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stripping paint off frame - ambitious?crazy?easy?(6 posts)

stripping paint off frame - ambitious?crazy?easy?wes_london
May 22, 2001 3:38 PM
i have an older italian made frame that is chrome but unpolished underneath tired/scratched paint.

as my lbs is doing a couple of things and taking it apart i would love to strip the paint but not damage the chrome. how do i buff the chrome? id like to do it myself.

i am planning to take photos of all the decals for reference but might try 'remaking" them by scanning and retouching them in photoshop then printing them on acetate/clear film before gel-coating this back on to the chrome frame.

i think this way im preserving a litlle bit of history as a few parts of the frame are engraved and pantographed.

i understand it could be messy but would like advice on tools and chemicals needed.

all replies appreciated.

seen more dawns than farmers wes
any semipaste paint stripper...dave
May 22, 2001 5:05 PM
should do the trick. Lots of brands out there. Just apply stripper, wait awhile, and rub with steel wool to remove the paint.

You really can't do much to improve the chrome, if any of the polished areas are rusted or scratched. Unpolished chrome areas cannot be buffed out. The buffing that gives chrome plating it's luster is done to the base metal, before plating. Decorative chrome consists of a base layer of copper, a heavy layer of nickel, followed by a very thin layer of chrome. Any extensize buffing will remove the chrome, and expose the nickel plating underneath. Small buffing wheels and fine buffing compound are available a hardware and home improvement stores if you want to experiment.

Removing old chrome from brazed, lugged frames is also tricky. The chemicals that are used to etch away the nickel and copper also etch away the lug brazing material. If the chrome is really in bad shape, the best approach would be a fine grit sandblasting of the entire frame to prepare it for new paint, and forget the chrome.
thanks dave - will i be risking the framewes_london
May 22, 2001 5:27 PM
as you mentioned removing chrome could deteriorate the brazing i am worried if the paint stripper might have a similar effect. or is it much milder.

i quess i could experiment on a smaller section with a diluted stripper and see how i go.

thanks for your insight. you have been very helpfull.

ciao wes
paint stripper won't hurt anything (nm)dave
May 22, 2001 8:49 PM
except the paintD'Ohhh!!!
May 23, 2001 12:22 AM
ok im primed to do it ;-)wes_london
May 23, 2001 1:57 AM
will give it my best shot.

and if i fail ill be looking for a 54-55cm italian bb frame/fork with good paint.

no..... i think it seems pretty sraight forward.

any ideas how to plug the holes of the frame??

and is there any frame treatment i should give it while its apart??
i suppose things have come a long way scince fish oil ... or have they?

ciao, wes