So I waited a week for the last round of paint to dry and finally got the nerve to use my $20 can of SprayMax 2K clear coat this past weekend. Once mixed, the can was only good for 48 hours so once started, there was no going back.
I did a light wetsanding with 1000 grit paper and then used degreaser on it. Then I strung up my tank with wire so I could access the underside. I put my fender on a horse. I found it was difficult to get all the dust and lint off the tank and fender using a rag (shocking) but I found brushing then off by hand while wearing nitrile gloves worked pretty well.
Here they are after emptying just over half the can of clear coat on them. I also took care of my horn cover and air cleaner cover at the same time (not pictured).
The can of SprayMax 2K is covered with warnings. I did my spraying with my garage door fully open, wearing a proper respirator and wearing nitrile gloves and goggles. I wasn't messing around with this stuff and you shouldn't either. I made sure the garage could air out before shutting the door.
According to the SprayMax website, the paint dries in 12 hours. The next day I took the tank down and put it on a horse too. Shiny. :)
Then I wetsanded the clearcoat of the tank and fender with 1000 grit paper. It's nerve racking to seemingly mess up a good looking finish.
After that I used the degreaser again and brushed them off with my gloves to ensure they were clean. Then I emptied the rest of the can of clearcoat on them. Here they are.
They look awesome but they're still not done. After the clear dries and cures (I'm planning to wait more than 12 hours) I have to buff them to a glossy, smooth shine - something else I've never done before. Did I mention this is the first tank and fender I've ever painted?
I can't wait to see the tins on the bike!