Painting a Powerbook G3?

6 replies [Last post]
Joined: May 29 2004
Posts: 4

Hi, I was wondering if anyone could give me some suggestions on painting my powerbook g3 lombard? I'm not sure which paint to buy, and if a clear coat or any sanding is necessary? I managed to buy a complete spare set of all the plastics for my laptop, so I can work off of my main computers plastics in case I screw up. Anyone done this that can help me with a few hints? Thanks!

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g3head's picture
Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 213

Sanding won't hurt anything and depending on what paint you use could help it stick. The important thing is that the plastics are clean. Mercury (which is probably still buried in the carcass of AF1) was run though a low temp cycle in a dishwasher. After that some people elect to use a primer coat but I haven't. I mainly use model paints (Testors) or Rustoleum. I've had good luck with each. I can't speak well on clear coating, as my attempts at it have turned out horribly, but I think the advice there is make sure the main coat(s) and clear coats are produced by the same company.

Of course the best bet is to read each cans instructions, as it can vary greatly between makers, I've even had cans from the same company carry vastly different instructions.

alk's picture
Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 373
Krylon Fusion...

... works great.

Reference: RedBook 5300




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Dr. Webster's picture
Joined: Dec 19 2003
Posts: 1688
Whatever paint you use, if it

Whatever paint you use, if it's glossy, give it a coat of car wax when you're finished. The wax not only improves the shine but protects the paint from dust and light scratches.


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eeun's picture
Joined: Dec 19 2003
Posts: 1891
Missing Link

I can't find the link where I originally read this, but another good paint is Pactra polycarbonate paint. It's a lacquer-based paint available in small rattle-cans, aimed at the RC Car crowd. The paint is designed to adhere to the polycarbonate shells of the cars - and supposedly works amazingly well on laptop plastics.

I've had good results with the Krylon Fusion as well.

Neither of these paints needs primer, and based on what they're designed to do - adhere to plastic - primer probably shouldn't be used if you want the best adhesion.

My greatest fault when painting anything is being impatient. Follow the directions on the can for drying times, and leave if for as long as you can possibly stand to let the paint cure.

One more tip is to use primer/paint/clear coat of the same manufacturer. They're designed to work together, and you're less likely to get orange peel or other terrors.


"Give a man a fire, he's warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he's warm for the rest of his life."
(Terry Pratchett)

Joined: May 29 2004
Posts: 4
Thanks for all the great comm

Thanks for all the great comments, I will probably go with Krylon Fusion, but I am still in the deciding process. Anyone had luck with painting the palmrest part of a laptop? I know oils from hands are rough on paint in this area, and was wondering if anyone had any problems with specific paints wearing off due to this?

Thanks again!

Kurenai's picture
Joined: May 28 2004
Posts: 82
use expensive paint

i painted my powerbook 1400 a while back and learned a lot, mainly not to use cheap paint. i needed a a few cans, not just one it took 2 cans to paint it i think, i bought 4 so i got some cheap krylon stuff and it made the whole powerbook permanatly(even when its off and cold) stick of spray pain and chemicals so use nice paint, maybe that molecu-bond stuff