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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I’m a strong advocate of bright, ultra-visible protective gear for street riding. The fact that I formed this opinion while flying through the air a distance of more than 100 feet after being rear ended by a blind son of a bitch in a pickup truck gives it some priority in my personal credo. I figure if your helmet does the job of alerting cagers to your existence, it may never have to perform its real task, that of keeping you among ranks of living, thinking riders.

My pearl silver SHOEI did the job for which it was designed – I hit the street hard, and my glasses didn’t even come off.

My next SHOEI was more effective. It was a blaze orange RF700. (See avatar) Not stylin’, but very noticeable. People actually began to drive differently when I was wearing that helmet. They’d wait instead of turning left in front of me. It was unnerving, but ultimately preferable to full combat riding. Five years later, it's time to retire that helmet, but SHOEI stopped making that color.

I checked out other brands, but there was really nothing as bright that fit me. And since I wanted to upgrade to an X11, the lightest and best helmet in the SHOEI line, it was going to be a financial sacrifice to get one with factory graphics. And they weren’t as garish as I wanted anyway.

So I bought a white one and painted it.

The primary tools I used were a Paache airbrush and AUTO –AIR water soluble paints by Createx. And tape – lots of tape…
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
dude, this kicks ass! My wife has a black hjc (yeah i know cheap) helmet and always wanted a visible, colorful helmet so I told her I would try to airbrush it. I have all kinds of fancy airbrush equipment from my cousin but don't know how to being. I guess I'll start off like you and mask off whatever part I want painted first and go from there!!

Good luck with the project and please show us step by step pics and the final result!
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The graphic I used as the theme is the logo for the 60's band, Traffic. I extended the arrows from the side logos.


After the tape was applied, I masked the logos with rubber cement and sprayed a red to orange fade..

Since the paint is water based and has no smell or VOC's, I did this in the kitchen !

(Helps if your spouse is an artist....)

I took the mask off with razor blades, and since that was a major pain in the ass, I took a different approach and masked the red-to-orange part with plastic and tape.

Next came a very subtle shade of fire engine chartreuse, with a bit of metalflake blown in for shadow.

Hand striped, clearcoated, and done.

Since I couldn't get an exact shade to match my leathers, the fade made sure it worked.


Now I can be seen by the legally dead...
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
CBRVFR said:
The graphic I used as the theme is the logo for the 60's band, Traffic. I extended the arrows from the side logos.


After the tape was applied, I masked the logos with rubber cement and sprayed a red to orange fade..

Since the paint is water based and has no smell or VOC's, I did this in the kitchen !

(Helps if your spouse is an artist....)

I took the mask off with razor blades, and since that was a major pain in the ass, I took a different approach and masked the red-to-orange part with plastic and tape.

Next came a very subtle shade of fire engine chartreuse, with a bit of metalflake blown in for shadow.

Hand striped, clearcoated, and done.

Since I couldn't get an exact shade to match my leathers, the fade made sure it worked.


Now I can be seen by the legally dead...
very respectable work until you said chartreuse! What the hell is that?? :idunno: Did you learn that from the Fab Five? :gay:

I'm just kidding! I could only hope to be 1/10th as artistic as you!! It looks great!!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
NinerPilot said:
Looks awesome dude! You going to pimp that thing at COTU?
Chris
That's the plan! This way you can differentiate me from Guido Lou....

See you there :thumb:
 

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CBRVFR said:
That's the plan! This way you can differentiate me from Guido Lou....

See you there :thumb:

Unfortuneatly no, I wont be there.... Ill be involved in all the races here in Nashville all weekend... Tell the gang hello for me.
Chris
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I finished my son's HJC.

I'm getting better at the airbrush stuff - the eyes and the metalflake on the mask worked better. There's still a bunch of little mistakes. I need more practice...I guess I'll get some crappy helmets at garage sales.

Some of you might recognize this design from homestarrunner.com
It's StrongBad, the Mexican Wrestler. (Thus the tie up panel in the back of the helmet.

Note to others who are going to try this - The Auto Air colors get cured with a heat gun or a hair dryer.

Because I took this helmet apart, which I won't do again, I had the top plastic vent off and I was "curing" the paint with a heat gun. It curled up like an ant under a magnifying glass. Ooops ! :idunno:
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hey CBRVFR, that's some sweet work you did there. Question for you though, how do you prep the helmet?? Do you rough sand, fine sand, or what?? I doubt if the paint will stick to the clear coat or whatever the shiney layer is.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Newfie TLR said:
Hey CBRVFR, that's some sweet work you did there. Question for you though, how do you prep the helmet?? Do you rough sand, fine sand, or what?? I doubt if the paint will stick to the clear coat or whatever the shiney layer is.

Newfie,

If the helmet is new, you can scuff it with a grey scotchbrite pad to make the clearcoat receptive to the paint, cleaning it before and after with wax and grease remover.

The HJC was used, and had been dropped on the chinbar at a gas station, so the gel coat was cracked and peeling. In this case, I feather edged those places and sanded the whole helmet to 320 grit, and used catalyzed glaze putty to repair the damage.

Note - The Shoei is MUCH better made. The HJC is Snell and DOT approved, but that helmet is for kart days now. He's getting a Shoei or an Arai for the motorcycle.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Great thread and nice work, CBRVFR!

Where would a guy find those Createx paints? Is the clearcoat part of the same line?

Did you hand stripe your helmet or did you get help from a steadier hand? ;)
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
dB said:
Great thread and nice work, CBRVFR!

Where would a guy find those Createx paints? Is the clearcoat part of the same line?

Did you hand stripe your helmet or did you get help from a steadier hand? ;)
If you do a search on createx auto air, you'll find a bunch of mail order houses like Dick Blick that carry them


The retailers should be available through www.createxcolors.com

A pretty good description of the line is at

air brush depot

They have pearls, iridescents, candys and generally a really nice selection.

I striped it myself, and if you look closely, it shows ! But from a foot away, it does what I wanted it to do, which is to make the blind see... :p
 
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