Pictures of fan progress for today.
First I spent a couple of hours finishing the taping process. For the frames, the important part is to protect the hole that the fan blade spindle slides into. You don't want paint down there. You'll notice I didn't bother to protect any of the wires or sleeving, since I will be redoing all of this anway:
I made a quick little homemade paint booth out of a box for a TV I bought recently. I stuck some PVC pipe through the sides, and it made a nice little rack to hang the frames from. As mentioned previously, I just used the sleeved wire to hang them with, since I'll be redoing all of this anyway.
When painting you want to do just light dusting of paint to make a very thin layer of paint, let it dry about 30 minutes or so, and then do it again. Here is what they looked like after the first coat:
After two coats:
After three coats:
After four coats:
After five coats:
After six coats:
At this point they were looking pretty good. After each coat, I would also rotate the poles in the paintbooth so that the other side was facing forward, to help ensure I was getting all sides evenly. I think its also important to remember that you do not want to try and treat spots. That almost never comes out good. Do lots of thin coats over the entire fan. Do not get up close and try to pinpoint a certain area. You will overpaint it and it will run. I did one final coat for a total of 7, but it was dark so I don't have a final picture of it out in the paintbooth.
Now while the frames were drying between coats, I was busy working on the fan blades. Here was my setup for the fan blades:
For the blades, I wasn't 100% happy with the last paint testing I had done, with regards to how well it matched the computer case I have. It was darn good, but not perfect. But if you are limited to just the "plastic" paints, there is not as big of a color selection as you get with all the other normal spray paints. So.....what I ended up doing is using a plastic primer from Valspar first. I put two light coats of it on both sides of the fans. Its clear...but creates a surface that will allow regular paint to bond to the plastic. That opened up some more colors for me. What I ended up being the happiest with in my pre-testing, was to create a base coat using Rust-O-Leum "cabernet", and then topcoating it with Rust-O-Leum "crimson red". The cabernet by itself had too much purple in it, and the crimson red by itself didn't have enough purple in it. The two together are perfection for what I'm trying to do. I ended up doing 3 light coats of the cabernet, and then 2 light coats of the crimson red.
So this is what the blades looked like after the first coat of cabernet:
After two coats of the cabernet:
Lost my sunlight so I don't have pictures of what these looked like after each of the remaining coats, but I am absolutely thrilled with how they came out. They are perfect color for me. Here is a shot of everything after I brought it back inside for the night:
So at this point I have all of the fan blades done, and 1/2 of the frames. Tomorow I plan on finishing the frames, and then doing all of the tape removal. Then I'll start on fan headers and sleeving. I'm planning on shortening all of the fan headers to 3 or 4 inches, and sleeving them in white MDPC-X. Then I'm going to make a custom fan harness with male connectors to minimize the wiring. I'll have more tomorrow!