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Cosmetic Maintenance: Washing, Waxing, Detailing, Bodywork, Protection Anything related to keeping your Camaro clean and in good cosmetic condition.

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Old 05-18-2013, 01:44 PM   #1
ec1990

 
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3M Paint Defender (Spray-on Clear Bra) Review

I will be updating this as it dries.

3M states it takes 2-4 hours to dry and 1-4 days curing time for it to be water repellent, I believe mine will be done at the minimum if not before as this was done at 90 degrees and the car is parked outside in the sun.

So for this I did a control the driver's side rocker panel was sprayed with the spray film and the passengers side was cleaned and clayed at the same time but left exposed to the elements.

Beginning out here's the kit, I just ordered the spray-can only



It included the spray-can and 1oz of wax to assist in removal.


For the following areas here's the recommendation of cans needed

Leading Edges - 1 can
Full Hood - 2 cans
Front Bumper - 1 can
Mirrors - 1/4 can
Rear Bumper - 1 can
Trunk Lid - 1 can
Rocker Panels - 1 can

You can pick up a kit which includes a microfiber towel and plastic sheeting for $12 but I decided just to go to Home Depot and pick up the sheeting on my own, it was located in the paint section.

Here's what I picked up and it worked quite well.





Much cheaper than the kit.

In total here are all the items I personally used to accomplish this.



A list:

1 bottle with ONR mixed in clay lube/QD solution
2 Microfiber Towels (One for washing, one for buffing the wax)
Clay
Foam Applicator for wax
Plastic Sheeting
Painter's Tape for the sheeting
Knife
Spray Film
Wax

For prep I used ONR and cleaned both panels followed by using ONR as a clay lube.



A bit of dirt on the clay, but not too bad overall, the car was washed a week prior.

Wax:



The wax was extremely easy to apply, but 3M gives you WAY too much, I barely used a 1/4 of the pack and also directs you to not let it dry to a haze, only to apply then buff off. Unfortunately it's not resealable so it was thrown away after use. That was how much product I used and was probably overkill as well.

Now time to tape up the vehicle and sheet it up.





Especially make sure you tape up the creases, near the door, etc…

Here it is sprayed on



30 Minutes After Application



I will update it as it dries after a few hours, and in a couple days once it's cured. That area on the bottom right, is part of an Xpel clear bra and I will be using that to compare the 3M Spray film too as well.

Overall though:

Application was super easy, prep was as easy as it can get, wash, wax, prep, spray. Already though I can see a few high spots but I expect them to level out as it dries. It also is very thin, nowhere close to a plastic clear bra, so for front bumpers it won't handle up to the repeated rock chips, but for lesser traffic areas like mirrors, the roof (specifically front half), rear fenders It's definitely an option, and I think better than taping it up for the drag strip.

Thanks for reading!

Last edited by ec1990; 05-18-2013 at 02:02 PM.
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Old 05-18-2013, 02:39 PM   #2
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Thanks for posting. Sure looks like an interesting product.

I'm a little confused, you wax before you apply it?
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Old 05-18-2013, 02:52 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ihaveacamaro View Post
Thanks for posting. Sure looks like an interesting product.

I'm a little confused, you wax before you apply it?
Correct. I don't understand it either, but according to 3M it allows for easier removal, and is as directed in their application pamphlet.
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Old 05-18-2013, 02:59 PM   #4
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Old 05-18-2013, 03:25 PM   #5
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Very interesting

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Old 05-18-2013, 03:58 PM   #6
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Does it still look all rough and orange-peely when it dries completely? Looks more like old fashioned chipguard than a clear bra so far.
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Old 05-18-2013, 04:05 PM   #7
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Right now it does slightly, it's smoothed out slightly, but mostly just looks hazed over at the time.
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Old 05-18-2013, 07:07 PM   #8
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Old 05-19-2013, 09:36 AM   #9
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A couple updates roughly 20 hours after.

