How to Paint a Motorcycle Helmet
Here's an arts and crafts lesson, but for adults. Becoming a motorcycle rider isn’t a very cookie-cutter decision, which probably means that you aren’t a cookie-cutter person. You enjoy being different from everyone else, which usually translates to just being you, and you don’t just go with the status quo. You’re an interesting person who values an exciting ride, and that means that you might customize your bike to the point that it isn’t even recognized as a particular brand or model anymore. It’s entirely and uniquely yours.
But if you love the idea of a customized bike that isn’t like anything else out there, why stop with just that? While it might seem like foreign territory, you don’t have to have an artistic bone in your body to translate that unique idea into other forms of riding. Motorcycle helmets can be boring sometimes, let’s call it how it is. Most of the time, they’re either really bland or so far out there that you wouldn’t want anyone to see you wearing something like that. So when you know exactly what look you want out of a motorcycle helmet, but it doesn’t exist, who’s stopping you from creating it yourself?
We all love motorcycle DIY projects, and as long as you’re willing to put in the time and effort, you can create something that no one else will be wearing.
Here are some key steps to follow when you decide to paint your motorcycle helmet:
I’m just going to slide this suggestion in here before you start throwing paint around because your helmet starts to look more like a cat painted it. If you have some patience and give yourself time to think every step through, I promise it will turn out better than you expected. That’s not to say it will be stellar looking, because I don’t know if your painting skills are Picasso- or stick figure- level, but you’ll still be impressed by what you can achieve with some patience.
Clean the helmet and remove key parts:
You wouldn’t paint on a canvas that was covered in dust, Right? Okay, maybe you would, but don’t follow that same idea when you paint your motorcycle helmet. You need to make sure it’s as clean as possible so that you’re working with a good base. If you have a full face helmet, you’re going to want to take the visor off so that you don’t cover it in the paint. The best way to clean the helmet is to use some grease remover, but remember to wear gloves so that you aren’t marking it up with fingerprints. It’s the first test of patience for you.
Sandpaper the heck out of it:
Yes, it’s tedious, but you shouldn’t skip this step. You’ll need to use wet sandpaper to make sure the surface will grab the paint more easily. You can probably skip this step, but you might find that your finished product doesn’t look as good or last as long. After that, wipe it off with a wet rag so that you can pick up any particles on it. Don’t worry; the fun part is coming...I think.
Make your design:
See, I told you! There’s hope at the end of this arts and crafts tunnel. It’s time to create the design you want and cover the areas you don’t want to paint with paper and tape. Go ahead and put your first coat of paint on the helmet, but make sure you let it dry. You can apply one more coat, to be safe, and once that’s dry, you can remove the paper from your designs, cover the rest of the helmet, and then paint your designs. The paper will make sure that different areas stay different colors.
Add that clear coat:
You’re almost there! Take off all tape and paper so that all the colors can properly set into the helmet. Once you’re sure that everything is dry, you can apply a Urethane clear coat. This will give your helmet that glossy finish you’re looking for and help lock in the colors beneath it. It’s usually suggested to do four layers of clear coat, so get to it. After that, go ahead and reassemble your helmet if you had to take off any parts.
That wasn’t so bad, but I’m also not sure how your helmet turned out. But no matter the look, know that you did it completely by yourself, probably saved a good bit of money, and can now wear a helmet that you know no one else has. And that’s got to count for something. So enjoy your helmet and enjoy the ride!
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