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Modding Aluminium painting

Discussion in 'Modding' started by Dave Penguin, 9 Jul 2008.

  1. Dave Penguin

    Dave Penguin O hai.

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    Bit of an odd one, but fingers crossed one of the genius members of the modding community here will have the answer!

    I need to paint some extruded aluminium parts - not for a PC, but a different (equally fun and random) project of mine.

    At the moment though, I've come run into a bit of a stumbling block. From what I understand, painting untreated aluminium can be a complete headache, and after searching around online for quite a while, have come across more different solutions and responses than I care to mention!

    The question is this: If I wanted to spray paint aluminium, what's the best method to go about it? The paint I want to use is matt black spray paint, but I want quite a smooth, clean finish. I understand you can get hold of some spray on "Primers" - but I've heard these can be "Pants", "Rubbish", or "More useless than an epileptic giraffe at an ice skating rink".

    The other option is of course getting them professionally anodized, but with the crazy costs that are associated with this, I want to use that avenue as a last resort.

    So - any ideas / tips / past experiences you guys fancy passing on?
     
  2. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    I've painted my MBP using SEM High Build primer (Self etching), Pearlescent black and Unpol Clear Coat (Or Umpol, I'll need to check the can when I get home), and I've had no issues with it in terms of chipping, flaking etc etc. I tried it with another brand of clearcoat (I'll check the brand when I get in), but that reacted horribly with the SEM primer, so I had to sand it down and start again.

    I didn't strip the anodising before hand, which is apparently recommended, I just sanded it with 800 grit to 'rough it up' a shade.

    Side note/ninja edit: Where have you looked for getting the stuff anodised? The dad of one of the guys in the office here owns an anodising company, they're pretty reasonably priced, based in Birmingham.
     
    Last edited: 9 Jul 2008
  3. marcus000

    marcus000 Watercooling Mad

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    I'm pretty sure you shouldn't strip the anodising off to paint a part, the anodising helps. :)

    Chris @ Reeve by any chance?
     
  4. liratheal

    liratheal Sharing is Caring

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    I was just repeating something that was on one of the kinds of primer I bought, it seems to have worked fine for me without, so I'd agree with you :p

    Naw, the guy here's (God that reads horribly) dad Tony owns Badger Anodising. I dealt with Peter there, after speaking to Tony. I think it's because Peter's son had his Lian Li re-anodised there :D

    Checked the names, btw, and the clear coat is U-Pol. The stuff that had a crappy reaction is Eastwood Diamond Clear, after testing it on some other paints, I'd avoid it entirely, it seems to be pretty terrible (The Diamond Clear stuff).
     
  5. talladega

    talladega I'm Squidward

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    When I painted my frame for my case I got some primer in a spray can. Sprayed a few lights coats to get a nice even coat over it. Then I painted over it with the color I wanted with a few coats and then did a few coats of clear coat. Worked good.

    One recommendation I have for you is to get a primer that is a light color. The one I got was dark green so it took even more coats to cover up the primer.

    Also DO NOT get a paint that says 'Fluorescent'. Nasty stuff. I didnt realize was that was when I bought my paint. I wanted a bright red and thought that the fluorescent just meant that it was bright. Nope, I was wrong and its a major pain to use. My primer had worked really good but once I put this fluorescent paint on I had to be very careful as it would eat through my primer somehow. It was also very runny and did not make very nice coats. Also I guess because of the chemicals in the paint it kept screwing up my spray cans. I would use them and the next day there would be no pressure or it would be leaking out and stuff. So stay away from fluorescent paint.

    Just use a self etching primer that is made for painting on aluminum and then get the color you want and a clear coat that is compatible. Usually its best to get all of the same brand. Then you should know if its all compatible.

    Oh, one nice thing about that garbage fluorescent paint is it really glows nice under UV Lights. Looks cool.

    Also, I didnt sand my aluminum at all. With a self etching primer it isnt needed.
     

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