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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone going to get their front end clear bra/PPF applied?

Really helps in preventing rock chips to the front. Have gotten quotes around the 800-1200 range.


 

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I am not going to get a clear bra. I think that it is a bit of a waste of money. I'm not so worried about getting ships in the paint. I just really have something against car bras. i'm afraid of what it will do to the paint as far as sun fading and dirt.
 

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Not sure if "clear bra" is the same as vinyl wrap e.g., from 3M, but I'm considering getting the front half of my sq4 clear wrapped, including side mirrors. It preserves your paint. Although my car is a darker grey so it won't show the eventual yellowing that most clear wraps develop over time i.e., don't clear wrap your white car.

Or why not camo-wrap your Maserati? ;)
 

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We have a clear bra on our black 911. It has protected the paint (presumably as I see nicks in the bra, hopefully not in the paint) however, there is a demarcation line. We're not going to get a bra on the Ghibli. It has a higher profile and frankly, I just don't like the look of it.
 

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Maybe it's because I've not driven as many highway miles but ever since I switched to European cars about 8 years ago, I haven't seen nearly as many chips on the front of my cars. I remember the Honda and Toyotas I've had would always pick up a good amount of rock chips as time went on.

I did get a huge rock to the windshield of my BMW once. I needed a force field to be saved from that one.
 

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Not worth it. For the price of a clear bra application you can repaint the chipped areas twice. The look of the bra after 2-3 years is nasty. The lines where the bra is are yellowish disgusting color and I actually took the bra off my black 911 tt because I couldn't stand it. After 1.5 years no bra I barely see any damage and if significant damage was to occur it would cost about $500-$600 to paint it and make it look like new
 

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Not worth it. For the price of a clear bra application you can repaint the chipped areas twice. The look of the bra after 2-3 years is nasty. The lines where the bra is are yellowish disgusting color and I actually took the bra off my black 911 tt because I couldn't stand it. After 1.5 years no bra I barely see any damage and if significant damage was to occur it would cost about $500-$600 to paint it and make it look like new
Clear bra tech has improved greatly over the years, now they don't yellow, or just don't yellow as quick as they used to.
Plus I really care about the quality of work being done on my car.

I rather not have to make frequent trips to a body shop. Better to do this.
 

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Wow, they even put camo on the wheels with this Ghibli.



I could take or leave a clear bra. I'm not terribly worried about damage to the paint on my Ghibli. I would rather get the paint fixed than put a clear bra on. Not sure if that completely seems logical, but whatever.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
For those complaining about the clear bra yellowing - did you happen to go with 3M the first time around?

There are many options for films now that do not yellow as quickly.

You have to expect to replace them every 3-5 years

The newer films also do not have as much orange peel so they look more discrete. If you do not like the line you should wrap the ENTIRE hood. I've installed a few front end clear bras in my time and I can tell you that some films are practically invisible if you wrap the entire hood.

I am personally going to be getting Opti-Coat Pro applied on the entire car and have the front end wrapped with either XPEL or Nano Fusion.

Opti-Coat is paint protection to resist contamination as well as resist swirls and light scratches.

The film/vinyl wrap on the front is to prevent rock chips on the freeway.

You say that you can repaint the front a few times over for the price but a repainted car will always be worth less than an OEM paint job.

I've owned a paint refinishing business in the past and I can tell you that for around $1000 to paint the front end - you are not getting a very good paint job. You might be happy with it - but in the right eyes - there will be flaws.

You should be able to get away with wrapping the entire front end and having the car Opti-Coated for under $2000. It should last over 5 years and longer. If you are planning to keep the car for long it's a good idea. If you are leasing and planning to return the car after a few years then I guess it would be a waste of money.

If anyone needs help finding a clear bra or opti-coat installer in your state or province shoot me a PM. I have met many quality installers throughout my career and can recommend you a trustworthy business.
 

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For those complaining about the clear bra yellowing - did you happen to go with 3M the first time around?

There are many options for films now that do not yellow as quickly.

You have to expect to replace them every 3-5 years

The newer films also do not have as much orange peel so they look more discrete. If you do not like the line you should wrap the ENTIRE hood. I've installed a few front end clear bras in my time and I can tell you that some films are practically invisible if you wrap the entire hood.

I am personally going to be getting Opti-Coat Pro applied on the entire car and have the front end wrapped with either XPEL or Nano Fusion.

Opti-Coat is paint protection to resist contamination as well as resist swirls and light scratches.

The film/vinyl wrap on the front is to prevent rock chips on the freeway.

You say that you can repaint the front a few times over for the price but a repainted car will always be worth less than an OEM paint job.

I've owned a paint refinishing business in the past and I can tell you that for around $1000 to paint the front end - you are not getting a very good paint job. You might be happy with it - but in the right eyes - there will be flaws.

You should be able to get away with wrapping the entire front end and having the car Opti-Coated for under $2000. It should last over 5 years and longer. If you are planning to keep the car for long it's a good idea. If you are leasing and planning to return the car after a few years then I guess it would be a waste of money.

