How to paint cowling - Ex-500.com - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R
 3Likes
  • 1 Post By Saabnut
  • 1 Post By john z
  • 1 Post By jorge moros
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-21-2019, 2:33 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
ex-ninja's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 104
 
How to paint cowling

I bought a cowling like this on ebay. https://www.ebay.com/itm/KAWASAKI-EX...cAAOSwR2RaCBvb

Just like in that ad it's white and unpainted. I have looked up and found several different methods of painting.

What method do you guys recommend? I don't have special paint tools. I want it to look good, but at the same time don't want to spend too much as I have never painted anything like this before.

I have a yellow 2007 Ninja 500.
ex-ninja is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-21-2019, 3:40 AM
Member
 
johna6968's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Location: Cheshire UK
Posts: 79
 
Like the fuel tank that is an area that will show up flaws most if not done well. It depends what standard of finish you want for your bike I guess.
johna6968 is offline  
post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-21-2019, 8:22 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 452
 
You need to start by finding a matching color. That can be challenging.

In order for the paint to stick to the part it must be dull (sanded - 320/400 wet) and absolutely clean.

A good idea for cycle parts is using a 2-part clear coat over the color base. That protects the finish from gas and allows you to use cleaners like bug and tar remover if necessary. It also gives you a much better gloss than regular spray paint. SprayMax 2K Gloss Clear is a special 2-part clear that comes in a spray can.

There's a bit of work and experience required to get a quality paint job. Search for a few DIY videos so you get a feel for the process.
jkv357 is offline  
 
post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-21-2019, 10:11 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Posts: 124
 
Also get some cheap cans from hardware store to practice. A lot of people randomly spray and wiggle can in all directions to randomly arrive at even finish. But that technique will result in thin rough finish. Instead practice doing even horizontal rows with 25-33% overlap. Like red/white stripes on U.S. flag.

Practice on many sheets of paper to get even finish. Start off edge of paper when you press button because there’s an initial splat of too much paint. Once paint is flowing, move spray over paper. Then stop spraying after you’ve moved off edge of paper on other side. Repeat next stripe.

Also keep spray column 90-degrees to surface and even distance (6-10”) along entire stripe. Don’t swing spray left & right with wrist. Keep spray aimed 90-degrees to surface. Create stripe my moving arm stiffly sideways. Then move your feet sideways to continue stripe past reach of arm.
DannoXYZ is offline  
post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 3:24 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
ex-ninja's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 104
 
I think I'll go with the complete repair package listed on this page. https://www.colorrite.com/product/ka...ellow-1578.cfm

Does that look like a good choice? I think it will also come with instructions.
ex-ninja is offline  
post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 4:13 AM
Senior Member
 
po18guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,161
 
Garage
Solar Yellow is a beautiful highly metallic color, but will be the devil to match. ColorRite always struck me as kinda pricey and arrogant, so I bought a touchup kit from Bike Colours UK. Nice fellow, but cannot ship aerosol.

Personally, save up your cash and locate a dedicated M/C paint shop. Will it cost? Yep. But it will be a beautiful match. Or, be patient and watch eBay for a good used 2007 upper.

1987 EX500-A1<br />K&N/Dynojet kit<br />Webcam 245 cams<br />Cobra F1 slip-ons<br />3rd airbox snorkel<br />Tapered rollers<br />Prog. Springs<br />Russell braided line<br />Galfer pads<br />Avon Super Venoms
po18guy is offline  
post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 8:27 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 699
 
^ +1
The odds of you matching the original color are slim. The the number of layers of paint, thickness of gloss coat, the amount of buffing and even the base primer color will all effect the final result. You will think that you have it matched and then the sun will hit it and you will see that you are not even close.
Basic rattlecans will cost you much less and you can get creative with it. You will not lose any value between an almost factory and a "custom" paint.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_0330.JPG (265.8 KB, 11 views)

John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
john z is offline  
post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 8:28 AM
Super Moderator
 
ducatiman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: NEW YORK
Posts: 14,012
 
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by po18guy View Post
save up your cash and locate a dedicated M/C paint shop.
You want a proper job? ^this^

“Being shot out of a cannon will always be better than being squeezed out of a tube. That is why God made fast motorcycles, Bubba....” quote Hunter S Thompson

Custom Carb Service

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
ducatiman is offline  
post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
ex-ninja's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 104
 
Should I then just paint it another color like like black?
ex-ninja is offline  
post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 12:21 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 452
 
As others have noted - it ain't easy. Solid colors are one thing, but metallic or pearl colors with multiple base coats are another.

