoated then don't bother. Go with paint.

Main point...who the fuck in Sunraysia (apart from you) is going to give a shit what your fork lowers look like?
 

Cardy George

Piercing rural members since 1981
The powder coater at Irymple is as good as any I've used but unless your 'product to be painted' is either ferrous or already powdercoated then don't bother. Go with paint.
The Irymple guys are trade account only now. I asked the two young blokes who happened to be out the front if there was anyone I could speak to and was told no.

K bye Felicia.

Main point...who the fuck in Sunraysia (apart from you) is going to give a shit what your fork lowers look like?
Is there anyone else more important? :p
 

Mr Crudley

Wheel size expert
How chewed up is the finish now. Is it way beyond a gentle touch up and some frame protector film to help hide any difference in paint finish?

People will see you as a d00dy hero if your fork legs are all chipped to buggery.
 

Cardy George

Piercing rural members since 1981
How chewed up is the finish now. Is it way beyond a gentle touch up and some frame protector film to help hide any difference in paint finish?

People will see you as a d00dy hero if your fork legs are all chipped to buggery.
They're matte black with a few bare metal rub marks, and the stickers are all chewed up. While there are some marks on the frame, they don't stand out anywhere near as much. Probably change it up and make them glossy to match the rest of the bike.
 
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