DIY: Raptor Lining.
First and foremost let me state that I am not a pro at this. I came to the conclusion that I needed to learn how to do my own raptor lining since the estimates I was receiving was way too costly. Sure enough with some good ole online research, and the Help of Vinny Martucci of Adventure Offroad and 4×4. I was able to knock out the task with ease, and come forth victorious in my task. Below you find details on my experience with Raptor lining the hood, grill and interior.
Why Raptor line?
Why not!? Some people may like it, some may not but who cares. At the end of the day this is your vehicle. You do whatever you please to it regardless who likes it or who doesn’t. You are not building your vehicle to appease anyone but yourself. I like the Raptor line finish because my Jeep is not a pavement princess. I do not want to wash, shine and buff the outside finish to a glossy shine. I am not in it for the bling aspect, but for the adventure and thus prefer a rugged, exterior finish that will withstand rocks, chips and, branches rubbing against it. Also when it is time to clean the jeep after a day of mudding, I merely spraying it down with a hose and all that dirt, sand, mud and grime runs off it. To me that is what I want and a need, and thus I call it a win win, other people may think otherwise. However you decide what you want to do to your Jeep, remember once again it is your build.
- Scratch and stain resistant
- Helps deaden sounds and vibrations
- UV Resistant – Will not fade
So what did I get and what to you need?:
(2) Bottles of Upol Raptor Liner for hood and grill, they sell kits of 2, 4, 6 and 8 bottles. I did use (4) bottles to do my whole interior floorboards thus removing the nasty rugs. I have taken the liberty of linking the kits to Amazon in this paragraph.
(1) Gallon of Acetone – Lowes or Home Depot. A must to clean off the part after you sand it. I suggest you use paper towels and not a rag.
(1) Pack of sandpaper, nothing too rough of a grain. Remember you are not trying to sand to the metal. You are just trying to scuff it so the Raptor liner spray will adhere to it.
(1) Plastic drop cloth and blue tape: Remember that over spray does occur, and thus you want to tape and plastic off the areas that you do not want spray to hit.
Where to begin? – Prepping is everything!!!!!
Remove the pieces you are going to spray if they are removable. Unless of course if you are spraying the whole exterior or flooring. Exterior you will need to tape off everything you do not want Raptor lined, interior you need to gut out all seats, panels, and tape off areas such as dashboards and center consoles, Pretty much same as the exterior, tape off everything you do not want prayed. Please remember that once this application goes down, it will NOT come off.
Once all parts are ready, start using your sandpaper to scuff up all that you will be spraying. This will give the Raptor Liner a better surface for adhesion. Once all areas are scuffed, then proceed to use paper towels to remove all the sandpaper and paint grit from those areas. Paper towels work best as you can clean and toss out, a rag would keep too much grit and thus not ensure a clean surface. Okay now that everything is sanded, prepped for the liner, now begins the fun.
Your compressor should be at 60lbs of pressue to ensure a nice finish. Make sure you have a long enough hose and are spraying in a well ventilated area. Remember there will be lots of overspray pending in how you spray and where you spray, put into account wind if you are outside.
Hardener has no Mercy
It is imperative that you follow directions on the bottle, mix the right amount of hardener in, shake extreme well and follow all guidelines. I have discovered that if you put the bottle down between drying times, it will harden it and render the rest useless. So instead I keep the bottle and gun in my hand between drying times, and continue to shake the bottle to keep the mixture moving.
I have also come to the conlusion that 60lbs of pressure on the compressor was the best setting for the finish I wanted. That and keeping the gun atleast 12-16″ inches from the surface you are spraying. Remember the farther back you keep it, the more of a texture you will attain. The closer you keep it, the greater chance for drips you will have which is a no no. Take your time, do it right and calculate how much you are going to use.
After each bottle, remove the air gun out, stick the spray tube into the acetone gallon and flush out the Raptor liner from the gun. Do this in an area that will not affect what you just sprayed, I flushed it out in to bucket. Now once the gun is flushed and clean, you can proceed on to mixing the next bottle and repeating the process of spraying again. Remember, Remember, remember to repeat cleaning the gun out between each spray section to ensure it doesnt get gunked up and become rendered useless.
Take your time, do it right and make sure you have enough material to finish the job. For me this was an amazing experience, I learned a great deal from it and am now comfident enough to do it again when I need to.