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i have a 1987 gl1200 with 34,000 miles. i have went through the bike bumper to bumper and repaired any mechanical problems. it runs and rides like a new bike. the problem i am having is paint. it has been painted at some time and poorly done. i want to remove all the old paint and repaint it.my question is how to remove the old paint? soda blasting comes to mind. iknow nothing about soda blasting, iwould like to knowif any readers have used it on abs plastic and if so the results. any advice would be welcome. walkabout :)
 

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I would sand it by hand. Your not talking about that much area and the ABS is very soft. If you end up with any residual media imbedded in the ABS you will have nasty paint contamination problems. The Street Rod crowd has reported substantial paint contamination problems on car bodies that have been soda blasted.

steve
 

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Village Whack Job...
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Soda blasting will create more problems than it will solve. I learned that the hard way.
 

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i agree just get out the o'l scotch brite pads and start rubbin it smooth
 

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I heard/read someplace on one of these sites about blasting with nut shell pieces or coconut husk something like that..anyone remember know about that.
 

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It isn't a good idea to remove all the paint from the plastic. The panels will have etch primer under all the paint and that's what keeps the paint from flaking off. I would do like Steve says and sand the panels by hand.
 

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I agree, it will take a while, but sand it. If it was metal you could sandblast it, but you shouldn't blast ABS plastic with anything. Do not use any kind of paint remover, it melts plastic. I'm assuming they probably painted over the original paint. If they did a poor job, you will need to sand it down to the original paint, especially since you don't know what they used. You can use lacquer over enamel, but not enamel over lacquer. If you are going to have it done professionally, catalyzed enamel is the only way to go. Don't try to use this stuff yourself unless you know how. It takes a lot of experience to get it right, and the catalyst is basically superglue, it will do serious harm to your lungs.
 

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and the catalyst is basically superglue, it will do serious harm to your lungs.
Come on, I resemble that remark. Besides, you work in a/c's, you know as well as anyone that hitting refrigerant with a torch is much worse for your lungs.

Back to the subject at hand, if I were you walkabout, I'd hand sand it. I wouldn't even use a DA. What I might use is one of those wedge style finishing sanders, but just know that those will leave tiny swirl like scratches that will have to be filled (and the filler WILL have to be hand sanded). And honestly, I don'thow well bondo works onABS, but assuming it works, youcould go with that method. I think anything else would be more a lesson insculpting the plastic rather thanstripping it.

As far as paint, you can get an ok finish with thosesingle stage urithanes, but if you got the time, gun, ventilation, mask, body suit, timers, mixing cups, filters, dryers,a really good spray boothand money, catalyzed acrylics really are the way to go. It won't neccissarily look better than the single stage, but it will last a hell of a lot longer, especially on a soft flexable surface. The reality is, the less experienced you are with paint, the more clear you need to lay so you have some meat to sand back.

The worst paint job in the world can look pretty good with enough wet sanding and buffing. That's been my experience anyway.
 

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You guys advocating that this poor sap hand-strip multiple layers of gawd-knows-what paint are sadistic. What's he supposed to use - 40? That'll leave a nice finish.

Issues with painting over a soda-blasted surface mean it wasn't properly cleaned/prepped - period.

You should be able to use glass bead if nothing else and follow up with a light sanding with 240 dry or 400 wet to leave a nice surface for priming/sealing.
 

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Buy a decent sander and just sand the thing already:?
 

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You guys advocating that this poor sap hand-strip multiple layers of gawd-knows-what paint are sadistic
Now, now, now, in all fairness, I did sort of recomend using a power sander. My concern iswhat blasting (with any media)would do to the butter soft plastic under the paint. I do agree that any "contamination" issues are a result of poor prep work.

Besides, I'm not just sadistic, I'm also a massakist having stipped an entire VW rabbit convertible (with three different paint jobs) completely with a DA, wedge sander, and yes, even by hand.:raspberry:

It may not be pleasent, but sometimes you just gots to bit da bullet.
 

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As a finisher by trade, I would suggest that you let a pro do your paint. Unless you are not as picky and can live with some flaws, and have some basic equipment and knowledge of automotive painting, it don't pay. Not to say that alot of folks even rattlecan thier bikes and get a decent finish, it's just alot more work than you would think. I media blast stuff all the time, and it's a matter of "feel" for the substrate beneath the paint. You gotta keep a distance and air pressure just right, or you'll be destroying plastic panels left and right. Hand sanding is by far the best for a novice, albeit slow and hard work. Those little detail sanders have damaged more surfaces than you'd believe. They are aggressive, and can "wallow" out a surface. And trust me, it'll show. It took me 30+ years to get comfortable with painting vehicles, and to this day, I get nervous when it comes time to lay down a finish for money. Your eyes don't lie! Just my opinion, jimsjinx
 
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