Subaru Legacy Forums

Subaru Legacy Forums (
-   Exterior/Aesthetic (
-   -   3M Brushed Steel vinyl wrap (

Hops 07-03-2012 02:08 PM

3M Brushed Steel vinyl wrap
Inspired by ArcTec34's matte black vinyl wrap, I started checking out some options... Matte black had already started to get played out (although I still love it), so I looked into a matte red or grey. I laid out a couple samples on my car; I already had a GRP wagon, and the grey took on a primer look that enticed me to grab some sandpaper. Finally, I stumbled upon something new that I hadn't seen before... satin color AND brushed metal texture! After waiting 8 months for a turbo that I decided was never going to arrive (which finally did after 1 year) and I had already sold my old setup, I needed a big project to keep me sane. I ordered these three samples to try out:

After placing all three samples on the car and observing each piece in various light sources, the brushed steel became the winner.

I had laid vinyl on large decals on many cars for my dad's body shop over the years, so I figured this would be easy. No need to remove anything, I was expecting to go over door handles, moldings, etc. So I invited a few friends over and we started on the hood. 4 of us tried to lay the vinyl over the hood... One person stretched it too much, another didn't pull it enough, and eventually I got pissed off and threw it out and gave up. Then I tried on my own to lay what was leftover from the failed hood attempt and see if I could make it work on top of trim pieces and what not... what a disappointment. Every trim piece would need to come off. Anybody that has taken a door handle off a Legacy knows that they are a pain in the ass. Everything else is just a lot of disassembly.

So, I gave up. Called a couple of local shops. I offered to bring them the car fully stripped and ready to go, vinyl supplied and all. $2000-$3000. :eek: F*ck that! Then I came home from work one day and my girlfriend had finished my RBS rear lip spoiler and it looked killer. I jumped online and watched some vids and grabbed some of the scrap vinyl and learned how to manipulate the wrap.

I ordered a roll from a local supplier for about $550. Ended up needing a second roll and I still have some leftover for small projects, touch-ups, and interior pieces. I bought a couple of nice squeegees, an exacto knife with about 3 packs of extra blades, some 3M high-strength double-sided tape (for moldings, spoiler, etc.), and a heat gun. All in all, I spent about $1300-$1400 in supplies.

I took off every trim piece on the car so I could hide every edge and take my time to make it perfect. Bumpers, moldings, mirrors, handles, trunk trim, window trim, headlights, taillights, yadda yadda yadda.

Here are the results:

Hops 07-03-2012 02:08 PM

By myself, the hood took me 3 hours.

angeltalin 07-03-2012 02:43 PM

Any more pics I like the look ! Nice job on the hood

dudeondacouch 07-03-2012 02:49 PM

this thread needs way more pics.

also... for others interested in such things, instead of x-acto knife/blades, you can get disposable scalpels on ebay for less than $1/ea and they are retarded sharp. (plus, you don't have to worry about changing blades and shit)

Hops 07-03-2012 02:53 PM

Sorry, was in the process of posting more pics when nature called. :lol:

Hops 07-03-2012 02:59 PM

For the roof, I did the main section first... Then used 1/4" masking tape to line up my cut line. I wanted to do this without any visible seams, so I followed the roof lines.

Then I did a huge piece for the A-pillar all the way back to the quarter panel. No seams! Unless you look really hard.

dudeondacouch 07-03-2012 03:03 PM

love the leftovers all over the glass :lol:

when can we expect a finished pic in the sun?

Hops 07-03-2012 03:10 PM

Hops 07-03-2012 03:11 PM


Originally Posted by dudeondacouch (Post 3965392)
love the leftovers all over the glass :lol:

when can we expect a finished pic in the sun?

Yeah, it was a good way to save leftovers! :lol:

Pics comin...

Hops 07-03-2012 03:12 PM

I had DocHolladay cut me some pieces for the headlights...

Also tinted the tails in red and covered the shtupid chrome piece in vinyl to go for a monochrome look...

Hops 07-03-2012 03:16 PM

Hops 07-03-2012 03:20 PM

And the finished product...

Quick coolant piss

joelwatts 07-03-2012 03:22 PM

that is awesome. very nice job. where did you get the vynyl from and what size roll did you get? i'm pretty interested in this.

dudeondacouch 07-03-2012 03:25 PM


I kinda like the black under the tails from the garage pic. :hide:

Hops 07-03-2012 03:30 PM

Overall, it took me about 6 months to complete. I took my time with it since I was still waiting on a turbo anyways. It took A LOT of patience. It was more like meditation.

I had kept my car polished and waxed regularly, so the paint was perfect before I laid down the vinyl; although I did clay bar it for good measure.

I started on the wrap last July... In the heat, it's a pain in the ass. By the time winter rolled around, it was a lot easier to manipulate with the heat gun.

This car turns a lot of heads... young and old. I expected some criticism, but surprisingly... it's been a big hit. I had my car parked on Main Street in Park City for an hour and I had a couple old guys looking around the whole car trying to figure out if it really was metal. It looks and feels like it's real. Most people have asked me how I got the metal to look like that. :lol:

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:26 PM.

vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise v2.6.3 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.