When I got my bike last summer, there were several things about it that I disliked. The biggest of which was the rear tail graphic which consisted of a pink spade with 3 skulls and a logo for Steel City Choppers. It might float some people's boat, but its not my style and have been hoping to to ditch it ever since. You can see it here:
Rear View Before
Additionally in the photo you can see other things I am not keen on. The swing arm plate mount for instance. In order to use sagglebags, the PO added an extension to move it further back so the brake light was more visible. He used a steel bar which looks ghetto to me. Rear plate/light
and Side Angel of Rear Plate/light
Also as seen in those photos and the ones in my gallery, you can see the two-tone classic studded seat. I don't like the studs or the two-tones.
The tank had some damage which was repaired rather poorly (not by me) as can be seen here:
. I also made it much worse when I spilled some gas on the repaired area and found out the repair paint and gloss was not fuel safe. I have no picture of that. But it was bad. It ate right through down to the metal.
You can't tell by any of my pics in my garage, but the chrome on those Spiked grips and foot controls have started to flake. Not only that, but they are slippery and not that great for actual riding. My feet want to slide right off if I don't angle them just right. It's a bit annoying and takes some inner thigh muscles to keep them on the pegs so they need to go.
Needless to say, there was lots to do to remedy these issues.
This winter I've been addressing some of them. I've picked up new grips, new foot controls and oem non-studded seats to replace the ones on it now. This part was easy.
The other issues, the rear graphic, plate/light and tank damage weren't so easy. So I decided to tackle the repairs and graphic delete myself as a winter project. I'm an amateur and weekend warrior for sure, but I figure the worst case, if i really mess it up, only then I'll take it to a professional painter.
For the rear fender, first I selected a new plate/light combo that I decided I wanted to mount back on the rear fender. What I settled on from Ebay
would require new holes since the old holes had been deleted by a previous owner. I used some bondo to fix some dents, drilled new holes, then sanded it all down ready for paint. After a few calls to local painters and getting quotes ~$1200 for a solid color, I decided I'd try to tackle this myself using spray cans. Yep. Spray Cans. In my attempts to at least do it as good as spray cans can do, I decided to go a real automotive paint store and get some high grade primer, paint and a 2K clear coat that was fuel safe. The place I went to locally was able to put the color of my choice into a can. The 2K Clear Coat they carried was Spray Max which I've seen on Amazon. I chose black as my color for simplicity and also because I was going to try and blend into the tank to repair the damage. I wanted to preserve the skulls on the tank rather than repaint the entire tank. Even though they are also cheesy, I like the uniqueness they bring to my bike and I can live with them. They make me laugh.
Here is where I am now. This photo of the rear fender is after drilling new holes, bondo/sanding/priming and paint. Before Clear Coat has been applied.
And this photo is of the Tank after bondo/sanding/primer/sanding/base coat but before the clear. You can see here where I've tried my best to preserve the tank skulls and blend the new black base coat into the existing paint. Tank repair before Clear Coat
. After this shot, I sanded the whole tank down with 800 grit paper to give the new clear something to stick to on the existing clear coat and also blend into the repair better. I probably should have used something more coarse, like 600 or even 400 but I was nervous it would show through after clear coating.
Both the fender and tank are now curing in my basement. I'll get some pics of how it turned out, but I think they both turned out great. You can't see any of the paint blending on the tank nor the marks from the 800 i did on the existing clear. I plan on waiting 3 weeks before I tackle it with some 1500/2000/3000 to get rid of the orange peel in the clear and then I"ll cut and polish it with the DA I have coming in the mail.