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topic 18986

Painting a chrome bicycle


I'm looking into restoring a 10 year old bike. I have finished buying all the parts to complete the bike, but there's one thing left to do. PAINT IT, but the bike is chrome and I have the slightest clue how to prep the bike before painting it.

Thank you!

Michael Dominguez
- Claremont, California, USA


Standard paints just aren't going to stick to chrome. It would be best to take the parts to a plating shop and have the chrome stripped.

Ted Mooney, Teds signature
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Pine Beach, New Jersey
Striving to live "Aloha"


There are two methods I know about putting a top coat of paint over a chromed surface :
1. sand the chromed surface with something like 80 grit sandpaper, then change to a 180 grit, of finer to dull the chrome finish; then make sure to wash the surface well (light non residual solvents like Acetone [linked by editor to product info at Amazon] etc) then dry, prime and paint.
2. again light sanding over the chromed surface, then apply a coat of "zinc Chromate" primer...(very penetrating primer used mainly on the aircraft industry, but not hard to make available) then apply your regular primer (it will stick to the dried zinc chromate) then apply your top coat.

Claudio Escobedo
Aircraft repair & Inspection - Frazier Park, California

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