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I have the suspension out of my 74 spider replacing tie rod ends, bushings etc. I would like to paint all the components but have also been considering powder coating.
I know there was a thread some time ago but with new materials popping up on occasion, I wondered if there was anything new under the sun or improvements on existing materials.
I'm told powder coating will also chip if hit with a rock so I wonder if it's worth the extra cost?
Has anyone had good experiences with Eastwood products or is anyone familiar with SEM paint products? I'm told SEM seems to be a bit more durable.
I know the key to durability in general is a super clean surface to start out with and a high quality primer; creating a good bond.
Thanks all!
 

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Painting

Hi,

I just finished all the suspension parts on a Fiat spider that I am restoring and I used POR-15 on everything. I sandb,asted all the components and then painted them with POR-15 using a brush. They came out glossy black and very very smooth. I am going to leave them like that as they are not that exposed to sunlight and I am not going to top coat them with the POR 15 chassis coat which is a satin finish and does prtect them from direct sunlight. I decided to do this on the Fiat as an experiment to see how it will hold up. I cannot give you any long term results but I can tell that I have "accidently" dropped a contol arm on the cement shop floor and absolutely no chipping or damage. This stuff is aslo a rust inhibitor paint as well.

I am doing this prior to doing my 69 Alfa Spider to see how it holds up and looks. I was going to powder coat everything on the Alfa but I might use the POR15 on it as well.

I can take some pictures tonight of the parts that I have done in POR-15 if you are interested. Doing the powder coating requires the same clean up on the parts as POR-15 so the prep work is the same. I bought an Eastwood powder coat gun and have doing my own powder coating as well. Great stuff but it can chip under certain circumstances.

I am quite sold on the POR 15, I cleaned off the underside of the Fiat and did the entire bottom side of that in POR15 as well. This I am goint to do to the Alfa, then undercoat it with European paintable texture undercoat, then paint over that with POR15 2 part epoxy hard nose paint in the same color as the car .

I have already undercoated the Fiat, still trying to decide if I am going to paint the underside of the Fiat.

Thanks, Rick
 

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powder coating has two types, thermosetting and thermoplastic. One will certainly resist chipping more than the other but how much more and compared to paint, I don't know.

I have always heard powder coating would chip but much, much less than paint and provided a much more durable finish.

If you have a local coater you would use I would check with him to see what he has, might not have the latest, greatest.
 

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POR-15 is good stuff !
Powdercoat has it's place and can be great on suspension bits. Very durable and resists rock chips. It will chip if you hit a big enough rock !

I use powdercoat on things like fan shrouds, air cleaner cans, metal brake fluid containers because it covers well, comes in the right color/gloss finish and resists fuel and other solvents used in the engine compartment.

On the chassis, I like the POR-15 chassis black only. One coat on clean metal and it looks right and is tough as nails. Stays like this for years.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Wow; that's some work. But I'm sure well worth the effort. I did use POR 15 on some areas of my Morgan suspension as well as under the car. So far so good. I would have thought to try that on the Alfa but I was told that the POR actually needed some amount of rust to adhere properly. This was not from a knowledgeable source, just someone repeating what he heard. I will investigate in more; it really is a great product. I would love to do the bottom of my car after I have some work done on my floors. A few photos would be nice; thanks!
 

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I just used regular old rattle can spray paint. This is stuff you're not even going to see once it's all assembled and roadworthy. Furthermore, there are no Alfas in junkyards because of rusted out tie-rods or control arms, it's not something you need to worry about.
 

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For body panels yes but the arms, rods and other suspension components are not things that are in danger of rusting away. The idea of powder coating the lower A-arms, it just seems to me that for the money, there's more bang for the buck in a host of possible options and upgrades in other areas from shocks to cams. Powder coating suspension components is something that you are never going to see or feel - nor is it beneficial in any way since it is completely unnecessary.
 

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You are soo right !
A normally operating Alfa will coat the entire bottom of the car with oil so no paint is required ! ;^)
 

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Hi Folks,

I used POR 15 Chassis Black on the "Chassis & Suspension Parts" of my `57 TR3 I was restoring (Nut & Bolt). This stuff is "Great"; Not Inexpensive (Approx. $50.00 pint) but really goes a long way & you can brush it on with professional looking results.

I`d just like to add; Wear some heavy duty gloves cause If this stuff gets on your hands; You`ll be sanding yourself for months to get if off!! Its "Tough Stuff".

Have Fun,

Russ
 

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Sand blasting and a good epoxy paint is what I do three years ago and still seems like the first day, epoxy paint is super resistant, and it's what many OEM's use. I suppose POR 15 is some kind of epoxy paint.
 

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Good ideas and good points made. The POR Chassis Coat is not a rust preventative like the POR 15. Its made to go over POR; as POR 15 will fade on it's own if exposed to daylight; no UV protection. Thanks for all the great input!
 

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Paint will be the easiest to keep nice and maintain. Powder coat will have much deeper chips, if that's what your worried about. POR can be touched up in place with excellent results.
 

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POR: Use POR15 over rusty surfaces. The whole point of it is to chemically bond with the rust and offers no advantage otherwise. POR15 over sandblasted, bare metal doesn't make sense and is expensive. Regardless, POR15 is not UV stable and will break down over time. Top coat it with their classic black product if you are going that way.

2 Part Epoxy/Urethane:
Expensive and not as durable as powder coat. Must have clean, bare metal with primer base. Think of pelting the body with sand and rocks - how long would it last?


Rattle can:
You are kidding yourself...


Power Coat: By far the best solution if you want an easy to clean, durable surface is powder coat. It is cheap to have done and cheaper to do yourself. Trash pick an old oven and spend $60 on a Harbor Freight gun Powder Coating Gun with 10-30 PSI Powder Coating System . Powder is cheap and you can get a myriad of colors at places like this: Rosey's Powder Coating | Rosey's Powder Coating . Sandblast, coat, bake for 10 minutes and serve.

Do Nothing: Really not a bad option. These parts were designed to rust and still function. It's not pretty to look at but if you are building a driver anything you put on will eventually chip off (including PC) and once it does, you'll get rust.
 

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POR is designed to paint over rust, but over sandblasted metal it is also my choice for undercarriage and suspension components for two reasons. The metal does not need primed, actually it is recommended not to prime metal. Second, it is very hard and not at all porous when dry. Much better than regular paint.

Compared to the other options, considering time, money and convenience, POR is what I use. Sand blast and paint, dry in 24 hrs ready to reinstall. And no I don't own stock in the company. I painted the entire undercarriage and suspension of my Duetto, along with the inside of the new quarters and rockers before installing.
 

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If I'm doing a full resto it's cost effective for me to give all the components which need to be satin black to my powder-coater - he blasts them, & zinc coats them before powder-coating. Does about 70 items (surprising how many parts need to be black in a rebuild!) for about £120 (less than $200). Did a whole underbody rebuild on a customer's car a few years ago, using new springs, dampers & front sway bar - had it in recently for a service, all the parts I'd had done were still good while on the new parts the PC was peeling off in places... Sure, those lower wishbones are never going to rust through but my customers want to see all those parts looking 'like new'.
2-pack epoxy black paint would probably last nearly as well, but would probably cost as much if not more - I'm impressed by the PC & so I'll stick with it, but I guess the quality can vary....
 

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when I rebuilt my car from the ground up , I had all suspension components powder coated except the differential shaft tubes.

The powder coating looks like crap while the enamel paint on the diff looks almost new.

powder coating is a waste of money unless you are building a show and shine car.
If not , just find a good enamel..
 

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As pointed out, powder coating has its uses, but not everybody needs it.

A rattle can only applies a very thin coating; I prefer brushed on enamel to build a thicker, longer lasting coating, and sponge brushes give a much better finish than regular ones. Have a bunch of them handy as solvent may attack the sponge.

This discussion started around suspension parts. A thick coat of paint on the bolt pads or any surface that is pinched between a bolt and a nut can make the tightening of that bolt unstable. I wouldn't trust anything but PERFECTLY CURED epoxy (and this includes epoxy powder coat); enamels and urethanes are permanently heat sensitive. In short, I would just scrape off the finish on the bolting pads, short of having masked it in the first place.

This of course would be true on any safety critical part. Believe me, this is from experience.
 
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