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Discussion Starter #1
I have a Memphis Shades Batwing Fiaring that I'm considering doing this myself. I don't have a lot of experience with spray paint, but do have a little. I also don't have a compressor/sprayer set up so I would do this with aerosol cans.

I figure the worst that can happen is I don't do a good job and have to get a body shop to do the work over again. The materials to do it myself aren't cheap - and if I have it redone, it would be lost money. On the other hand, if it goes well, I've saved a few bucks, and learned a new skill in the process.

I do have a set of wind deflectors on the bike, so I could start with those, and if it goes horribly, I could just go the body shop route at that point.

Has anyone done this? Is painting something like this particularly difficult to do and have it come out good?
 

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When I do my batwing, when I get one, I may have the custom paid to shop mix me something to match my cherry red metallic. Not sure if cans available will match spot on... background primer color has an effect especially with metallic imo. Think I will need a white or very light Grey primer to get more brilliance.

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Had mine done at an auto shop. Took the guy a few tries (spray outs even with the "gun" that "reads" paint) to match the paint on the bike. I had both the fairing done and (two tone) hard bags. Can't recall what I spent, but it came out very well.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I got quotes from two different shops to have this professionally done. Because it's a tri-coat paint, just to do the fairing, one shop was $500, and talking to the guy, he said he wouldn't give me any kind of guarantee on the paint because it's painting a non-metal part. He really didn't seem confident in his work at all. Even if his bid had been affordable, there is no way I would let him touch the job. The other shop I didn't get as far as having him do a full quote, he looked at it and told me the quote would definitely be over 800, and asked if I wanted him to work up a full quote. I thanked him for his time and told him that was out of budget for me.

At that point, I decided I'm going to give doing this myself a shot. I've done a bunch of research on how to do this. I'll take my time, go slow, do the best I can. I'm reasonably confident that I'll end up with results that I'll be happy with. To get a feel for decent technique, I did a small test project painting a waste paper basket with cheap spray paint from the local home improvement store. It really came out pretty good, and if I had taken the time to do all of the appropriate prep work it would have been great.

So I'm going the spray can approach, and getting materials from ColorRite. It's not cheap paint, and you have to have enough on hand to do the full job in one day, so there is a bit more of an initial lay out in cash that was a few dollars more than expected, but it's the way I need to do it. You can't run out of paint, and decide you need a little more, order it and paint - you would have to start over completely. I did the spray test on a piece of card stock over the weekend, and found out it's going to take quite a bit of paint to do this. I'm planning 2 coats of primer, 2 coats of the base color, 4 coats of top coat/final color, and 2 coats of clear. That's a total of 10 coats. Granted each coat is light to avoid drips and keep things even. To make sure I've got enough paint, I've gone back and ordered a little more than I did on first order. Fortunately I can return unused cans for a 25% restocking fee. I may end up returning several unused cans, and I may end up returning none.

What I will have on hand prior to starting painting:
Primer: 2 cans
Base Coat: 2 cans
Top Coat: 3 cans
Clear Coat: 1 can

There are other various things I've got on hand after researching online how to do this, like automotive masking tape, wax and grease remover and tack cloth. Most of these came with a kit purchased from ColorRite. I'll take pictures along the way, and post here how things go. That will probably in a different full write up thread.

If the second order from ColorRite arrives in time, and the weather cooperates, I'm hoping to do this later in the week.
 

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MattF, I painted mine today. I am too tired tonight to put a thread up, but perhaps will tomorrow. My local custom aerosol shop mixed the color and I think it's pretty close. I used a 2K clear for the last 3 clear coats. -- Good luck with yours. Will look forward to your outcome!
 

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I have always given up on spray painting myself. When I have done it, I think it turned out good though. The issue is, everywhere I have lived is really high dust areas, always construction around. Impossible to paint anything without getting dust in it.

Think the last time I actually painted something was 25years ago. Man, that makes me sound really old. The KZ400 I rebuilt from nothing. Still have a few extra parts from it floating around.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
MattF, I painted mine today. I am too tired tonight to put a thread up, but perhaps will tomorrow. My local custom aerosol shop mixed the color and I think it's pretty close. I used a 2K clear for the last 3 clear coats. -- Good luck with yours. Will look forward to your outcome!
I'd love to see pics of your final result.

I know it's going to feel like a gut punch to me, but I am curious. Do you mind if I ask what you paid for materials?
 

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baron58, excellent video and prep, nicely done and great looking finished product. Thanks for sharing this!


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I cant believe people were quoting $500 to $800 to paint a fairing!

Is it possible they thought your motorcycle is called "the Bat Wing Fair Ling" and they were quoting to paint the entire bike?!

When I was in college there was an on-going attempt to define real Engineers. One of the definitions that came up was "Real Engineers don't care about aesthetics". Function is everything, appearance does not matter.

To put this into perspective: the $500 to $800 that could be spent on paint, could first be spent on things to make the MC run better, or be more comfortable, or on a week long road trip!

I guess in a way that is the mindset behind a rat-bike - all the money was spend on performance.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Is it possible they thought your motorcycle is called "the Bat Wing Fair Ling" and they were quoting to paint the entire bike?!
LOL. Nope - both places were perfectly clear on what needed done. With the first one, we even went so far as to pull the fairing off and point out what would and wouldn't be masked.

To put this into perspective: the $500 to $800 that could be spent on paint, could first be spent on things to make the MC run better, or be more comfortable, or on a week long road trip!
I very much agree. The ultimate seat with backrest was less. The Cobra fuel management, and air kit were less also. Hard side locking saddle bags were less. (Chronic insomnia + internet access = spending more than expected on a new hobby.)

Side note: update on doing it myself: Yesterday I got the primer laid down and wet sanded with 600 grit. I won't have the time today to get the color coats and clear coats done. That will come tomorrow, followed by a week or so of letting the paint cure prior to final polish.
 

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I cant believe people were quoting $500 to $800 to paint a fairing!

Is it possible they thought your motorcycle is called "the Bat Wing Fair Ling" and they were quoting to paint the entire bike?!

When I was in college there was an on-going attempt to define real Engineers. One of the definitions that came up was "Real Engineers don't care about aesthetics". Function is everything, appearance does not matter.

To put this into perspective: the $500 to $800 that could be spent on paint, could first be spent on things to make the MC run better, or be more comfortable, or on a week long road trip!

I guess in a way that is the mindset behind a rat-bike - all the money was spend on performance.
Actually that is pretty common for 3 tone paint, base top coat and clear coat. Most of the other fairing companies charge 300 - 400 dollars to have the fairings factory painted which is altogether a better deal unless you have the tools and ability to paint it yourself.

I got a reckless fairing on my 1300 (without stereo) but it comes with all the stereo holes and cutouts. The faring was 350 and paint was 400 for both sides. The windshield was pretty cheap and the mounting brackets needed some modification. But the paint match was dead on.
 

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My fairing has not arrived yet but my spray paint from ColorRite arrived 2 days ago. I sprayed a test card and compared it to the bike and its a dead on match. I'll have about $120.00 total in the paint, I bought 3 kits just to make sure I have enough.
 
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