Chromovelato home job

In short - Has anyone had any successes with doing a home job of chromovelato style pain jobs. I’ve got a frame with generally good chrome bar a few small spots of bubling/rust. Not looking for a perfect job just something passable. If so what paints exactly and any tips.

In long - I’ve screwed up a Somec road frame I picked up a while back. Gave it a weak (0.1%) oxalic acid bath to remove some of the rust spots on it. Decals pretty much fell off when I looked at them, and then as I hosed it down/wiped it down (soft cloth) the blue tinted clear paint came off in large bits (like as big as my hand). Looking closer I could see the paint had all wrinkled like prunes (I’m guessing from the moisture not the acid as the rust hasn’t really changed). Now I have a chrome frame with bits of blue paint left on it. Feeling pretty stupid, should have just left it exactly as is… Ah the power of hindsight.

So, brain fade aside, I’m thinking remove the remainder of the paint, clean up the chrome as best I can and give a new colour tinted clear coat a crack. If it turns out shit, I re strip it back to chrome and ride it like that.

Any suggestions for paint etc appreciated.

as you said, colour tinted clear. it’s your best bet.

You put a painted frame in acid?
A somec at that.
Oxylic acid is usually used for cleaning timber saps and tannins,
For rust it’s usually phosphoric acid aka rust converter but I would only spot treat it with cotton wool buds.
As for paint I would be getting a pro job.

Any tinted clears are hard to paint because any overlaps or thicker areas will be a darker colour.

Good luck hope it is salvageable.

I would get your frame painted by a professional painter - and not just any professional painter but a GOOD painter that has experience with painting show bike frames specifically.

‘Candy’ paints (tinted clears) can be obtained from any specialist automotive paint shop, so you can theoretically DIY. But I wouldn’t.

I’ve painted a couple of frames myself in metallics and pearlescents. I did it with a (large volume) compressor and spray gun set up and got good results. But here’s the thing, candies need to be laid down with serious consistancy which I wouldn’t feel confident being able to achieve personally. Regular paints, including metalics and pearls, are far more forgiving. You need the experience and ‘touch’ that only comes with having painted numerous frames to paint candies well.

I’d be getting in touch with either Star Enamellers in Sydney or Joe Cosgrove in Brisbane. Don’t know of anyone here in Melbourne that is skilled enough. Maybe contact Andy at Fxyo and see what/who he can recommend, he is probably the person with most experience in chromovelato frames that I know of.

plus it can be very difficult to get many paints to adhere to chrome, I’d ride it as is

Thanks guys. Yep stupidity reigns here!

Dayne, yes I soaked it in acid. I read lots of other forums (BMX resto threads mainly) on the process beforehand, they all noted that oxalic acid was a good rust converter and didn’t damage paint… Lesson now very much learned that the contrary is true. However frame is definitely salvagable in one way or another.

Dice, cheers for the info. I’m thinking I’ll just ride it chrome for now, if I love it enough to get a proper repaint done down the track I will definitely get a pro job. I’m in Adelaide so that makes things more difficult to find the necessary skills.

Brakefree, as is is the go. I’m not touching it any further.

I’ve never had any probs dipping painted frames in oxalic acid. Maybe your mixture was really strong or something.

I wondered about this but I measured it out at 0.1% acid. Comparably to some of the ones I’ve read about (0.5%, 0.25%) it was quite weak. I think it was probably more to do with the candy style of paint not having as strong adherance to the chrome as a ‘normal’ paint would have to an undercoat or primer.

i remember some paint at super cheap auto that was made to be painted over chromed things or stuff painted ‘chrome’ which gave an anodized look.
may have been this?

Dupli-Color Metalcast Colour Paint - Base Coat, 311g - Supercheap Auto Australia

but when i saw it there was only blue and red i think and the cans were taller so it may have been something else… check out their shop if there is one near you.

yeah, paint your somec with rattlecans from the autobarns, paulie.

+1 whatever Dice said.

Paint is just as much an art as framebuilding. Truth be told Jim Bundy said the painter’s and line artist’s (scroll work and feathering/flourishes) used to get paid at least 20% more than he framebuilder’s back in the day (40’s and 50’s). Why? Because it’s pretty easy to discern and appreciate good paint, and it really helps sell a bike.

I can do almost everything but I’ll leave painting to the experts.

Have you been drinking? I’ve never seen you leave words ou of a sentance before;)