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wordsmith

Painting my GT pannier lids... first steps (more to follow)

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Posted (edited)

Since Yamaha is too mean or short-sighted to supply painted pannier lids on GTs sold here in Oz, I've had to do it myself.   Not a task I recoil from, having done so on my previous Tracer, but it shouldn't be necessary.   As an aside, a polite enquiry as to "why" from me to Yamaha's Oz HQ brought a gobbledegook, meaningless, bullshit response.

Unlike on the last lid painting, I decided not to apply a primer/ undercoat this time.   Three small test-panels on the underside of each pannier seemed to show that the alternative approach, using a proprietary surface treatment, would work.   This is ESP - Easy Surface Prep, which I've used satisfactorily before, and which claims to make paint stick to almost any surface, including glass and plastics.  Easy to use - wipe on, wait, wipe off after five minutes, paint after 90 minutes - all of which I did.   It didn't really seem necessary, but I also sanded very lightly the surfaces to be painted, and was frankly surprised at the amount of sanding-dust that came off (see pic) - seems the panniers are made of a pretty soft material.

I only wanted to paint the roughly elliptical area of the lids inside the raised ridges, and began the masking process with some narrow pinstripe tape that takes curves neatly.   This was followed by standard painters' masking tape, then the whole plot was wrapped in newspaper.  Five or six coats (I lost count!) were applied at intervals of several minutes with the panniers standing up vertically, and after each pass I laid the panniers flat so that there would be no 'runs' in the paintwork.   Judging by the 'feel' of the paint-can  I reckon I've used about 90% of the 320g contents.

Now that last coat is drying.   I'll remove the masking tapes tomorrow, then intend to leave the panniers to fully cure and harden for at least a month, at which point I'll polish the lids with fine polishing compound, to remove the unavoidable dust specks.   Then I can apply the finishing touches.   So far the finish, using RustOleum Gloss Black paint, looks quite OK, in fact it wouldn't be going to far to say 'deep and lustrous', possibly not much inferior to a factory finish.

More later, then.

 

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Edited by wordsmith
adding pic

Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Posted (edited)

SECOND STEPS...   Impatience being my middle name, and the paint appearing to have dried-out to quite a degree, I decided to 'un-mask' the panniers - carefully and slowly!

I'm pretty happy with the outcome so far.   There's not much colour contrast, if any between the paintwork and the bare pannier surface, but the glossiness does give it a decent visual lift, I think.

Now I really have to be patient to allow the paint to fully cure and harden before I apply the finishing touches - a pair of GT decals in silver in the reflector cut-outs, and maybe some matching silver pin-stripe, which I have a roll of left over from my last Tracer.   I don't want to overdo things, but if the supposedly 'blurple' PVC film that's coming is a good match for the 'swoosh' decal on the tank I may add one of those too, for a further 'lift', as I have a decent template.

And if after polishing the lids I think they need a further lift, I'll spray them with a clear gloss topcoat finish, although that means masking-up again, a tedious chore.   Still, can't spoil the ship for a h'aporth of tar, or some such thing!

Meantime, the panniers will be put into a wardrobe for a few weeks...

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Edited by wordsmith
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Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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@wordsmith - Those look really nice, good job!  I really like the visual difference between the gloss and matte finish. 👍

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***2015 Candy Red FJ-09***

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the comments, guys!   I'm delighted to say the the 'blurple' PVC film I referred to in my main story here arrived today, and lo! - it is about as near the desired colour as it's possible to get!   Now I can consider adding the 'blurple' swoosh decals - in fact I'll cut one out and just lay it on the pannier to see how it looks. 

LATER EDIT: here's the very crudely cut-out Royal Purple 'swoosh' mimicking the one on the tank.   That OE one almost disappears in most lights, probably because it's against the dark glossy tank paint.   In real life, the colour of the cut-out 'swoosh' is a pretty good match for the nearby 'blurple' wheels, but as always indoor light + camera flash distorts it a lot.

I may or may not proceed with this once the panniers can be handled without marking the new paint, but I don't want to overdo it - often, less is more!

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Edited by wordsmith

Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Posted (edited)

Next steps - three weeks after spray-painting the lids are ready for the next steps as the paint has now fully hardened to the point where a finger-nail pressed hard into it leaves no mark.   I used some cut-and-polish cream on a soft cloth to cut back the surface a little, and was pleased to find that the majority of the very minor surface blemishes - dust specks, etc - were removed, and a slightly matte finish remained.   

Here I had to decide whether or not to take things to the ultimate, and use some 2000 grade wet-and-dry sandpaper to smooth the surface out completely and remove the few almost-invisible blemishes completely before finishing with another going-over with the cut-and-polish  compound.   After some pondering I decided to give this a miss: if I over-sanded (despite doing a lot of such work to good effect on the strip-plank timber and fibreglass sea-kayaks I used to build) I'd probably want to re-spray the lids, which I'd prefer to avoid.

So after a bit more hand-polishing to remove the swirl marks that you can see in the first pic below, I have gone straight to spraying on the clear gloss top-coat, applying three coats.  In due course I'll post pix of the final steps, which will include some discreet pin-striping and insertion of a reflector in each rear cut-out. 

Later Edit:  I applied the clear gloss top-coat - actually three coats with a short wait between each.   I stood the panniers upright to spray, then immediately laid them flat to minimise the likelihood of runs developing.

After another short wait I very carefully removed all the masking-tape and paper so that the still-tacky top-coat might leave a smooth edge rather than a sharp one if I'd left it until fully dry.   Fussy - moi?    I must say that I'm delighted with the result so far.   Of course the overall finish is not quite as mirror-like as a factory finish would be, nor jdavis's custom professional job, but I'm happy enough as it's better than 'just OK'.

