51 BMW 1973 R75/5 Paint Side Cover Stripes

The side covers on the R75/5 Monza Blue bikes have blue horizontal stripes on the side covers while black is used with all the other color bikes. One side cover was original and painted with blue stripes, but the paint was chipped. The other side was a replacement cover I bought and it had black stripes.

I removed the old paint from the stripes on the side covers using a single edge razor blade. It came off easily. The entire side cover is chromed. I actually like the covers with no paint on the stripes. But I’m going to try painting them blue as this is an attempt to restore the bike close to the original configuration. If I don’t like how they come out, it is easy to remove the paint.

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NOTE: I first painted the stripes with Glazurit Monza Blue and clear coated them. They didn’t come out well; the paint stayed soft and easily peeled when I removed the tape. As I thought more about the original color, it was blue, but I wasn’t sure it was the Monza Blue metalic. So, I repainted the covers using rattle can spray enamel for the stripes.
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First Try: Taping The Side Covers with Monza Blue Paint

I use painters tape and a single edge razor blade to mask off the covers. I apply the tape and then cut out the stripe section. I use wide tape to complete masking off the rest of the cover. The mask needs to not go down the side of the indentation for the stripe. Keep it flush with the top of the cover.

A Razor Blade Cuts Out the Tape Inside the Stripe

A Razor Blade Cuts Out the Tape Inside the Stripe

Peeling Masking Tape From Stripe

Peeling Masking Tape From Stripe

Final Masked Side Cover

Final Masked Side Cover

The first attempt used the Monza Blue paint, 2 coats and then after it dried, two coats of clear coat. I let that dry for two days or so before peeling the tape. The paint on the first cover came up with the tape. So I removed the paint and waited two more days before peeling the tape on the second cover. The paint on the second cover was harder and didn’t peel as easily, but it didn’t look very good as shown below and the paint peeled.

First Attempt Painting Side Cover Stripes: Ragged Edges and Easy to Peel Paint

First Attempt Painting Side Cover Stripes: Ragged Edges and Easy to Peel Paint

I used a razor blade to remove the paint from the right side of the second from the top stripe to test how well it had adhered.

So I decided to remove the paint and try again.

Second Try: Pinstripe Taping with Rattle Can Paint

I got thinking about how the original paint looked. It didn’t look like the Monza Blue did. So, perhaps the stripes were painted with a different paint?  I decided to try rattle can blue paint in a shage complimentary to Monza Blue.

I found two Dupli-Color brand colors to try: a GM Exact Match, “Medium Quasar Metallic” and a MetalCast Blue.

Dupli Color Paint Choices

Dupli-Color Paint Choices

Here are the test panels.

Color Test: Duplicolor Metalcast Series, Blue

Color Test: Duplicolor Metalcast Series, Blue

The MetalCast Blue is interesting and lets some of the shine from the underlying chrome show through giving an irridescent effect. But it also shows any scratches in the chrome and there are some so the overall effect isn’t what I hoped for.

Color Test: Duplicolor Exact Match Series, Ford Twilight Blue Metallic

Color Test: Duplicolor Exact Match Series, GM Medium Quasar Metallic

I decided on the GM Medium Quasar Metallic. It’s a very close match to the Monza Blue and it will be easy to repair if it gets chipped.

GM Quasar Blue Metallic

Duplicolor GM Quasar Blue Metallic (BGM0438)

When I taped up the side covers the first time, I tried cutting the tape so it coverd the sides of the indentation and the paint would be only on the flat part of the stripe. That didn’t work very well and the edges were uneven. This time I used some 1/4 inch pinstripe tape I had lying around which is just about the width of the flat part of the divider between the stripes.

1/4 Inch Pinstripe Tape For Masking

1/4 Inch Pinstripe Tape For Masking

I put small pieces of masking tape next to the rounded corners to limit the overspray. I can use a single edge razor blade to remove the overspray and I want to limit how much I have to deal with.

Retaped Cover with 1/4 Inch Pinstripe Tape Over Dividers

Retaped Cover with 1/4 Inch Pinstripe Tape Over Dividers

Covers Ready to Paint Stripes a Second Time

Cover Stripes Ready to Paint for the Second Time

Here are the covers after Spraying four coats of color.

Rattle Can Painting the Side Cover Stripes

Rattle Can Painting the Side Cover Stripes

I rotate the panels 90 degress after each coat so the paint would be uniform on the upturned lip between the indented stripe and the top surface of the cover. I also clean the nozzel of the spray can after each coat. This reduces paint schmutz and blobs of paint getting on the part.

Rattle Can Nozzel After Spraying

Rattle Can Nozzel After Spraying

Use Lacquer Thinner to Clean Nozzle Between Coats

Use Lacquer Thinner to Clean Nozzle Between Coats

Clean Nozzle Ready for the Next Coat

Clean Nozzle Ready for the Next Coat

I let the side covers dry for a day and then clear coated them.

Here’s the final result.

Final Side Cover Stripes

Final Side Cover Stripes

It’s not very good along the edges of the pinstripe tape. It looks like the paint softened the tape and the edges are ragged. So, time to try again.

Third Try: Fine Line Taping with Rattle Can Paint

This time I used 3M Fine Line tape, 1/4 inch width to mask off the horizontal areas for painting. I put the tape down the beveled sides of the indentations so there would only be paint on the flat part of the stripe. The picture below is from when I removed the Fine Line Tape. You can see how I used two pieces to cover the raised section between the indented, painted stripes.

3rd Try with Fine Line Tape Masking Off the Raised Section and Down the Beveled Edges

3rd Try with Fine Line Tape Masking Off the Raised Section and Down the Beveled Edges

You can see how sharp the edge is when I peel the tape off. There is just a minor amount of paint fogging at the rounded corner. I remove that very carefully with a sharp single edge razor blade.

3rd Try Peeling Fine Line Tape from Beveled Edge

3rd Try Peeling Fine Line Tape from Beveled Edge

Here is the final result. The third time was the charm 🙂

3rd Try with Fine Line Tape-Final Painted Side Cover

3rd Try with Fine Line Tape-Final Painted Side Cover

3 thoughts on “51 BMW 1973 R75/5 Paint Side Cover Stripes

  1. Pingback: 1973 R75/5 Rebuild: Painting Pinstripes & Side Cover Stripes | Motorcycles & Other Musings

  2. Hi Brook!
    Every now and then I read your site with interest. I have been wondering about my chrome battery covers, which are black, and whether or not I should paint them red like the bike (similar to Jeff Dean’s). I have decided to leave the black stripes alone, and start building the bike, now that I have my R60/6 back on the road. The two will be mechanically nearly identical. My only question is the R75/5 carbs. Mine look like they have been damaged (drilled out a bit) where the float needles go. Did you run into that issue?

    I very much enjoy all your posts, and will be following it in detail with my rebuild.

    Regards,

    Ken Cruise

    • Hi Ken,

      Thanks for reading my content. I hope it has been helpful.

      Your question about the R75/5 carburetors being “drilled out a bit” where the float needle goes could be due to someone replacing the float needle seat in the carburetor body. The seats can get scored in which case they don’t seal and gas overflows from the carburetor bowls. IIRC, the old seat can be drilled out and a new one pressed in. I’ve not done that repair and it is a delicate procedure. I believe the BING Agency in Kansas provides this repair service.

      Bob Fleischer (aka Snowbum) has information on how to refurbish and replace the seat here:
      http://bmwmotorcycletech.info/bingcv-2.htm
      See section “20A. FLOAT NEEDLE SEATS”

      I hope this helps.

      Best.
      Brook.

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