Home » Restoration Update: Sandblasting, priming, painting

Restoration Update: Sandblasting, priming, painting

This past weekend was a big one for my little Kelsey press. After taking the whole thing apart, each piece of the casting needed to be cleaned of all the old paint, and re-painted to prevent rust and protect it from grease and printing ink (not to mention to make it look prettier!). Luckily, Doug has access to a sandblaster through his work. We determined that using a walnut shell medium in the sandblaster would remove the paint and dirt without damaging the surface of the casting, or removing any metal. An added bonus to using the sandblaster is that it drastically cuts down the amount of elbow grease needed to get the pieces down to bare metal.

Here is the Kelsey badge on the handle piece as we bought it:

The press in its original condition

As I mentioned in a previous post, the entire press had been spray-painted red without dismantling a single part. Who knows how many times it has been painted over in the course of its long life.

Here is Doug, sandblasting away!

Once sandblasted, the pieces looked like this:

The press after being sandblasted

While the sandblaster removed the paint, it did not remove any surface rust or dirt. So I still had to get down and dirty with the brillo pads and scrub to get some of the pieces shiny (like the platen and the case bed).

After sandblasting, I cleaned each piece, then primed and painted. I used a gloss X-O Rust oil-based enamel paint. This is the kind of paint used on farm equipment and the like. It is specially designed to protect against rust, resist weathering, and to repel grease. For the best adherence to the metal surface and to seal the surface against rust, this paint requires a primer coat. X-O Rust oil-based primer comes in a couple of different colors. I chose the gray metal primer, but it really doesn’t matter, since it will be covered up.

The press after being painted with a primer

I decided on glossy black for the press color. I wanted it to be simple, yet elegant.

The press after the first coat of paint

It was a lot of work, but we got it done!

When it is all completely dry, I intend to go over the lettering on the handle and the main body casting with a silver paint to make the wording pop. Hopefully the shiny platen, chase bed and new dowel pins will compliment the silver lettering.

Check back often for more updates!


One Response to “Restoration Update: Sandblasting, priming, painting”

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