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  • Clear Bra protection

    Hi all,

    Has anyone done a clear film protection on their car? If so, any suggestions on brand of material? Any negatives associated with clear film protection? Can it damage the paint since it's older one stage? Any suggestions on places in Los Angeles area? All input is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

    HT

  • #2
    Expel is the one of the best films to go with from my understanding, it's self healing. I am choosing to go with Ceramic Pro instead of a film only because you can always tell there's film on the car, no matter how good.
    @slowprogress

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    • #3
      There are a lot of mixed reviews on the net. I looked into getting one but decided against it, based upon the fairly substantial costs and issues many people complain about.

      My buddy got one a couple of years ago and it is already noticeably yellowed.....

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      • #4
        Most of the new ones have 10 year warranty on yellowing and other defective issues... I have suntek on my other cars but they are a lot newer than the M3.. I'm just concerned about possible paint damage to the paint and painted bumpers. Will it peel the paint off when removed? I've seen a few bumper paint peel when non clear wraps have been applied. Any thoughts?

        Thanks

        HT

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        • #5
          Back in the day i used to install this film with a company here in Atlanta called Speedfilm . Xpel is NOT the best film to use , if im not mistaken they are in a lawsuit right now in regards to their film. Film technology has come a long way since i was installing film , the yellowing effect is no longer a concern. Before applying the film we always waxed the car before hand to prevent paint peeling and adhesive residue when removing the film. The concern and one thing to look out for with an E30 or any older cars is that there is no patterns available. The install on older cars consist of draping the film over the car and cutting it to fit. If the installer is a newbie and doesn't have the "feel for cutting the film" he will cut your paint. David Dearing at Speedfilm (my old boss) has years and years of experience in this industry , we did all the Porsche dealerships in Atlanta and all the high end / exotic cars. In fact we worked with Porsche of North America hand in hand , we were doing the installs on certain Porches before they were released to the public. I would give him a call and pick his brain about it. Not sure if this helps , but i recommend giving him a call 678 249-7165, you can tell him Paddle refereed you.

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          • #6
            I have no experience with the new ceramic stuff but i can personally vouch for the film. One case stands out to me like no other. We had a client who bought at that time a brand new Ferrari F430 , we wrapped the whole frond end for him. A few months go by and we get a call from the customers wife and she pleaded for us to come out and take a look at the front bumper again and that it needed replacing. We get there and it turns out that her Husband went out of town on business , the Wife decided it would be a good idea to sneak the car out for a test drive. When she went to pull the car back into the garage she clipped the front right corner of the bumper pulling in. The film was all scratched up and frayed in a few places , we pulled off the old bumper and there was not a single scratch to be found !!! no damage whatsoever !!! We installed the new bumper and were on our way . I dont think he ever found out since there was no story in the news about someone's wife lol .

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            • #7
              Originally posted by HTM3 View Post
              Hi all,

              Has anyone done a clear film protection on their car? If so, any suggestions on brand of material? Any negatives associated with clear film protection? Can it damage the paint since it's older one stage? Any suggestions on places in Los Angeles area? All input is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

              HT
              With regards to your question, I've got clear film protection on my daily drivers and the film works as advertised. We purchased one of the cars "pre-owned" and the front end had a tremendous amount of road rash due to highway driving in only 12.5K miles. I had the full front after the bumper was resprayed (bumper, hood, fenders & mirror caps) and wrapped with Expel. The car looks as good as the day it was wrapped 36K miles later. It worked so well I had our other new daily fully wrapped (whole car) with Clear Guard Nano Film ( which is supposed to be better than Expel). The film would have saved the rear bumper from paint work had we not damaged the rear quarter panel in a minor fender bender we had with it ( much like Paddle's story with the Ferrari).

              I've not put film on any of my E30's for several reasons. First, as Paddle mentioned there are not readily available patterns available for the cars. However, I believe 3M may have one from years ago. We offered film at SIGFest back in the mid 2000s thru a SIG member. If you can find a skilled person to do the work as Paddle mentioned, it can be done. Phil at Detailer's Domain would be probably up to the task, but my next reason would be why I've not pursued it. Second, I don't drive my E30's enough that it would justify the cost. It's not a cheap thing to do.

              The only negative I can think of is - it could lift the paint when it's removed. If you've gotten your car recently painted, you should wait 30-90 days to apply any clear film coating.

              Here's a nice link from Detailer's Domain FAQ on clear film as well as one on the clear guard nano:

              FAQ: https://www.detailersdomain.com/page...ilm-new-jersey

              Clear Guard Nano: https://www.detailersdomain.com/pages/clearguardnano

              Hope this helps

              1989 E30 M3 Cabrio - Nogaro Sliver / Black - 1 of 786
              1990 E30 M3 - Sterling Silver / Black
              1991 E30 318is - Sterling / Black (Mtech II project)

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              • #8
                IIRC, many years ago somebody here on S14 had scanned (or however it's done) an M3 with the purpose of creating a template. He offered the film here as well. A search might turn up the details.

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                • #9
                  Does anyone know if it will damage the paint once it is removed. I saw a newer BMW have its bumper paint peel off while taking off the wrap (none clear). I don't know if the one stage paint or plastic painted bumpers will be damaged. I'm not worried about cost of the clear bra.. My main concern is damage to paint upon removal.

                  Thanks,

                  HT

                  Comment


                  • L James
                    L James commented
                    Editing a comment
                    If the film is applied correctly, it should not pull any paint. If the bumper has been resprayed there's always a possibility depending on the paint and prep. As JimK mentions there is a method to remove. I've seen it done many times by Detailers Domain. It can be done if you know what you're doing.

                • #10
                  Xpel has instructions how to remove without pulling the paint. Basically it is stretched to the side, not pulled up. I have removed film with no paint pulling.

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                  • #11
                    In my experience it didn't matter if it was single stage paint or base clear , it all depended on the quality of the paint job and the cure time of the repaint . As Jim mentioned you remove it by pulling the film off to the side.

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                    • #12
                      I've used the 3M Ventureshield and Pro versions on my daily drivers. Installed both myself. The Ventureshield was very easy while the Pro was much more challenging.

                      Had the Ventureshield on for about 12 years. No yellowing. Was beat up from road rash and parking lot scrapes. Peeled off with no issues. No damage to paint underneath and no difference in colour / sun fading.

                      The liquid coatings serve a different purpose. They won't have the same protection from stone chips. They will have good protection for the whole car from dirt / chemical damage (e.g. bird droppings). I'm looking at using both film and liquid on my current daily driver since the paint is so soft. I keep my cars for a long time so it is worth it to me.

                      I would love to get die cut film for the M3!

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