Repainting a safe. Advice?


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SuedePflow
August 26, 2013, 05:40 PM
As some of you know, I recently picked up an older Amsec safe. It's in good shape except for the paint. I figured it's would be a fun garage project to restore it to a good looking safe again. But though I'm a capable, hands-on kind of guy, I have no experience with this, so I have a few questions.


I spoke with my bodyshop buddy today, and he suggested starting with 150 grit on a DA to get the current scratches out. Then going over it with 400 grit. Then, apply a 2-part primer surfacer. Then final sand with a 600 grit.

Sound OK so far?

I planned to keep it simple and paint it black. He suggested a 2-part tractor enamel. Would that be a better route than paint and clear coat? Thoughts/opinions on the two? I'd rather go with whichever is more scratch resistant and will hold up best over time.


As always, I'm wide open to advice. Sanding starts tomorrow night. :)

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Texan Scott
August 26, 2013, 06:55 PM
Anything made to adhere to metal and withstand the elements. Never would've thought of tractor enamel, but probably as good as anti-fouling boat paint.

AlexanderA
August 27, 2013, 11:32 AM
You might want to consider a crinkle paint instead of a gloss black. It would save you a lot of preparation work. Many safes were originally painted with crinkle.

Crashbox
August 27, 2013, 09:57 PM
I don't know if they still make Glyptal #1209 black enamel but that stuff is one of the very toughest enamels I've ever used. Not cheap though.

ColtPythonElite
August 27, 2013, 10:02 PM
Tractor enamel is tough stuff when applied properly. I have a motorcycle trailer I painted with it 15 years ago. It has sat outside ever since and held up well.

Coltdriver
August 27, 2013, 11:58 PM
I was going to say get yourself a two part (epoxy) paint. And since you want black a two part tractor enamel will do just that. It will be much tougher than any clear coat over a color. Once its tucked in you won't see much paint anyway.

SuedePflow
August 28, 2013, 12:54 AM
I picked up the enamel and 2-part primer today. I also started sanding today. I got 1/3 of it done and I was beat. I'll be looking forward to when the sanding is done.

oneounceload
August 28, 2013, 10:07 PM
Without pics, it isn't really happening!

This could become a good tutorial sticky for others

tnxdshooter
August 29, 2013, 11:06 AM
As some of you know, I recently picked up an older Amsec safe. It's in good shape except for the paint. I figured it's would be a fun garage project to restore it to a good looking safe again. But though I'm a capable, hands-on kind of guy, I have no experience with this, so I have a few questions.


I spoke with my bodyshop buddy today, and he suggested starting with 150 grit on a DA to get the current scratches out. Then going over it with 400 grit. Then, apply a 2-part primer surfacer. Then final sand with a 600 grit.

Sound OK so far?

I planned to keep it simple and paint it black. He suggested a 2-part tractor enamel. Would that be a better route than paint and clear coat? Thoughts/opinions on the two? I'd rather go with whichever is more scratch resistant and will hold up best over time.


As always, I'm wide open to advice. Sanding starts tomorrow night. :)

The appliance paint works really well and seems sturdy.

Sent from my mind using ninja telepathy.

Rottweiler
August 29, 2013, 12:50 PM
Garage floor epoxy paint is damn near indestructible. Sticks to anything clean

SuedePflow
August 29, 2013, 07:33 PM
Pics!

These are the before pics:

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130827_203354_zps4dabb428.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130827_203433_zpsc8608e87.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130827_203413_zpsc63e2162.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130827_203445_zps007137db.jpg

SuedePflow
August 29, 2013, 07:45 PM
And upon taking the door apart, I found two of the fixed bolts had cracks in the weld. Overall, I am disappointed in most of the welds that I've seen. They may be good enough, but I wouldn't call them 'good'. Hard to believe this is supposed to be of higher quality than many others on the market.

I busted out my welder and fixed the cracked welds.

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130828_203842_zps7eded182.jpg

http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a361/99gst_racer/20130828_203903.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130828_210235_zps9ef7f156.jpg


And this is how it sits right now. I still have the sand the bottom edge of each side, the door, and the top. Hopefully I'll be done sanding tonight. If so, I'll be priming Saturday and painting on Sunday.

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130829_133920_zps909cd614.jpg

4v50 Gary
August 29, 2013, 09:20 PM
Those were bad welds to begin with. A good weld should have solid contact such that it flows between the two metals and forms a single bond.

SuedePflow
August 30, 2013, 03:33 PM
Those were bad welds to begin with. A good weld should have solid contact such that it flows between the two metals and forms a single bond.
Aside from generally poor welds, it appears that another big issue is that the bolts are only welded around one side (180*). The bolts are allowed to deflect just enough when impacted that it eventually fatigued the welds and cracks formed at the weakest and consequently highest stressed areas - the starting and stopping points of each weld bead.

I'm going to go through the door this weekend and finishing welding the bolts all the way around the perimeter. No better time to do it than now. :)

SuedePflow
August 30, 2013, 03:40 PM
Sanding is almost finished. The safe itself is done. As it most of the door. I just need to block sand around the trim plate for the handle and keypad, and it will be ready for primer. I'm so glad the sanding is out of the way. If I don't handle a DA again for a few years, I'll be a happy man.

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130830_000647_zpse1f03ea7.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130830_000628_zps0842cc6a.jpg

CB900F
September 1, 2013, 03:33 PM
Suede;

I'd contact a good local lock shop & ask them how much they'd charge you to remove & install the lock & handle. If it's reasonable, then you can remove the trim plate & either re-finish or replace. I've done that in the relatively recent past & I think the new plate was about $30.00. After the paint, it absolutely looks like a new safe just off the truck from the factory. I don't know if it's worth the hassle to you to take the door to the shop & back twice or not, but it's a thought.

900F

SuedePflow
September 1, 2013, 08:00 PM
I can remove the lock and handle myself. I'd be concerned with the aluminum panel though. It's glued on and I'm pretty sure I'd ruin it pulling it off. I should be alright with it taped off though. If not, I'll pull it, repaint the door, and source an new aluminum panel.

Everything is primed right now. Just waiting for it to dry. I'll shoot paint tomorrow.

SuedePflow
September 3, 2013, 01:45 AM
I battled the spray gun all day, but I finally got it right before the final coat. It turned out pretty nice, IMO. Next comes the buffing.

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130902_203503_zpseeada4c1.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130902_203342_zps1e79007f.jpg

SuedePflow
September 4, 2013, 12:07 AM
More info for anyone else who wants to tackle this job down the road.

This is the epoxy primer and hardener that I used:

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130903_192706_zps7251a67e.jpg


And this is the jet black enamel, reducer, and hardener that I used. Mixed 8:1:1.

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130903_192640_zps5c95f006.jpg

SuedePflow
September 4, 2013, 12:11 AM
I decided against any wet sanding or buffing. I think it looks fine the way it is, and I didn't want to chance messing it up. I'm also ready to be done with this project. :)

Here are completed pics:

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130903_211958_zpsacd3a996.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130903_212134_zps76f6eb03.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130903_212641_zps4625d79b.jpg

http://i68.photobucket.com/albums/i17/paulvolk/Amsec%20Safe/20130903_212715_zpscf52e56b.jpg

arizona98tj
September 4, 2013, 03:25 AM
Congrats on a nice job.....and thanks for sharing.

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