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Clear Auto Bra

Discussion in 'E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006-2011)' started by jlwsbw, Dec 31, 2009.

    • Member

    jlwsbw

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    All,

    I have a 2010 328iT in Alpine White on the way. There is a product by 3M called clear bra, and a shop about 1 mile from my BMW dealership. The cost to protect hood/fenders/mirrors/etc is $525. The product is supposed to last 5-7 years, however I intend to keep this car much longer. Anyone have any opinions about this type of product?
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    eam3

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    A good friend of mine got it for his 2001 Mustang Bullitt the day he bought the car and I have to admit, it's an excellent product. Nearly 9 years later and the front end of his car looks fantastic plus you can hardly tell it's there - especially the color you're getting. His car is dark blue and it's barely noticeable.

    I just noticed this:

    "'01 E91
    Alpine White
    Black Leather
    Aluminum Trim
    6 Speed Manual "

    Do you mean an '10 E91'? :)
    • Member

    jlwsbw

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    Thanks for the heads up on my signature, will get it corrected.
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    John in VA

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    Venture Shield is one of the toughest chip protection films on the market, and offers a LIFETIME WARRANTY for cracking, bubbling, or yellowing with proper care.

    3M - 5yr warranty
    Venture - Lifetime

    3M - Some 'older' stories of yellowing over time - may have been cleared up
    Venture - alleged to be clearer

    3M - Some orange peel visible - I've seen this - not great IMO
    Venture - Not so much

    Longevity and happiness completely tied to installer in both cases.
    • Member

    jlwsbw

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    Let me change the question up a little bit. I used this installer on a previous vehicle that I only kept a short time, however this BMW will be with me for a long long time. If i plan on keeping it for 10 years plus, is this clear bra worth it? Im really wondering how many of you out there have it on your cars. My guess is that very few older Bimmers have it due to it being relatively new technology. G-d for bid I get in a wreck i dont want to throw $525 away, and at the same time dont want any paint fade. The flip side is I know what rock chips do to white paint.
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    John in VA

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    Your paint, if clear-coated, will not fade like non-clear-coated products of olde.
    Rocks will chip any color, and dark chipped paint looks worse than lighter paint. I've not been thrilled with the durability of auto paint since it was changed to a water-based formula, but what choice do you have.
    If you're planning on a clear protective product, do it soon after purchase. Don't wait until you have your first chips.
    You'll find plenty of other ways to "throw away" $525! Performance chip, wheels, suspension mods, pine tree air fresheners...
    • Member

    jlwsbw

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    So John Im trying to figure out if youre for or against this product. Surprised that dark color chips would be worse as once you bust thru the paint you uncover a grayish color. Thanks for noting that fade wont be a problem.

    ForcedInduction guest

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    I went with the 3M clear bra and it's been pretty good. Nothing can guarantee 100% protection from stone chips. A good installer makes a big difference on the quality and looks of the installation. I've seen 8 yr. old 3M clear bra on a white daily driver car with no yellowing FWIW.
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    jlwsbw

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    Would you put it on again if you had it to do all over?

    ForcedInduction guest

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    In my case, yes.
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    elfhearse

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    I'm having Xpel installed this weekend on my 2010 E91 ZMP (bumper, rockers, rear sill and hood bikini cut)
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    pseto

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    i've had clear bras on all my cars and its always the first thing I do when I get a new ride. i never hesitate to get one and will continue to get them unless paint technology changes

    528eta guest

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    Clear bras are very helpful to prevent rock chips and scratches, but as the owner of the car you have to look at the bra everyday. (to me not worth it) Also in the edges they collect wax, polish, and dirt, making a detail harder. (even after detailing for years now i have not found a good method for removal) Also another point to add is that if you decide to take the bra off, the paint under will be in much better shape, thus not matching the rest of the car. All in all its a very opinionated subject.
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    jlwsbw

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    528eta, or anyone else, has paint technology changed that much since that gorgeous alpine white 528 in your pic was produced? im curious to see a pic of the hood/front if paint technology is relatively the same. seems on this site and bimmerfest those who own newer vehicles really like the product. however i agree that im not sure i want to look at it everyday. on my old car a few yrs back, a white lexus, it was very visible, especially after driving thru a good midwest summer haze.
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    jlwsbw

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    elfhearse, what color combo/options on your new E91?
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    elfhearse

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    Ordered it thru BMW Military sales while I was in Iraq..just got it a few days ago:
    LMB/Saddle Brown 6MT, ZMP, I-drive, Xenon, Heated seats

    ForcedInduction guest

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    A pro installer can do a custom clear bra install with no visible edges, which is what I've done on several cars. Everything from the firewall forward is covered. No lines on the hood, fenders, grills or front bumper. You wouldn't know the car even has clear bra without a really close examination of the material which you wax just like paint. It's not cheap but it's better than stone chips IMO.
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    pseto

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    absolutely true and its very hard to find a really good installer that can cut their own material and apply this way. i would guess that 90+% use the computer-cut kits which are a lot easier to install, but for those who do not want edges/lines, a custom job is the only way to go (and usually twice the cost).
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    wretched

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    What about removal? If your paint is new then I would think it would remove easily. If you have older paint that has chips example bought a CPO BMW, The day you decide to remove it will it peel some paint?

    ForcedInduction guest

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    New or old paint doesn't matter per se on removal if done properly. They always advise that you should allow paint repairs to cure well before applying clear bra.

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