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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As I've mentioned here before, my recently acquired '97 CR came in the rare factory yellow. It's not my favorite color for this bike though I think it looks great on 748's and Ferrari Dino's. In spite of that, I would keep it yellow except for the fact that the previous owner resprayed the fairing. Apparently in a taxi repair shop in Long Island City. It's pretty dreadful. A poor match laid on thick with no clear coat and no sanding. So, since I would need to paint it anyway, I have decided to paint the whole thing black. It is an homage to my old black and gold '78 Darmah as well as every car and bike that wore the John Player Special livery.

Here's the thing. I've never painted a vehicle. But I had never fixed a washing machine, never caught a carp, never practiced intermittent fasting, etc. etc. until YouTube. I have over the past couple of weeks watched dozens of videos and feel confident that, at the very least, anything I do can be undone by a professional if necessary. Two of my favorite Youtubers are Dave the Aussie from CustomSprayMods https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdCViyboSXSfns8wtFx3_1g and septegenarian Windy Urtnowski whose "Windy U" channel has no less than 1,300 painting, prepping, sanding and riding videos. He's a hoot. Check him out.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuw2xxvgvaVOB1T1J-tv9NA

Since I live in Brooklyn I do not have a garage, however, I do own a CrossFit gym and can work there after hours. I've also never chronicled anything but I want to be both a giver and taker on this forum. I'm probably in the bottom quartile here in terms of mechanical knowledge so this is a good opportunity to maybe help someone else who is considering a winter project like this. Thanks for reading this far, stay tuned. I've already got one part prepped and primed and will post progress and process soon. Looking forward to your help and feedback.
 

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Painting

If I may chime in here...When you ask someone to p[aint a vehicle,airplane etc..You are basically asking him to sand,sand,sand...Then sand some more...
So I would suggest that sanding the old finish is most definitely a way to save some coin..and it can be done by almost anyone.
Do not use Rattle can ANYTHING on the sanded pieces..
Todays finishes are called 2K to stand for base coat(usually flat) and clear with a hardener..They use a cataltst to harden the Primer,the Clear coat...and sometimes the paint..
So that will be the first choice you need to make..
I have had GREAT results with PPG branded paints,primers,and clears
I currently use Dupont Chroma products and have been very satisfied with the results.
One word of advice...do NOT!!! sand the painted finish to flatten it thinking to clear over it with the DuPont.
You will hate yourself if you do..
If you sand the paint you expose the waxes and then the orange peel,cracking shit happens...
You need to use a quality Spray Gun...spend at LEAST 200 or more..make sure you get 1.4,1.5,1.6 or 1.8mm tips..my gun camae with three tips...That should cover you for Primer(biggest Tip),Color,and clear
Start the finish on a friday...prime...and sand sand sand...Saturday is good for color coat...then Sunday is Clear day...Never spray on Humid days..
If you have patience and good to great eyesight your results will be great...plan to spend nearly 1,000 for paint and primer,and miscellaneous supplies...buy quality and pay once..Ive never heard ANYONE regret paying for a quality gun..Spray or otherwise.
AS you can see paying a painter may be your best option as really...a high quality HVLP spray outfit is pricey..
Oh yeah...youll need a quality air compressosr...look at the compressor information plate..It will tell you the compressors HP ,Motor frame,Motor RPM,CFM output...and the DUTY CYCLE!Duty cycle refers to how long the compressor can run under load...as a percent...50% duty cycle means 30 minutes per hour on annd 30 minutes off...Good compressosrs are a great investment...and not cheap..You will want a two stage compressor to handle air tools...or a good quality single stage...Ive had both...I love my new two stage compressor...175 PSI of sweetness...Then you need regulators,aIR HOSE,air hose fittings...And a place to store EVERYTHING thats safe,dry and accessable..
Ima Licensed Electrician and Builder in the State of Michigan so I ahve all this stuff and more...stretched out over a few years the money outlay isnt bad...a couple thousand for me..So...
Maybe sand the stuff first...then see if you want to do more after...I hope I have helped...I have a 1996 900SSCR I have poured money into so its a labor of love...I am painting it over the winter months...Kevlar Tank...CF parts...imported front fairing(I have two)
I moldeed the front fairings to the side fairings and they came out PERFECT...or as perfect as my eyes could see..
Its been an experience and I am loving it...I think you will also..
Theres something about being able to say " Yes, I did paint it" and explain what you did and what you were trying to accomplish...
I love doing this stuff.
Feel free to Private message me as the discussion may not be of interest to most.
In the attached pics you can see the the CF parts I purdhased from RSRMoto in England...half the weight...perfect finish...Perfect fit!!!
Mike Sotomayor
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Holy cow Mike those are great looking pieces! Thank you for all the excellent advice. However, I am convinced that a good outcome can be achieved with rattle cans. And yes, plenty of sanding. I plan also to use paint stripper (per Windy U) on the respray to get me down to plastic and bondo. I have already invested in a few cans of 1k urethane from Express Paints who have mixed to my Audi's "Brilliant Black" paint code. Bike will "match" the car. The alternative is me riding out to Michigan and spending the winter in your guest room so I can use your guns and compressor. <big smile>
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Pillion cover

