Recumbent trike – Paint
So now I have striped the trike back down to the frame. There was more touch up welding and grinding going on. The Atomic Zombie website motto seems to be “weld, cuss, grind, repeat” and it fit my welding skill level. So after things got close, I fixed any questionable spots that appeared and finished at 80 grit with a flap disk. Then I got out the Bondo to fill the last gaps, divots and make the fillets pretty. This took a few coats not counting the one where I mixed in spot putty rather than hardener (same size tubes and color – darn). So I also had to clean off the non-curing mix with lots of acetone and paper towels. Then after recoating with a proper mix, it was more sanding filing and then priming. The fillets all look nice now and errant grinder marks have disappeared.
For the paint, I used Rustoleum self-etching primer and the color coats were Rustoleum Professional High Visibility Yellow. While a 2 part auto paint or powder coating would be more durable, this paint combination has served me very well on multiple machine tool builds and rebuilds (14″ Radial arm saw, Southbend 13″ lathe, Bridgeport Mill and the CNC router). Undercarriage parts were painted Gloss black for contrast. Unfortunately a week later it is still rather soft and scratching during assembly.
This paint has a less <1 & >48 hour recoat window. I can generally push this to < 3 hours but at 12-18 you will definitely get blistering much of the time. So the painting was done on a weekend where I had a full day available for prep, prime and paint.
I had some business travel scheduled so this forced a week to allow the paint to harden fully. Plus I was getting started on the new idler pulley design. The original pulleys from Northern tool are a bit narrow and wearing badly. So I will make some similar to what you can buy from TerraCycle for a fraction of the cost using spare gears and 3D printed parts.