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theksmith

Late to the Party: theksmith's 2016 JK Unlimited Rubicon (Gadget)

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did a little exploring this weekend near home...

 

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Is that the CAP bridge you can see off of the 303? Super cool!

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9 minutes ago, 4x4tographer said:

Is that the CAP bridge you can see off of the 303? Super cool!

 

 

yup, where the old canal crossed over the Agua Fria... the current one is much larger and goes underground.

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removed rear fender flares, will repainting all of them over the next few weeks...

 

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the clear coat was peeling. not sure if i did something wrong, or if just bad paint from Dupli-Color. this time i'm using (hopefully better) paint from automotivetouchup.com. 

 

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the other problem is the rear ones have pitted severely from rocks hitting. i've been dabbing all the spots with a touch-up paint pen after every run, but they're just a mess now. i'm going to try and install clear PPF (paint protection film) to mitigate this problem once the new paint has time to cure.

 

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sanding them down is a giant PITA so far!

 

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unrelated photo of Gadget basking in the sunrise:

 

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Edited by theksmith
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up before the sun dialing-in some recent changes...

 

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finally finished re-painting the rear fenders. i'll let them cure a few days and then apply PPF.

 

i ended up with a fair bit of texture across the top horizontal area because i had to hold the can further away there to keep it at a good angle in order for it to not sputter. but, it's so hot right now that it really needed to be held closer to lay down smooth. i'm still happy with how they came out for a quick garage paint job.

 

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i used color-matched spray paint from automotivetouchup.com this time around. it definitely sprayed nice than Dupli-Color or the little tiny Mopar touch-up cans. my only complaint is their spray fan is actually just a little too wide and catches the can edge which will cause drips if you're not really careful.

 

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for the clear coat i went with a 2-part urethane, the 2K SprayMax Clear Glamour.  i was impressed with how it sprays and looks. i laid down 2 really wet coats with about 10 minutes between. this stuff should also be more durable than the Dupli-Color clear i used last time.

 

you do really need a respirator and some quality filters with this 2K though. it contains isocyanates, an extra nasty type of chemical.

 

a couple additional handy things i used on this project were a spray can trigger to help keep a consistent pressure and a mixer attachment for reciprocating saws.

 

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Edited by theksmith
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 Nicely done Kris!  
I’d never heard of that urethane top coat.

 

You might have shamed me into getting one of your fancy paint mixer.
I’m getting a bit tired of the hose clamp and long blade combo.

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2 minutes ago, jgaz said:

 Nicely done Kris!  
I’d never heard of that urethane top coat.

 

You might have shamed me into getting one of your fancy paint mixer.
I’m getting a bit tired of the hose clamp and long blade combo.

 

check out the reviews and their photos for that SprayMax 2K clear. apparently it looks really amazing if you take the time to sand/polish/buff out the orange-peel. i'm not going to bother with all that for a fender flare that will surely catch a rock or tree again at some point though!

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got the PPF on and re-installed the rear flares...

 

videos 2 through 8 from this playlist made for a good primer on installing PPF.

 

instead of trying to do it with the flares on the rig, i made a quick place to mount them on a work table.

 

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i first tried to do a full wrap with a practice piece of PPF and it actually went pretty well. i was able to get the compound corners to lay down without any wrinkles, which was my initial worry. however, when it came to wrapping around to the back edges with a 1/4" or so of material, i couldn't get it to stick on the underside of the flares. i hadn't prepped that inside area well during painting - i.e. it wasn't really smooth and glassy like the outside surfaces.

 

so i moved on to plan B, which was to just do a surface install using knifeless tape to trim the PPF to shape. this is the easy way to do it, but the edges of the material will eventually pick up dust and dirt, which may even cause the edges to lift. hopefully i get at least a few years out of it though.

 

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note that of you're using 3M's knifeless tape, the "Precision Line" variant is recommended for thick films like PPF. you're also supposed to tape the top of the PPF directly over the knifeless line to help make the cut come out crisp.

 

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i did have a hard time getting the knifeless cut started on one of the flares and had to trim a portion of film with scissors, but overall they came out nice.

 

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i only ended up with a few small bubbles from dust particles that were stuck in the clear coat.

 

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i took Gadget over to the car wash for a buff and wax before putting the flares back on. she's all shiny now (except for those peeling front flares still).

 

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supplies used for this PPF project:

 

 

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just waiting on more color-matched spray paint and then onto fixing up the front flares!

Edited by theksmith
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yesterday i noticed the plastic near the bottom of my tablet mount was cracked and ready to come apart soon.

 

this little thing has been bounced around for a loooong time though... i first made the custom quick release dock out of 2 Satechi phone holders in 2014 in order to install a 7" tablet in Aimee's KJ Liberty Renegade. then in 2016 i welded up bracket to mount the dock in Gadget, and it's been used constantly since then. in late 2017 i bought a new 8" tablet and had to do surgery to swap out the dock's micro-usb for a type--c connector.

 

i pop the tablet out anytime i leave Gadget parked in the sun, or need to plan a trip, download maps, etc. the top of the clamp is spring loaded so just have to slide the tablet upwards and it gets unplugged and released from the clamp all in one motion.

 

after a little CA glue along with a piece of aluminum and some screws to brace the bottom, this antique will live to hold a tablet for yet another day!

 

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Edited by theksmith
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