To get started I wanted to use a small piece that didn't require masking and would not prevent me from using the motorcycle if removed. The passenger seat cover was the perfect choice. I began by bringing it over to my slop sink and scuffing it up using a scuffing pad and scuffing paste. This proved to require a little more elbow grease than I expected and I may just use 400 grit sandpaper for this purpose going forward. We'll see. Following this I wiped down the part with grease and wax remover then a tack cloth before applying my first (and lightest) coat of 1k primer from Express Paint. The fan (spray pattern) on the primer is relatively small and requires some practice to get good coverage. I used some cardboard for this purpose then applied three coats of primer with a 10 minute drying time in between. Ten minutes in the warm dry gym allows for enough drying to apply another coat that will bond well (so I am told). After 24 hours of drying time I wet sanded with 600 grit paper to get a smooth finish for my base coat. Using a gloved hand I was able to feel for rough spots. Since the part was in really great shape to begin with, there seemed no need to re-prime after sanding.
Pics show the part in original condition, scuffing stuff, the "handle" I used for painting, the piece in primer, and after sanding.
 

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V8S4 - thanks for documenting your project!

Mike (Ducoddy-SS) - any tips for painting an engine? I'm happy to start another post if this is detracting from V8S4's post.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Base Coat and Clear

Once the pillion cover was sanded it was time for the base coat. I tack clothed the piece after putting back on the "handle". The base coat, Audi "Brilliant Black", comes with a better nozzle than the primer (or clear coat as I would learn). This nozzle provides a really nice vertical fan in an attempt to replicate real spray guns. Even so, my first light coat was a little too light. I was both too far and too fast while spraying it. The next three coats were much better. However, I picked up a couple of specks so I allowed the part to dry overnight and yesterday hit the flecks with 600 grit then applied a final base coat. I then waited 20 minutes and began clear coating. Note that I was spraying outside because one of my coaches was doing a private session in the gym so the dry times were a little longer due to the 50 degree temps. Also, it was windy AF so I set up in the bus shelter on the corner (which is a very Red Hook, Brooklyn thing to do). How considerate of the city to provide a spray booth on my corner. >:)

I applied only two coats of clear because I ran out of time but also because I plan to apply a decal over which I will "flow coat" two additional coats of clear. Since this is 1k clear coat (no hardener) I must wait a few days before sanding and buffing. Pics will show orange peel that will hopefully get knocked down. Also, sorry not sorry about the selfie. I'm a 55 year old teenager.
 

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The next three coats were much better. However, I picked up a couple of specks so I allowed the part to dry overnight and yesterday hit the flecks with 600 grit then applied a final base coat.
Just a thought...600 might be a bit too rough. Specially when you move to sand your clear. I don't use less than 800 on a base coat...usually 1000. I step up a grit count or two between final color coat and clear. I use a sponge to back my paper as it retains water easily and prevents "burn through".

