The title of my page, “How to paint a Bobcat” may be a little misleading since trying to explain how to de-grease, wash, sand and prep a machine like a Bobcat for painting could actually become a long novel.
I do have a video that shows that RodsShop even tackles jobs like painting heavy equipment. However I do get asked a lot what the paint codes are or where can someone get the right colors to paint their Bobcat. I am going to share that info with you to make the process a little smoother and hope it helps those tackling such a messy job.
I will go over the basics of painting a Bobcat, although you have to understand that this will vary as not all Bobcats are the same. It will depend on the year and model you have. I will share my experience with the Bobcat in the video which was a 753.
The first thing I did before I even started was cover the entire machine down with a de-greaser. I used Super Clean in a pressure spray pumper. Then pressure washed it. I had to go over some areas with a putty knife and scraper to remove the heavy packed up grease around pivot points and the hydraulics. I was just persistent until the machine was clean.
It made the whole job easier by removing the decals although you do not have to. They can always be masked off. This Bobcat’s decals were all pretty much destroyed and putting on new ones makes it look better in the end. I removed the decals by soaking them with enamel reducer. I soaked rags with it and held them over the decals loosening the glue. I used a heat gun to strip the main part of the decal off and then more enamel reducer to finish wiping the remaining glue off.
From this point, using a DA Sander, using from 80 grit to 120 grit paper, I sanded the entire machine. I mostly used the 80 grit on the surface areas that had become rusted. The rust wasn’t so bad that the metal was gone, just a heavy surface rust common with farm and heavy equipment. What made the job interesting is how I had to raise and lower the boom and raise and lower the cab to get it thoroughly sanded.
For the wheels, I ran a wire brush around the inside of them on a die grinder. This process cleaned off all the flaky paint, dirt and grease. The wheels got washed with Superclean, a pressure washer and then wiped down with enamel reducer. I just masked off the tire as there was no sense in spending the time and money to have the tires dismounted just for paint. You may have noticed in the picture above that I went the little extra on masking and painted the hubs white like factory. I mention this as I have seen others just paint the entire wheel and hub orange.
It got a good washing once the sanding was complete. Once the machine dried, I masked off all the hydraulics and the inside of the cab. I painted the inside of the cab last but it can be done before as well. Once masked off, I wiped the entire machine down with enamel reducer.
I used Nason single stage enamel paint with hardener. I will provide the information below so that you can get what you need. I used two quarts of white, one quart of orange and 3quarts of semi-gloss black. There are quite a few black parts to paint, plus you have the outside and inside of the cab to do, provided the inside of your cab need repainting. I found the decals on eBay for a really cheap price for the quality I got.
That is pretty much all there was to painting this 753, of course the actual spaying the paint was fun due to the same reason of sanding. I constantly has to raise and lower booms and cabs and the attachment arms to ensure getting every spot covered. If you have any questions, please send me a message through my contact page.
Here is the information to get the single stage enamels I used:
White: # F1858 Toyota Code 056 1998
Nason Number: 853188 IEB
Orange: # 6756 1992 Mustang Code MX706718
Nason Number: 851619 IEE
Charcoal: Bobcat Number: 6902229
Nason Number: 867781 IEC
Nason Semi-Gloss Black – This is an alternative to the Charcoal and I think looks better. It isn’t packaged semi-gloss. I have it mixed this way although you can use a gloss retardant in any enamel paint to reduce the gloss.
Find a automotive paint store in your area that sells Nason brand paint. O’Reilly Auto Parts sell Nason brands but any automotive paint store of any brand should be able to take this information and cross it over to something they can sell you.
You can use any brand enamel hardener, I used Marhide “The Wet Look” on this job. You will only want to use a very small amount in the semi-gloss back. If you use the normal amount, it will gloss the black back up. The reason for using hardener is to make the paint resist oils, dirt and grease. Regular farm equipment paint will dissolve with solvents, including fuels, grease, oils and some dirts.
Tools and Materials You can use for this type of job: