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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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I borrowed my friends full helmet that is white and mine is black, I swear to the Winged god thathis was cooler in the sun on the freeway. I wear a white T-shirt outside and it's cooler than a black one. SO........can you paint a helmet and if so, what is the procedure to do it yourself?

Al
 

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I always wondered this myself. The gentleman that painted my bike said you could with no problems. He would just sand the helmet lightly, apply paint, then apply clear coat. I always thought it was supposed to damage the shell of the helmet but he told me no and he is a very active motorcyclist. Paint did not seem to hurt my helmet in any way and it has been on for 4 years.
 

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Yes you can paint your helmet I have seen it done.
 

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Sure you can paint it. The only down side is it may chip easier. Just be more carful not to scratch it. I have done it before.



First get all the grease and finger prints (body oil) off. Use an enamelthinner to do this. Then be sure it dries out good for a few hours. Then I'd wet sand it with 600 grit paper. I'd use an acrylic enamel on it. Be careful to not try to cover in one coat or it will run. Getting a good finish and not running is a bit of skill. I'd put on a primer first and then the color. You could put a clear coat if you want too.



You could use a spray can. Follow the time between coats and drying instruction on the can.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
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The reason I asked was 'performance'. I had a black helmet i painted red to match a bike I had and it chipped like you wouldn't believe. Any little bump was a chip out. When I say i painted it red, I bought some Krylon and painted it red. Not the best job.....I never even wore it, it was on my sissy bar and kept falling off.



As for the heat factor, do you think the white would need a good light colored prier underneathto buffet the color change and be effective? AND can I do this myself with spray cans?
 

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My grandson has a motocross helmet that we bought new and it's obvious that it was painted. Yes, if you drop or bump it more than likely it will chip.
You are correct about the color. If you put a white object in the sun, it will be much cooler than a black object. (white reflects all light, black absorbs all light).
Jim(inSC)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
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Well I did my lower chrome fairing cover (over the filter) and the color match was terrible Chrome Ain't Chrome) I e-mailed them and they send me a case of black (my bike color and other paints. It didn't hold up after I re-did it all , but i won't blame dulpi-color. They went way above and beyond for one complaining e-mail.

I have a long trip south coming up and I'm gonna give something a try. Thanks for the tips on saying I can do it myself instead of a paint shop.
 

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helmet makers will always tell you not to paint them so you dont hide their brand.. thats a lot of crap, you can paint it any color you want. go ahead!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
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Well you talked me into it, tomorrow a light sanding to scuff it up, prime and paint. Thanks



Al
 

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In autoracing, we always pained the high dollar helmets. In fact, the really cool way to do it is to order a primered shell from the manufacturer, paint it, and return it to the the manufacturer for the final build. Some of the really cool helmets incorporated chrome as Penske does.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
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I got no idea why I bought a black helmet. It's only a couple months old so i'm doing it the cheapest way I can.
 

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If you are in a state (or ride in one) that has mandatory helmet laws you may want to watch the DOT sticker. If it can be removed and re-applied you would probably be ok. If not, maybe you could mask it off before painting. I'm not sure how picky they get about the DOT stickers. It could be if you are not wearing a pudding bowl or a German army helmet they won't give you any notice :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
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Too late all emblems gone. But now that you mentioned it, i'll probably get busted somewhere.
 

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Predator...

I have done a lot of auto-bike trimpainting

You may want to do yourself a favor and buy your paint from an auto paint finish supplier. "NOT touch-up paint from an auto parts store". They can mix any color, even white, but it will be in a single stage "auto finish" paint. They can also put it in a spray rattle can for you. Here it's about $15 to $25 a can, depending on the paint used. Metallics need to be applied with a gun and are two stage... base coat, clear coat. Strait colors, single stage,apply great from a rattle can.

The quality of the paint along with the quality of the surface prep will make all the difference in how it looks, and the auto finish paintwill not be so apt to chip and flake.
 

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Predator wrote:
Too late all emblems gone. But now that you mentioned it, i'll probably get busted somewhere.
I should have kept my mouth shut :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
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I've sat here with several different sanders/grit andpre-paint prep. The place I used to work for handled businesses that dealt with paints/primers/preps. My main concern as silly as this my sound was if the helmet was black (even underneath, was it still going to project the heat. I talked to the bodyshop supply I used to buy from and they suggested this, take it for what its worth.

Sand/scuff original paint

tack off residue

medium gray prime

light sand

tack off residue

light grey prime

light sand

tack off residue

white

white

white..............................
 

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jwhitmore44 wrote:
If you are in a state (or ride in one) that has mandatory helmet laws you may want to watch the DOT sticker. If it can be removed and re-applied you would probably be ok. If not, maybe you could mask it off before painting. I'm not sure how picky they get about the DOT stickers. It could be if you are not wearing a pudding bowl or a German army helmet they won't give you any notice :)
I got 2 helmets when I bought my GW. They both had the DOT stickers removed and were replaced by a GL sticker. One of the helmets (a Shoei) I wear most of the time has a "Snell standard" sticker inside. The snell standard a more stringent test then DOT. So hopfully if I'm ever questioned on the lack of a DOT sticker I can talk myself out of a ticket. Or else maybe I'll fight it in court. :)
 

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Light sand, prime... Light sand, prime...... that's to fill dents and imperfections on body panels!
Here is what I have done..

Scuff off the glaze with a scotch-bright style pad. Get all the ridges and trim areas.

Tack - blow off residue with clean air.

Mask off everything not to be painted.

Apply multi light coats of white... say 2 0r 3.

Final heavy coat of white. Not too heavy because you do not want curtains "runs".

This will give you a good hard shine.

The white will cover the black just fine because it is a heavy bodied paint. For this application one dosen't have to go to the extreme details of a "custom auto finish". In fact on most trim, most of the details can be skipped...... especially if one is to use automotive paint in a rattle can!

Just my 2 cents.
 

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Arai says the outer shell can be painted with no problems, it's the soft Styrofoam inner that can be damaged by solvents and heat lamps.
 
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