helpful hints and tips

Painting heatshield with custom graphics

You can further add color or uniqueness to your engine bay by painting the turbo heatshield.

Detach the heatshield by removing the bolt that holds in it place and then carefully lift it out. It is also held in place by a few clips but it will pop off.

Once removed, give the heatshield a light sanding to promote adhesion. Then, very thoroughly wash and dry the part. I also use a spray-on adhesion promoter before following with a high-temp engine paint made to withstand up to 1000+ degrees. The highest temp paint is important since the turbo get extremely hot and this piece is right against the engine.

You can also apply a custom graphic. You can make a mask with a low-tack material such as frisket paper. This can be done in two ways, let's use my custom turbo graphic above as an example:

  1. Paint the shield in the color you want your graphic to be, in this case silver. Dry thouroughly and apply the turbo graphic cut from frisket or other material. Then paint the second color, black. Once thoroughly dry, remove the graphic and the bottom silver layer will be exposed , surrounded by a black topcoat.

  2. Paint the heatshield black and dry thoroughly. then apply a stencil cut from frisket or similar material. This time you don't apply the artwork that you have cut from the frisket but what was left behind, like a true stencil. Mask off the rest of the shield with newspaper or similar and paint. Dry thoroughly and remove your masking and stencil to reveal your second color painted on top of the basecoat.


  • you will likely need to cure the high temp paint with heat. It remains somewhat soft until properly cured. Simply air drying often is not enough. If you put it in the engine bay after a drive home that might be enough to help it set. Once properly cured it is very hard and durable.
  • make sure to use a low-tack material for a stencil/mask. If the material sticks too much, when you peel it away you will peel away paint along with it.
  • Try a hair dryer to help speed the paint curing.
  • High temp engine enamel rated for 1000+ degrees is best.
  • If you have the time, instead of painting the heatshield can carefully be polished to a chrome-like finish.
  • It may help you to remove the small pipe from the bypass valve to the turbo intake pipe, but it is not neccessary. However when re-installing your painted piece, if it has not had time to cure, I would advide removal of this pipe to give you an easy install. Otherwise it is very easy to scratch that soft paint while trying to fit it at awkward angles.


-submitted by abdukted1456

The Griffin Gear logo and the Griffin Gear triple crown roundel emblem are copyright Helixgfx 2005