INTRODUCTION TO PAINT
If you've found yourself at this page it's because you've booked yourself on the Cole Coatings Workshop 'Introduction to Paint' course and you have paid your deposit to secure your dates (your final payment is due on or before your arrival for the first day). Here you'll find everything you'll need to know about your visit to the site, what to expect from your three days with us and how best to prepare.
HOW TO FIND US
We're located at:
67 Overhill Road
Upon arrival, you'll see a large, silver, aluminium gate. You'll need to enter through the smaller personnel door. You'll find us at the bottom of the hill.
[Visits to our site are strictly by appointment only and this address is not published publicly online]
The course spans across three days.
These are usually three consecutive Saturdays or Friday/Saturday and then the following Saturday. They are set up this way in order to allow curing times between stages and should have been agreed with you already.
In the event of a cancellation, we will do everything we can in order to reschedule at your convenience. We will require at least 48 hours notice to facilitate this. Cancellations inside this 48 hour window will be rescheduled at a cost of £200 per day.
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In most instances you will be accompanied by one other student.
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For the sake of booking travel arrangements, each day is set to run from 9am - 5pm
If you take to the steps well, you could end up wrapped up as early as 4pm. In the event of any kind of minor paint disaster, we have the potential to stay until 6pm in order to remedy it.
Your ITP course will take place in an active, functioning workshop rather than a dedicated teaching facility. With that considered, amenities are somewhat limited. There are WC facilities on site. Tea and Coffee making equipment is also available. The local corner shop is a few minutes away for newspapers, soft drinks etc but for greater food options, you're a 10 minute walk from local eateries or a supermarket.
You'll be provided with a mask to wear throughout and this will be yours to take away at the end. We recommend wearing sturdy, robust footwear and clothing you don't care too much about... it's a paint shop so you'll very probably end up with stains! Avoid anything too loose fitting, or fabrics that can pill or moult and if you have long hair, you'll want to tie it up. Avoid wearing aftershave or perfume or any non-essential cosmetics. That slightest contaminant can irreversably damage a finish.
The processes will be very much hands-on and catered towards the practical because that's how we personally learn best. With that in mind, there will be no work sheets, tests or cheat guides. We all remember in different ways so however you choose to record the pertinent details is down to you. Most people find that a notepad and pen is enough to record what they'll need to know in the future whilst others have opted to take snapshots on their phones. You'll need to keep records of mixing ratios, appropriate paper grades for individual stages or specific products for example.
DESIGN - MANAGING EXPECTATIONS
Whilst you no doubt will be familiar with the type of extravagant finishes that we are able to achieve at our workshop, it's important to understand that these are often highly involved, multi-stage, technical finishes that fall firmly under the EXPERT or ADVANCED umbrellas. Our course is catered to introduce you to the fundamentals of tool usage, introduce you to industry specific products, demonstrate how to prep a substrate well and finish it to the highest level. To that end, the design we undertake together must not be too complex. You should prepare for...
1 - A single 'main body' colour.
2 - A second 'accent/contrast' colour.
3 - A third 'detail' colour to be applied with airbrushes for stencil branding.
Have an idea of what you'd like to walk away with but be ready to have your idea finessed in order to make it more achievable in the time frame with your newly acquired skills and allow us to offer our professional guidance regarding individual colour choice or graphic locations for example.
Common elements that we would consider 'advanced' and therefore not realistic to tackle on our course would be such things as longer fades/gradients/full-length pinstripes/candies/chromatic colours/flake/non-gloss finishes/graphics that require sub-assembly/finishes with four colours and up/leaf/silver or light metallics as base colours/marble/lug masking/lug lining/stainless exposed windows etc
At least one week before you attend, you MUST provide us with a sketch - no matter how crude - of what you'd like to achieve. If necessary, we will provide notes alerting you of any potential major issues, make alterations and amendments in order to potentially simplify your finish and return your sketch. You can use this template if you wish - COLE COATINGS WORKSHOP CUSTOMER DESIGN TEMPLATE. If you have a brand and require specific logos, you will need to send these to us in advance in a scalable vector format. Just ask if you need help with this part.
WHAT TO BRING WITH YOU
A fully disassembled frame and fork. That's it. No stem, no seatpost, no mudguards, just the frameset.
The bike will need to have all parts removed... headset, bottle cage bolts, mech hanger or crown race etc.
The frameset welds or lugs must have undergone all filing and dressing and all flux must be removed too.
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Removing a factory finish is not part of the course, we aim to work on newly built framesets. If your bike currently has a factory finish, a DIY finish, or significant corrosion, you will need to ship it to us in advance in order that we can remove this coating before paint is possible. This process will cost £80. If you wish to undertake the rawing yourself, we can recommend some products and processes but please be advised that if it is not done 'properly' it may mean that you are unable to begin painting on the allocated days and rescheduling will be billed at £200 per day. Your best bet is to show us photos of your bike's current condition and have us assess accordingly.
HOW THE DAYS WILL BREAK DOWN...
Your first visit to the site will see you clean, degrease and prime your frameset. The primer will give you your first relaxed, hands-on gun time. It will provide a barrier to the elements and help chemically bond the paint products at the next stage. Following priming we will prep or 'key' your primed frame ready for paint. This key will help provide a mechanical bond for the paint products. We also will aim to lay out all of your branding, graphics and masks in preparation for the next day.
The second day will focus almost exclusively on masking, spot priming, painting and clearcoat. This must be done in one day in order to accommodate for the 'active' solvents in the products which achieve optimum chemical adhesion - it's primarily for this reason that we must undertake a more 'straightforward' finish as opposed to something more advanced. Day two will include more gun time for the basecoats, some airbrushing and finally, some closely supervised gun time for clearcoat.
Optimally, one week after the clearcoat stage, polishing can be undertaken. Minor nibs and localised inclusions will be removed. Hardware contact areas, tube faces and exposed badges will be cleaned of paint. 'Peel' will be removed from the surface of the clearcoat. Through various grades of paper and compound, a gloss lustre will be buffed into the clearcoat.