Although not yet decided in color (I'm leaning towards red), I'm about ready to start painting my engine.
Can the valve covers successfully be powder coated, or should I paint?
If paint, is there a certain type of rattle can paint that will hold up to the engine's heat, and inevitable oil?
Bear in mind that I've not ever done this to an engine component, nor have I seen it done.
All suggestions are appreciated.
I use Rustoleum on engine parts other than the exhaust manifold. That includes the intake manifold and the valve covers. No problem.
For the exhaust manifold I've had good results with this.
While it is not high heat paint, I agree with Steve, rustoleum gloss black (what I use) works good on all the engine components except exhaust manifolds.
I have discovered and like a product called Calyx for exhaust manifold. It's a paste you rub on and into the metal. Seems to work good and last decently.
Use Powder Coat on wire wheels. Less money compared to separately paying for sand blast, costs for paint/primer and labor for all the sanding required. Sand blasting wire wheels is a pain getting around each spoke.....same goes for painting. JMHO
I'd do the engine satin black and the valve covers and transmission cover in silver.
I prefer satin black for the engine because that's the closest I'm likely to come to Ford's "Gilsonite wash" and is much more durable. With an aluminum hogshead I leave it bare. A cast iron hogshead gets the same treatment as the engine.
A glossy engine is just wrong.
I used the Ford Antique Green spray that is available from the usual suspects. It has held up well. I think one misconception is that the engine block needs a extreme high heat paint. If you block is getting that hot, you got bigger problems than paint.
I used the green for the block and head, matte black for the coil box, horn, generator, starter, etc and lower pan and arms and hogshead. do your bolts whatever you want to bite off for show or go.
I used black stove polish on the exhaust manifold and it has been great. A little on a paper towel, wipe on and wipe off and I cna touch it up if I need to while still on the car, but I haven't had to yet. I even wiped it on my muffler and on my jeep that is exposed and it looks great.
On my Depot Hack project, I'm leaning towards a Ford Tractor Grey block with matte black accessories. The hood and fenders will be a dark green and the Ford green on the engine will not contrast enough for my taste. So, grey and green it is.
Henry would roll over in his grave. But, I'm keeping his spirit alive. As for being jedged by the T police . . .
It's My Frickin T
Be careful if you have your wire wheels powder coated. They are a tight fit on the hubs. There is now too much paint on the inside of one of my wheels so I will have to remove the powder coat and spray on a thin layer of regular paint.
Bill: One thing to think about. If you powder coat the covers and not the block, will they match. Colors are not same from powder to spray cans. Powder coating block may mess up the Babbitt in block. Heat may make it turn loose. Dan
I appreciate your bringing that up; I didn't think about that.
I spent the morning at Finish Master, and I've decided to not powder coat the valve covers, or any other engine component.
I have several questions that the guys at Finish Master told me to ask the forum:
1. If lacquer thinner will remove the paint shown in the three pictures of the engine (I'll learn that over the weekend) bringing it back to bare, clean metal, what engine temperature rattlecan primer and/or paint straight-to-bare-metal is best to use? (This engine will be driven, not shown).
2. Is there a different primer/paint, and/or paint straight-to-the-oil pan that's best to use?
3. Should VHT be applied to the head?
Also, will Etch Primer be a good idea to use?
Bill: If you want to see a nice black engine paint job. Have one E-coated black. Nothing will take it off. We had a job for Hyster once ecoating the backing plates for their brakes. They had a brake fluid test. Brake fluid would not even touch the e-coat. Dan.
My answers are based on my own experiences. Others who have had different experiences are likely to have other ideas.
1 I paint the engine (all of it, including the head), satin black Rustoleum, which is best with no primer. Apply it between 50º F and 90º F.
2 I use the same paint on the engine, pan, and other chassis parts.
3 VHT is for the exhaust manifold, which is the only part that gets hot enough to need it.
I tried glossy paint on this 1915 engine and was appalled. Absolutely hated it.
The satin finish looks much better.
The only VHT is on the exhaust manifold.