Experienced airbrusher with questions....
19 replies to this topic
Posted 10 May 2009 - 05:10 PM
Hey Guys, I've been airbrushing since the mid 70's, and even on a professional level for the last 20+ years.....i've painted everything from tee shirts to semi's and most everything in between except fishing equipment....lures or reels to be exact...never done any, but i've been asked to on several occasions.
Most recently i've been painting for the biker crowd....lots of Harleys, helmets, and leather jackets to say the least....lol. So I can safely say, i've got a fair amount of knowledge in the area of paint, plus i've already got a fair amount of automotive paints and clearcoats in stock and I was wondering if I can use them on lures? I see alot of you use waterbased paints which i've also got cabinets full of(Createx & AutoAir)but i'd like to stick with the solvent based stuff if I can....I just like the way it sprays more so then the water base.....but I never see anyone talking about using automotive clear coats as a top coat for their crankbaits....mostly I read about brushing on Devcon epoxy.....Is this what I need to use instead of even concidering automotive urethane clear coats?
Currently i'm just looking at repainting some of my own factory finished cranks....but if I like the way they turn out, I may look at doing more later on since I have some physical disabilities that are beginning to make it difficult to prep the sheetmetal parts of a motorcycle....working on something small like lures would be so much easier on me and i've seen some sweet looking paintjobs done on cranks that I think i'd enjoy doing something like that......But only if I can turn out top quality stuff.....same as what i'd do on a high end chopper.....My best or not at all.
If any of you have any experience in using automotive urethanes on crankbaits i'd love to hear your thoughts......Thanks in advance for any help.
I'd also like to ask about prep.....How do ya'll go about prepping a crankbait body that is not smooth, but has a scale pattern molded or carved into the body....several of mine have very heavy patterns and i'm concerned about sanding or scuffing the areas down inside those tine grooves....or is that not an issue.....what do ya'll do?
Thanks again, and I look forward to hearing everyones advice.
Posted 10 May 2009 - 05:28 PM
I'm not one of them (us auto paints etc) but hang onto your hat, there are heaps of guys here that do. So stand by there should be an avalanche soon.pete
Posted 10 May 2009 - 05:34 PM
No worries mate....i'm in no hurry.....my shop was damaged during a recent tornado and is waiting for contractors to do the repairs so i've got some time before i'll be able to paint anyway......i'm using my down time to do some research on the subject.
Posted 10 May 2009 - 05:50 PM
Sorry about the tornado, (my wife's watching "Twister" on tv right now as she relaxes for mother's day. I used the water based, but I firmly believe the solvent based paints and supplies are better. The big thing for most of us home-based types is the ventilation, which is why many use acrylics.
Try a search for:
in the hardbait forum and you'll find a ton of lure specific info.
refinish is a term to search that might help with redoing plastic baits, as would repainting.
A lot of the more production type members do use these types of paints I know.
Posted 10 May 2009 - 07:33 PM
Contact KCDano if he doesn't contact you first. I've seen his paint work first hand and it's top-notch. He also uses automotive urethane as a clearcoat.
Posted 10 May 2009 - 11:40 PM
I think more of us don't use automotive clearcoats because the most durable ones seem to be two part coatings that are relatively expensive, plus we'd have the challenge of mixing it in very small batches of and ounce or less for a batch of crankbaits, and lastly many are concerned about toxicity and for that reason spray only non-solvent paint and dip or brush on solvent based clearcoats. Anythng tough, waterproof and clear is in the running around here. But there seem to be limited options. You obviously have lots of experience in automotive clears and many of us would appreciate your comments about which ones you favor and how you use them. Many TUers have tried one part moisture cured polyurethane - dipped, brushed, or sprayed - and like it. But is is touchy to store without beginning to cure.
Posted 11 May 2009 - 02:41 AM
Thanks for everyones input so far....its sounding like urethane clear is good stuff to use so thats what I start with and see how it goes from there. To clarify my position....i'm much more of an artist than I am a painter.....I got into airbrushing as a teen because I wanted to paint Ratfink style hotrod cars onto tee shirts like Big Daddy Roth and guys at the county fairs....never did I dream that little paint gun would lead me down all the other paint paths that it has since then.....I was forced to learn about urethanes and clearcoats when folks started asking me to paint their bikes,helmets,cars,etc.
