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[General] How to Paint your Brake Calipers - While Still Attached to the Car

Discussion in 'Holden Commodore How-To's' started by easycalipers, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    Hi Guys/Gals

    Its my first post and i thought i would share some know how.

    A simple guide on how to paint your brake calipers yourself and get an awesome finish.

    The most important part of painting anything is in the preparation.
    With automotive painting there is also the disadvantage of accessing hard to reach areas and working with rust / grease and other elements.

    To paint your brake calipers properly you will require some tools and the focus is on removing all rust dust and grease.

    ***SAFETY NOTE

    Use protective eye wear and a breathing mask when doing any painting or cleaning of the brake area as the chemicals and brake dust is highly carcinogenic.

    The tool kit:

    Jack Stands
    Tyre Iron
    Jack ( For raising the car )
    Masking paper
    Masking Tape
    Heat Gun
    Steam Gun or Degreaser
    Caliper Paint - Colour
    Caliper Paint - Gloss
    Thinners
    Sand Paper
    Rag

    1. Step one is to position the car for painting the brake calipers , you need to have clear access to all four wheels and the car needs to be parked on a flat surface ( ie. not on a hill ).

    SAFETY WARNING - Make sure the car is in gear and the handbrake is on !

    2. The next step is to loosen all the wheel nuts on all 4 wheels
    Don't undo the wheel nuts all the way just loosen them a little bit so they are easy to remove once the car is jacked up.

    3. Using the Jack points on a car raise the car onto all 4 jack stands
    WARNING - if you are not familiar with how to Jack a vehicle up please refer to this article -> HOW TO JACK UP A CAR

    4. Once the car is raised, you can proceed to undo all the wheel nuts and take the wheels off.
    Make sure you note which side of the car each wheel came from because it affects performance having wheels in the wrong position.

    5. The next step is to clean your brake calipers , This is where the steam cleaner and wire brush comes in handy.

    Thoroughly wire brush the brake calipers and loosen any hard dirt or brake dust, cover as much area as you can using a wire brush.
    -Do this for all 4 brake calipers.

    Then using the steam cleaner steam as much grease as possible from each brake caliper.

    The longer you take on the cleaning process of the brake calipers the better the end result will be.

    6. Dry off the calipers using the heat gun untill there is no liquid or wet areas visible on the calipers.
    Make sure to cover all angles and fire the heat gun into the hard to reach places.

    7. Now it is time to mask the work area in preparation for painting your calipers.
    Refer to this article for use full images.
    You need to mask and cover any area that you don't wish to paint.
    That means covering the wheel hub , the suspension and drive shafts so that they are not painted in the process.
    Repeat this for all 4 sides.

    Once you are happy that everything is covered except the brake calipers, you are ready to paint.

    8. Apply a thin base coat of paint onto the brake calipers.
    Dry each coat with a heat gun.
    Repeat this process until you have good coverage.
    Dry with a heat gun. waiting about 10 minutes per coat.

    9. Finally apply a few coats of gloss paint to your calipers using the heat gun to dry each coat .

    10. Remove the masking paper, clean up any over-spray ( Rotate the disks by lowering the handbrake and putting the car in neutral to free them up )

    - Now you can access any overspray and clean that up using your thinners.

    11. Put the wheels back on , lower the car and you are done.

    I hope this helps someone
    It took me some understanding of how to paint to get this little mod right !

    Kind Regards
    Boris
    [URL="http://
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2013
  2. vrsprspt

    vrsprspt Member

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    Hate to burst your bubble dude, but this way of painting you calipers is not what I would call doing it 'PROPERLY'

    The proper way would be removing the calipers completely from the car. This way they would be easier to clean in all areas and easier to paint from all angles. How did you go cleaning and painting on the side of the calipers facing the inside of the car, the parts you don't see when you look at them through your wheels?

    Your way would be, as your user name suggests, the easy way of doing things
     
  3. Husky

    Husky Active Member

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    If you know anything about brakes you should also point out that before using a wire brush you should wear a face mask and goggles, as brake dust is highly carcinogenic if inhaled.
     
  4. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    Thank you for your opinion.
    When the word PROPERLY was used in relation to painting the calipers , it was regarding properly cleaning the dust and grease from the calipers, Properly prepping for the paint work also which is the most important part.

    And while yes you are correct that taking the brake calipers off and painting them off the vehicle is a much more thorough process.

    You have to ask yourself how far are you willing to go ? If the modification is just for looks and you simply want the appearance of a colour change , then going to the lengths of removing brake calipers is really going a bit too far.

    However , if you are restoring a classic such as a mustang or perhaps a monaro then definetly it would warrant taking them off.

    I do apologise if this post made you upset in any way and the use of the word PROPERLY was not intended to imply that this was the only method of doing the job.

    But I am sure you will agree it is the correct wait to paint your brake calipers **IF THEY ARE STILL ON THE VEHICLE.

    Regards
    Boris

    www.easycalipers.com
     
  5. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    Duly noted .. and thank you for your use of the phrase "if you know anything about brakes" , it is always good to be on a forum where people communicate effectively.

    As per your suggestion and i do think it is a valid one , especially if you are removing rust from the wheel hubs and painting them also.

    I have added your comment to the How To Guide, and thank you for your contribution sir.

    Regards
    Boris
    http://www.easycalipers.com
     
  6. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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  7. Thumpin

    Thumpin Member

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    Good Post Easycalipers.

    Don't worry about the opinionated. Everyone's got one but if your happy with your painting method then that's all that matters.

    Have you got any methods and type of paint to coat the exposed disc (not the friction surfaces before someone harps in) surfaces that turn rusty orange behind your lovely wheels?
    I've tried high temp paint once which lasted for a while but eventually peeled.
     
  8. Husky

    Husky Active Member

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    Painting the disc and then baking it before installation seems to work.
     
  9. vrsprspt

    vrsprspt Member

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    I only needed to see it was from Supercrap Auto to know how bad it was going to be. You really do need to be careful how you word things as there probably are alot of people that might want to paint their calipers but don't know how to go about it, so I'm sure this will help some of people out.

    This stood out to me because I recently painted a set of calipers that were off the car so knew there was a different way of doing this also. Like I said you do need to be careful how you word things, maybe you should add 'while still fitted' in the title description or something like that just to clear things up a bit for people
     
  10. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    You are totally right -- ill do that
     
  11. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    Thx :)


    REGARDING THE RUSTY DISK HUBS

    I helped someone out today with the exact same problem.

    I will post a how to for you !
     
  12. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    Just did a write up for you.
    It will be visible once a moderator approves it.

    It is prob the best method ive seen and used by many restoration enthusiasts :)

    regards
    Boris
    [url=http:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2013
  13. Thumpin

    Thumpin Member

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  14. easycalipers

    easycalipers New Member

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    Just thought id share this with you guys.

    Recently restored some Brembo Calipers which were taken off the car and we ended up using 2pack paint for the job. wow 2pack clear coat is incredible.

    Pick Included

    [​IMG]

    regards
    Boris
    Easy Calipers
     
  15. WazzaVN

    WazzaVN Wazza VN

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    Hey man. Good write up. Just a few things I would suggest you do differently. If the brakes aren't rusty don't wire brush them, you will most likely see the stratches through the paint! A bit of a prepsole wash should do fine and if you use a scotch bright it will scuff it up and be less coarse to paint over. Also giving them a coat of etch would keep the paint sticking to the calliper allot longer.
     

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