Time to dress this “Bella Donna” up!
The paint has been finished except for the final clear coat so it is time to put the decals on. I took several reference photographs prior to stripping the old paint so that I could get the decals exactly where they belonged. For decals I chose the Velocals 1 mil version and applied them using the water method. They are self adhesive but the water method allows you to correct alignment errors more easily. Once these decals stick they are going to stay!
The graphics are sharp and crisp and really pop! I was able to get every original decal except the Technotrat logo for the down tube, but it is simply not available anywhere that I can find. With the decals complete I can send it back to my painter for the final clear coats. I’m sure it will come out fine but I can help but be a little nervous until it is finished
Back from the painter, again!
Well here it is, painted, decals applied, clear coated and beautiful! I took it back in to the bike shop where I purchased it to show them the result. They were blown away! They said they had never seen a re-paint look so much like a factory paint job, and would not have believed it if they had not seen it before. The paint I used was a tri-part automotive mix with an epoxy base coat, three color coats and 5 clear coats. The mix also included a little pearlescent and a fine metal flake for some depth. We could not match the original color exactly but still got a good result. I think that for now I will just press in the head-set and attach the fork and then set it aside. I have a number of bikes in the queue already and I won’t mind having this one to look at for awhile.
Just for fun I weighed the frame and fork once it was totally stripped of paint just to see how much of a weight difference paint would make compared to the finished frame. The bare frame weighed 4.6 lbs and the fork was 1.6 lbs. After primer, paint, decals and clear coat were applied, the weight jumped to 4.8 and 1.7 respectively. That totals about 4.5 ounces for paint decals and clear-coat! That’s a fun but useless fact that you now know.
Part one of this build is here.
Part two of this build is here.