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I want to paint my engine block and its ancillary parts while in the assembling process, but I don't know when would be the right time to do it. Should I paint the parts "before" being put together? Or should I paint them after being installed? I would like to keep the fasteners, nuts, gaskets with their own look, i.e., not painted (since I darkened the nuts, bolts and stubs, for instance).

I gonna use high gloss, high temp aluminum paint and the same but red for things like the valves cap, pulley, etc. I will hold the engine in an engine stand, if that could add something as for protecting the parts from being scratched.

So question is: when do you suggest I should do the paint job?

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Before.

Given that you want the bolts, gaskets, etc. to not be painted, the best time to do it is right out of the machine shop. It will never be this easy to access every part of the engine again.

Painting the ancillaries is easier when you can easily move them around to get a good angle on whichever part you are spraying.

Also, you can paint them on the ground. If you attach them first, you'll have to tape off every bolt, every hose connector, every gasket, and a bunch of not-flat things. Compare this to taping off the bare block, which is 2 or 3 big, "flat," easy to tape surfaces (heads, bottom of the block) and a bunch of holes (which are way easier to tape off than a bolt)

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    Was just going to type up an answer saying pretty much the same thing. Just mask off what you don't want painted. Make sure to clean the parts to be painted to remove any oils or you'll never have a good finish. Feb 27 '17 at 23:18
  • I would also add to tape off mating surfaces where the parts go together. Paint does not make a good gasket material, so tape off all gasket and seal areas. Also, be careful not to fill threads with paint. You may need to chase threads with a tap to make sure they are clean before assembly.
    – CharlieRB
    Feb 28 '17 at 12:41

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