How to Use Chrome Paint


Chrome paint is designed to imitate the look of chrome plating. No matter what type of object you want to paint, chrome paint can give it that bright, shiny look that is so popular with real chrome. However, in order to use chrome paint--especially chrome spray paint, which is one of the easiest forms--you need to do the proper prep-work to make your finished product really gleam.

Things You'll Need

  • Primer
  • Jet-black basecoat
  • Chrome paint of your choice
  • Cleaning rags
  • Lint-free cloths
  • Purchase the appropriate primer. If you are painting a car, you will need an auto paint primer. If you are painting a railing, you will need a primer specifically geared to work on that type of metal. Ask a professional at a paint store for help selecting the right primer for you. Use chrome paint basecoat and chrome paint on top of the primer.

  • Clean the entire surface you will be painting. The best paint jobs are smooth and sleek. Get every particle of dust and dirt off of the surface before you prime. Use a moist, warm cleaning rag to scrub the surface with gentle pressure and circular motions. Once the surface is fully clean and fully dry, move on to the next step.

  • Prime the surface. This will give you a smooth, even surface to paint on. Spray the primer using either spray primer or a paint sprayer. However, you can use a brush. Make the primer coat even, smooth and not too thick. Add a second coat if you do not get the necessary coverage in one coat.

  • Apply the jet black base coat. This will actually make your end reflectivity much brighter. Buy this in a spray can or use a brush or paint sprayer. Generally, this should just have one coat, but if you are using a brush, you may end up applying two to get sufficient coverage. Make sure this basecoat is fully dry (may take up to 24 hours) before you move on.

  • Paint on your chrome. If you are using spray chrome paint, hold the can about 10 inches away from the surface and spray, moving constantly to keep the application even. If you are using a paint gun, then use a psi of 20 and a "dusting" setting that uses a lot of paint and a little air. Just keep going over the area you are painting until the chrome look is as bright as you want it and the coverage is adequate. If you are using a paint brush, then you may need to apply two or more thin, even coats to get the look you want. Allow a few hours in between coats so the paint can dry.

Tips & Warnings

  • The best chrome looks are generally a result of spray application rather than brush application.
  • Always paint in a well-ventilated area.


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