Painting Instructions by Bobby

  From the picture, these painted cameras look okay.  In reality, the finish is far from perfect. 

Overall, Iím happy with how they turned out.  The finish is holding up well too.

 Keep in mind there are better materials to use, and methods to paint your camera.  This is the most practical way for me.   

 Take your time, and have fun with it.  Make your own notes.  These are general instructions.



STEP 1:  Sand the chrome parts with 120 grit sandpaper.  Spend at least 5 minutes per part.  Donít expect to remove all, or any of the original finish.  You may see some patches of brass, but donít expect to see a lot of it. 

STEP 2:  Wash with soap and water and rinse well. 

STEP 3:  To remove the paint from the body I like to scrape it off with a small screwdriver (less messy).  It will flake off very easy if itís the original paint.  If itís not original paint, use 220 grit sand paper.

When thatís done, wipe down with a degreaser. 

STEP 4:  Taping is difficult to explain, so here are a set of pictures instead.  Just make sure you use are using masking tape.  For parts you donít want painted, tape it off and trim the excess with a sharp razor blade, utility knife, ect.

  This is what youíll need.






3.  Cut the extra tape off with a sharp utility knife.










Hereís another view from a different angle.


Now do the same to the other side.

4. Use the utility knife to trim around the flash sync.


Use your thumb nail to trace around the lens flange.  Now do the same to the other side.





Here is another view.  







5. The red box is where another piece of tape was placed.  Again, use your thumb nail to trace around the lens flange and trim off the extra tape.


  6. Use small pieces of tape to cover up any areas that are still exposed on the strap lugs and flash sync.


It should look something like this when itís done. 


Do the same to the back plate.




7. Use a piece of paper and tape to cover the back.





8. The red box is where the viewfinder is.  Cut a small piece of paper the size of the viewfinder and stick it on with tape.  Do not apply tape on the actual glass of the V/F.


This is done to prevent overspray from hitting the v/f and to avoid getting tape residue on it.


  9. Try to use one long piece of tape, cover the top. 


Make sure the seal is tight at the bottom and there are no holes where overspray can get in. 


Take your time with this step.



10. Run a couple strips of tape on the bottom of the camera.

When youíre finished taping, it should look something like this. 


Make sure the tape is sticking well. Double check around the edges.

The back plate should look like.

Hereís the top view of the back plate.


STEP 5:  Put on latex gloves and wipe all parts twice with a degreaser before you paint.  From this point on leave the gloves on whenever you handle these parts. 



Follow the manufactures instructions on how to apply, and when to re-apply the etching primer and colour paint.  Always, make sure the surface is dry, clean and lint free before you spray.  Even one piece of lint will be noticeable when you spray on the primer or paint.  Make sure your working area has good lighting.

Spray on the etching primer first.  When you get 100% coverage, spray on the colour next.  These basic instructions apply to both primer and finish colour.




Spray the sides of the camera in a 45 degree angle because the back of the camera isnít fully covered.  Spray the sides of the removable back cover the same way.

STEP 7:  To paint the engravings, use model paint with a fine tip paint brush to apply. 


This is what you will need.








1. Apply a light/thin coat of paint. 


Donít put too much paint on your brush. It should almost be dry.


Wipe off the excess paint with a rag.  Donít use too much pressure or youíll wipe the paint out of the engravings.


After 15 minutes, apply a second thin coat of paint and wipe off the excess. 


Itís hard to tell with these pictures but the colour is deeper.


2. Wait 2hrs for the paint to dry.  Use rubbing compound to remove the white paint residue from the wiping. 


Donít use too much pressure when youíre using the rubbing compound. 


It should look like this when youíre done.  



Now apply rubbing compound over the entire top and bottom plate to even out the low gloss look around the engravings.  Clean off parts with a slightly damp rag.

I donít bother applying rubbing compound on the body of the camera.  I think the slight offset in the colour looks better.  Itís up to you.










With the top plate still off the camera, taped around the V/F.  Make sure the tape is stuck very well along the edge of the V/F.  Use a small paint brush to apply flat/matte paint. 


Donít put too much paint on the brush.  Try to apply the paint with as few strokes as possible.


NOTE:  Wait for the paint to fully dry before you assemble your camera.  If you painted the V/F top plate or the area around the V/F give it 3-4 days to dry.