[Step by Step] How to RAPTOR Line your 4×4 camper!
If you are a 4wd addict or, like me, you are building your 4×4 camper and you need to paint your toy, then read carefully this post, because the UPOL Raptor Bed Liner is a great choice. No doubts. The product is pretty heavy duty and it will stand abuse like not many other paint out there of similar price and texture is gorgeous…I really fell in love as I touched it for the first time. But the real key factor, that makes the huge difference for DIY users, it is the extreme ease of use: forgiving about (bad) preparation, minimum risk of dripping, little overspray and no need for clear coat.
Now, let’s go into details!
STEP 1 – BLACK OR TINTABLE?
As you may already know, Raptor liner comes by basically two versions: black and tintable. Tintable means that is may be tinted to match any color code! 🙂 On my Hiunday H1 4×4 camper conversion project I bought tintable bed liner to match a NATO desert tan color – which is amazing by the way!
You may add up to 10% of tint, and Raptor specs say that a 5% should be enough to get a good opacity.
So, now the first step is to just take some time thinking about what color you prefer, all black could be cheaper but it is not the only option as you saw.
STEP 2 – ORDERING THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF RAPTOR BED LINER:
Normally Raptor Bed Liner is sold in kits, each kit contains:
- Four bottles of Raptor Bed Liner
- Raptor hardener
- Schulz spray gun (only in some kits)
For painting a truck, just exterior, you could have enough with just two kits, 8 bottles, but a you’d better buy three kits, just to be sure. Any leftover will come in handy for future local reparations.
STEP 3 – CAR PREPARATION
Vehicle’s prep before applying the urethane bed liner is pretty much straightforward. First, clean very well the car with water and soap, let it dry, then sand it with a 80-180 grit – I normally use the 120 grit.
You just have to take out the clearcoat, so no need to be too aggressive.
If there is some bare metal (or aluminum and galvanized) apply a couple of coats of Raptor Etch Primer 1K Aerosol UP5023, or a full 2K epoxy primer if it is a large area.
Rigid plastic (ABF, SMC) and fiberglass require a 120-180 grit sanding before cleaning and degreasing; flexible plastic (TPO, EDPM, PP) are better sanded with 180-320 grit and sprayed with an adhesion promoter like the Raptor Adhesion Promoter Aerosol.
Then proceed as always, taking out the dust by air, clean with wax and silicone degreaser and do the masking process.
STEP 4 – MIXING THE PRODUCT
Personally, I prefer to spray this product on a HVLP spray gun, 2.0 mm nozzle, for a fine finish. So I will give you advice about mixing the paint for this tecnique, even if using the standard (and cheap) Schultz gun would be a little easier.
Mixing ratio is 3:1, so get a suitable mixing cup and pour in it three parts paint and one part hardener.
Then, in case of tintable raptor liner, you must add between 5 and 10% of tint.
For use with the HVLP gun, reduce the final product with 10-15% of urethane solvent.
Do not mix more than a couple of liters per time: the product will start to harden after 20 minutes.
STEP 5 – SPRAYING THE LINER
Nothing best than a video to show you! 😉
STEP 6 – TAKING OUT MASKING TAPE
Please remember to take out the tape after 60 minutes to obtain best result. Raptor bed liner is declared touch dry in less then one hour and trough dry in 5-7 days (no heavy objects or water before this time).
Hope you found this post valuable, please let me know in the comments if you have any question or any advice! See you guys 🙂