ColorRite is hit or miss from what I've heard, and their prices are really high.

If you want it to match, a custom painter would be your best bet, but chances are they may still struggle to get it right. Most cycle paints don't have mixing formulas and recipes to go by like auto colors.

If you are fine with black, that's the easiest option. Most regular spray can paints aren't going to hold up well though, even with proper prep.
jkv357 is offline  
post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-22-2019, 3:02 PM
Senior Member
 
Saabnut's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Santa Rosa, CA
Posts: 2,313
 
A quick note on that fairing, have you test fit it yet? Aftermarket bodywork for anything always fits funny, some of the real low quality stuff just simply won't work. I encountered the latter with a crappy aftermarket fairing off ebay, though not the one OP bought.

Let us know how that thing fits. It it's good, that'll be nice to know for the future.
jkv357 likes this.

1990 EX500 - 142,000 miles as of August 12th, 2019
1993 Ducati 900SS - The real canyon carver
2002 EX500 - Undergoing a full restoration
Saabnut is offline  
post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-23-2019, 2:54 AM
Senior Member
 
po18guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,161
 
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saabnut View Post
A quick note on that fairing, have you test fit it yet? Aftermarket bodywork for anything always fits funny, some of the real low quality stuff just simply won't work. I encountered the latter with a crappy aftermarket fairing off ebay, though not the one OP bought.

Let us know how that thing fits. It it's good, that'll be nice to know for the future.
True! The absolute last thing on the list should be the application of paint. Fitting, drilling, mounting signals windshield etc. etc. must come first, or the new paint will suffer. Badly.


You could flat black the A/M fairing and save your search for a Ninja 500R ('07) fairing on eBay. Check Craigslist also. There's one out there in decent shape and Kawi did paint better than any local shop.

1987 EX500-A1<br />K&N/Dynojet kit<br />Webcam 245 cams<br />Cobra F1 slip-ons<br />3rd airbox snorkel<br />Tapered rollers<br />Prog. Springs<br />Russell braided line<br />Galfer pads<br />Avon Super Venoms

Last edited by po18guy; 7-23-2019 at 2:57 AM.
po18guy is offline  
post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-23-2019, 8:48 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 699
 
@ Saabnut & @po18guy
From his original post link, it looks like the exact front that I bought for my bike. The fit was right on and it required very little sanding to get it prepped. The windshield took a little adjusting to line up, but that may have been because of the $20 windshield that I bought.
Unless they have changed the mold, this is a great value for a brand new cowling.

Flat paints are a godsend to new painters. Blemishes, dust and small mistakes don't show up as well on flats, and the overall look can be pretty cool once completed.
jkv357 likes this.

John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
john z is offline  
post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-27-2019, 10:38 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
ex-ninja's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 104
 
I'm thinking of just painting it a matte black then. Would that be a good idea?

What I like about my original solution is it provides everything needed, with instructions.

If I paint it a matte black, what are all the things I need, and which instructions should I follow?
ex-ninja is offline  
post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-29-2019, 10:36 PM
Senior Member
 
jorge moros's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 773
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ex-ninja View Post
I'm thinking of just painting it a matte black then. Would that be a good idea?

What I like about my original solution is it provides everything needed, with instructions.

If I paint it a matte black, what are all the things I need, and which instructions should I follow?
First one should be: Use the search option.
Second one (I did the first one for you ) : Follow THIS LINK "HOW TO PAINT"
ex-ninja likes this.

