In order to obtain these results its important to be very patient with each step and understand the instructions. There will be step by step instructions on how to get your piece prepped for paint and also an instructional video explaining the final paint process. Begin by following all the steps below, then you can come back to the full detailed video to see the whole process! so let's get started and follow me on instagram @Hoovervader
Supplies Filler primer
Etching primer Metallic chrome paint Wax and tar remover SANDPAPER ( 80,220,400, and 600) Electric sander (black and decker) with 80 and 220 sandpaper Electric blower (or something comparable) Shop towels Spray bottle
This is a slideshow of the whole process, I explain each step in the rest of this post.
Here is a detailed video of the final Chroming process
We will start with this Mark 50 facemask. As you can see its a somewhat of a rough print with some heavy print lines. Not everyone's printer is gonna print really smooth so I choose this piece so you can see how this can work on anything.
I always start with a small sander and 80 grit sandpaper.(Black and Decker mouse) I have been sanding my prints for several years like this and never had a problem. Just be sure to keep it moving quickly and move it in all directions. I then switch to 220 grit and run it again to give me an even smoother surface. This knocks down any lines that were not laid flat by your printer.
This next step will probably have people scratching there head a little. YES, that's spackling. It fills imperfections and gets rid of those printer lines quicker and easier than anything I've used. How, you ask? Spackle needs a binder to really harden up. Well, filler primer works perfect.
You can apply the spackle however you want- scraper, bondo spreader, etc. I put a glove on and simply apply with a finger and smooth it out the best I can. Cover the entire part as smooth as possible with the spackle and let it dry overnight.
After drying, you will want to knock it down with 80 grit sandpaper. Be gentle here, even though you let it dry, spackle is a very soft material. Use the sandpaper to start leveling the spackle being gentle with it, just glide over the part making it as level as you can.
After 80 grit continue to 220 grit with the same process. Being soft with your sandpaper keep smoothing out your part, moving it in all directions.
At this point if your part is smooth, use an air tool to blow off all the dust from sanding. ( sometimes I go to 400 grit if I feel it's still not smooth enough). *notice how the part is not totally covered in spackle after sanding, remember the spackle is only there to fill in imperfections and level out your 3d printed part*
Once smooth I begin with a light coat of filler primer. After about 3 minutes I apply another light coat. Then I apply a heavy wet coat of the filler primer.
After drying overnight I begin to wet sand the primer with 400 grit sandpaper. I use a spray bottle and make sure I keep the paper very wet. Make sure and keep light pressure and constant movement because you don't wanna break through your primer. If you do, you will have to paint it again.
When done use plenty of water to clean off the mask and dry it off completely. I like to use an electric blower. You can wipe it dry but be careful not to scratch it, microfiber towels work well for this. Next we will be applying the Etching primer. I like to apply 2 light coats 3 minutes apart and finish with 1 heavy coat. This primer provides the best adhesion for the chrome paint. When finished drying overnight you will also quickly wet sand this down. Refer to the video for the final paint process.