Tuesday, March 26, 2013

In case you haven't noticed ---

Paint has 'Pain' in it.


So, I decided to break out the big components and make some Muskie spinners.

As luck would have it, the painted body beads were in short supply. Warning!!! - Paint cycle alert.

What's a paint cycle alert about?

Here's a clue.. check the first sentence.

Beyond the one liner, well, it gets complicated quick.

First, I need to muster up the inclination to plan and tackle the project... nothings ever easy, is it?

Good things, may come to those that wait, but only what's left..

I guess there's no time like the present to get the show on the road.

Like I tell the G-kids. If you want to finish your chores, you need to stop whining, and start one.

Ok, whew, the inclination hurdle is in the rear view...

The Process


 Now thinking about the project, I need to clean off more space on the work bench.

Have I shown you my dream Spinner Shack layout? It's organized differently, much bigger... shared with squirrels, not cats....

Lots of windows facing the River. My Ridgetop Spinner Shack Squirrel Sanctuary.

Thank-you Jesse Colin Young

Mossy rock formations surrounded by pine needles and rotting leaves.

Shafts of sunlight filled with dust from the disturbed forest floor.

Disturbed as I stalk toward the massive brown trout.

He lays below the fanned out roots of a cedar dead fall, waiting and watching for his prey.

As I try, desperately, to avoid this painting chore blog post.

Painting sure trips the stall wire, almost like writing about it does..

Try that again

Anyways, once again, I need to clean off some space on the workbench.

Painting drags out a mess of support tools - like

Jars of bulk powder paint colors, component beads and bodies, a sweet Milwaukee heat gun, hundreds of paint wires, A few wooden cooling stations, bake racks, baking wires, A bake prep rack, The oven, A post-bake drying rack, and finally finished product storage.

OK, so much for space on the work bench, better plan a lean-to on the Spinner Shack, LOL.



Now a few tests to get back in the paint zone - adjust heat gun temp - Check, windage heat times based on bead sizes - Check, clean up the round nose pliers - Check, fire some wires to torch off any old paint - Check.. basically get organized and try to remember any lessons learned, noting any pulsing body parts or twitches resulting from specific memories.

Let the adventure begin! Now we're having fun!!!

String a batch of beads on to the paint wires.


Brass beads for solid colors. Nickel for transparent colors. Trusty round nose pliers. A rubber pad to keep things from rolling around. This was a scrap for the picture. The real one's bigger, LOL.

Background has a tube of Paint wires with the bearing bead, a tube of ashed over dip wires that were torched to clean them, a tube of used dip wires with paint still on them.

Pick your power color and spoon some from the storage jar to a dipping jar.

Per bead Ops


Position a bead in the middle of the wire and support it with the round nose pliers below it.


Reduction nozzle on adjustable temp Milwaukee Heat Gun. Bulk Powder Paint. Powder Dip can.

Hot Drop grip on the Paint wire as it's heated. I've tried lots of techniques. This position leaves the base and top of the paint wire cooler. That's important for the next step when it's going into the dip can. Imagine counting up to eight. One thousand one, ...., one thousand eight. OK, it's hot enough.

Too hot the power smokes, burns and bubbles. Not hot enough, the powder doesn't melt to the metal. Note** err on the side of not hot enough.


This one's not hot.. This was a staged re-creation using one hand and the cell phone. Note to self, find some hand lotion...

Another tried and true discovery.

Dipping is a two hand job.

What do you do with a hot metal part covered in melting plastic strung on the world's smallest branding iron?

Something quick. Melted plastic drys hard. especially over wrapped stainless wire.

I found that if I grab the part (again with the round nose), only this time above the painted part I can swing over to the wooden cooling station, then flip it over to seat the wire into a drill hole.

Eureka, the hot part slowly sinks, sliding down the wire to rest on the wooden rack. This action not only keeps the part from cementing to the wire as it cools, but reams out most of the paint that got into the components hole during dipping, leaving it on the wire.  SweeeeT!


Notice the paint trailing down the dipping wires. Those beads started out on top of the wire when they were seated.

Imagine about a hundred of these colorful little asteroids lined up on the wooden cooling board.

Time to get Baked!

OK, now what...Time to get them ready for baking. If you don't bake them, the plastic is brittle and chips off easily.

Don't believe me, drop one on the floor. Did I just hear some curse words?

I've found I need to move the dipped part to a clean wire before baking.

If you try to bake it on the dipping wire, either hanging it immediately without cooling or flipping it back against the wires loop, all that paint that slid out of the hole, is back inside it, waiting to bake and harden into a bond akin to lava rock, stronger then say - the love of one drunk for another?


I have a Black and Decker variable temperature toaster oven w/timer. I'm happy with it. I try to do small on-demand batches. This keeps the painted inventory limited, but maximizes flexibility on raw materials. To each his own.

I built a wooden stand for the oven rack, then added those black office clips, end to end on each of the oven racks wires. The clips grab, separate and suspend each painted part during it's time in the oven.

I found, that putting that small round bead on the baking wire first, before the part, helps to avoid a lot of baked part wrestling, pinched fingers, broken wires, chipped parts and other varieties of strain related injury and foul language. These behaviors are known to occur during the 'Baked  Parts Removal Festival' (BPRF).

In practice, excess paint melts and drains off each part while it's suspended vertically in the oven.

The small bearing provides a narrows between itself and the part, like an hour glass. A pivot point for snapping loosing the part.

Without it, the melt off paint coats the wire and turns to concrete. I've thought about putting a split ring hook on it and calling it done, but only in my dreams!

Stay tuned for the Parts Removal Festival post!

Anyways, with this technique I can usually just use the round nose pliers to snap between the part and small bead to loosen the part and slide it off the wire.

I've tried stacking several parts on the backing wire too.

In my opinion, it seems that removing the parts is less frustration, if they're not stacked.

If there's a lot of melt off the part, it's not that easy. Time for the wire cutter jaws, but again, having the narrows, albeit coated separation seems to help.

The sooner after the bake cycle you get to removing them, the better -  and as always - practice makes perfect.

I think certain paint colors are more problematic then others. It's likely the way the mix is made. Some seem to coat much thicker then others.

Transparent is fun to work with. The solids seem to be the ones that coat thick, coat the round nose, bake and run, you name it, but if you want the fluorescent colors, there you have it.

Fast forward past all the remaining toil and trouble (removing each part after baking) to a blissful box of painted parts.





Another picture of the painted parts lined up on Muskie spinners.

Fish Creek Spinners in progress Muskie Spinners 2 oz+ Single Bites
Stay tuned, these are large (2+ ounce) single blade Double Skirted Armadillo's - #9 .40 gauge Fluted blades. Sixteen colors. - Silicon Star flash Skirts.


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