After an incredibly long journey, we finally have the gearbox casing painted. Almost as time consuming as the paint process was the choosing of a correct paint. The right finish had to be of course the correct colour, the correct gloss, and extremely durable.
First came choosing the correct colour and gloss level. This was done by studying a number of original un-restored casings from which we determined a close similarity allowing us to know exactly what to shoot for.
Next came choosing the paint in which close to 30 different silvers were evaluated. Some came from spray cans (as seen below) and others through mixed catalysed paints. It is at this time that we have to give a special thanks to our new friend George B. who literally went to the ends of the earth to help us. George took a special interest in our project and rallied the top chemists at PPG to try and match the finish we were after. In the end, the newer water borne toners just could not achieve the colour we were after which left us to poll spray cans for the correct finish.
With a number of finalists we subjected the finishes to extreme durability tests until there was just two left. Again more tests eeked out a winner in the Wurth product shown below.
After painting and drying, the castings were given a final wash in preparation for assembly. The main casting was mounted to a stand that will eventually hold the final engine / gearbox combination.
It was a long road to get here and we hope that in sharing our research we can save someone the great amount of time expenditure we had to endure.