You know what I found to be a good trick when I painted my heatshields, to give it a neat texture?
After I painted it and it was still slightly wet, I took my propance torch and went over it, waving it...took some practice, but if you leave it in one spot for a (short) period of time, it makes the paint kind of blister, giving it that 'sand' look...
Definitely practice, but I think it's a good alternative texture (I like the wrinkled finish)...Another thing that Rustoleum makes is the 'hammered' spray
; that takes a little skill (practice) also, but the results are nice! I *think* it could withstand the heat of the valve cover, but not 100%...One word of caution for a nice finish: make sure the coat is totally dried and cured before spraying clearcoat over it. On my drillpress, I got the paint all looking real nice (the hammered finish) and got in a hurry and sprayed the clear, before it dried...dammit, it blended in with all the 'pockets' of the paint and looked like crapola!