I use a graduated method, first 1000 then 12 or 1500, and finally a 2000 grit before polish. Wet sanding worked best for me as the paper tends to clog without the water. I also used a drop or two of a ph neutral soap when wet sanding as I discovered it suspends the paint particulate and sloughs it off more uniformly than without the soap. That both stops the clogging and prevents the particulate from scratching deeper than the paper grit (swirls). That makes the polish phase much easier. ........ this process works extremely well with rattle can paint, and standard lacquers shot from either a can or a paint gun. LOTS of elbow grease required..........sean
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Just a thought...600 might be a bit too rough. Specially when you move to sand your clear. I don't use less than 800 on a base coat...usually 1000. I step up a grit count or two between final color coat and clear. I use a sponge to back my paper as it retains water easily and prevents "burn through".

I use a graduated method, first 1000 then 12 or 1500, and finally a 2000 grit before polish. Wet sanding worked best for me as the paper tends to clog without the water. I also used a drop or two of a ph neutral soap when wet sanding as I discovered it suspends the paint particulate and sloughs it off more uniformly than without the soap. That both stops the clogging and prevents the particulate from scratching deeper than the paper grit (swirls). That makes the polish phase much easier. ........ this process works extremely well with rattle can paint, and standard lacquers shot from either a can or a paint gun. LOTS of elbow grease required..........sean
Thank you. I have 1000, 1500, and 2500 for wet sanding the clear before compounding and polishing and I'm looking forward to that in a couple of days. But I wasn't sure about what to use if I needed to sand between base coats so I settled on 600 because I thought I needed to leave a surface the next coat of base could bond to and that is what is suggested for primer. If I need to do this again (sand between base coats to knock down an imperfection) I will use 1000. Lesson learned.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Rookie mistakes

I got back to it a couple of nights ago and removed the tail panels. These are beautiful pieces and I feel like you don't really appreciate them until you are holding them in your hands and feeling the curves. I began, as before, by scuffing them up with a scuffing pad and paste and cleaned the undersides with simple green. I then applied wax and grease remover to the finish, rinsed and dried them, then gave them three coats of primer. Yesterday I wet sanded them using 600 grit and soapy water and they came out seemingly perfect. So far so good. However, last night as I set up to apply base coat I decided to hit them with wax and grease remover one more time. Bad idea. Wax and grease remover also removes primer apparently. Thankfully I only did this to the right panel and I hurriedly got it to the slop sink and wet sanded it down mostly to the scuffed finish. This was ok because most of what I have seen and read (including from the company that makes these paints, Express Paint) says you can apply base without primer as long as you are not down to bare metal/plastic. So I went ahead and applied three coats of base (10 minutes in between) waited 20 minutes then two coats of clear. The problem is that I didn't adequately sand some parts of the piece where there was both primer and the old finish. This showed through the base and clear. You might think the lesson here is not to apply wax and grease remover to primer and you'd be right. But the real lesson for me is, SLOW THE FUCK DOWN. I was so worried about losing a night of painting and setting myself back a day that I didn't take enough care in prepping the part. Rookie mistake=lesson learned. I will wait a week and sand and buff the part out then assess. If it sucks, I will take the time to redo the panel correctly.
 

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I got back to it a couple of nights ago and removed the tail panels. These are beautiful pieces and I feel like you don't really appreciate them until you are holding them in your hands and feeling the curves. I began, as before, by scuffing them up with a scuffing pad and paste and cleaned the undersides with simple green. I then applied wax and grease remover to the finish, rinsed and dried them, then gave them three coats of primer. Yesterday I wet sanded them using 600 grit and soapy water and they came out seemingly perfect. So far so good. However, last night as I set up to apply base coat I decided to hit them with wax and grease remover one more time. Bad idea. Wax and grease remover also removes primer apparently. Thankfully I only did this to the right panel and I hurriedly got it to the slop sink and wet sanded it down mostly to the scuffed finish. This was ok because most of what I have seen and read (including from the company that makes these paints, Express Paint) says you can apply base without primer as long as you are not down to bare metal/plastic. So I went ahead and applied three coats of base (10 minutes in between) waited 20 minutes then two coats of clear. The problem is that I didn't adequately sand some parts of the piece where there was both primer and the old finish. This showed through the base and clear. You might think the lesson here is not to apply wax and grease remover to primer and you'd be right. But the real lesson for me is, SLOW THE FUCK DOWN. I was so worried about losing a night of painting and setting myself back a day that I didn't take enough care in prepping the part. Rookie mistake=lesson learned. I will wait a week and sand and buff the part out then assess. If it sucks, I will take the time to redo the panel correctly.
Nice work- love the DIY attitude- I lived in Brooklyn for years and used to wrench on my old Honda Superhawk on the corner of FlatBush and 6th Ave in Park Slope - sucked when i forgot a tool in the apt and had to ask a shop owner to watch my stuff while I ran upstairs- Also painted some race bodywork on my fire escape... City living- By any means necessary- Can't wait to see the finished project!
 
