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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Attention 5Dr Owners: those pesky, flaky, decrepit stone rock guards gotcha down? These can be a particularly bad eyesore on lighter paint models and have always been a thorn in my side over the years. Recently discovered there to be a factory part number for the PPF (paint protection film) and it was on with removal.

OEM PN 4399754 LH and 4399747 RH

The small quarter trim piece is held on with two plugs at the bottom and a thin strip of double sided foam adhesive on top. I found it helpful to remove the forward plug retainer as well during install. The side skirt can be pulled back by removing the long rubber strip (full length of skirt behind both doors), one 10mm plastic nut in the wheel well and 2-3 10mm plastic nuts underside near jack cover. The old film came off with a heat gun, tough thumbnails, Goo Gone and A LOT of patience. I'd advise some more potent 3M Adhesive Remover if you can swing it to expedite the process. All cleaned, my paint was thankfully near perfect underneath. I hit the embedded dirt outline left behind with claybar and final prepped with alcohol wipes.

Installation: Peeled back and carefully positioned just the top rear corner of the film and mock laid the whole strip to follow the wheel arch evenly. Took my time, slowly worked my way down with just my thumb pad bit-by-bit. The film stretches/distorts so you don't won't to lift it back for air bubbles or put too much force or tension on it. Snail's pace prevented any bubbles for me. Took a few cool evenings to knock out but the results are well worth the effort and numb thumbs.





















 

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That looks so much better! It's good to know that the tape is still available. I wonder how much longer they'll continue making parts like that, including the trim tape that goes on the B-pillars? I'm keeping the backing sheet from the last piece of B-pillar tape I installed so I can make my own from standard 3M trim tape the next time mine wear out.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That looks so much better! It's good to know that the tape is still available. I wonder how much longer they'll continue making parts like that, including the trim tape that goes on the B-pillars? I'm keeping the backing sheet from the last piece of B-pillar tape I installed so I can make my own from standard 3M trim tape the next time mine wear out.
Any advise regarding those? Suppose my front doors could use replacing, $15 a side ain't bad. Just don't want to break anything.
 

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The trick is figuring how the window trim comes off. On my 3-door, the strip at the bottom of the window has a plastic snap that goes through the door. You release that, and then the strip pulls up and out of the door. The big piece of weatherstripping that goes around the backside and top of the window is more complicated. You have to be very careful not to bend it because it has metal embedded in it and will get kinked if you force it in a direction it doesn't want to go. Once you get those off, peeling off the old trim is best done on a hot day so it doesn't crack and break into a million pieces. After it's off, use the 3M Adhesive Remover you mentioned in your first post to get all of the adhesive goo off. That's the worst part. Putting the new trim on is pretty simple in comparison. You only have one shot at it because it's so thin. If you try to peel it off, it will stretch and will never look the same. I got a couple of small bubbled in mine, but I popped them with a pin and it smoothed out nicely. You can't even see the pin pricks.
 

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Nice work - great photos.
I'd be worried the trim with the 'lugs' would break - leaving the trim 'lugs' in the body.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The trick is figuring how the window trim comes off. On my 3-door, the strip at the bottom of the window has a plastic snap that goes through the door. You release that, and then the strip pulls up and out of the door. The big piece of weatherstripping that goes around the backside and top of the window is more complicated. You have to be very careful not to bend it because it has metal embedded in it and will get kinked if you force it in a direction it doesn't want to go. Once you get those off, peeling off the old trim is best done on a hot day so it doesn't crack and break into a million pieces. After it's off, use the 3M Adhesive Remover you mentioned in your first post to get all of the adhesive goo off. That's the worst part. Putting the new trim on is pretty simple in comparison. You only have one shot at it because it's so thin. If you try to peel it off, it will stretch and will never look the same. I got a couple of small bubbled in mine, but I popped them with a pin and it smoothed out nicely. You can't even see the pin pricks.
Much of what I anticipated. I'll have to try my hand on some junkers first to figure out a technique for all the associated 'neighbors' before removing the old film. Application is a strong suit; I managed this custom piece within a 1/16th of center and only one minor bubble.
 

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