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Re-Painting a Radiator

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
So I am buying a radiator that is severely scratched up. I plan on repainting it with Dupi-color Orange Engine Enamel.

Any tips?

I assume it is as simple as sanding with 240 - 500 grit or something and then just spraying on the enamel, right?
Should I use any primer? What type?
Should I bother with the fins, or just cover them up with some tape?

Thanks and REPS.
-d3d
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post #2 of 21
engine enamel should be good to go straight on bare metal. otherwise they would make an engine enamel primer that is good for 250*C which im pretty sure they dont.

as for what you paint i would not paint the fins, i would leave them as they are, i would think that paint would reduce its cooling effectiveness since paint is not a good thermal conductor.

i would also sand with much finer sand paper, try starting with a Wet and Dry 600 grit, then a Wet and Dry 800 grit then paint. use the Wet and Dry as a dry sand. 250 grit is pretty coarse and would leave nasty scratching.

Edit: also when painting it dont flood it with paint. take your time. you want to "mist" the area your painting. too many people think they need to cover the area with the paint and layer it that way, end result is the paint runs, and doesnt stick. if you mist it, the paint cures better and has time to bond to the metal, what your after on your first coat is to lightly speckle the metal, leave it for 10 minutes then repeat, do that until your part is the colour you want.
Edited by Kal777 - 2/12/12 at 10:14pm
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post #3 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal777 View Post

engine enamel should be good to go straight on bare metal. otherwise they would make an engine enamel primer that is good for 250*C which im pretty sure they dont.
as for what you paint i would not paint the fins, i would leave them as they are, i would think that paint would reduce its cooling effectiveness since paint is not a good thermal conductor.
i would also sand with much finer sand paper, try starting with a Wet and Dry 600 grit, then a Wet and Dry 800 grit then paint. use the Wet and Dry as a dry sand. 250 grit is pretty coarse and would leave nasty scratching.
Edit: also when painting it dont flood it with paint. take your time. you want to "mist" the area your painting. too many people think they need to cover the area with the paint and layer it that way, end result is the paint runs, and doesnt stick. if you mist it, the paint cures better and has time to bond to the metal, what your after on your first coat is to lightly speckle the metal, leave it for 10 minutes then repeat, do that until your part is the colour you want.

Thank you for the input! Rep +!

Yeah, then I might just skip the primer, unless I can find some engine primer, then I will go REALLY light on it.
An, yeah, I had the same thing with painting the fins. Best just to leave the stock coat on. Anything else will just inhibit thermal conductivity.
Ok, I will start out with like 520...600 sand paper. And, yes, quick misty sprays with a large amt of thin, even coats every 10 minutes. biggrin.gif

Thanks!
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post #4 of 21
Dont forget to show off your work when its finished!
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post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 
I will! Part of a big, upcoming mod wink.gif
I'll let you know.
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post #6 of 21
I painted mine with some rustoleum ( spell check lol ) from lowes , it actually worked really well I did about 3-4 coats.
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post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nickw View Post

I painted mine with some rustoleum ( spell check lol ) from lowes , it actually worked really well I did about 3-4 coats.

Thanks for the input!
So, did you use the same method outlined above? Sanding? Did you paint the fins?
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post #8 of 21
I wouldnt worry about sanding or anything. should just go straight on. Make sure you paint in good temperature so the paint can cure properly! should fix all those scratches
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post #9 of 21
I did not sand, I went directly over the paint that came on the rad, It was brand new and did not have any chips but with a few coats you should be fine.
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post #10 of 21
id still sand it, the idea of sanding a surface before painting it is to help the paint stick more readily. also before you start painting, sit your spray can in a bucket of warm water, around 25*C for 1-2 minutes. helps stop the paint from looking blotchy and gives it a coat almost as good as if you had a spray gun.
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