It is still appearing a bit cloudy and you can see high spots. Unfortunately in the instructions it doesn't state what you can do with high spots, only that you have roughly 10 minutes to fill in low spots.

Here are a couple pictures

Driver's Side (With spray-on clear-bra)





Passenger's Side (Without)




You can see there's quite a bit of rough texturing to it even almost 24 hours after, 3M does state 1-4 days so I'll continue to monitor and check back.
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Old 05-19-2013, 04:09 PM   #10
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Thanks for reviewing this! Really interested in how this turns out in 1-4 days and I hope you give some "long term" road test updates.
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Old 05-19-2013, 04:46 PM   #11
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Will do, I plan on keeping it on there. I'm getting ready for a move so the car will get a solid 1000 mile road trip in roughly a month. I also plan on taking it off after that to test how easily it is to remove. And also compare how the finish looks with and without it. So far it's still slightly cloudy, which isn't comforting from a detailing business perspective because if I was a customer I'd be upset over a cloudy/hazy finish. Especially over the entire front bumper or hood.
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Old 05-20-2013, 06:42 AM   #12
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FYI.Our local Autozone stocks this product. 24.99 per can
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Old 05-20-2013, 07:55 AM   #13
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After waiting the prescribed time I removed the 3m spray on defender from my hood and bumper. The majority of it came off however, tiny specs were found throughout. I clayed, washed, clayed again and washed it in effort to remove this crap.

In the end it did more harm than good, my rockers are only thing area that turned out fine. If I had to do over again I would NOT use.
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:16 PM   #14
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48 hours after





Still extremely hazy and the high spots didn't level themselves out leading to a glaring problem since there's no instruction on how to level it. I felt if I tried to wipe it down with a microfiber it would not only leave a hole but probably destroy a towel as well. But it still has 2 days for 3M's cure time, so we shall see.

If that's not bad enough, here's the dirt pulled off my windows after just a week.



Tip: Having a car parked outside 24/7 in the southwest is extremely dusty.
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Old 05-20-2013, 04:15 PM   #15
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Very nice, thanks for bringing this to our attention OP.

Nice winter prep product if you ask me...especially since you car spray your entire car with this!

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Old 05-23-2013, 05:36 PM   #16
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5 day Update:

So I washed the car today and got to see how it would react to normal wash. It didn't change at all and sealants applied. But this product is still cloudy and extremely rough. It feels exactly how it looks.

Picture


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Old 05-24-2013, 07:27 AM   #17
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Just saw this on TV yesterday, thanks for the great write up.
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Old 05-24-2013, 07:47 AM   #18
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No problem. Let me know if you have any questions about it or application.
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Old 05-24-2013, 09:09 AM   #19
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Sounds like its junk.
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Old 05-24-2013, 10:30 AM   #20
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Good review. I've been curious to see what the results were. I could see this being a viable/cheap option for temporary road trip protection or even to preserve parts in the winter, but it definitely doesn't look good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ihaveacamaro View Post
I'm a little confused, you wax before you apply it?
Probably relying on the wax to act as a release agent when you want to remove it, otherwise it might be too difficult to remove.
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Old 05-24-2013, 07:56 PM   #21
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For that portion of the car I would recommend getting the GM Quarter Flares . . . I've had mine on since I bought the car and my gills and rocker panels are still in fantastic shape.
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Old 05-27-2013, 07:13 PM   #22
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I just saw this on tv and was thinking it was the answer to our prayers.

Now I'm not sure....
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Old 06-13-2013, 04:45 PM   #23
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Did it ever clear up?

Also is it possible maybe it was put on to thick?
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Old 06-13-2013, 06:47 PM   #24
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Could be too thick, but 3M states sweeping motion and covering an area 4 times cross-hatch style, but no never cleared up or self-leveled. This weekend I'll probably do a review on removing it.
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Old 06-13-2013, 10:36 PM   #25
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That sucks . . .
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