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Self Install Clear Bra Paint Protection Film on a 2016-17?

4502 Views 13 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  quirkySquirt
Has anyone done their own self install of clear bra installation for hood and bumper on a 2016 or 2017? I've installed 3m kits on previous cars, but its been a number of years. Just wondering if Volt is a bear? The bumper looks like it might not be a ton of fun.
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I don't like those clear bras, but I do love plastidip. I keep telling myself I need to get an Erlang dip sprayer and some gallons to dip the whole car, but I've done lots of trim pieces in the past. The cool thing about plastidip is that if you mess up, it peels right off. At about $5 per can from Menards (when there is a sale), you can't go wrong.
No experience myself, but the cheapest quote I could get was from a place underneath the West Seattle Bridge and they were charging $3000 for a full body bra while other places were averaging $4000 and the dealership was charging $5000. These prices were collected last summer, however.

Perhaps you can meet them in the middle? Have pros do the difficult bumpers and such and you'd do the large door panels and hood yourself?
Hmmm, at $500 for a dip sprayer and several gallons plus sweat equity over a weekend, I'd plastidip it over getting a body bra.
Yeah, been meaning to clear out some more room in the garage and try out dipping. I'm not a huge fan of the feel after feeling some coworkers' dips and I'm not sure if the "clear" options are clear enough I can see the kinetic blue shine through, though. I do recall that dips come with a clear option but I ran across some forum where multiple layers of the clear gloss yielded a matte-like appearance and dust caught between layers were noticeable. I can't seem to find it again with my Google-fu, though.

Another reason I didn't go with dipping was according to this forum post:

the dip doesn't protect the same as actual PPF clear bras. To get any appreciable protection, many layers were needed and that combined with a clear dip's trapping of dust in between coats, deterred me. I'm still going to try it on small parts cause I think I can use it as an alternative to painting my Volt in a few years when obvious scratches accumulate too much. Hopefully, dip tech will advance by then and we get more durable dip with a single coat. Or maybe I'll finally get tired of the kinetic blue and just dip a different solid color so I don't have to worry about between-coat contaminants.
There's a new DipPearl Topcoat product that looks almost like a clear pat and is much smoother, but I think it only comes in gallons which means you need to buy a dip sprrayer.

Watch their YouTube videos and you can't put plastidip down in one coat. The first coat needs to be a really light goat where you have 50% coverage followed up by 4 to 6 heavier coats. If you are really worried about dust particles, then you need to make yourself a paint booth - the poor man't paint booth could be with 2 by 4s, big sheets of plastic, a box fan, and some air filters. But then you might need an oxygen mask with a hose for fresh air for when you go into the booth as when you spray this stuff, the curing process emits stuff you don't want in your lungs. I just choose to dip outdoors on a day with zero chance of rain and not worry about it.
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