Tuesday, August 14, 2007


I've been stewing over how to reproduce the "Columbia Sports III" logo on the chain guard, and also to reproduce, with paint, some decals that had completely peeled away from the fork, leaving only the outlines of their shapes. After much experimenting, I finally cut what I think are some passable stencils. The process was harder, I think, than it had to be.

First, I tried frisket paper to create a stencil, but the film was too thin and stretchy for the detailed work. I ended up taking close-up shots of the words and then cropping and printing them on regular printer paper. I cut the letters out to create a stencil, then used it to create another stencil with the backing of the frisket film (not the actual film itself)--the benefit of using the frisket backing for the stencil is that it is coated in plastic and won't (I hope) allow the paint to soak in and bleed through. To make the stencil stick to the metal while I paint it, I put two-sided tape with a removable backing on the backside. To fill in the center of the "O", "B", "A", "P", "R" and "III", I'll use a very small brush dipped in the main color of the bike, which will be red, after I use the stencil to paint the words on.

There are probably easier ways to do this, and it may not work, but we'll just have to see. If anyone reads this, and knows a better way (short of paying someone else to do it), I'd be glad to hear it. This is what I've been doing for the past couple of days, so I haven't gotten to cleaning the rear hub yet. Soon.


  1. I'm repairing the same model bike. Do you have a copy of the stencils online to print out that I could buy? I'm superbly crappy at making my own.


  2. Oh man, you know, my process for creating these stencils was so tortured and bass-ackwards that I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, but I do have what I suppose would pass for a template of the chain guard lettering. The front fork motif I mostly just free-handed. Shoot me an email and I'll send what I have to you (it's in a Word file). Of course, I wouldn't think of charging money for it.