Brake Calipers–Final Paint

Today I applied the final coat of paint to the front brake calipers. They should be ready to bolt onto the car once I install the crossover tubes and new cylinders.

I bought a gallon of a product called RustAway from Halon Marketing in Pennsylvania for $27.95. It is a chemical rust remover that is pretty safe to the environment. I figured I would try this out on the cast iron calipers as an alternative to sending them out for sandblasting. There was some surface rust on the calipers when I pulled them off the car.

I poured enough RustAway into a plastic bucket to cover one caliper and all of the cylinder mounting bolts and pad retainers. Then I allowed the caliper to soak for two full hours.

After switching out the first caliper for the second I allowed another two hours for soaking. When the calipers came out they had a black residue where the rust had been. I gave them a final wiping and washing by spraying on some Simple Green and then spraying the parts with the hose. I find it easiest to wire parts up to a nearby tree in order to get them clean, allow for good air circulation for drying, avoid touching them with greasy fingers once they are clean, and applying spraypaint all in one location.

I used a special high-temperature paint from Eastwood Company that is designed for brake calipers and drums. It cost $9.99 for one 12 ounce can, which was plenty of paint for this job.

I painted the calipers and pad retainer brackets using two thin coats, allowing for 20 minutes of drying time in between coats.

Here are the finished calipers–they came out very nice.

Differential Prep & Paint

Today I did the rust repair and final painting of the differential. The first thing I did was to give it a quick final cleaning using Simple Green to remove and grease on the surface from handling and working with the differential case since I last cleaned it. Prior to introducing and water I replaced the fill and drain plugs, the breather, and taped off the axle openings to keep water from getting inside.

Before painting I used an acid etch to brighten up the aluminum front of the differential. I used an Eagle One Mag Cleaner which is designed for rough-finish aluminum wheels. I donned my safety glasses and heavy rubber gloves (this is acid, after all) and sprayed the aluminum liberally.

Per the instructions, I waited thirty seconds while the acid did its etching on the aluminum, which caused a fairly vigorous foaming.

Then I washed it off very thoroughly with water.

Then I turned my attention to the rest of the differential. The case itself had several rough areas where the original paint had worn off and surface rust had set in. I had previously used a wire brush to remove and loose material. Before painting, I sealed the remaining rusty areas using Eastwood’s Rust Encapsulator product, which is supposed to seal in rust and neutralize its ability to deteriorate any further. I bought a quart can for $19 and applied it using a regular paintbrush.

There was a lot of rust around the edges of the axles, presumably from the finish being chipped by rocks and stones kicked-up by the tires. I painted over all of those areas with the encapsulator.

There was also surface rust around the welds at the rear of the “pumpkin,” which I painted over.

I rotated the differential to point down so I could access the areas underneath, and completed sealing over all of the rust areas.

After allowing the Rust Encapsulator to dry for four hours, as recommended by the instructions on the can, I prepared for the finish coat of paint. I masked off the aluminum part using heavy-duty foil and some painter’s masking tape. You can tell Thanksgiving is on my mind already!

Then I removed the plugs. The paint I used is Eastwood’s aerosol Chassis Black, which was $13 for the can.

I applied two coats, waiting 20 minutes between coats.

Then I rotated the differential up again in order to apply two coats to the areas I had missed.

After allowing the paint to try for several hours, I moved the differential into the garage to dry over night. I removed the masking from the aluminum area.

Overall I’m pleased with the results, particularly compared to the way it looked when I pulled it off the car.