This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Making the bike your own, adorning the Hunqapillar

There comes a time when the true nature of the relationship between a man and his machine becomes apparant, you're gonna use it and the damn thing is gonna get scratched.  We stress, worry and think of all sorts of solutions to attempt to retain that pristine  factory finish on which  we spent thousands.  But if we don't build a shadowbox in the bedroom with a dedicated swiffer to dust it daily--the damn thing is gonna get scratched.   You can try get the paint color from the manufacturer, rub the scratch down with a fine steel wool, wipe it off with tack cloth, mask every other area on the frame, enclose the room in plastic sheeting, fog a light coat of primer over the scratch, wait a day, repeat, wait a day, fog a coat of duplicate paint on, rub it down with steel wool, wipe with tack cloth, wait a day, fog a coat on the... oh you get it by now.
I figure a bike is not really yours until you leave scratches on it.  It shows that you care enough to give it the necessary  exercise.  I think of it as a signature.  But stressing out over how best to protect its original finish gets a little crazy for some people (and after spending thousands of dollars and hours choosing components and building a bike, it's understandable).  Just this past week, I read an article by Grant Peterson who (also designed the Hunqapillar)advocates not covering the scratches but embellishing them.  He suggested using red nail polish on them, kinda like exposing the war wound as an accomplishment.  I thought that was cool, but don't like the idea of red and decided to use orange to extend the trim and decal paint into a personal signature.

So after a couple weekend rides, I took a look at the Hunq and found a couple places to work with.  The fork had gotten a little bunged up because I didn't get the front rack tight enough (Of course I was being cautious not to scratch  the bike during installation).  So I touched it up with a little primer.
Then daubed a little color over it.

It needed a second coat to give it good color.  Rather than a brush, I used a paint pen because I am really, really clumsy with a brush.   Testors makes paint pens in many of their basic colors and it is a very durable enamel which can be applied neatly.  I covered several scratches and then wiped over the spot with a soft cloth soaked in mineral spirits.  That isolated the paint in the scratch, if you get lucky you will have one that actually looks painful.
See, that's a trophy scar, like stitches an 8 year old boy would show off in the playground.
There are all sorts of options that come to mind to keep from just covering it and obsessing about the appearance.  You could, if you are artistically inclined, make each one a little design. You can use stencils if you are clumsy like me.  I downloaded some free ones on the internet and, since I have no fear and less common sense, I thought I'd make my own.  Since the Hunq is a Wooly Mammoth made by Rivendell, I chose fairies and, of course, wooly mammoths but finally decided it would look like a collection of Disney bandaids for the scratches(hardly braggin' rights on the playground).  While I thought that was too cutsey for me,  you could draw a heart here, a diamond there, or even letters.  Plan a whole complex signature around the bike rather than just random blobs of paint. Even scatter a message in the letters, a note in a bottle for that future grandchild who ends up with the bike(one of them will think old stuff is cool).  No, wait, I got it. Ancient Nordic Runes, you could develop a code based on...

"What...Ah, OOkay!"

The pretty nurse wants me back with the group now.   No more self-medicating for me.

No comments:

Post a Comment