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Facelift MS with front license plate holder removed & rear debadged

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by KinjaChris, May 30, 2016.

  1. KinjaChris

    KinjaChris Member

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    SoCal
    The front of the car is really stunning so I just had to remove the front license plate holder to show it off better. Yes, I realize this puts me in the "ask for forgiveness" club with no front plate in CA. I'm ok with this.

    Here is what it looks like without the thing on the front.


    So the front plate is held on by two screws that I don't have the name for in a star pattern. The pattern isn't one of the obvious ones that comes in those kits from Harbor Freight. Thankfully an 11/32 socket gives just enough grip that a gentle push will loosen them and then you can screw them out by hand.

    This is the screw:

    Once you take the two screws out you give it a good even pull. There are 3 strips of rubber stickers holding it on.

    Most of it came off when I applied pressure but a little was left on the car. Here is the bumper after pulling it off.


    Here is the back of the plate holder for reference:

    When I took delivery, I told the service team I planned on debadging it and they gave me what was left in a can of the solvent they use to take stickers off. Here is their solvent:

    I was able to get the rubber stickers off with the solvent and my fingernails but it took me a good 10-15 minutes of picking at it. I'm sure it would have gone quicker if I had used something plastic to help it off but I didn't want to scratch it so I just picked at it slowly.

    Once it was all removed, i gave the outline of the plate frame a quick wipedown with maguire's scratch X so insure the outline of the plate was gone, then a good polish with a clean rag and BAM. What a looker without the front plate!


    Now for the back. The model S stickers and battery size stickers come off really easily with a long piece of dental floss. It just cuts them right off. I was able to peel the stickers behind these letters off without solvent, they came right off as they are only a few days old. A quick dab with the solvent to get the residue off and now the back is all cleaned up as well.

     
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    • Helpful x 2
  2. eclipxe

    eclipxe Member

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    Thank you!
     
  3. SDRick

    SDRick Member

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    That's great news and I even have a 11/32 socket! Thanks for the write up.
     
  4. DÆrik

    DÆrik Member

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    11/32 socket for the win!

    Congrats in the car. It beautiful!

    Thanks Erik
     
  5. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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  6. SteveW25561

    SteveW25561 Member

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    Looks great! Thanks for the tip on the bolts on the front plate. They look like a pentalobe type but the edges are rounder than I've seen in the tiny pentalobes they use for iPhones.
     
  7. marty2112

    marty2112 Member

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    Thanks for the update. I believe a little bit of heat will help with removing the rubber adhesive strips when pulling off the bracket...
     
  8. Gizmotoy

    Gizmotoy Active Member

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    Pentalobes are all technically rounded, but once they get small enough it's hard to even tell. Torx plus are similar, but have squared-off ends, and regular torx have pointy ends. These look like true Pentalobes.

    In general, just yanking on these is probably pretty dangerous. The rear badges were done fine with the floss, but be careful with the front bumper. I've seen debadgings go awry where new, still-not-fully-cured paint comes right off with the adhesive pulling. If it were me, I'd use light heat (either let it sit in the sun for a few hours or a hairdryer) and floss all around.

    Of course, maybe Tesla paints the bumpers ahead of time in big batches so they're all pretty well cured by the time they're installed. So maybe it's fine, but I wouldn't risk it with my car.
     
  9. KinjaChris

    KinjaChris Member

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    The glue tape they use was pretty pliable. It reminded me of very sticky taffy. I just had to apply slow pressure and it slowly stretched apart. At no time was I worried about the paint coming off.
     
  10. Ashkenaz

    Ashkenaz Member

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    Beautiful! But don't you feel less safe now without that little plate in the front?
     
    • Funny x 1
  11. Brunton

    Brunton Pontificating the obvious

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    Removing the front plate holder I understand, but why deface the rear of the car by removing the Model S and battery size badges?

    And if you want to remove all indications of what the car is, are you going to remove the "TESLA" bar in the back and replace it with some sort of custom blank bar? How about the "Model S" sill plates?

    Don't misunderstand. I'm not criticizing - it's your car, so knock yourself out making it into whatever you want. I just don't understand the desire to "genericize" it.
     
  12. KinjaChris

    KinjaChris Member

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    Brunton, your profile says you pontificate the obvious, well.... it's obvious to any car enthusiast what model this car is. Without the letters cluttering up the back of the car, the design lines are more pronounced. This car has beautiful lines, it doesn't need labels to identify it. Yes, I'm keeping the T. The only thing left for me to do is get some window tint on (very light). Initially I thought I would switch the rims out to the aftermarket 19 inch turbines, but these wheels are growing on me.

    After reading this forum for several months now I'm also feeling the need for one of those blackvue cameras as well. I'm feeling the need to protect the front of the car from all those id10ts out there. Tmc induced paranoia perhaps.
     
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  13. Brunton

    Brunton Pontificating the obvious

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    Fair enough. It might not be so obvious to non-enthusiasts what the car is, but that's neither here nor there anyway, really. Anyone who pays much attention will probably recognize the car.

    I never thought of the major and minor model badges ("Model S" and battery/drive train configuration, respectively) to be clutter, but like I said, your car, your choices. The term "deface" wasn't a good choice on my part - since it's the back of the car I should have said "deass!" :D

    At least we don't have to deal with dealer advertising stickers! I would hate to have something like "Billy-Bob's Tesla Emporium, Decatur Georgia" plastered onto the back of the car!

    I added a Blackvue with both front and rear cameras. After I received it in the mail I procrastinated for several weeks before installing it. Turned out it was very simple to do - took about 90 minutes total I think. I look at it as a good investment against anything bad that might happen in a parking lot or on the roadways. Cheap insurance on a $100k purchase. I would definitely go for it.
     
  14. Tellotes

    Tellotes Member

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    I'm considering doing the install myself. You didn't find it difficult. Do you think it's worth paying someone $400 bucks to get it done? I want to tap in the power cables behind the rearview mirror. My car will be here tomorrow!
     
  15. Brunton

    Brunton Pontificating the obvious

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    That's what I did. I buy the connector someone else recommended in another thread (about 3/4 down this page) and plugged into the extra power connector behind the microphone grid. That same thread is what I followed to do the installation.
    If you're leery of doing the installation yourself and can spare the funds, you might find $400 to be worth it, but I wouldn't have.
     
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  16. Tellotes

    Tellotes Member

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    Thanks Brunton this helps! I am going to order mine soon and plan on doing it myself. Seems pretty simple.
     
  17. valkeriefire

    valkeriefire Member

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    Nice work removing the rear badging. I've been thinking of doing the same so I can pretend I spent less on my car than I did. My wife is now having buyers remorse and misses her minivan and is worried about the fact we spent 3x what we normally would on a car. I looked at her and said "but what about all the gas we didn't buy and pollution we didn't make?"
     

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