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Nomad Make-over

During my 2009 riding season, I toyed around with the idea of painting my bike. When the season started to slow down, and I didn't have any riding plans, I decided that I would post my bike for sale to see what would happen. My thoughts were that if I could sell it for what I was asking for, it would be worth it. If not, I would paint it and catch up on some maintenance. After 11 days, it sold.

I have ridden many different types of bikes (Honda-VTX 1300, VTX 1800, Fury, Gold Wing, Aero, Spirit, Rebel, Kawasaki- Nomad, 1600 classic, Mean Streak, Vulcan 2000, Vulcan 900, Vulcan 800, Harley V-rod, Sportster, Street Glide, Suzuki Boulevard C50, Yamaha Raider) and I feel that the Nomad is the best bike for my current riding style. After selling my 2005, I purchased a nicely accessorized, 2006 Nomad, with next to no miles on it, down in Phoenix. The color was green and silver. Although I got a lot of compliments on the colors, they weren't what I wanted and stock paint sucks!

My winter project is to redo my Nomad. I stripped off a few of the accessories that weren't what I wanted and sold them (1500 Nomad front fender tips, F&S luggage rack, Saddlebag strips, F&S tank bib). The things that I would like to do (I will update this post through out the winter as I accomplish these things) are:
-Re-paint the bike
-Add a clear fender protector
-Add a chrome inner engine cover (Done Dec. 2th)
-Add a chrome drive shaft cover (Done Nov. 20th)
-Add a Cobra luggage rack (Done Nov 2oth)
-Put studs and conchos on the pillion backrest
-Switch the non-studded Mustang seat with a studded one
-Add an open air intake system (Done Nov 5th)
-Make a lay-down license plate mount.
-Add lower bag rails (Done Nov 15th-$60)
-Make larger lower deflectors
-Add Vista Cruise control (Done Nov 2oth-$15)

Stripped of all paintable parts

Drive shaft cover. Design for the vulcan 1500 and modified for the Nomad.

The tank's all ready for some paint.One of the challenging things that I will be doing to my bike is removing the brushed aluminum accents off the saddlebag doors and filling the indentions with a plastic filler. I really like how the smooth doors look below.

UPDATE 12-28-09
Several weeks have gone by and I haven't been able to do much work due to my schedule. I have the week off and I will hopefully be getting everything done. Today I sprayed the primer on the parts that had body work done

The fender came with a chrome trim. I really liked the way it looked but, since the previous owner didn't really do the research to find compatible trim, I was not able to find the same trim tips for the rear fender. I decided to remove the trim, weld the holes shut and fill them in. Eventually I might get the correct tips for my bike, but for the time being, I'll leave it how it is.
The original paint was a two-tone and I had to sand away the vinyl pinstripe. I was concerned that a little line might show where the pinstripe was, but luckily the primer is covering any trace of sanding.
The front fender is showing a line where the pinstripe was, so tomorrow I'll have to spend some time sanding it.
The doors originally had three aluminum stripes each. I wanted the doors to look smooth and clean, so I removed these. I had to fill the holes where the stripes were with an epoxy-type product (SEM 39767, Problem plastic repair) and then, afterward, filled and glazed the surface. It now looks as smooth as can be with no signs of the stripes.

Today I finished spraying everything. I got to the shop bright and early and sanded down everything that I primed yesterday. The bike took a lot of work to sand because of all the little nooks and crannies. After I had the primer sanded, I sprayed one good coat of sealer over everything.

After the sealer dried, it was time for the base coat. BRIGHT METALLIC GOLD (Solar Gold BC01)! My bike did not look its best in gold. I sprayed four coats of the House of Kolor Gold base. After the base dried, a friend of mine came and helped me spray five coats of House of Kolor KANDY APPLE RED KBC11. As soon as the red started to thicken I knew it was the right color. After that came three coats of clear (transtar) and I was done. It was a 13-hour work day, but I got all the painting done in one day, so I think it was worth it.

The pictures from a computer screen look like crap and don't do it any justice.

The bike is mostly put back together. I'm going to let the paint cure a little longer while I search for some sort of fender protector to put under the pillion seat before putting the seat back on. I really like how the bike looks when set up with the single seat and I don't want the pillion seat to leave marks on the fender.

The color turned out really cool. The candy has a definite pop that, unfortunately, you can't really see from the picture. When the bike is in the shade it looks like a dark, blood red and when it's in the direct sunlight, the gold and metallics pop through and it looks like a burnt orange.


  1. The color is stunning! You did a great job!

  2. I'd like to know more about the purple color, and how you got that effect.

  3. Any problems with the smoothed out bags to date?

  4. I have build and done this to two Nomads. The first one, after a few weeks there were very faint signs of recessing. When I say faint, I mean really faint, but in the right light I could see them (no one ever mentioned noticing them).

    On the second Nomad I used a Fiber filler. It was a bondo type product with fiber glass hairs mixed in with it. After a year it is still perfectly smooth.