How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose) - The Jockey Journal Board

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Old 11-08-2017, 07:26 PM   #1
kbb
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Default How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

I’d like to get a checking (or wrinkling or cracking) effect on a Triumph tank I’m about to paint. I want to create the conditions for it to happen naturally (but quickly) if possible instead of doing an actual faux-finish.

Any thoughts on how I could make this happen to a new finish?

Chemical reaction? Shrinking paint? Expanding metal?

What type of paint was most susceptible to checking back in the day?
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Old 11-08-2017, 07:30 PM   #2
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Here are some checking catalysts I found online, no way to vet these besides testing:

Solvents in new finish attacking old finish… ex) painting lacquer clear over urethane/enamel base.

Recoating single stage outside of the flash window.

Heavy, wet basecoats, sprayed over with finish coat.

Hard/inelastic paint.

Expansion/contraction of metal or paint.


An idea related to expansion: I could paint the tank cold (how cold?). After the paint is hard, I could heat up the tank from inside to expand the metal.

My understanding is that acrylic enamel will dry harder than lacquer, but it takes a while. Not sure where a single stage urethane (with hardener) lies on that spectrum. I need something almost brittle I think.
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Old 11-08-2017, 09:08 PM   #3
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Most older paints that have cracked are lacquer. Lacquers are applied with a high percentage of lacquer thinner as the "vehicle" which carries the solids and pigment. They dry only through evaporation of the solvent over time. Because of this, the paint losses a lot of it's original volume, shrinking in the process. There are modern decorative painting processes which can simulate the cracking but I don't know if they're suitable for automotive use.

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Old 11-08-2017, 09:54 PM   #4
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Agree. To my knowledge, lacquer is the most crackable paint. Heat and freeze the tank over the course of ... um ... a week? I dunno.

My '47EL was painted in lacquer, as custom bikes chiefly used to be I believe, and it was most excellently crackled.
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:50 AM   #5
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Copy that. I'm gonna buy a tank to test with.

Maybe my first attempt will be lacquer, and possibly find some way to get rid of the solvent a bit more abruptly... plus temperate abuse.
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Old 11-09-2017, 06:04 AM   #6
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Back in the 70's I played with a Custom paint called VREEBLE that gives this effect real easy and I was surprised that it looks like it's still available as I found this Video on it,.... it has an email address at the end for the supplier.............. a similar effect can be had spraying cellulose over enamel but effect is less predictable, slow & messy....
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Old 11-09-2017, 09:02 AM   #7
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Paint it, lacquer it, give it a chance to set up a little & then wipe it down with a rag with some thinners on it.
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Old 11-09-2017, 09:13 AM   #8
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

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Maybe my first attempt will be lacquer, and possibly find some way to get rid of the solvent a bit more abruptly... plus temperate abuse.
The more solvent you put in it, the more likely it is to crack. It will also run more easily, but you can sand out the runs if that bothers you.

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Old 11-09-2017, 10:42 AM   #9
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

That Vreeble is nifty, never seen that before. Doesn't look like checking to my eyes, but it is cool!
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Old 11-09-2017, 11:02 AM   #10
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

I powder coated mine, then rattled following by lacquer. Cracked like a motherfucker! powder and paint don't get on which has added to it!
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:17 PM   #11
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Its called "crackle paint", plenty via google.
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Old 11-09-2017, 12:45 PM   #12
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

I'm 63 and spent my entire life trying to make things look polished and glossy. Always amazed at people doing just the opposite. Free world and free will so do your thing. Some of it can be pretty convincing.
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Old 11-09-2017, 01:08 PM   #13
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

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I'm 63 and spent my entire life trying to make things look polished and glossy. Always amazed at people doing just the opposite. Free world and free will so do your thing. Some of it can be pretty convincing.
I know what you mean,...
Kids today cant be bothered to make something look nice or ''waste'' the time in keeping their bikes clean hence the FAKE patina look has been used as an excuse for ''kool''.
back n the 70's, Vreeble was used for the cracked effect in Murals and in panels and panel edges that was then flatted and lacquered smooth as a baby's backside, then pin striped around as a highlight
it was NEVER used to fake age of a bike or Rod.......
fake is fake and always will be,...
only way to get that look if you want it is to do the job right in the first place THEN use it for years without cleaning it,....
eventually you get the look by earning it,... not painting it.
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Old 11-09-2017, 04:19 PM   #14
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

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I know what you mean,...
Kids today cant be bothered to make something look nice or ''waste'' the time in keeping their bikes clean hence the FAKE patina look has been used as an excuse for ''kool''.
back n the 70's, Vreeble was used for the cracked effect in Murals and in panels and panel edges that was then flatted and lacquered smooth as a baby's backside, then pin striped around as a highlight
it was NEVER used to fake age of a bike or Rod.......
fake is fake and always will be,...
only way to get that look if you want it is to do the job right in the first place THEN use it for years without cleaning it,....
eventually you get the look by earning it,... not painting it.
Lol, are you done?

I'm trying to avoid paying period-correct tank prices for a period-correct bike. Not going to do a full restoration on this bike to aesthetically match a new paint job just because some blowhard on the internet thinks it's "fake". I think I see some kids on your lawn, if you need someone to yell at.
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Old 11-09-2017, 04:21 PM   #15
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

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The more solvent you put in it, the more likely it is to crack. It will also run more easily, but you can sand out the runs if that bothers you.

Bob
Lots of good suggestions coming in... Time to experiment. Thanks everyone.
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Old 11-09-2017, 04:33 PM   #16
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Shoot lacquer over an enamel base and it will crack immediately.
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Old 11-09-2017, 04:57 PM   #17
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

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Shoot lacquer over an enamel base and it will crack immediately.
Bingo, give the man a star by his name. the enamel needs to sit overnight, to create a shell on the outside. Then shoot the lacquer. Only drawback is the enamel will take a week to cure, if it does it that quick. It has to have a heavy coat of enamel, so it does take time to cure overall.
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Old 11-09-2017, 05:48 PM   #18
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

Hey, that ‘blowhard’ gave you two correct answers before everyone else repeated them, and put some fucking time into helping you. Plus he’s old enough to have earned the right to tease us young ‘uns.

I personally offer a no-hassle paint / parts ageing service: drop it off at my place any time you like and I’ll have it back to you old as new in 25yrs - good rates too.
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Old 11-09-2017, 06:32 PM   #19
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Default Re: How to make a new paint job check/crack (on purpose)

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Shoot lacquer over an enamel base and it will crack immediately.
It'll wrinkle as the lacquer solvent attacks the enamel, but I've seen that happen and it doesn't look a lot like an old crazed, checked finish. Maybe it would work for him with some experimentation, however. You never know what works with off the wall stuff like this.

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Old 11-09-2017, 07:08 PM   #20
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That was teasing? You could have fooled me.
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