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Discussion Starter #1
So I'm working on repainting my bike piece by piece. The original paint, while not in bad condition, is a bit worn. The front fender was rattle canned by the previous owner and looked pretty bad. The tank has lots of fine scratches (more so at the belt buckle area since it doesn't have a tank guard) and the tail is a bit faded. I already did the side pieces a semi-gloss black (though I think I'm going to do these in matte black eventually) and I now have the fenders off. I'm going to do the front and rear fender in gloss black with clear since it'll be easier to clean.

Anyway, to the question. I'm trying to decide what to do with the front fairing/tank/tail as I am debating on going gloss black or some other color. I like the all black look, but sometimes feel like it's a bit overdone. I actually really like the orange that came on some of the Z's, but I am going to be bound to a rattle can job as I don't know any painters (and don't want to really pay for a paint job anyway).

So that said, are there any nice colors that you can get in a rattle can? I don't think I want to do red again, as it's just not my favorite color (despite owning several red vehicles in the past). I'm obviously thinking about the orange (if you can get that in a rattle can) or a deep black. Is there a better place to get rattle can paint than the local hardware/auto stores? I'm not sure if there's any place online that has a better selection.

Any general tips/suggestions on painting would be appreciated. I know that prep work is important and I have done painting in the past so I'm not worried about the quality. I actually did the front fender last night in a metallic black but don't like the metallic so I'm going to redo it (just doesn't look right, and not the paint quality, just the metallic).
 

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I believe a paint store can fill a rattle can with good paint in the color u want. It's a bit more expensive I believe but better than off the shelf paint. An auto paint store should be able to do it.
 

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You're probably better off getting a spray can and a compressor than to have good paint put in a rattle can.

You wont be able to get good airflow and consistent coats with a rattle can.

Another tip, PREP, PREP, and then PREP again. Oh and keep the environment CLEAN. I got a freaking dead mosquito in my clear coat...
 

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Been using the candy burnt orange color out of a rattle can from these guys. Prep is very important as well as a good quality automotive clear coat. Sanding between clear coats with 1000 and 1500 grit will get the clear super smooth. Not sure I tackle a fuel tank with a rattle can however, I'm really satisfied with the results on smaller panels.

Or, simpy order the paint by the pint or quart.

http://www.colorrite.com/department/kawasaki-10020.cfm
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am prepping well, don't worry. I have run into one hiccup, evidently the front fender is not made of ABS plastic like the rear hugger is. Reason this is a problem is I was using lacquer thinner to get the existing paint off, which worked great on the rear hugger and left bare plastic. The front fender is made or some kind of rubbery plastic that does not respond well to lacquer thinner. The fender is from a ZX-6R since I have the suspension upgrade. Either way, it's making me have to do a whole lot more prep work on the front fender.

I'm curious about that colorrite aerosol can, but at $34 a pop I'm not sure if that's worth it to me. To do the front fairing, tank and tail I'd probably need 2-3 of those cans (plus clear coat). At that price I might as well find a painter.
 

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If I were to paint my bike again it would be a candy forest green with a silver basecoat. I know they make color change "chameleon" paint in rattle cans and I would think with all the sexy angles on the Z it would look pretty sweet. I saw a magenta to bronze scheme that was cool, and green to purple as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Painting takes so long... I just finally got to putting the first base coat on after getting the primer on and smoothing everything out.

Do I need to wait the full 24 hours before I do sanding? I want to smooth the base coat out a little before I start the clear, but I painted about 4 hours ago...
 

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Hey Camride I saw you took her out to work without the fenders and you're pretty thorough with the prep and painting! You wanna give us guys a step by step of what you did (well at least for an idiot like me :silly:)!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Sure Mr. Jones!

I will add a couple of warnings first. I can't speak for the stock fender (it may be the same material as the rear fender) but if you have the ZX-6R front end the fender is not made of ABS plastic. Do NOT use lacquer thinner on the front fender. Unless the paint is in really bad shape I'd recommend just sanding it down real good and get it as smooth as possible. Second warning is keep your workplace as clean as possible. It'll really **** you off when you get a nice coat of paint on, only to get some dust, hair or other random crap in it.

So as I said, first off sand down the paint and get it smooth. This is much easier to do on the front fender than it is on the rear because of the design. If you have a stock rear fender you can use lacquer thinner or something similar to peel the paint off and expose the plain plastic. I will warn if you do this method be careful with the plastic, because even a fingernail will lightly gouge it. So be careful. Once you sand down the stock paint (or peel it off) take it inside and wash it with soap and water (make sure you use something like Dawn, not something with lotion in it). Dry it off (preferably with a lint-free cloth) and let it sit for a while to make sure it's completely dry.

Once you sand it down I'd highly recommend using a sandable primer. This will allow you to get the base nice and smooth. Use a 600-800 grit sand paper to smooth it out. If needed do another coat. Make sure to wash the fender in between coats.

Once you have the base ready it's time to apply the color. I will say be careful which paint you use, especially if using rattle cans. I found that the Rustoleum rattle cans with the "comfort tip" are the easier to use and spit the least (spit meaning throwing a big drop of paint out). It's probably best to use the ones that are "designed for plastic". When you're painting it's best to use smooth strokes and let off the paint when you get to the end of each stroke. If you don't ever take your finger off the sprayer you're much more likely to get runs. The front fender is pretty easy to do a clean job on, the rear is much more difficult because of all the scallops and curves.

I'd recommend at least 2-3 coats for the color. Most paints recommend doing multiple coats about 5-10 minutes apart. Read the can to make sure. If you're not getting a really smooth finish you can use the 600-800 grit sandpaper to gently smooth it out. It doesn't need to be perfect, but the smoother the better.

*Remember that you need to wait 24 hours for the paint to dry before you do any sanding*

Once you have a good color coat it's time for the clear. You're going to do this the same as the color, but if you need to sand I'd recommend doing at least 1000 grit sandpaper. For the best look I'd recommend at least 3-5 coats of clear. Once you're done with all the coats let the fender sit for 2 days. Then you can use a polishing compound to carefully smooth the finish out. Follow up with your preference for wax/polish. I'm a big fan of Zaino Brother's show car polish (www.zainostore.com).

A few more things to keep in mind. When you're painting you want to overlap strokes and try to make sure that you don't get any hazy spots (you'll know what I mean once you start painting). The trick is to overlap to make sure you get no hazing without getting drips. Even strokes are important, as is a steady hand. If you can hang the parts you'll be much better off. I had my fenders sitting on a box on top of the big trash bin. :lol Use what you have, just make sure you're off the ground (trust me, you will get more crap in your paint than you'd ever imagine if you paint on the ground).

Anyone that has done a home paint job is more than welcome to chip in with your own suggestions. You may not get a show quality finish using rattle cans, but you can certainly get some nice paint with a little effort. I've got about $50 in materials to paint my front and rear fender (including buying the wrong paint several times).

I will post pictures of my fenders next weekend once I get some polish on them.
 

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WOW! :Wow1: Super thorough directions and well explained! I'm even thinking of printing them out when I'm finally ready to repaint my scoot!
Thanks! :righton:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
No problem. :) I used to paint safes for my dad's manufacturing company and while I never did anything remotely as nice as an automotive finish there I did get the hang of the basics. Be sure to post up if you have any questions when you get around to painting.
 
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