Here’s what worked for me.
Step 1. Get a bike
I had one, then lost it, then got it back. Hopefully you’ll get your own bike.
I decided to get a professional paint job because I shudder to think what would happen with me and a rattle can.
2. Get the bike stripped of its parts
Again, I shudder to think what would happen to me with some bike mechanics tools so I took it down to Brooklyn Bike and Board, or what ever bike shop you prefer with mechanics you trust.
Ok, I did the basic stuff like handlebars, seatpost, pedals…But because I tried to use more complicated bike mechanics tools…the crank was stripped out and had to be pounded out.
But you are conscientious bike owners who routinely grease up the seat post so it doesn’t get frozen and checks the bearings in the headset, things like that.
This does make for an easier stripping of the bike which you want to get it down to just the frame and fork.
3. Sandblasting. (lemme back up a little)
Through a very popular bike forum dedicated to one type of bicycle, I heard rumor of place in Greenpoint which paints bikes.
That spot is:
Carter’s Powder Coating
Larry Carter, owner, is part of a small community of light industry manufacturing in Greenpoint Brooklyn.
As stated on the bottom of his low-tech website:
they paint bicycle frames and forks.
They do a process called Powder coating which is free flowing dry powder, often used on automobile parts.
So i emailed Lcarter@carterspray.com and asked about painting bikes. He responded right away and told me that it would have to be sandblasted first and that was done some where else.
But Larry has taken care of this and has a good relationship with ACME sandblasting in Manhattan. See the webpage.
I took the bike to this place:
41 Great Jones Street,
Now I know what your thinking…hmmm ACME?
Besides making anvils and rockets to catch the rascally roadrunner…ACME also does Sandblasting.
You go into a industrial storefront in the middle of NOHO, find Leon. He looks like he’s been around since the time they were painting the celluloid for Warner Brothers Cartoons. Leon explained they were installing some new equipment and it would take at least 10 days. Within a week the bike was done and in cost $81.00. I believe now it will only take 2 days.
Here are the results:
Step 4. Powdercoating. (the paint job)
So this is Carter’s:
65 Eckford Street-Brooklyn, close to McCarren Park and right down the street from B Bikes.
I talked with Larry about colors. Their website lists standard colors here.
I brought in my green aerospoke wheel and Larry was able to match it fairly accurately.
It was 130 dollars and took 2 days.
I know there are other painting methods out there, but I was very happy with the speed and quality of the powdercoating job at Carters.
Here is the final result:
Larry was is into painting bikes and has worked with the Worksman Tricycle Company. He seems like he can powdercoat just about anything. He was eager to show me his glow in the dark cruiser and I hear he is trying to come up with a reflective paint like what is used on street signs.
Step 5. Putting it all back together.
Depending on your wrench skills, I would suggest using a competent mechanic.
But for a free option and if you’d like to learn the process, check out the free bike mechanic workshops with Time’s Up.