Powder and Ceramic Coating

Small details make a huge difference when it comes down to detailing anything, and the motor is no exception. So today I stopped by Sunrise Automotive to pick up a few pieces that will be powder-coated gloss black by Topp Coat Powder Coating right here in Orange City, FL.

This morning I did a quick search for powder coating services near my home, and lo and behold, this shop is less than two miles from my house.

So I dropped off twelve pieces, including pulleys and brackets, which should be done in about a week. John, one of the shop owners, sent me a "before" photo of the parts inventory, which was great since I forgot to snap a few beforehand.

Unfortunately, I did not know that Topp Coat also offered ceramic coating, otherwise, I would've let them take care of the exhaust manifolds at the same time. Anyway, those are going to be done by Performance Kote of Orlando.

For the exhaust manifolds, I chose a cast finish instead of the traditional shiny coating, which looks great on headers but not so much for OEM exhaust manifolds, in my opinion.

We'll see if the cast ceramic finish was the right choice in about a week. But needless to say, anything will be far better than the oxidized look.

And even though I was able to chase the stud threads, they still look horrible and ready to be replaced, so I ordered a new set of exhaust studs and brass bolts.

I am going to let Mark at the shop deal with removing the old ones since they have "welded" themselves to the manifolds, and heating them with a torch is the only way to get them to come off.

Almost as an afterthought, I realized that the hood locks would also benefit from powder coating, so I took them apart and will also get them coated gloss black. The springs I will paint gold for a little contrast and definition, but that's it as far as color goes under the hood.

By the way, the chipped paint is courtesy of the paint shop which did not have the right tools or know-how, to adjust the hood properly after they painted the front of my car. A little patience and care go a long way to prevent marring.

After disassembly, I filed the bottom lock-nut to eliminate as many of the deep scratches it ended up with. The top plate is stainless steel so I sanded and polished it, and the same goes for the alignment pins. I will post photos of the finished product once it's done.

Even though some of these parts show their age and use, they clean up fairly well and look a lot better after a thorough cleaning and polishing, so there was no need to replace them.

And I will make sure the locks are aligned properly before tightening and will use a brass drift punch instead of Channellock® pliers, to lock them in place.

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