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -Albert Einstein.
2007 Ninja 500R
jorge moros is offline  
post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-30-2019, 8:53 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 699
 
This is going to sound a bit harsh, but if you read any of my other posts you will see that that is not my intention. However...
Painting is something that you have to DO. You will read that you have to sand and then prime and sand again repeating this cycle until you are at 600 grit and then paint and sand repeating until you are at 1500 grit and on and on, but when you actually go to do it, you will either wait too long between coats or not long enough and you will ruin the paint. Or you will sand too much and ruin the paint. Or there will be too much humidity and you will ruin the paint.
You WILL figure it out, but it will take doing, not reading. About the 3rd time you repaint, you will be fairly happy with the result.
Go to the hardware store and buy a couple rattle cans of black paint and a can of flat overcoat. You will also need 300, 600 and 1500 grit sandpaper. Then find an old piece of plastic (old cowling?) and see if you can get a smooth coat of paint on to it.

John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
john z is offline  
post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-30-2019, 8:56 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 699
 
As an add on to my last, it cost me more to figure out how to paint and finally get a good result than it would have cost me to just take the pieces in to a body shop. It saves me money now that I have a good understanding, but the first time was a definite loss.

John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
john z is offline  
post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-30-2019, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
ex-ninja's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 104
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jorge moros View Post
First one should be: Use the search option.
Second one (I did the first one for you ) : Follow THIS LINK "HOW TO PAINT"
Thanks! The cowling is white like in the ad I posted. Is that primer? Does that mean that I can skip the section on primer and just start at the painting section?
ex-ninja is offline  
post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-30-2019, 10:45 PM
Senior Member
 
jorge moros's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 773
 
I just checked the link. Specifications say "Fiberglass" and "Unpainted." I think you will have to follow all the steps.

The only advantage of painting everything in matt black is that if you have any imperfection in the paint, it will not be noticeable at first sight. The only extra advice I can give you is as @john z says, first paint a piece of scrap material as a test and paint thin layers between hands.

Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -Albert Einstein.
2007 Ninja 500R
jorge moros is offline  
post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-31-2019, 8:45 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 699
 
If you can feel it or see it before painting, you will see it and feel it after painting. The white is a primer, but any imperfections will have to be sanded out and you will have to prime again.

John Z.

If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough. -Albert Einstein
john z is offline  
post #21 of 23 (permalink) Old 7-31-2019, 9:12 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 452
 
Because the piece is fiberglass, most likely the white is Gel Coat.

It needs to be sanded to a dull finish before applying anything. Primer evens-out the surface, and can be used to fill minor imperfections by sanding after drying until you just start to go through, but spray can primer is not going to do much filling. Generally people use too much. You can prime, wait for it to "flash" (dull down), and paint directly over it without sanding if the surface doesn't need evening-out.

Chances are any spray paint you put on it is going to chip from rocks being thrown off the front wheel.

As noted, a Satin or Flat paint will cut you more slack as far as surface and application imperfections. You don't want a lot of paint or primer on it. Figure just enough to "cover" plus one more coat. Only time you need more is if you plan to sand and buff, but you can only do that with a Gloss finish.
jkv357 is offline  
post #22 of 23 (permalink) Old 8-1-2019, 5:37 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: S.F. Bay Area
Posts: 124
 
As mentioned, regular spray-can paint is not very tough compared to 2-part catalysed auto paint used by pro paint shops. Comes down to your durability requirements on this job. You can get similar quality to pro paints in cans. They have both parts in one can and you combine them when shaking. Has similar pot-life of several hours like pro paints. Much, much stronger than 1-part spray-can stuff.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CXPQ814/
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0186NI7LQ/

Last edited by DannoXYZ; 8-2-2019 at 2:24 PM.
DannoXYZ is offline  
post #23 of 23 (permalink) Old 8-1-2019, 7:13 AM
Senior Member
 
po18guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2,161
 
Garage
For 1K rattle can paints, I use U-Pol, as it is quite good. Not really any better around in an aerosol. Still has its limitations, however.

1987 EX500-A1<br />K&N/Dynojet kit<br />Webcam 245 cams<br />Cobra F1 slip-ons<br />3rd airbox snorkel<br />Tapered rollers<br />Prog. Springs<br />Russell braided line<br />Galfer pads<br />Avon Super Venoms
po18guy is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Ex-500.com - The home of the Kawasaki EX500 / Ninja 500R forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome