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I'm currently working on a steel frame that I got off ebay. I'm removing the existing paint using wire brush adapters for a drill (didn't want to get involved in nasty chemical baths). One result of this is that it gives a nice "brushed" effect, which I thought would look quite nice unpainted.

Would a clear lacquer, such as this one, be sufficient to keep rust at bay?

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

The manufacturer recommends this product for protecting a painted surface and not used on bare metal. Lacquer by its nature (at least the types still available in the U.S.) provides a beautiful finish but not very good at chip resistance. It is typically applied in multiple layers with sanding between coats. Take this to mean very time consuming and tedious. I would look for a product designed for bare metal, a urethane or clear epoxy should be much more durable than a lacquer. I would suggest finding an old bike or scrap pipe and practice your technique particularly in the headset and bottom bracket area. If you took the frame apart, tape all the threaded areas to keep the clear out of the threaded parts.

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Something like this? amazon.co.uk/SP320-Solvent-Clear-Epoxy-System/dp/B00382W7ZI –  tdc Jan 9 '12 at 9:47
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This looks like an industrial chemical that would require more safety equipment than your project warrants.Looking at the web site for Halfords they should have something in an aerosol can that would meet your needs.In the U.S. we have available appliance paints for stoves etc,that are inexpensive and easy to applyand very durable.Explain to them what you want and they should have the technical expertise to help you select the right product.Keep in mind that this is a bike and you want somethung that you can touchup scratches later –  mikes Jan 9 '12 at 21:28
    
Thanks for the pointers ... I'll try to post here when I get round to actually doing it!! –  tdc Jan 10 '12 at 15:00
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