Gary's Restorations

Preserving our transportation history, one piece at a time.

RESTORATION TIPS

Paint and Rust Removal: The best technique is to disassemble the project and have all the painted parts media blasted. They use silica beads, sand, soda or walnut shell chips depending on the condition of the paint and the base material (cast metal, sheet metal or aluminum). You can purchase a small media blasting cabinet for $200-300. This may be cost effective if you do a lot of restoration projects.
Paint
Equipment:
•    Paint Sprayer--good quality $250-300
•    Air Compressor--good quality $300-400
•    Sander: Small rotary sander to remove sheet metal imperfections and smooth areas of Bondo applications.
•    Sanding Block: A rubber block for use with wet/dry sheet sandpaper.
•    Supplies:
•    Sandpaper: Wet/dry type with grit of 400 (coarse) to 2500 for final finish work.
•    Epoxy Primer: Apply to bare metal. Never apply finish coat to bare metal. Epoxy primer should not be exposed to sunlight (UV will break down the primer). Epoxy primer will adhere to bare metal better than other primers.
•    Pigmented Paint 
a) Lacquer: Difficult to apply but easy to repair chips and scratches. It can be sanded and polished easily. 
b) Urethane Enamel: Easy to apply but cannot be sanded or polished as easily as lacquer.
Paint Methods
•    Three Stage Painting: Epoxy primer, base coat and clear coat. This is a modern paint system and was not used on vintage scooters or bikes.
•    Two Stage Painting: Epoxy primer and a base coat. Typical of paint used on vintage scooters and bikes. Primer is sanded smooth before base coat is applied. When dry, the base coat can be color sanded with wet 2500 grit sand paper and then buffed out with polish to give that high sheen finish that looks like clear coat but is period correct in terms of the finish used on these vintage scooters and bikes. 
•    One Stage Painting: Apply base coat over existing paint or bare metal. If you use this approach the paint will eventually peel. This is the proverbial “rattle can” spray paint job you see on most old scooters and bikes. It must be removed and replaced with a 3 or 2 stage paint job if you want long lasting results.
Chrome
•    Three Stage Painting: Epoxy primer, base coat and clear coat. This is a modern paint system and was not used on vintage scooters or bikes.
•    Two Stage Painting: Epoxy primer and a base coat. Typical of paint used on vintage scooters and bikes. Primer is sanded smooth before base coat is applied. When dry, the base coat can be color sanded with wet 2500 grit sand paper and then buffed out with polish to give that high sheen finish that looks like clear coat but is period correct in terms of the finish used on these vintage scooters and bikes. 
•    One Stage Painting: Apply base coat over existing paint or bare metal. If you use this approach the paint will eventually peel. This is the proverbial “rattle can” spray paint job you see on most old scooters and bikes. It must be removed and replaced with a 3 or 2 stage paint job if you want long lasting results.
Detailing
On a restoration, this usually consists of buffing out and polishing both painted body parts and chrome finish pieces. This is best done by hand to avoid applying too much pressure and scratching the newly painted or chrome surfaces.
Mechanical
Engine detailing: see section in Reconditioning
Engine rebuild: see section in Reconditioning