Monday, 24 September 2012

Wabi Sabi

We have some progress !   The first batch of parts have been painted.

From this:

to this:

All the parts were cleaned, blasted to a bare metal finish, sprayed with a zinc rich primer and then powder coated. Powder-coating is a paint finish that has come a long way in recent years: the colour range has got bigger and the tones better. Essentially I think you get the same finish as a very good stove enamel - but when correctly applied it is also incredibly durable too.

The top yoke fitted to the bike was the wrong sort to fit with a nacelle - so it was put to one side and only the bottom one refurbished.

I'm a big fan of powder-coating - but if there is a criticism of it it's that it goes on so evenly and smoothly that it doesn't hide the condition of the underlying metal. Therein lies a judgement.

If you were seeking visual perfection you would put the countless hours in with filler, high build primer and stopper to remove any pitting or surface imperfections. All of which wouldn't survive the powder-coaters oven, so it would need spraying with 2 pack - a good finish but not as durable.

Somehow though the emphasis seems wrong there - a motorcycle is for riding and in addition, they lose something when all of the patina is gone. They cease to be an honest machine.

So I feel powdercoating the cycle parts helps keep the bike honest. Like Hagi Ware pottery and Wabi Sabi - where the beauty comes through because of the (carefully acknowledged) imperfections rather than despite them.

But don't worry....... we'll get all anal over the Tin Ware  :-D


  1. Looking good Stephen! I'm getting behind, you are painting already!

  2. Thank you! I thought you'd got paint on the aerial cycle parts ? Incidentally I sent you a message on the bantam forum about stainless fasteners ...