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So, you want to learn how to paint a motorcycle helmet? I can certainly help you with that. I can’t tell you how many times I have walked into a motorcycle shop looking for a stand-out helmet and found nothing but duds or gotten laughed at by my pals because my helmet was trashed.
I decided that it was time to take it into my own hands and custom paint one myself, but first, I had to learn how to do it. I’m going to just tell you this quick before I get into details, it isn’t a quick and easy task, especially if you want it to look professional. With that said, are you ready to learn too? Alright, let’s do it!
What You Need For This Project
First thing first, these are the materials that you are going to need for this project.
- Kylon Spray Paint for Plastic
- Rubbing Alcohol
- Fine Sponge Cloth
- 100 & 300 Grit Sanding Sponges
- 400 Grit Wet/Dry Sandpaper
- Canned Air
- Painters Tape
- Cheap Helmet
If you are going to do this the right way and not have it come out looking like a 5-year old painted it, you are going to need to follow these instructions as closely as you can. The better you follow, the better outcome you will get. Ready?
Step One: Get Rid Of Shine
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After you have removed your face shield so that you have the proper amount of working space, you are going to want to start getting rid of the shiny surface. You will do this by taking your 100 grit sand sponge and scuffing the surface of the helmet. Be careful not to scuff too much, you don’t want to dig too much into the shell.
Step Two: Refine The Surface
After you get rid of the shine on the surface, you are then going to use your 300 grit sanding sponge to refine the surface and get into those edges and crevices the best you can. You need to make sure you are getting that sand sponge into all of the contours of the helmet. The better you can do this, the better your finishing job is going to be.
Step Three: Final Smoothing
Go ahead and grab your 400 grit wet/dry sandpaper. Got it? Okay. You are going to use this sandpaper to do all of the final smoothing of the helmet. This is the final step before you really get into the nitty gritty. Make sure that the whole helmet is nice and smooth and all of those crevices are all cleaned out and noticeable.
Step Four: Commence Cleaning
I know, it’s not really exciting at this point, but not to worry, I’m getting to the fun part. This step involves some more cleaning and detailing. You are going to want to take that canned air and begin blowing it all over the helmet. This will help to get all of the excess dirt and debris off of the helmet. Make sure you are also blowing it into the vents. We don’t need any little particles popping out of there while we are painting.
Step Five: Alcohol
This step involves the rubbing alcohol and a fine cloth. Take that alcohol and put it on the cloth then rub it all over the helmet. You want to get into all of those crevices again and make sure there are absolutely no dust particles anywhere. If there are and it gets stuck in that spray paint, it’s going to stick out like a sore thumb, especially once you notice it.
Step Six: Taping
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This is the most tedious step out of all of them,the taping. The painters tape is going to be used to tape up all of the openings, cracks, crevices, vents, switches, and anything else you don’t want to get paint on, obviously. This is the part that is going to take the most time, but it needs to be done with precision or else you are going to have random paint spots on parts of your helmet that you don’t approve of. This also includes creating a “tape visor” in the space where your actual visor was.
Step Seven: Inspection Time
This step involves inspecting the helmet very carefully. Take your time and look over your entire helmet for any areas that are exposed that shouldn’t be. It is a good idea to cover up the DOT sticker on the back of your helmet so that it isn’t spray painted over. If a cop is having a bad day and wants to pull you over for not having that DOT sticker exposed, he will. So save yourself some time in the long run and keep that certification sticker unpainted.
Step Eight: Time To Paint!
Finally, I never thought this step was going to get here. It’s time to paint the helmet and make it look like new! Alright, so go grab your spray paint and hold it 18 inches away from the helmet. Make sure you are doing this in a well ventilated area. As you are painting, use a sweeping motion back and forth to get an even coat. This will make the surface look much neater and not saggy or runny.
Step Nine: Remove The Tape
In this step, you are going to very carefully remove the tape from the helmet. Don’t just rip it off like you would a band aid. If you see that some of the other paint is starting to peel up with the tape, it probably wasn’t quite dry yet. You may need to touch up this area or give it a little longer to dry. Oh, wait, we’re done! That was the final step my friends.
And We’re Done!
I really hope you enjoyed my quick tutorial on how to paint your motorcycle helmet. I understand the frustration of not being able to find that perfect helmet that’ll stand out from the crowd. I have heard of many other ways to paint one of these and they are all very detail oriented and extremely time consuming. This tutorial is best suited for beginners who want to just stick to the basics. If you have any tips or comments, please feel free to drop us a comment!