What kind of paint to use on a motorcycle helmet - How to paint a motorcycle helmet
In general, motorcyclists tend to be conscious about their appearance as well as that of their motorbikes. One way of enhancing this look is by painting their bikes as well as their gears.
This article will focus on personalizing your motorcycle helmet through Painting. It is not hard but that does not mean it is as straightforward as painting a door. It requires skill and patience for you to get the job done and get you the maximum satisfaction.
Most of the helmets that come with the motorcycles have different colors. You would be lucky if the helmet you intend to custom paint is of a plain color, since this would be cheap and quite easy for a beginner.
Before you start painting hour helmet, always ensure that the constituent chemicals of the paint are compatible with the material used in making the helmet.
You would not want your helmet to be corroded by the paint, would you?
Also read: What Size Motorcycle Should I Get? Handy Guide
Preparation for painting
The work area
Your work station should be clean, dry and dustless. This is for safety and comfort as well as hygiene purposes.
Additionally, you should have a workbench with a mannequin head which you can hang your helmet and in the process make your work easier
The kind of tools that you will need greatly depends on the method you will use to paint your helmet. We will guide you on how to go about two basic methods of painting; an easy one and a rather complicated one.
Method 1: Easy method
This method is recommended for the beginners. To use it, you should have the following items in tow:
- Water paint
- A painters’, tape airbrush gun or a paint spray.
- An old newspaper
- An overall coat
- Sticking plaster
- Flexible pencils
If your helmet was a full face one, you should start by removing the visors. Additionally, remove any other plastic attachments on the helmet.
Then, go ahead and degrease the helmet. You can use a solution of dishwashing liquid for this purpose. You will then do a follow-up through a grease remover. In this step, always ensure you have disposable gloves on.
Once you are done degreasing, you should use a wet sandpaper to remove the sheen so as to create a fine surface for the new base paint. Finally, clean off the surface by use of a wet piece of clothing.
In this stage, start by putting on your overall coat, followed by covering any part that you do not want to paint. Use the sticking plaster for this purpose.
You will then cover your work bench with the old newspaper and place your helmet on the mannequin head, which you will have placed on the highest point on the bench.
Proceed to start painting your helmet. You can use the paint spray or painter’s tape air brush. Once you are done painting, wait for about 20 minutes for it to dry. After that, you can then draw the sketch of the picture you want on your helmet.
You should then use the paintbrush and water paint to paint this picture on your motorbike helmet. Apply your painting skills to the maximum. Give the paint between 2 to 3 hours to paint.
Once this period ends spray some transparent paint on the helmet’s surface to make it smooth and shiny. Then wait for 20 minutes for it to dry.
Finally, carefully remove the sticking plaster and just like that, your helmet is ready for you to wear.
Method 2: The complicated method
This second method is a bit complicated and is normally used by the veterans in the painting field. To apply the method, you should have the following tools ready:
- A paintbrush
- Acrylic paint
- A pencil or a marker
- The painting
You will start by creating a color foundation. Use the paintbrush to paint only the sections on the helmet’s surface that you wish to draw. Choose the color of your preference.
Wait for the paint to dry and then draw the skeletons based on your ideas. You will then color the skeletons and you should use several layers so as to cover the paint that you had used in the starting point.
Finally, you will have to make the skeletons clear. This you will do by use of a marker. After you are done with this stage, your helmet will be ready for use.
Reassembling the helmet
once the final coat has completely dried, you should remember to reattach the elements which you had removed before you had started painting.
Point to note
There are certain situations that may be considered unsafe to paint a helmet. They include:
- When the helmet is cracked or damaged.
- The components of the helmet have been removed, yet it has not been designed for such actions.
- You have weakened the surface by sanding through the painted surface into the plastic.
- The plastic surface of the helmet tends to be softened by the solvents of the new paint.
You may check out: What happens if you drive a motorcycle without a license in the USA?
A guideline to applying different colors on the same helmet
Applying multiple colors on the same helmet can give you a torrid time. However, we shall give you simple principles which you can follow so as to be successful in this process.
You should always place your reference picture at the most minimal distance so that you can comfortably view it without straining.
Always leave the part that you intend to paint uncovered.
You should also wait for one area to completely dry before proceeding to the next one.
If you want to avoid the mixing of colors, you should use a masking tape to cover the region outside the areas you want to paint.
As you can see, it is quite possible to paint our motorcycle helmet at your backyard or in the garage. Just follow the simple guideline above and you will be good to go.
However, should you feel uncomfortable doing the process yourself, you can always outsource the work to specialist and you can be sure that the task will not be a complete mess.