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. But the real lesson for me is, SLOW THE FUCK DOWN. I was so worried about losing a night of painting and setting myself back a day that I didn't take enough care in prepping the part. Rookie mistake=lesson learned. I will wait a week and sand and buff the part out then assess. If it sucks, I will take the time to redo the panel correctly.
That is an important lesson. Look, if you want to acheive a professional looking finish you need to do just that. Slow down. Don't sand, primer, paint and finish in one night. That's waaaay too much to do and you won't get any of it done the way it needs to be done.

Sand and primer. That's one day. Let the primer cure in a heated environment for at least a day. Wet sand that with the 600 grit and let it dry. Completely. Layer on your base coat like you've been doing. Let it dry in a heated environment for 24 hours. Wet sand with 1K to 1500 grit papter. Wash it with soap and water. Let it dry completely. Layer on base coat again and repat the process.

You shoud do this like 3 or 4 times BEFORE you reach a clear coat stage. After the last color coat is wet sanded and dry, layer on your clear coat the same way. Wet sanding with ever increasing grit paper between three coat sets. This should be done the same, about 3 or 4 sets. Somehwere between set 2 and 3 or 3 and 4 is when you should apply your decals.

Once you apply the final coat of clear, wet sand with 2500 grit and polish. Like I wrote before...LOTS of elbow grease. Lots. If you think you're done, do it again. You should acheive a uniformly satin like finish between each new set of coats regardless of clear or color. When I say uniform, I mean no shiny spots at all. You'll thank me after the final polish is done....but that takes several goes as well and isn't done until you're satisfied with the finish.

Last time I did this, it took me about a week to complete EACH panel. Well....the tank probably took 3 times that long but the entire thing took me around 8 weeks or so. Wet sanding was my only activity for several days out of a week. I got more done when I took vacation as I was able to work on different parts on the same day. Elbow grease, elbow grease and yet more elbow grease. The amount you put in is directly related to the quality of your finish......sean
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Tri-colore

Got a lot done on a small piece over the last couple of days. As mentioned, the bike is to be black with a nod to the old 900 SS and John Player Special livery. However, I have always loved the Ducati F1 tri-colore scheme and wanted to find a way to incorporate that into the design. I decided to do stripes down the center of the tank. Since I've never done anything like this before (and because I want to keep the tank on the bike until the last so I can run it occasionally) I chose the tail piece to start. It's small and would make a nice test piece. Here's what I did:

- scuffed with pad and paste, followed by wax and grease remover
- sprayed four coats of GM "Summit White" down the center (ten minutes between coats)
- waited 40 minutes then masked the center where I wanted it to remain white
- sprayed four coats of Porsche "Viper Green" then masked it
- sprayed four coats of Ferrari "Rosso Corsa" then masked it
- sprayed four coats of VW/Audi "Gold Metallic" then masked it
- sprayed four coats of Audi "Brilliant Black" on the remainder followed by four coats of clear

Note that I was able to fabricate a simple handle from wood, screw and washer that were hanging around. This proved invaluable. It's not perfect and it might not be the subtle accent I was looking for but it makes me smile. Will post more pics in a week when I sand, buff, polish. I APPRECIATE ALL THE FEEDBACK SO FAR and look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Robey
 

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Got a lot done on a small piece over the last couple of days. As mentioned, the bike is to be black with a nod to the old 900 SS and John Player Special livery. However, I have always loved the Ducati F1 tri-colore scheme and wanted to find a way to incorporate that into the design. I decided to do stripes down the center of the tank. Since I've never done anything like this before (and because I want to keep the tank on the bike until the last so I can run it occasionally) I chose the tail piece to start. It's small and would make a nice test piece. Here's what I did:

