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Protecting the carbon on BLTc

1653 Views 13 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  B-Line
I'm sorry if this is beating a dead horse but what frame protectors are you all running on your BLTc?
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Im using some clear plastic film that I purchased from Tap Plastics

Its clear, adhesive backed plastic which I cut to size to place at cable rub areas,
the bottom side of down tube, seat and chainstays.

Seem to work well and it was only ~$4.00 for a 24"x 24" piece.
Also check out Aircraft Leading Edge Tape. Its designed to protect the aircraft's wings from hail damage. I bought a 50 yard x 1 in roll for about $10. Great stuff.
Thanks for the feedback.
Mr Yeti said:
Also check out Aircraft Leading Edge Tape. Its designed to protect the aircraft's wings from hail damage. I bought a 50 yard x 1 in roll for about $10. Great stuff.
I used the same, had to get it from England, it was called helicopter tape made by 3M. Its used to protect the leading edge of the rotors I believe!
jimarin said:
i just ordered this:

I'll post up how it is when I gett it.
Whewww, bloody expensive however, $60!!.... :eek:
Red PeeKay said:
Whewww, bloody expensive however, $60!!.... :eek:
Yes expensive, but I just bought a $2500 frame, so spending $60 to protect it is pretty minimal. I've used the Bonk kits from pricepoint before (those are $30) and they work great. If this is the same thing but custom cut for the frame i think it will be worth it.
I put Frameskin on my Blur LTc. The small pieces went on fine, but I got a lot of bubbles on the bigger pieces. That said, you can't really tell it's even on there from a couple feet away. It kind of blends in with the carbon wrinkles/layering you can see thru the clear coat. Overall, the kit was well designed in terms of number of pieces, shapes, etc.
I put the frameskins kit on, and it looks great. There are a couple really small bubbles on the big peices, but the only place its slightly noticable is on the top tube, and then only if you are really close to it. I would say i'm satisfied with the kit. Even though it was expensive, the custom cut pieces are worth it. As far as durability, time will tell but I think its worth the $70 shipped.
I cover all my frames completely in the 3M stuff.
It takes about half a day to cover every bit of the frame. But well worth it. I've got an old 6.6 and the 3M plastic is full of gouges and scratches, but the paint underneath is exactly as it was the day I bought it.

There's a great video here
on how to install it without getting air bubbles and on how to get it working around curves.
The water with a few drops of baby shampoo is the way to go.

ebay sellers have it in rolls of various lengths - a $30 roll is enough to cover the whole bike.

I pull the front and rear triangles appart when I do it as it's easier to work the material around the tubes when you can access all of it and pick them up/twist it.

I put a tripple layer on the chain stay for chain slap protection.

Here's what my LT alu looks like - no one even notices it.
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Hey Rural,

That is some great info that you posted! I just ordered a roll off e-bay this morning and your posting couldn't have been more timely. I also picked up an aluminum blur over the winter, and covering it in 3M will be my winter project. I want to get it done before I head down to arizona to ride (I am up in Canada, where everything is currently covered in the white stuff).

Do you have any other tips for covering a Blur LT?

How did your create your templates? I am thinking of using painters masking tape and transferring the tape to cardboard to make a template that can be traced. No idea if this will work... is there a better solution?

Where you able to use one piece on the top tube?

Could you post some close up shots?

Can you use scissors to cut the film or is it better to use a utility knife?

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Some quick answers before I post some close up pictures tomorrow.

- I used grease proof/baking paper to make my rough templates as you can wrap it around tubes and trace through it easily.
-each tube covered was one piece (even the top tube, it just takes a bit of time to work the plastic to shape)
- The templates only have to be rough as I made them a little bit bigger and cut it exactly to size as I applied it.
- The joins are generally where the tube welds are as they are the parts that take the most work to get the plastic formed to the shape of the welds, so being able to squeeze the water out at this point helped a lot.
- you need to wipe the excess water away as you work it or it just sucks back under the plastic and the edges don't stick down.
-Take your time, it doesn't go off, but once it's stretched there's no un-stretching it. so you can peel back mistakes very carefully but try not to deform the plastic too much.
-the other joins were in places that were protected or not visible e.g. the down tube had a sheet rolled all the way around and the join was under the brake cable.
- use the Velcro over the squeegee thing like in the video, it works great.
- You don't need to worry too much about templates as you kind of stretch the material around the corners and with the contours, it will also stretch out a little bit. So I just used a small pair of nail scissors to cut it exactly to size as I applied it. I also cut the holes for anything needed as I applied it. Don't try and do this before as it really does stretch and move from what a template would show. The trick is to make sure it stays wet as that takes the stickiness/finger print mark up factor away so that after you anchor part of the film like they show in that video, you can then grab the other corners and stretch it around the curves of the frame. While it’s wet it’s easy to work with, peel on and off. But if you let it get dry it will stick to everything (dust, fold back on itself, the oil in your skin, etc).
- Loads of the soap water solution keeps the air bubbles out and even if you get a few tiny bubbles of water trapped, they dry up eventually leaving a perfect finish. Water bubbles are not a problem, but air bubbles are so make sure you work any of them out.
- The new pivot bolt system that SC is using is awesome!! Really easy to pull a couple of the bolts out and separate the frame triangles, this is worth doing as it's easier to work around the tubes then.

That’s about all I can think of off the top of my head.
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Thanks rural for the tips:)

Im still waiting for the 3M paper to arrive.

Thanks Again
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