How to mod: Painting your radiator

By Johan Nyman, on August 5, 2016

I am working on a new custom build right now with a Mirrors Edge theme, I will be using a red and white Carbide Spec-Alpha case and to cool the CPU a Hydro H100i v2.

To make the radiator fit better to the theme I wanted to paint the radiator white and then used our red parts from the H100i v2 color kit.

So what do you need for painting your cooler?

  • Cardboard.
  • Masking-tape.
  • Sandpaper.
  • Primer, paint and clearcoat.
  • A place to paint, preferable outside.

First of all, I started by masking of the things I don’t want to paint. I cut out a piece of cardboard that fitted inside of the radiator to mask of the fins.

When you get a new Hydro H100i v2 cooler it comes with a plastic bag over the cooler, I used that bag to mask of the tubes and CPU-block.

Then I used masking tape to mask of the last pieces of the tube.

To prepare the surface for the paint I used 80-grit sandpaper and went over everything to make the paint stick better.

Now it is time for the paint, I started out with a grey primer. My recommendation is to spray very thin layers with 10 minutes of time between them. When you covered the surface with a few layers of the primer let it cure for 24 hours.

After that it is time for the paint, same thing here, thin layers with 10 minutes of wait time between them and 24h cure time.

Next step in the painting stage is the clearcoat, but before that I went over the surface with a very fine sandpaper to remove small bumps in the paint.

Now it is time for the clearcoat to make the paint glossier and stronger. Paint a few thin layers and let it cure for 24h.

After that it is finished and you can remove all the masking tape and the cardboard pieces.

This is the final result of the painting, I am very satisfied with the result and it fits very good with the overall theme.

Here it is together with the motherboard and a GTX 980 which also got a paintjob to fit the theme. Let me know what you think about this guide in the comments!

See you next time!