- scuffed with pad and paste, followed by wax and grease remover
- sprayed four coats of GM "Summit White" down the center (ten minutes between coats)
- waited 40 minutes then masked the center where I wanted it to remain white
- sprayed four coats of Porsche "Viper Green" then masked it
- sprayed four coats of Ferrari "Rosso Corsa" then masked it
- sprayed four coats of VW/Audi "Gold Metallic" then masked it
- sprayed four coats of Audi "Brilliant Black" on the remainder followed by four coats of clear

Note that I was able to fabricate a simple handle from wood, screw and washer that were hanging around. This proved invaluable. It's not perfect and it might not be the subtle accent I was looking for but it makes me smile. Will post more pics in a week when I sand, buff, polish. I APPRECIATE ALL THE FEEDBACK SO FAR and look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Robey
Sorry to be the one to break it to you after you’ve taken such care to get a good paint job but the Italian flag colors are green, white, red, in that order, left to right.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Sorry to be the one to break it to you after you’ve taken such care to get a good paint job but the Italian flag colors are green, white, red, in that order, left to right.
Not gonna lie, I did intend to put green on rider's left after researching and finding that Ducati's mostly do it that way. However every Ferrari tri-colore that I could find on the interwebs had the red on driver's left so that when it is coming at you, green is on the left. I'm not sure if I will keep it this way for the tank or reverse it and see if sharp eyed observers notice. Just to complicate matters the Hublot liveried 488 below gets around this by reversing it on the rear. :laugh:
 

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Love that Tri-color against the black with the gold trim. Inspired. Will look good with gold Ducati decals. Can't wait to see the end result.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Love that Tri-color against the black with the gold trim. Inspired. Will look good with gold Ducati decals. Can't wait to see the end result.
Thank you! Was gonna go with white tank decals because that's what my Darmah had but I agree with you, the gold will look awesome. Just got a full set from Bevel Heaven. :grin2:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Sit rep

Guys,

Apologies for the lack of updates. I've been working steadily for the last month, working on the smaller parts first, taking two steps forward, then three steps back, then two steps forward. In short, I'm having a blast spending time with the bike and am pleased with the results so far. My mistakes have been laughable and include, but are not limited to, working in conditions that are too dark to see imperfections before they get covered in clear coat, burning through edges with sandpaper, compound and polish, dropping parts on hard surfaces before paint is cured, and worst of all - re-applying base coat over sanded clear coat that hadn't cured sufficiently (this results in the dreaded alligator skin and requires basically sanding everything back and starting over). If you're new to this stuff like I am, make your mistakes on the small parts before tackling the tank and fairing uppers.

Below are a few pics. I included the front fender in its original yellow because it was truly humbling to see the beauty in these designs. It made me really want to take the care to do them justice. Decals are from ebay and are intended to honor the original design as well as my old '78 Darmah. I aim for perfection but what I'm getting is a bike that looks damn good from about 7 feet away or in low res iphone pics. Lol
 

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Guys,

Apologies for the lack of updates. .....
I for one appreciate that you have kept us updated unlike some in a minority (fortunately) that breeze through this forum.

It is looking great so far.
 

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I bought a red 1997 SS two years ago because at the time I could not found a yellow one.
I know, Ducati's should be red (or black for you) but I just love the yellow ones. Not a big fan of black SS's, sorry, but hey, you can't argue about taste!

Anyway; good luck with the job! I think DIY-ers deserve every support possible!

I never did a paint job myself so the support you'll getting from me will be no more then: Good Luck!!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thank you for the support! I'm finding lately that paint removal is a lot more difficult than I had imagined it would be. As mentioned, the fairings were poorly resprayed over what was presumably some crash damage so there was no question of just painting them. The old paint needed to come off. For this I used paint stripper which for about 60% of the paint was quite effective. Ten minutes after application the paint was bubbled up and was easily scraped off with a plastic putty knife. For most of the rest, even multiple applications of stripper didn't work. I then spent an hour with a palm sander and another hour sanding by hand (220 and 150 grit). Finally, I needed to resort to my dremel tool to get some stubborn holdouts sanded off. Did I mention I'm ham fisted? Yes, I put some gouges in that will now need to be bondo'd. Sheesh. Pics to follow.
 
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