If anyone needs help finding a clear bra or opti-coat installer in your state or province shoot me a PM. I have met many quality installers throughout my career and can recommend you a trustworthy business.
That's definitely not the case. I repainted my 911 TT front bumper for $600 and it looks 10x better then any scratched yellow 'clear' bra - it was a 3M clear bra and original application cost me $1500 for bumper, partial hood mirrors and side scoops. I only do my body work at IND Distribution which is one of the most reputable body shops in the area specializing in German makes (BMW M, P-car) etc. Check them out. iND Distribution Group & Eisenmann North America | Custom Vehicle Solutions for BMW, Audi, Mercedes Benz, Nissan, Porsche, Ferrari | Eisenmann, Motorsport24, 3D Design, iND Parts and Accessories, Victory Road

Also I spoke at length about painted cars with my Porsche dealer. They told me that even if a car has previous paint job, and its done right, they don't discount the car 1 dollar. If it has an accident on file they do, but not if it has a properly done paint job. I've painted front a rear bumpers on all my cars and never had an issue selling one or getting full price for it. Many people do this, to maintain the car's new paint look without incurring any loss to car's value.
 

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That's definitely not the case. I repainted my 911 TT front bumper for $600 and it looks 10x better then any scratched yellow 'clear' bra - it was a 3M clear bra and original application cost me $1500 for bumper, partial hood mirrors and side scoops. I only do my body work at IND Distribution which is one of the most reputable body shops in the area specializing in German makes (BMW M, P-car) etc. Check them out. iND Distribution Group & Eisenmann North America | Custom Vehicle Solutions for BMW, Audi, Mercedes Benz, Nissan, Porsche, Ferrari | Eisenmann, Motorsport24, 3D Design, iND Parts and Accessories, Victory Road

Also I spoke at length about painted cars with my Porsche dealer. They told me that even if a car has previous paint job, and its done right, they don't discount the car 1 dollar. If it has an accident on file they do, but not if it has a properly done paint job. I've painted front a rear bumpers on all my cars and never had an issue selling one or getting full price for it. Many people do this, to maintain the car's new paint look without incurring any loss to car's value.
I agree with what both of you are saying, however, even the BEST paint job is easy to see that is not original. The newer paint meters using laser measuring can determine the depth of the paint and it is impossible to match the depth to factory spec unless painting a whole car. Now whether that translates to discounts, loss of value or noticeable to the naked eye is another discussion.

With the best bras and applications, they do not yellow for at least the first several years. I've had one on one of my cars that lasted 7 years and absolutely no yellowing and very without closely looking at it, you would never know it is there. It comes down to the brand and model (3M makes a bunch of different quality lines of bras) and how you take care of it over time. Some bras can be waxed and sealed, some can't…the long-term care of the bra is as important as the application which is ultimately all based on the quality line of bra you got, not just the manufacturer.
 

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The thing is the only thing that a bra accomplishes is it protects the paint underneath, it does nothing to make the car look better because instead of having the dings in your paint you have them on your bra and they are very noticeable and look just as ugly as if they were on your actual paint. This is in addition to potential yellowing and the reduction in luster you get from your natural car paint. If you are worried about resale value, I say go with bra - that's the safest. If you want the best looks - it looks much better to repaint, even 2 times if you have to over life of car rather then deal with bras. Just my opinion but everyone of course chooses to do what they like.

And the paint meter is definitely a valid point, but I've never had anyone care about the car be painted if the panels are OEM. If you can't tell that the panels are from original car, and the car is painted - run, otherwise you're ok.
 

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I have my appointment set for 9am Monday morning to get my clear bra installed. The dealer recommended a local shop, and is actually lending them a bay at the dealership to do the work (they need a clean, well lit, and warm work space).

My previous Volvo was black (as is my Ghibli) and the only part of the car that showed age after 10 years was the paint on the hood. I am looking forward to having eternally fresh paint once I am done!

I am getting the Xpel Ultimate film. It has a 10 year warranty (parts and labor) against cracking, fading, peeling, etc. It also has a very impressive self-healing capability where scratches and dings are repaired via the car sitting in sunlight for a couple hours. Intriguing technology!

I am having the full bumper, mirrors, half hood, and a spot in front of the rear wheel well covered. I am in Ohio, and I have been cringing driving behind salt trucks, so I can't wait!
 

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If you're going to wrap your front end, wrap the entire hood. Otherwise your paint will show the difference over time, not to mention the unsightly edge that you'd otherwise have to tolerate.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Agreed. Wrap the entire hood.

Its personal preference if you care if the paint is original or not.

Depends on the car really.. And on a car like the Ghibli is is likely not a big deal.

if it was an expensive collector car that is a different issue.

For a daily driver a clear bra is a no brainer for me.

I replace it every 3-4 years. The front end stays unchipped.

Of course if you rarely drive on the freeway than you can probably do without the clearbra

The best form of protection is prevention but that can't be done for some people
If your local commute consists of lots of freeway driving you will eventually get a rock chip.

The clearbras do take a bit of damage when nicked with a rock but most of the nicks will self heal when its hit with some heat/sun.

Only after some age does the film loose its self healing capabilities.

A clearbra is protection. repainting the front bumper is a way to fix a problem.

You can't exactly paint your front bumper everytime you get ONE rock chip.

You would wait until it gets bad right? Well for some people they might not want to have a car that has a messed up front bumper.

Plus keep in mind if you send your car in to be repainted you loose your car for some time. There is downtime involved. A clear bra can be removed and reapplied within 3 hours.
 
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