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Plasti Dipped my aero wheel covers

Discussion in 'Model 3: Interior & Exterior' started by Shygar, May 14, 2018.

  1. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    This was my first time using Plasti Dip, but I think it turned out pretty well. Some observations:
    • My desire was to keep the thin spoke lines and the center cap original, and just plasti dip the wide gray parts. So this involved a lot of masking. It probably took the most time to do this. Even though any overspray was easily removed by rubbing it, I'm still glad I spent the time masking it.
    • I did 3 base coats of matte black plasti dip, then did 3 coats of bright aluminum. Bought at Pep Boys because it was cheaper than Amazon.
    • I let the wheels dry about 30-45 minutes in-between coats, then let them dry overnight before unmasking.
    • Plasti Dip sprays on just light paint, and has the strong smell just like paint. I did it in my garage with the garage door open, but you could smell it even in the backyard. Very strong smell
    • Be careful when unmasking so that you don't pull up the plasti dip that you want to keep. What I did is used a box cutter to cut the plasti dip in between the little 3 mm grooves that run next to the thin spokes. This was the most time consuming part of unmasking. I had a very small flathead screwdriver that I also used to help pry it out of the grooves.
    • It's easier to unmask when you don't have a 2 year old running around your garage.
    Some pictures:
    plastidip_matteblack.jpg plastidip_matteblack_close.jpg
    plastidip_silver.jpg plastidip_silver_after.jpg
    plastidip_wheels.jpg plastidip_wheels2.jpg
     
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  2. Boourns

    Boourns Active Member

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    Nice! The time you took to prep seems like it paid off. Everything looks really sharp.

    Seems like someone could do this but reverse the colors, and it would give the illusion of more traditional 5 spoke wheels without sacrificing the aero benefits.
     
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  3. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    Thanks! Yea the time spent preparing paid off I think. I did consider the reverse option also, definitely possible just keep in mind the valve stem is in one of them so that may throw off the look a little.
     
  4. tjkessler

    tjkessler Member

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    Just curious, what do the base coats of Matte Black due for you? Is that just to make sure you cover the underlying grey? Beautiful work.
     
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  5. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    I think it just gives a better foundation for the aluminum to stick to. On the aluminum can it specifically states it's to be applied to something that has already been plasti dipped.
     
  6. Coeus

    Coeus Member

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    I've been considering this, but I'm interested to hear how it holds up to the elements and if you find you have touch up often or anything. I'd appreciate it if you could post an update after a while with how it's doing.
     
  7. Pkmmte

    Pkmmte Le meow

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    I regret buying the Sport Wheels instead of doing this. :(
     
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  8. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    Yep definitely will do. Doesn't really rain here now but I'm curious myself how it will hold over time. One note, I realized while I was unmasking that my 2 year old was jumping up and down in the stroller with one of my wheels leaning inside the seat. His socks eventually scratched one of the sections. I ended up just spraying over that part again and it looks like nothing happened. So I think touching up should be ok, I just don't know how often it will need to be done.
     
  9. plasmo

    plasmo Member

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    Very nice!
    I ordered my Model 3 in Silver, and really don't like the black Aero tires. I didn't realize it is difficult to change this option once you pushed Submit, so this might be a good option to change the Matte black Aero to something similar to what you did.

    Was it difficult to remove the rims? I have no experience with doing this but am very good at following directions and might give this a try.
     
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  10. Bays

    Bays Member

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    Looks great!
     
  11. octoad

    octoad Member

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    Grey wheel covers reminds me of a Prius.
     
  12. FoghornLeghorn

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    I'm definitely doing this. Thanks for showing how it's done.

    I"m also considering Plasti-Dipping the stock 18" wheels to a bright Aluminium. I think it'll look much better than the dark grey. But I'm worried the Aero cover clips will wear off the plasti-dip.
    thoughts?
     
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  13. slipnslider

    slipnslider Member

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    I'm thinking of doing this to my future aeros too, but doing the whole thing, not just the flat areas. Did you look into wrapping as well? If so, why did you pick plasti dip over wrapping?
     
  14. slipnslider

    slipnslider Member

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    They DO look better in bright silver than dark grey. There were a couple photos of prototypes with them. I think they went with the dark grey because the light silver looked too good and would have resulted in fewer sport wheel upgrades.
     

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  15. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    Actually the aero covers just pop off with your hands. Probably can ask them at delivery to show you. It's very easy to pop off.
     
  16. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    Yea I think it might wear off the plasti dip if you are taking the aero's on and off.
     
  17. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    I just did this as a test mostly, so I figured plasti dip was easier to do. I didn't really look into wrapping though.
     
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  18. slipnslider

    slipnslider Member

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    Nice!

    I'm thinking of doing this myself, except applying it to the whole aero cover.

    Why did you choose "Bright Aluminum" instead of just "Aluminum true metallic" which this video says can be applied without a base coat?
     
  19. Shygar

    Shygar Member

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    They are spraying it directly on a metal rim. I was worried it wouldn't look exactly right, but it probably would be fine if you want to try without a base coat. Only one way to find out :).
     
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