I'll leave the panniers inside now for another cuppla weeks to fully dry and harden before giving them a hand-polish with some Turtle Wax - which will knock-off any tiny remaining dust motes - then apply the finishing touches.

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Edited by wordsmith

Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Here’s the finished job, with reflectors and GT decals added, and pinstripes at top and bottom of the painted portion of the lid.   The bottom purple stripe was cut from a length of Royal Purple PVC sheet that I bought on-line, it being the closest I could find to the ‘blurple’ of the wheels, and a pretty good match at that.   I had considered cutting a ‘swoosh’ out of it to match the one on the tank, but here, less is more.

As always when pin-striping, I put a tiny dab of Mrs Wordsmith’s clear nail varnish at each end of the tape so that it will be secure there and not start flapping in the breeze as I proceed at warp speed through the Australian countryside.   Or – much more likely – peel away when I wash and hose-down the panniers.

I’m not at all sure why I embarked on this job, as the panniers will likely be on the bike only half-a-dozen times, but IMHO they look unfinished and frankly cheap in the bare matte plastic ex-factory finish, so boo! to Yamaha for not including painted lids on Australian Tracers as they do on other markets.

Job done!

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Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Posted (edited)

Sorry about the multitude of pix.   I have accidentally changed the picture size in the camera and it will take me a while to fix - these pix are of such a size that only one can be posted at a time.

 

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Edited by wordsmith

Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Last one!

 

 

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Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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35 minutes ago, wordsmith said:

Here’s the finished job, with reflectors and GT decals added, and pinstripes at top and bottom of the painted portion of the lid.   The bottom purple stripe was cut from a length of Royal Purple PVC sheet that I bought on-line, it being the closest I could find to the ‘blurple’ of the wheels, and a pretty good match at that.   I had considered cutting a ‘swoosh’ out of it to match the one on the tank, but here, less is more.

As always when pin-striping, I put a tiny dab of Mrs Wordsmith’s clear nail varnish at each end of the tape so that it will be secure there and not start flapping in the breeze as I proceed at warp speed through the Australian countryside.   Or – much more likely – peel away when I wash and hose-down the panniers.

I’m not at all sure why I embarked on this job, as the panniers will likely be on the bike only half-a-dozen times, but IMHO they look unfinished and frankly cheap in the bare matte plastic ex-factory finish, so boo! to Yamaha for not including painted lids on Australian Tracers as they do on other markets.

Job done!

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Wordsmith, I noticed you've added amber reflectors on the sides of the panniers. Been wanting to do the same but cannot get a size to fit the existing cut-out/position on the panniers. All I could see were two sizes made by NARVA from Repco here in Perth, 28 x 70mm or 44 x 94mm. The first is too narrow and the second too long. A 44 x 70mm would be ideal. What size are yours and where did you get them from? Thanks.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Suu Kyi said:

What size are yours and where did you get them from? Thanks.

Mine are from Supercheap Auto - 70 x 28.   The cut-out itself is a little larger at 90 x 50 according to my measuring stick, so they have a narrow  ~ quarter-inch border around.   Pic below.   I'd prefer a perfect fit but it doesn't bother me that mine are a little narrow and short - it's the sort of thing that you'll see half a dozen times initially and maybe grimace, after which they become invisible!   An alternative would be to buy a sheet of red reflective self-stick film and cut out your own, as I have done on earlier Tracers.   If you care to PM me with your address I'll cut out a piece big enough for two and mail to you.  

Later edit: I don't know what these reflectors are made of but they seem like glass!   The only way to cut them to size is with an angle-grinder and very fine disc, it seems.

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Edited by wordsmith

Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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17 hours ago, wordsmith said:

Mine are from Supercheap Auto - 70 x 28.   The cut-out itself is a little larger at 90 x 50 according to my measuring stick, so they have a narrow  ~ quarter-inch border around.   Pic below.   I'd prefer a perfect fit but it doesn't bother me that mine are a little narrow and short - it's the sort of thing that you'll see half a dozen times initially and maybe grimace, after which they become invisible!   An alternative would be to buy a sheet of red reflective self-stick film and cut out your own, as I have done on earlier Tracers.   If you care to PM me with your address I'll cut out a piece big enough for two and mail to you.  

Later edit: I don't know what these reflectors are made of but they seem like glass!   The only way to cut them to size is with an angle-grinder and very fine disc, it seems.

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Thanks for the info and offer, much appreciated. Think I'll go with the 70 x 28mm as they look ok on your panniers, considering I've already bought them (see attached pic). Will post before and after images when I've installed them. Really appreciate your offer to send me some reflective tape...........

NARVA Retro Reflectors.jpg

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OK.   They do the job...


Wordsmith - a '39 model; bike - a 2019 Tracer 900 GT, Midnight Black and with many farklings.   Redland Bay, SE Queensland, Australia.

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Brilliant what you did with the pinstripes and the Matte vs Gloss Black. I am currently gathering supplies to skin my panniers (to cover my huge scrape from a 2 mph parking lot drop)

 

My idea is black reflective on top and bottom (where your Matte is) and Carbon Fiber in the center (where your Gloss Black is) and I ordered the Fairing blue decal to accent the Carbon Fiber. My idea was to do my lines pretty much straight through but I love the way your Matte is wrapping and connecting the top and bottom! I was considering twin pinstripes splitting the top and bottom but I think it may be too much with the decals.

 

 

Excellent job, I love it!

 

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