Painting a Helmet with Paint Pens

The painting of a Helmet

The painting of a Helmet

Scylla wrote in that she bought the Paint Pen Techniques DVD but wants more detail on painting a helmet.  Here are her questions and my answers:

1. Do you sand it first? With what? You gotta knock the gloss off of it so I sand the helmet with 400 to 600 grit paper.  Make sure you get all the glossy spots off.
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2. What do you prime it with? If the helmets white, you don’t need to prime it.  Otherwise I’d get a spray primer, there are a lot of brands to choose from.  Krylon has a flat white primer that I like.
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3. After applying then design do you clear coat it? Yes, but it depends on what kind of finish you want, and how much money and time you want to spend.  The helmet in the video I sprayed it with Polyurethane.  I sprayed it many times.  If you want a killer finish, you have to spray it over and over and over again.
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4. Anything else I should know? It’s all about the experiment.  You have to try a lot of different things to learn what works best.  Don’t be scared, just go for it!
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Life is Good – Drew  (Follow me on Twitter)
Here’s the video clip of my Helmet Painting:

About Drew

Artist, Surfer, World Traveler, wine enthusiast, history buff.

Comments

  1. question: i’m actually painting one as a christmas gift, do you use oil-based or water-based Sharpie paint pens?

  2. how you dry the helmet after the painting?
    just by wind? or heater?

  3. Thank you so much for all of this information!
    My husband bought a helmet and said, “Do it up!”
    I’m a graphic designer and have painted tanks before, but never a helmet.
    My husband even went out and got the Sharpie poster paint pens we saw in your video!
    Now to get the Krylon white primer.
    You rock!
    -Elizabeth

  4. João Branco says:

    Hello Drew!!
    I am from São Miguel Azores and i am thinking about painting with posca pens my surfboard. So i have some dificulties to know how to star painting because i am thinking to clean well the surfboard and than paint with posca pens without sanding. Is it possible that it works without sanding and clearcoating? or the ink will get out with the water?? if it is not possible i wonder if you could tell me how to do it.
    Thank you very mutch, and i am a fan of your job.
    Sorry if my English is not the best!!
    João Branco

  5. SoulScriber says:

    and are there ways to paint the KNOBS to different colors? if so, how?

  6. SoulScriber says:

    Hey Drew,
    I was wondering if you would ever make a step by step tutorial on how to paint a guitar, like: how to sand, how to paint, how to polish so the paint doesnt look so bumpy, and how to clear coat it .. what kind of materials you use , etc . I’d love to learn how your products come out so amazing !!

  7. Hi! Thanks for the help. I want to paint my helmet as well, but are unsure because many websites and the label on the helmet itself says that it will be damaged if one paints it. Is this true?

  8. Just wondering how you smooth the paint before you clear coat? My markers leave buildup and look uneven as I fill in large areas. Do you have to polish the paint job before you clear coat? If so, how do you do that? Thanks Drew. You Rock…

  9. Always low watching your vids…great different technique.

    To add to the clear coat, I assume most people will be using a spray bomb to clear there helmets. By far the best spray from a can is Spray Max 2K Clear Coat. It is one of the few clear coats in a can tat is a 2 part clear, and will harden and shine better than any 1K (most cans). It will provide a more durable finish, and as mentioned is a two part clear without having to use a compressor or a gun.

  10. How to get a sticker off: First, you’ll have to scrape it off. A sticky residue may be left, and you’ll have to use some kind of adhesive remover to get the sticky stuff off (any hardware store will have it). And then sand it. It’s going to be more work to get that off than it will be to paint it!

  11. I have a question about the helmet. If your helmet has the Decal wrap that comes on it like a lot of helmets how do you get that off.