Plastics Rejecting Paint

30 Nov

I remember my first experience trying to letter on plastics. was that ever a mind boggler.  A friend of mine wanted me to paint the name he called his 4×4 pickup truck on the bug deflector on the hood.

I hadn’t been painting but a few years at the time and had never painted on plastic before. What happened was funny after I thought about it, but at the time i got really frustrated with the crazy acting paint.

After I cleaned the bugs and road film off of it, I gathered the paint I was going to use, snap  a couple of lines to keep my letters uniform. I was using the same graffic arts or bullentin paint I used for most all my projects and started, and i wiped it off and started again.

After about three or four times I realized this wasn’t going to  work, so I just sat down and thought to myself, what is going on here. Then it dawned on me the problem.

When I cleaned it I used an old hand towel (cotton of course) to clean it with. When i cleaned and rubbed it dry, I created a charge of static electricity to build up on the plastic. So what happened was every time  I got my lettering brush close to the plastic the paint actually leaped from the tip of my brush and went like a cobweb  every which way. The reason it did this was because the paint had lead in it and the static field was like a magnet that drew the paint  to it. In fact after that I would tell people i could paint the plastic and never touch it with the brush and yes I had to prove it.

If you use acrylic enamels or lacquer base paint though, this doesn’t happen. Using these paints is hard for beginners though because it dries way to fast. You can use regular enamels once you learn the right paint consistency to use. If you get your enamels to thin they will surely give you a cobweb.

Just thought you might get a laugh from this, but if your trying to make a dollar or two, it isn’t so funny at the time.

To your Sign Painting success, James Chastain


4 Responses to “Plastics Rejecting Paint”

  1. susie moore 12/03/2010 at 22:24 #

    HI James, thanks for a very imformative post. I have had trouble in the past trying to paint over a plastic surface. I remember the difficulty of it. It is so wonderful to come across information that is so helpful to solve a problem. Thanks for sharing with us.

    Susie moore
    skype smsforce

  2. Kevan 12/03/2010 at 23:27 #

    Hi there James,
    there you see you post is very good with a lot of information that I am sure will help some if they manage to get here to read it.
    Thank you for you post.

  3. Tammie Perry 12/05/2010 at 02:25 #

    This post will be very helpful to me when I start redoing the kids things James. Thank you so much for the valueable info. I am sure I would have made a big mess if I had not read this first.

    • James Chastain 12/05/2010 at 07:16 #

      Thank you, Tammie
      One thing i forgot to mention on the plastic was that you can take cold water and a chomis and wipe it down and it will get rid of the static electricity.

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