I finally got around to restoring the 38 inch deck for my 4514.
I removed the rust and then prepped it with POR 15 Metal Prep followed by two coats of black POR 15. I then applied two coats of TSC graphite EZ Slide.
I replaced all bearings in the spindles as well as bearings in the drive pulley and belt tensioner. The belt tensioner pulley is a two piece. I removed the rivets and bolted it back together same as what we do when replacing the bearing in the PTO clutch.
The deck belt tensioner and drive pulley were both rusted and locked in a fixed place. The shafts were rusted so bad I had to use a pulley remover to get both of them off of the mounting shafts.
So even though there is a polyurethane or perhaps Delrin bushing it still rusted in a fixed position.
I drilled and tapped a hole and added a grease zerk to the belt tensioner and the drive pulley mounting shafts. The grease should keep both rust free now.
I used the original color paint number (Honda silver cloud).
Although it was getting warm when I sprayed it, I didn't get a lot of orange peel. I sprayed with a Harbor Freight #46719 touch up gun. It gets excellent reviews and costs about $14 when on sale.
The coating on the drive pulley was OK but I sprayed the each spindle blade pulley with a gold paint as the plating was beginning to rust topside and underside.
I used a rattle can with Valspar black paint on the spindle housings.
I got lifting on a test panel when testing the Valspar paint. Let me tell you, it was hard to remove even with a sanding disk. So I think it will be awhile before the spindle housings start to rust again.
The green belt is a Gates - time will tell if it wears well with usage.
As you can see there was a lot of surface rust on the underside of the deck even after wire brushing. As a result the surface isn't smooth like it would be if new. IMO a new deck prepped with POR 15 and EZ Slide would reduce grass buildup a lot less.
We will see if there is any grass buildup after a mowing or two. I'll keep you posted how well the EZ slide and POR 15 coatings work.
It's a shame after it looks so nice and clean, to take it for its first mowing.
Note: I grew up on a farm and recall that the best frictionless surface on metal on cultivator blades and plow shares was the actual metal itself after it would scour and be as smooth as shiney chrome.
So maybe the best method for longevity for the deck underside surface is too simply let the grass scour the underside of the deck. After each mowing, knock any buildup off with a water hose, and then spray a rust preventor on the surface to prevent rust until the next mowing when it will scour off again down to the smooth surface of the metal.
We used used motor oil when I was a kid as a rust preventor - but suppose the EPA would lock us up nowdays if used for that purpose.