Hello. Thanks for making it to my second Instructable!
In this Instructable I wanted to explain the process of spraying an entire vehicle in bed liner. This will probably interest those who like to take their vehicles offroad, or those who want to create a unique look for their ride. Bed liner creates a hard durable surface that isn't afraid to get dirty or take a few flying rocks.
This process can easily be done in a weekend if you're motivated.
Materials & Tools:
- Approved Respirator (Protect yourself from harmful particles).
- U-Pol Raptor Liner Tintable Kit or Black (Around $120. If you have a larger vehicle, you may require another kit).
- Paint (If you go with the tintable kit. I picked out a color at my local paint shop).
- U-Pol Spray Gun (Some U-Pol kits may include this, otherwise the price will vary depending on where you buy it. My local paint shop had it for $20).
- 3M or similar automotive masking tape (Used for masking off your vehicle).
- Masking paper (Used for protecting windows or anything else that you do not want bed liner on).
- DA Sander & sand paper (Used for scuffing the surface of the vehicle to create a more bondable surface for the bed liner).
- Air Compressor (For this project I used a 60 gallon compressor. It can be done with a smaller compressor, however you will need to take breaks for the compressor to catch up).
Step 1: Prepping the Vehicle
So like any paint job you need to properly prep your vehicle. Let's start off with the basics.
1) Remove anything that is easily removable. This step all depends on how indepth you want to go.
2) Mask off anything left on the vehicle that you do not want bed liner on. This is where your masking paper and automotive tape come into play. Attention to detail is very important here. Masking takes time so do not rush it; otherwise you will end up with bed liner where you did not want it! The stuff is near impossible to get off.
3) Scuffing the vehicle. I used 80 grit sand paper and a DA to make sure the bed liner stuck. You need to be very cautious with this step. If you clip your tape or masking paper with the DA, you will have to remask that portion. If it is in a spot where you cannot get the DA, scuff it by hand. When you are finished, wipe down the vehicle to remove any paint dust. Inspect your mask job and make sure you are good to go!
Step 2: Spraying the Bed Liner
This is the easy part! Follow the directions on your U-Pol kit. It tells you exactly how much paint and how much hardener to add to the U-Pol bottle. You will then shake it up, insert your spray gun and spray.
- ALWAYS wear your approved respirator.
- The further back you hold your spray gun, the more texture you will have on your vehicle. Play with it to find what you like.
- Make sure you get a nice thick coating applied. Look for thin spots where you can still see the panel of your vehicle and cover it.
- After you have applied your bed liner, let the liner dry. If you want to keep your spray gun for other projects, you MUST clean it right after use.
Step 3: Unmasking
This is the truly exciting part! I prefer to unmask when the liner is still somewhat tacky. This ensures that the masking tape does not become part of your vehicle. In my opinion, the results speak for themselves! I hope this Instructable motivates someone to try this on their own. It is a common misconception that only a shop can have these types of results. In all reality, you probably saved yourself close to a $1000 by doing it yourself.
I want to also note that there are several different brands and types of sprayable bed liners. Use what is available to you!