From the start I airbrushed outta my home like most of you....a spare bedroom, then an attached garage....neither were good places to use solvent based paints around the family so like most of you I went the waterbased route.....But once we moved into a place that had a separate shop I started using uro's and there was no going back.....all my adhesion problems went away....no more waiting on paint to dry....no more paint lifting with tape....none of the bad but all of the good it seemed.....I just needed plenty of ventilation and the more expensive materials and a degree in chemistry.....hahaha....well it feels that way sometimes....lol.
I've used several different brands of urethane clears over the past 12 years.....some of the cheaper brands actually work better than their prices suggest.....Extreme from 5Star runs $60 gal with catalist......Matrix is a 2:1 mix and runs a little bit more money but has higher solids so it builds alot quicker, where the extreme is a 4:1 clear and builds slowly which is great when you don't want to fill in tiny details so quickly....,Matrix clear,#M20 I think reminds me alot of the more expensive Concept2000 series clear from PPG.....I used that clear on most of the racing helmets I use to paint....specially for the sprintcar racers....their helmets take an amazing amount of abuse and Concept 2021 was a good hard clear that would withstand the punishment of dirt,clay,rock,etc hitting it at high speed but its not cheap.
From a custom standpoint I think House of Kolor has the best paint products on the market....they have been into custom paints longer than anyone....all the top custom painters have used their stuff for years and after using it myself I agree.....from a cost standpoint I think they are cheaper than PPG or Dupont brands, you just gotta shop around.....in the past few years PPG, Dupont and others have focused more on the custom market and now offer a custom line of paint products......Dupont Hot Hues is a good example of custom colors that didn't use to be available......Alsa is an up an coming custom paint mfg that has come killer stuff out.
The downside of using uro's for something like painting crankbaits is the cost.....they aren't cheap and you can't buy small amounts normally.....although there are places that have started catering to airbrushers and package HoK in small bottles that are affordable.....just be careful about buying "premixed" ready to spray HoK....that means someone else has already thinned it down....and its usually alot thinner then it needs to be....I want to be the judge of how thin I want my paint.....so I think its easy to ripped off if your not careful who you buy from.....these will all be candies and basecoats....not clear....clear isn't sold in anything smaller than quarts that I know of, but colors can be purchased in 4oz bottles I think.....Coastairbrush.com is a good place to shop....So is BearAir.com and Dixieart.com
When it comes to basecoat colors its sometimes wise to check with your local paint mixing stores as well as paint and body shops for old or miss-mixed paint colors.....alot of times they will sell these super cheap....even free in many cases....i've picked up alot of misc colors just by asking if they had some stuff they didn't want....saves them disposal fees and you get free paint....just make sure its something you'll use or you'll have to deal with disposal someday.
Well, i've rambled long enough.....i'll shut up and go back to listening....thanks again.
Posted 11 May 2009 - 01:35 PM
Great to have another experienced solvent based painter onboard!
No offense, KCDano.
Posted 11 May 2009 - 02:12 PM
As much as I like solvent based paint; the writing is on the wall. Some areas in California are already required to use waterborne paints due to VOC restrictions. It's only a matter of time before it will be the industry standard. I know of one european car maker that uses waterborne exclusively. Could be 5yrs, 10yrs before the change over occurs or not in this lifetime, and may never come to be for the little guy painting baits. Years ago lacquer was abandoned for the basecoat-cleacoat finishes now used to refinishing cars, but it is still in use. The waterborne paints have come a long way and in the end may prove to be the best thing since sliced bread.
Posted 11 May 2009 - 07:47 PM
Yeah, were headed that way aren't we.....it won't be long.....at least they seem to be makin strides in the quality of the waterbased and waterborne paints.....I hear good things already and from the stuff i've used its really not too bad concidering.....I'll switch when I can no longer buy solvent based paints but not a second sooner...lol.
Posted 12 May 2009 - 12:48 PM
68 I started using HOK paints last year and love them. You're definitely right, the water based paints I've shot just can't come close to the way they spray. I buy them from TCP global, they sell them in 2 and 4 oz bottles. Also TCP's Kustom shop paints. I was using Createx before and an epoxy clear, then switched to spraying a moisture cure urethane for a clear. Worked well thinned with acetone.......Tough as nails, very good stuff but I could'n't stand waiting for the cure. I got some PPG 3000 and love it. Expensive, but I just love that it can be lightly handled in an hour and a half, and it's plenty durable. Seems to continue to cure for 2-3 more days. The only problem is that if you're not going to be doing a lot of baits at a time, it's tougher to get the right mixture............using only an ounce of clear every drop of catalyst you're off makes a huge difference. Some of them ended up a little softer. I'm sure this is all stuff you know.
