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DIY 3M Pro film application

17 November 2002
Santa Barbara, CA, USA
Has anyone applied the 3M Pro film to their cars? How hard was it to apply to the front hood and fenders? What squeegee did you use. Also what spray formulations did you use. I recently purchased on line a 3M Pro kit for the lower front hood, fenders, and mirrors. I will probably not do the mirrors but definitely want to do the hood and fenders. I have had a couple of paint chips as a result of rocks etcetera while driving. I went through the process of cleaning them out and then used 5000 grit to sand down the sides. I then filled in the paint and repeated 4 times. Then I used 7000 grit to sand down. I buffed out by hand using 3M scratch removal. It does work but takes a bit of time. I am hoping applying film will help preserve the hood and fenders.
Well, I gave it the College try. I was successful in doing the two fenders but failed with the front hood. I think my problem was using one solution for everything. One YouTube station recommended using a solution of alcohol, water, and Johnson's Baby Shampoo. I think it ended up making the film too sticky to the hood. I was able to get it all squeegeed out but saw soap scum underneath. I should have left it to dry but pulled it up instead. So now I have ordered another hood and will use just the soap and water and only used a water and alcohol solution for the edges if I have a problem adhering them. Oh well.....
I commend you on trying to put PPF on the car yourself. When I was in high school, my friend and I tried to tint the windows on his 1967 Mustang. It cam out looking worse than the $99 Earl Scheib paint job he had done to it.
So I ordered another hood only without the emblem cutout. It arrived Friday late so yesterday (Saturday) I tried again. This time I purchased a pressure bottle from Home Depot for around $7 and filled it with DI Water and Johnson's baby soap. The other spray bottle I used had 70% alcohol and DI Water. I attached the sheet of paper on the door of the outside refrigerator and then began pulling off the hood film. As I pulled the film I sprayed the soap solution on the side of the film that contains the adhesive. I also sprayed the hood with the soapy solution. I then laid the film on the hood and began to move it around. I started in the center and squeegeed the soapy solution out. When I was done I looked at it and saw many of the imperfections that I saw in my last attempt. There was soapy residue and a couple of my dog's hair. So I pulled up parts and cleaned off the dog hair. It still looked like shit. So I thought it is not total failure to admit defeat, but bravery. So I grabbed one end at the bottom of the hood and began to lift it off. I thought I would pull as much off at one end and then start at the other end. I pulled it halfway off and then decided to try once more. So I sprayed the soapy solution on the film and hood and laid the film down again. I went over it with the squeegee and low an behold there was no residue underneath. So then I pulled up the other side (it is on tight) trying not to stretch the film too much. I then sprayed the hood and film and placed it down. I squeegeed it and now everything looked clear. So perhaps I did not allow the film adhesive to dissolve enough? or had too much adhesive? or???? Anyway now the film while not absolutely perfect matches the half fenders that I did. When you look at the film it is as glossy as the paint. It is really hard to see the edges. Man, I would hate to do this for a living as the stress would kill me.....
Thumbs up to you for doing this on your own. You are much braver than I!!
Thumbs up to you for doing this on your own. You are much braver than I!!

I'm with you...I know the pandemic has driven many to cut their own hair ect but this is up there with doing your own tattoo...:eek:
Here is a picture of the hood. The film goes up to the hood ducts.


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PPF? What PPF? I can’t see it in your picture! :wink: