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Painting plastic m/c fuel tanks

Discussion in 'Reader's Rides' started by Free Will, Apr 16, 2017.

  1. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    We have two of these Yamahas. One is an 86 and the other an 85. The fuel tanks have turned yellow over the years from the gas. The tanks look like Hell and the bikes are too nice to not try and correct them.

    I removed the tank from my 86. I sanded it all down and it came out good. Well, except for the factory OEM decals on the tank. I simply could not get them off 100%. It's like the decals chemically embedded themselves into the plastic itself.

    I removed as much of the decals as I could. Between dry and wet sanding, the paint should cover them up. I'm not very good with a rattle can of paint. Almost anyone could do a better job than I could. That being the case, I went ahead and took it on.

    I bought some Krylon paint specially formulated for plastic and such. I put three coats on and then wet-sanded. I plan to put about 2-3 more coats on, followed by some clear coat. Once done, I'll post up a pic or two of the painted tank. This is the 1st time I've painted a plastic fuel tank. The tank itself is quite rigid and non-flexible. I'm hoping the paint adheres well.

    [​IMG]
     
    bikemike and 2strokenut like this.
  2. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    did you use a plastic eching primer or is that in the paint you used.
     
  3. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    I was told that the paint I needed to use had it in it. I went to a Sherman Williams store, brought the fuel tank with me, and told them what I wanted to do.

    The decals are still kind of visible under the layers of new paint. :mad: I'm going to try another light wet sanding session and see if that helps. I've never ever come across decals like these. Whatever mistakes I make on the tank on my bike, will not be repeated when I refinish the tank on my wife's bike.

    I'm going to go to an Ace Hardware and see if there is anything that can be safely used on plastic to remove the decals once and for all. If I do happen to find something that works, I'll probably end up re-doing my tank.
     
  4. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    can you get a spray putty in a can that would give you a thicker layer to sand back and mybe flaten out the lip if you can get it once sprayed on let it dry for a few days befor sanding so it sinks back or you will get sink back later and you will see the sticker line agean.
     
  5. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    I went to Ace Hardware and spoke to a guy in their paint dept. He used to paint cars and such previously. He said that I'm using the right rattle can of paint. I spoke to him about the decal issue and the trouble I was having with them.

    He said that he's used something in the past, but didn't know the correct term for it. He described it as a big round eraser on a spindle that you check up into a drill. He said that NAPA might have one. I did stop at a NAPA and they had them. It's called a Big Eraser Pad. It was $15.00. It's great for removing pin-striping, decals and old adhesives. I didn't buy it though. I'm going to add a couple more coats of paint to my tank and see if it builds up enough top completely hide the decals.

    But, before I start in on my wife's tank, I will go back to NAPA and buy the eraser pad. I want to try it out and see just how well it does work. Both the guy at Ace and at NAPA said they work great. The guy at Ace also showed me some very good quality clear enamel for use as a top coat if I want.

    I added another coat to my tank about two hrs. ago and it does look better. I might add yet another tomorrow. If I can get by w/o having to do my tank all over again, I'm all for it.

    After my tank is done, and before I start on my wife's tank, I'll post up some pics of the two. I'm hoping the difference is huge.

    Picture / info. on the eraser pad:

    https://www.amazon.com/AES-Industri...TF8&qid=1492552855&sr=8-1&keywords=eraser+pad
     
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  6. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    sounds like the go keen to see the photos.
     
  7. Mac&Homelite

    Mac&Homelite Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Wow, you got knowledgeable guys at Ace? No one at mine can figure out how to order any Stihl parts for me, and I swear half of them couldn't tell you the difference between metric and sae! Someone said that they have been through at least 6 general managers in under 2 years so far at this location.
     
  8. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    Our local Ace is pretty good. My wife used to work there for a couple of years. Ace also has an outstanding fasteners dept. They juts moved their Stihl dept. out to a separate building that used to house the lumber dept. They remodeled the bldg. and now it's their outdoor power equip. dept.

    Our Ace is family owned and they seem to keep employees for quite a while. You have to watch out for their prices though and know what you are looking for and what it sells for at our stores.

    Overall, it's a friendly place and there's always help to be found if needed. Did I mention free popcorn on weekends? :dancing:
     
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  9. Flint Mitch

    Flint Mitch ArboristSite Operative

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    Those are cool bikes. I had one many years ago. Great in the snow and sand!!

    Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
     
  10. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    Totally agree. Ours have both front & rear cargo racks on them. They are a blast in the snow. I've geared ours down just a bit. The top speed is only about 40 or so, but they will out climb a Honda XR-600R dirt bike. I know this, cause I had an XR-600. The traction the Big Wheel makes is unbelievable.

    And, they are quiet, don't tear up the terrain, and are easy to ride. I've had tons of big dirt bikes over the years. Huskies, CZ's, Bultacos, Montessas, Maicos, and whatever. But, you get to a certain age where the big bikes are no longer compatible. Too easy to get hurt on.

    I knew in my heart of hearts, that the Big Wheel would be the perfect trail bike to grow old with. ;)
     
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  11. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    id love one for hunting on and the kids when they get older
     
  12. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    Depends on who's looking for me.....and why.

    When they were still being produced, they retailed for about $1400.00 or so new.

    The last year was maybe 1990? I think they stopped the BW200 before they quit making the BW350. I still see them used for sale every now and then. The prices are over $1000.00 though.

    But, they are a fun bike, and they are built like an army tank. Ours still have the OEM tires on them. I think of them as a sophisticated Tote-Goat. Prices for used parts on E-Bay are ridiculously high. But, a lot of the OEM parts are no longer available from Yamaha.

    If I had known way back when I bought mine, I would have spent some $$'s and stock piled some parts for them. A few years ago, a new unused OEM fuel tank for a BW was over $600.00 on E-Bay. I recently saw a new tail-light lense for one on E-Bay. I think it was like $225.00.:eek:
     
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  13. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    Progress on re-painting my fuel tank is coming along well. It's been kind of a slow process, as I don't want to rush things. Been doing light coats with plenty of drying time between them.

    One side of the tank will require a little more work / coats of paint to fill in some shallow areas. The stickers were the biggest PITA to deal with. Hopefully, when I do my wife's tank, I will be able to remove them 100%.

    Anyways, when I'm done with mine, it won't be perfect, but it will be a Hell of a lot better looking than it was. :yes:
     
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  14. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    will you find new stickers for it or get them made or just leaving it.
     
  15. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    I found some OEM decals on E-Bay, but they are pricey.

    If I do put any stickers on the tanks, they will be something small and simple. They will be still be a Yamaha decal of some kind, but not the OEM ones.

    Maybe something like this:

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    can you get the OME ones made years ago i had some made for my ninja from a sign & sticker shop only an idea
     
  17. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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    Depends on who's looking for me.....and why.

    I wasn't all that big a fan of the original stickers that came on the tank. I kind of like simple and clean. If the tank turns out pretty good, I may not even put any stickers on it at all.

    I'm going to do some research and see what's available. I have plenty of time to do so. If I find some I like, I might post um up and see what you all think of them. ;)
     
  18. Free Will

    Free Will July is Hug A Cop month.

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  19. 2strokenut

    2strokenut One nut loose

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    i see what you mean they are big
     
  20. stihl sawing

    stihl sawing MAD DOG

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    I can send ya a couple of these.

    [​IMG]
     
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