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Is there any type of easy-to-apply paint (spray paint, ideally) that would work well for:

  • rubber surface
  • relatively rugged

(Context: I need to paint hockey pucks)

I know you can get Krylon and the like for plastics...would that be suitable for rubber as well?

It's actually an odd thing to google given the number of rubber coating spray products out there. I'm specifically looking for paint to coat rubber.

  • 1
    Not really on the topic of home improvement, but it could be useful info so I'm not voting to close yet. – keshlam Sep 19 '16 at 1:58
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Instead of painting pucks why not just order colored ones?

http://www.ministicks.com/colored_hockey_pucks_and_colored_foam_hockey_pucks_s/14687.htm

This page has 4 different colors for regulation pucks, and 8 colors for regulation size foam pucks.

This was my first search and I'm sure you could find others if you needed something specific.

  • White hockey pucks! I love that idea, actually... WHERE IS THE PUCK!? HEADS UP! – DA01 Jun 2 '16 at 15:02
  • I think this is a better idea because the color is part of the puck and won't wear off over time. – The Evil Greebo Jun 2 '16 at 15:02
  • In theory this doesn't answer the original question, but boy! is it a better idea than what the OP was proposing. – Daniel Griscom Jun 2 '16 at 15:13
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You have to understand that the softer the rubber, the more flex in it, and thus the more likely you will get microfractures in any coating. I have had very good luck coating EPDM and buna-n type rubbers with the following process. Don't deviate or skip any steps.

  1. clean thoroughly with acetone or MEK.
  2. mechanically abrade with 180-240 grit (higher for smoother finish, but less lifespan, coarser for rougher finish but better adhesion) sandpaper
  3. wipe again with acetone or MEK
  4. prime with any UMA primer like XIM400
  5. paint with devthane 379 aliphatic urethane enamel.

Done!

Comment about MEK here: It is not good to use MEK in large amounts on plastics and rubber as it tends to break them down, but this is the point. the partial surface dissolution of the base substrate will allow a better chemical bond with the primer. If you want to know more, look up the properties and hazards of MEK.

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If you are looking for a durable and resilient coating then you should consider a product called "Plastic Coat". plasticcoat It is sold in 4 standard colors and is available in a spray can. The only issue may be that it goes on thick and will add to the overall thickness of any object. There is minimal prep work. For best results: Wipe with a household cleaner, scuff with a medium grit abrasive, wipe again. If you spray several light coats, alternating sides as they dry (which is only a short wait), the finished surface will appear smoother with no ridges. The only way to remove or damage the shell, once it has dried, is to make an incision and forcefully rip it off. If you do find any damage, re-spray and as soon as it dries it can be used.

  • This was my initial thought: to paint rubber you need something very rubbery. Plasticoat is what I thought of - I'm just not sure what surface prep you would need to do or how well it would stick. – JPhi1618 Nov 24 '15 at 14:29
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Consider building a simple jig to route a shape into the two flat faces of the pucks, say just circle of shallow depth. Use one of the previously suggested plasticized coatings to paint just the recessed portion of the puck in bright color. This way it's likely to last more than one session of being smacked around the ice or floor.

The drawbacks to this approach are 1) effort, and 2) a slight reduction in overall puck weight (which would be minimal with a wide, shallow router bit profile.

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