Looking to turn a tired and scratched frame into a like new bike? Don’t like the current color scheme? Let The Bicycle Shack strip the paint and/or rust and powdercoat your frame/fork in your desired color. Powder coated paint is generally more robust than liquid paint and the powder coating process is ecologically safer too. The Shack has teamed up with professional sand blaster and powdercoat outfits that are very good at what they do. Because of this professional relationship, we can pass the savings on to all of our customers.
What is the Powder Coating Process?
Powdercoating is a multistage process. Step 1: Remove all paint and rust from the frame – this is necessary because a small electrical current needs to pass through them. Step 2: Hang the frame in the painting bay and run an electrical current through it. Step 3: The frame is “painted” using a gun that charges powdered paint particles with an opposite charge than the frame. The particles stick to the frame and completely cover it. Step 4: The frame is moved to the oven where it is baked at about 400 degrees until the paint particles have all melted into the metal. The frame is then taken out of the oven and left to cool. Step 5: All of the threads on the frame are chased, then the bottom bracket and head tube are faced for precision installation of bottom brackets and headsets.
DIY Package $175*
- Customer strips frame and fork of all components, bolts, etc
- Frame and fork are sandblasted or beadblasted to remove previous paint, gunk, and decals
- Frame and fork are powdercoated in color of choice (one solid color)
- All threads are chased and the bottom bracket shell and the headtube are faced to provide a precision fit with components
- 3 to 4 week turnaround, depending on workload
- Customer builds bike
Deluxe Package: $325* **
- The Shack accepts a fully built bike with the old paint still on it
- All components are stripped from the bike
- Frame and fork are sandblasted to remove all paint rust or gunk
- Frame and fork are powdercoated in color of choice (one color)
- All threads on frame/fork are chased and the bottom bracket shell and the head tube are faced
- Bike is reassembled, all parts are cleaned, new cables and housings are used, and all brakes and derailleurs properly adjusted (equivalent of our $225 pro tuneup).
- 3 to 4 week turnaround, depending on workload
A La Carte
- Sandblasting of frame only $40
- Sandblasting of fork only $20
- Sandblasting of frame and fork $50
- Powdercoating of frame only, one color $100
- Powdercoating of fork only, one color $50
- Powdercoating of frame and fork, one color $125
* Extra fees for recumbent, tandem, and full suspension frames, fenders, racks and chainguards
** Extra fees for older vintage bikes that almost always need extra TLC
We use the standard powdercoat colors from Cardinal. For a little more money, we can also special order RAL colors, and special metallic flake and candy coats as well. Here are our standard Cardinal colors: Color Chart
Notes about Sandblasting and Beadblasting
The sandblasting process uses a composite of different types of very fine silicon grains. If the metal doesn’t have any rust, usually only a few microns thick are scrubbed off (3/1,000,000 meter), leaving a smooth bare metal finish with just a little bit of texture (great for the paint to adhere to). If there is rust, the sandblasters will attempt to eliminate it, which might leave a little pocking of the metal. Powdercoating over rust is not a good idea – the rust will probably bubble up under the paint, leaving a less than desired outcome. If a frame has deep rust, the sandblasting process might illuminate a weak structural integrity. Between The Shack and the sandblasters, the integrity of the frame can usually be determined before starting the whole process. Even though sandblasting will take a very small amount of material with it, a very high end thin tubed frame might be better off with a chemical stripping or beadblasting. Beadblasting uses a plastic media to blast off the paint but will not take off rust, and will not smooth out minor scratches in the metal.
Q: Can you powdercoat my carbon frame or fork?
A: We can only powdercoat metals. The resins in carbon fiber may not survive the bake process, plus carbon fiber won’t hold an electrical charge.
Q: What about glued joint frames and forks?
A: The glue will probably be compromised by the sandblasting, and will definitely not withstand the bake process, resulting in an unsafe ride
Q: Can you powdercoat supsension forks?
A: Probably not. The lowers would have to be removed completely, and then if there are any rubber rings or pieces, they will make a mess during the baking process (same probably holds true of the lower bushings).
Q: What if I want more than one color?
A: We can do multiple colors on a case by case basis, but this is not our forte, and the price will at least double
Q: What about decals after the powdercoating?
A: The best solution is to get heavy duty vinyl decals that can be applied over the powdercoat paint. Ask us about specific makes and models, and about fees for application.
Q: What about clear coat?
A: We can do a powdercoat clearcoat, either on its own, or as another protective layer over a base color. Clearcoat over a bare metal gives it a wet gloss look that brings out the qualities of the metal involved. However, most of the colors we use have as much protective properties as a layer of clearcoat. We cannot apply a clearcoat over decals since we do not do liquid paints, and the powdercoating process will destroy most decals.