It’s been a bit of a grind, this job.
We got the first coat of red paint on, and it was immediately apparent it was too dark. Still, having had two cans of it mixed, I put it all on. We tried again, a brighter red. Yikes! It was almost fluorescent, and didn’t get any better as it cured. Third time lucky. This time we went to a paint specialist rather than an automotive parts store to get the paint mixed. It’s still not a perfect match for the bike, but it’s a whole lot better than the other two. The motorbike is what’s called a ‘candy colour’: silver undercoat, multiple layers of transparent red dye, a coat of gold flecked lacquer and a final coat of clear lacquer. The colour is lively, it shifts in different light, the layers of dye give it a depth and richness that can’t be achieved with a flat colour, and the gold fleck gives it the final brilliance. I’m not a spraying specialist, and I wasn’t going there… So we’ve gone with a sort of intermediate, neither the brightest nor the darkest.
Once the multiple layers of red paint were dry, I took the template I’d made of the curve we want for the silver swoosh on the side, applied it to the side and masked off the curve with flexible blue masking tape. Over that went wide regular masking tape and paper on one side, plastic dropsheet the other. Paper’s easier to manage but not very flexible, the plastic flaps more and is hard to peel tape off if you want to reposition. Just thought you might like to know, in the unlikely event you’re ever mad enough to take on a project like this yourself….
On with the black, on top, at the front, the draw-bar and up the sides as far as the masked swoosh line. Two black coats later, I’m thinking a third coat might be a good idea to make it more hard-wearing. The lid will take all the weather, and the front and draw-bar will get a lot of stone-chip action, even with the clear lacquer we’ll be adding as the final coat.
Still, after a fairly gruelling day, I can confidently say we’ll be ready in time for our holiday!