In a perfect world we would all be able to dip and strip our parts and pieces; instead we have to sand, sand, sand, and sand, then prime and sand, then paint, and sand again.
The first step in proper surface prep is to get all of the gunk, dirt, and grease removed. One of the first things that you will want to do if you have access to one is a pressure washer and degreaser. There are commercial degreasers available as well as off the shelf stuff that you can find at your auto parts store.
It may take several applications of degreaser and pressure washing to get as much of the dirt and grime removed before sanding. The biggest thing is to be liberal with the degreaser and giving it a chance to soak in and let it do some of the work for you. Especially depending on what it is that you are working on.
The next step is sanding, there are several ways to go about this also. The best way would be to use a sandblaster but not all of us are lucky enough to have access to one let along owning your own. That and sand can get to be expensive and if you don’t have a decent air compressor that can throw another issue in to the mix.
For most of us using a wire brush on a drill/grinder is going to be your best tool, the angle grinder is going to add more scratches and damage the metal. Do you want to get rid of rust without sanding? I know you do, one product I have found that works extremely well is OSFO (Ospho Rust Treatment - Since 1947) you can just brush it on anything rusty then prime and paint, simple as one, two three.
OSFO is a chemical agent that when brushed on ELIMINATES rust. OSFO also eliminates the need for tack cloths when wiping and cleaning surfaces over and over. Use a good quality rust inhibitive primer and two quality top coats and you will have an excellent paint system.
Remember primer needs to be painted fairly quickly, within a month is best. A lot of primers are not made to withstand any UV rays. With the right amount of Penetrol and Naptha, most frames, decks, and other rough parts can be brushed with better results than spraying. The reducer additives will allow the primer to flow out and provide a smooth and hard finish when applied with a china bristle brush. The OSFO is sold from the company website in cases only, in either 4 gallons or 16 quarts at 139.00 and 149.00 respectively. It is available in smaller amounts at many hardware stores or it can be ordered from many home improvement stores.
If you have access to a decent air compressor and you already have a spray gun you may prefer to spray. Spraying is a little harder as you have to make sure the paint or primer isn’t too thin or thick and when it comes time to spraying the top coat it takes some practice to get a nice even shine with no runs. The art of painting is beyond the scope of this article, just take your time and practice.
Edited by NUTNDUN, February 27, 2010 - 05:45 PM.