DIY Chrome Delete with Plasti Dip

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KFORE

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#1
After receiving quotes upwards of $1,000 for a professional vinyl chrome delete, I decided to do my own with 2 cans of black plasti dip, some masking tap, and a few garbage/plastic bags. Total cost: $35. Total time: 6 hours.

Most of the effort is in the masking of the car, which took about 4 hours of total effort. I was being extra careful (probably too careful as plasti dip is very forgiving), and it was fairly tedious. It wasn't hard, just... time consuming.

The biggest tip I can give if you're planning on going the plasti dip route is making sure to apply the right kind of coating. I kept hearing to put super thin coats on to prevent streaks and runs, and while that is good advice, I took it too literally. I put pretty thin coats on the driver side and it ended up making me put 8 coats on for things to look nice.

For the passenger side, I decided to put thicker coats on, and after the 2nd coat, everything looked good. I put two more coats on for good measure, but this method proved to be much quicker and I got less texture. You don't want super thick coats, but thick enough that the trim is quite wet but not pooling up.

I also did the handles, which came out really nicely, but we'll see how they hold up with a lot of use over time.

Anyway, here are the results...


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Let me know if you have any questions! I'd be happy to answer anything and help people save a ton of money on this. Also, if you've done this yourself, any updates on how well it holds up?
 

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John

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#3
Did you overspray onto the paint and then peal the paint part away?
 

garsh

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#4
Looks great! I have no clue how that will hold up.
It will hold up wonderfully.

I still have original plastidip on the front chrome piece on my Leaf. The front of that car is completely pock-marked from stones over its 96,000 miles. But the plastidip has held up perfectly.
 

garsh

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#5
Did you overspray onto the paint and then peal the paint part away?
Yes, that's generally how you apply plastidip. As long as there is some kind of gap between the part to be covered and the part that you don't want to be covered, it's very simple. Just wait for everything to dry, and peel it off.

It's still good to cover the majority of the area with tap/bags/paper though. Thin layers of plastidip are much more difficult to remove, and overspray is a pain in the butt to remove. The first time I tried plastidipping wheels, I just allowed it to overspray onto the tires. I regretted that decision afterwards. Such a pain to remove it from all of the little crevices & stamped lettering in the tire sidewall.
 

garsh

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#6
The biggest tip I can give if you're planning on going the plasti dip route is making sure to apply the right kind of coating. I kept hearing to put super thin coats on to prevent streaks and runs, and while that is good advice, I took it too literally. I put pretty thin coats on the driver side and it ended up making me put 8 coats on for things to look nice.
I read the same advice, and made the same mistake on my first attempt. Having the coats be too light (and allowing them to dry too much in between coats) caused a lot of texture in the finish.
For the passenger side, I decided to put thicker coats on, and after the 2nd coat, everything looked good. I put two more coats on for good measure, but this method proved to be much quicker and I got less texture. You don't want super thick coats, but thick enough that the trim is quite wet but not pooling up.
Yep. Basically, you want to hit the sweet spot where it's thick enough for the wet plastidip to attract to itself and flatten out properly, but not thick enough to start running.

And also, don't wait for it to dry completely before putting on the next coat.

Now, the part I'm worried about for you - I'm not sure if you really want to stop at four coats. You generally want plastidip to be pretty thick. Thick plastidip is easy to remove in the future. Thin plastidip rips and tears as you try to remove it. Thick plastidip will stretch but come off as a single piece.
 

Lovesword

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#8
Amazing work! That's very impressive! And bonus points for your selection of the finest color for this car! ;)
 
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#9
Not gonna lie, this looks fantastic, and now you've tempted me to save $1000 and try this myself. A few questions....

How did you tackle the mirrors? Did you dip them in both the open and closed position, or do you see chrome when they are folded?

Did you mask off behind the door handles?

What do the door handles look like in the open position...how sharp are the "lines" from the dip to the undipped portion?​

Thanks for posting this!
 

JWardell

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#10
After receiving quotes upwards of $1,000 for a professional vinyl chrome delete, I decided to do my own with 2 cans of black plasti dip, some masking tap, and a few garbage/plastic bags. Total cost: $35. Total time: 6 hours.

Most of the effort is in the masking of the car, which took about 4 hours of total effort. I was being extra careful (probably too careful as plasti dip is very forgiving), and it was fairly tedious. It wasn't hard, just... time consuming.

The biggest tip I can give if you're planning on going the plasti dip route is making sure to apply the right kind of coating. I kept hearing to put super thin coats on to prevent streaks and runs, and while that is good advice, I took it too literally. I put pretty thin coats on the driver side and it ended up making me put 8 coats on for things to look nice.

For the passenger side, I decided to put thicker coats on, and after the 2nd coat, everything looked good. I put two more coats on for good measure, but this method proved to be much quicker and I got less texture. You don't want super thick coats, but thick enough that the trim is quite wet but not pooling up.

I also did the handles, which came out really nicely, but we'll see how they hold up with a lot of use over time.

Anyway, here are the results...


View attachment 11251

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Let me know if you have any questions! I'd be happy to answer anything and help people save a ton of money on this. Also, if you've done this yourself, any updates on how well it holds up?

I love thinking of new ways to use Plasti-Dip and this is a perfect example.
Lots of effort but the results looks outstanding!

I wonder if using the original plasti-dip (in a can) with a brush might greatly simplify things here were everything is long and thin and difficult to mask. I may attempt a test.

No worries about durability, I sprayed my winter rims with plasti-dip and after five seasons none of it has disappeared.
And of course if you change your mind, you can peel it off at any time.
 

KFORE

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#13
Not gonna lie, this looks fantastic, and now you've tempted me to save $1000 and try this myself. A few questions....

How did you tackle the mirrors? Did you dip them in both the open and closed position, or do you see chrome when they are folded?

Did you mask off behind the door handles?

What do the door handles look like in the open position...how sharp are the "lines" from the dip to the undipped portion?​

Thanks for posting this!
I dipped them while open first. Need to do it again while closed.

I did not mask off behind the door handles. Very little rubber got inside.

The lines aren't super sharp, but it doesn't look bad. I'll grab a photo.
 

scaots

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#16
It will hold up wonderfully.

I still have original plastidip on the front chrome piece on my Leaf. The front of that car is completely pock-marked from stones over its 96,000 miles. But the plastidip has held up perfectly.
Maybe I should coat the whole bumper. I already have several chips. Can't wait to get PPF. Actually if they had clear plastidip I'm sure folks would coat the whole car for a nice matte finish protection.
 
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#17
Thanks for posting this, I ordered a couple cans off amazon in anticipation of my delivery. I'd really like to see some pictures of the chrome on the door handles when they're open and the chrome on the windows when folded in if you get a chance. Thanks again!
 

JWardell

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#19
Maybe I should coat the whole bumper. I already have several chips. Can't wait to get PPF. Actually if they had clear plastidip I'm sure folks would coat the whole car for a nice matte finish protection.
You can always use Paint Defender. Doubt it will look great on a whole car, but it certainly good for temporary use on a bumper.
https://amzn.to/2maazlr