My biggest problem with the HOK paints is the fact that some colors I want to shoot are just not available. With the small quantities of paint that I have, I'm a little more hesitant to mix colors I'm not sure I'll be able to easily get right. The bases I've gotten used to mixing with aren't the same.
Posted 12 May 2009 - 04:37 PM
mixing small quantities of clear can be difficult.....I use some 1oz plastic mixing cups to mix my small batches....it has markings for 1/4oz....Drams....Milliliters and teaspoons.....mixing small amounts of a 2:1 clear isn't too bad....but its alot tougher to measure when using a 4:1
Clamboni, keep in mind if you can't find the color you want in uro's then i've used waterbased at times.....you can paint right over uro's with it.....just make sure you use a heatgun or hair dryer to remove all the moisture before clearcoating....i've never had any delamination issues on helmets or motorcycles, but I haven't tried it on something like crankbaits yet.
Also remember that besides all the pearl and candy basecoat colors, HoK has graphic colors and neons colors.....and they also have a line of pinstriping paints can that be sprayed thru your airbrush.....there are a couple of brands of pinstriping paints that can be used under clearcoat...Kustom shop has one if I remember correctly.....Sign painters OneShot brand is NOT one of them so don't use it below clear....you can however use it on top of clear and it dries to its own shine....its a tough as nails enamel but i've never used it underwater so who knows how it'll react....I'm guessing it'll work fine once cured, but I might have to give that a try one day just to see.
One last tip....if you like adding metalflakes or stuff like holographic pearls to your finish give these guys a shout....they have good prices and small quantities at www.paintwithpearl.com
Posted 13 May 2009 - 08:12 PM
If you would go to muskiesfirst.com there is a forum, with a guy named Beaver. I think he uses the paint you are talking about.
Posted 13 May 2009 - 11:01 PM
Thnaks for those tips......yeah, the 4:1 is much tougher than 2:1 to get an accurate mix for an ounce of clear.
I've gone through all the HOK colors........Lots of stuff to choose from, but what I'm having problems with finding is browns and olives, and just the right shade of whatever color it is......I've been doing exactly what you said though and shooting the mixed up Createx colors for that. I only have one gun that I shoot detail stuff through though, jsut trakes a few extra seconds changing between the solvent based and water based.
Word of caution though for anyone else, wet Createx does NOT like being cleaned up with Lacquer thinner. Acetone worked fine for me the few times I used it, but the one time I tried lacquer thinner it curdled and made a mess, had to tear the airbrush down completely in the middle of a session.
Thanks for that link.....really good prices.
Posted 14 May 2009 - 10:00 AM
I use DuPont Chromaclear for clearcoat and it works great on baits. You don't want to breath it or get it on your skin. It is expensive, but a little goes a long way.
Posted 14 May 2009 - 01:09 PM
Thats good to know since i've got a gallon of Dupont 7600 Chromaclear sitting in the shop.....You dip or spray yours?
Posted 14 May 2009 - 01:14 PM
I use cellulose paints and topcoat along with 2K clearcoat. Using these paints and clearcoats made me realize what garbage createx really is, nitro rocks.
Posted 14 May 2009 - 05:40 PM
It's 4:1 mix and I spray it through the airbrush. It works well.
Posted 17 May 2009 - 07:52 AM
I spray all urethane paints. I use two part epoxy sealer/ primer, with urethane paints and Chroma Clear for the topcoat. I run Muskie baits trolling, during tournaments we run 12 to 15 hour days pretty often. A hot bait or preffered color may stay in the water the entire time. I have not had anything hold up as well as the urethane including laquers. I read a lot on this site of paint reactions or clear coat failures. The automotive paints are deigned and engineered to work as a system. On plastic bait repaints I do a quick scotch brite pad and prime and paint. Many of the baits you can spray the urethane and not have a reaction but I play it safe and shoot a light sealer coat. I do not have any trouble with the small batches of sealer and clear by using the one ounce cups. Have fun and it gets a little addicting!