Painting Your Engine

A lot of people have asked us how we restored our engines, what paint we used, and what steps did we take before painting them.  Here we will try to tell you how we prep the parts and what we use on them.  This can also be used on tractors also. 

First we take the part and either sandblast, glass bead, and sand the part to bare metal. Sandblasting or glass beading is the fastest and easiest way, but sometimes you just have to do it the hard way.  Take caution what sandblasting or glass beading ANY type of SHEET METAL!!!  These ways create a lot of heat fast and it will warp the metal, or ever blast through it.  If you do blast sheet metal, use lower pressure and keep moving over the part, don't focus on any spot for much time!  Just take your time.

*When sanding DO NOT sand in the same direction as your fingers are pointing, sand 90 degrees from the way they are pointing (ie. have fingers pointing up and sand side ways).  This will keep the surface of the part flat.   If not, you WILL see all your finger marks.  Also, try to criss-cross sanding direction.*

If there is any spots that need filled, as in rust pits or dents, take a grinder, we use a flexible grinding disk, not a stone. This helps the body putty to stick better to the metal.  For deep pits or large dents, we use a regular body filler.  Then for small spots and light filling we use a Polyester Glazing Putty.  It works great.  We get ours from Evercoat, it comes in a small can and goes pretty far.  It sands a lot smoother also.  Don't sand with anything less then about 150 grit.

When you are done with your fillers, or if there is not to be done, take the part and sand with about 220 grit sandpaper.  This will help the primer to stick. 

Then get some Wax and Grease Remover, or also called Wax and Silicon Remover.  Many Auto paint makers have this.  Check with you local Auto paint dealer or auto parts store that sell paint supply's. Take two CLEAN rags, one with the wax and grease remover on it, and the other one dry.  Wash the part with the cleaner, then wipe the part off with the dry rag.  After you have cleaned the part, DO NOT touch the part with your hands, the oil on your hands may cause fish eyes. 

We use a sanding primer on everything.  If you get a run or dirt in the primer, you can sand it out, if you use a non sanding primer, you can't sand it.  It is up to you what kind of primer you want to use.  Auto paints are the best, but have a high price tag.  For the small engines, we use a spray can primer.  If you want to, you can use an epoxy primer, but it is costly.

After the primer dries, check and see if anything needs to be fixed, as in small pits, or sanding scratches from any fillers, you can use a glazing putty, like Ever-Glaze also from Evercoat.  3M also makes a good glazing putty.

After the glazing putty dries, sand with about 220 grit sandpaper.  If there is putty, then re-primer the part and then finish sanding if nothing else is wrong with it.  If there is no glazing putty to be sanded, then sand the part with 320 grit sandpaper. 

After the parts are sanded and ready to paint, then clean the parts with wax and grease remover as you did before primer.  Remember to NOT touch the part after you cleaned it.  After that is done, your part is ready to paint.  Remember to use a real thin "Tack" coat on your first coat.  Then apply as many thin coats as you want to.  We usually use 3 or 4 coats.  Use a few thin coats instead of a couple heavy coats to avoid runs and sags.

You can bake the paint in an oven or you can just wait a few days to reassemble the parts.


Copyright 2006-2019 By Mike and Jen Murphy