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creadinger
05-11-2015, 07:44 AM
While cleaning my chain on Saturday I noticed that the paint on the chainstay has been chipped and gouged off the frame in a couple of spots. Probably 2 spots about the size of a dime, so not tiny. The frame is steel, so I need some help figuring out what to do!

First I'll probably contact IF to see about getting a small bottle of touch up paint. What else can I do? I'd also need a sealant right? I know virtually nothing about bike paint jobs.

OneEighth
05-11-2015, 08:02 AM
Depends on what you are after. If you are mostly worried about rust, try using WD40 to wipe the bike down. That's what I do---inhibits rust/corrosion while leaving a nice shine. Don't think you need the clear coat unless you are worried about aesthetics.

Raymo853
05-11-2015, 08:30 AM
While cleaning my chain on Saturday I noticed that the paint on the chainstay has been chipped and gouged off the frame in a couple of spots. Probably 2 spots about the size of a dime, so not tiny. The frame is steel, so I need some help figuring out what to do!

First I'll probably contact IF to see about getting a small bottle of touch up paint. What else can I do? I'd also need a sealant right? I know virtually nothing about bike paint jobs.

Indy Fab does not sell touch up paints, however, can look up the PPG code for your bike and will provide that to you. Then you can get cans mixed just about any good auto shop. I have two ten year old plus IFs. Both are covered in chips, scrapes and so on. At most, I have just always covered them up with close matching paint from an art store. But I have really let most go, and have had no problems with the rust spreading, getting bubbly, etc. And I treat these two bike harsh, they spend good portions of the year covered with salt spray, are stored damp, and other thinhsd most would not do. Indy Fab steel is pretty tough. The only thing I do it frame saver the seat tube and headtube once per year. Both frames are over 10 years old and still fine.

If you are really concerned, the only solution is to have it powered coated. I have a frame that was powdered coated without a top coat in 1996 and it has only one chip in it. That p[aint chip is from a fall that broke off the front derailleur and used the broken sharp band to cut into the paint. That bike has bounced down rock gardens, hit cars, been locked up in college bike racks for weeks, .... and not one chip is in it.

Emm
05-11-2015, 08:58 AM
Not sure if this works for steel, but when I crashed my aluminum hybrid a few yrs back the bike shop told me to put some clear or colored nail polish over the spots to inhibit rust. I did, and the spots never showed any signs of rust. This bike got run through all sorts of wet conditions too--the chain and cassette was constantly battling rust since I am terrible about drying my bikes off after rainy rides. So unless you're really concerned about the look of things, it seems clear or colored nail polish can be a very cheap, and workable alternative to expensive paint jobs.

Vicegrip
05-11-2015, 09:46 AM
I degrease the area with a solvent and touch up with nail polish. Works well and can be removed later with asetone if you chose. Taking a bike into CVS to match up a color gets looks sometimes.

DismalScientist
05-11-2015, 09:47 AM
Chain stays get a lot of abuse from chain whip. Besides aesthetics, paint chips should not be a problem as long as the primer layer remains intact. "Bubbly" rust indicates a problem. My steel frame had some missing paint chips and was 30 years old before repainting it with no issues. If you do retouch the paint and want to keep it unchipped, wrap your stays with polyurethane film (helicopter tape) after retouching. Or wrap it with something else (handlebar tape, old inner tube, etc) if you don't care how it looks.

Aluminum is a different issue. Raw aluminum will immediately oxidize in the presence of air. The surface aluminum oxide is very hard and actually protects the bare aluminum underneath. Aluminum will not "rust," but corrosion is an issue.

jabberwocky
05-11-2015, 11:42 AM
Not sure if this works for steel, but when I crashed my aluminum hybrid a few yrs back the bike shop told me to put some clear or colored nail polish over the spots to inhibit rust. I did, and the spots never showed any signs of rust. This bike got run through all sorts of wet conditions too--the chain and cassette was constantly battling rust since I am terrible about drying my bikes off after rainy rides. So unless you're really concerned about the look of things, it seems clear or colored nail polish can be a very cheap, and workable alternative to expensive paint jobs.
Nail polish is usually just nitrocellulose lacquer, which was popular as automobile paint for decades, and is still commonly used on furniture and wood instruments.