The Lotus Cars Community banner

1 - 20 of 94 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
468 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Ok, I asked my car detailer yesterday about the clear bra.

Here is what he said in a nut shell:

Hard to get off later (took 12 hours on a different car with the same 3M product).

Will discolor with time.

Will protect but if the rock is large enough - or moving fast enough - it will go through the bra anyway.

Hard to wax around the edge of the bra.

For the cost you can have the front end painted twice.

Road debris has a different impact at 100 mph than at 75 mph. So if you do a lot of higher speed running it will help more.

Bra is only really worth about $500. Dealer markup is steep.

I'm in San Jose, California so the winters are no problem - we don't ge the salt or sand on the roads. (no sandblasting).

If you follow other vehicles closely (read especially quarry trucks) the bra will help.

My 1992 Miata repainted once (two years ago) had no significant problem for me. My problem was I over-waxed the cheap original paint job removing the clear coat.

I think those were the points he brought up - may have forgotten one or two - the beer was good though.

So, it will be a pass for me.

have fun

Nick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
I agree with you Nick. I too am passing on the dealer installed bra for now. Will probably add it later from an aftermarket place that will probably cost half of what they are charging. The car is already adding up pretty quickly with the Xtra $$ for the paint option, LSS, Touring, etc.

If they had charged $500 or $600 I would have gone ahead, a THOUSAND is definitely too expensive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
140 Posts
I've made my opinions on this topic very clear. . . so here we go again. Flame suit on. . . bring it on. . . lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
With the extra investment I'm taking on with a lifestyle color (part of the COM), I definately feel the need to protect it. Things I've heard from other posts seem very positive toward the 3M product. Yes, it seems expensive, but the clincher for me was that it was put on at the port by reliable installers, and covered by a lotus warrentee. This will avoid scuffing it prior to getting an aftermarket product.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,301 Posts
definitely yes...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,154 Posts
If dings were that big a deal to me, I would get it. They aren't, so I probably won't.

If I were planning to sell the car soon, I would get it. I'm not, so I probably won't.

If it covered the entire car, I would get it. It doesn't, so I probably won't.

If it were totally invisible now and in the future, I might get it. It apparently isn't and won't be, so ...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
114 Posts
Also depends on color and driving conditions. It's important for dark colors with highway driving. If you skip it, that dandruff look grows over time. Lotus offers nice body coverage -- it's more than the 'hood'. So the future paint $ might include hood, bumper, front panels, rear panels, etc.

I'm up in the air but leaning toward 'yes'.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,673 Posts
I've had it on my car for three years, installed it myself and will get the factory clear bra on my Elise.

Done deal, I'm a believer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
368 Posts
Nick said:
Ok, I asked my car detailer yesterday about the clear bra.

Here is what he said in a nut shell:

Hard to get off later (took 12 hours on a different car with the same 3M product).

Will discolor with time.

Will protect but if the rock is large enough - or moving fast enough - it will go through the bra anyway.

Hard to wax around the edge of the bra.

For the cost you can have the front end painted twice.

Road debris has a different impact at 100 mph than at 75 mph. So if you do a lot of higher speed running it will help more.

Bra is only really worth about $500. Dealer markup is steep.

I'm in San Jose, California so the winters are no problem - we don't ge the salt or sand on the roads. (no sandblasting).

If you follow other vehicles closely (read especially quarry trucks) the bra will help.

My 1992 Miata repainted once (two years ago) had no significant problem for me. My problem was I over-waxed the cheap original paint job removing the clear coat.

I think those were the points he brought up - may have forgotten one or two - the beer was good though.

So, it will be a pass for me.

have fun

Nick
Nick,

No Offense but I'd find a new car detailer if I were you, or at least one who actually knows something about the product.

Hard to get off? - No, I can strip a car in minutes, a pro in less time, if someone took 12 hours it was because of the beer.

Discolors? - No, at least not in the 7 years I've had the film. I think the stuff is guaranteed for 5, and how long do you keep a car on average?

Large/Fast rocks - Anything large enough or fast enough will DENT your car, but guess what, it will dent less than if you didn't have the bra. I had a muffler bolt - yes BOLT - fly off a car on the track ahead of me and at 100+ mph it tore the material but stopped short of getting to the paint. You must be hitting some really large rocks or traveling at more than 100mph more often than me. :)

Hard to wax around edge? - No - get ZAINO and wax from bra towards paint, and easy enough to wipe away anything that gets caught along the edge. Don't use cheap waxes.

Repaint - Hmmm matching paint on a repaint - overspray - seems like that option has its own fair share of potential problems.

Dealer Markup is steep - OK I'll give you that, the dealers are making $300+ off these installs and yes you could have it done for less elsewhere.

But I'd still recommend getting it done.

Of course there is no right/wrong answer here, but just don't make up your mind on the MISINFORMATION that your car detailer provided.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,607 Posts
Im not sure where you can get two repaints for $900.

To paint just the bumper and a tiny rear finish panel on my miata was $650.

Plus on the Elise you have to consider the pock marks in front of the rear wheels etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,352 Posts
Re: Re: Clear bra - not for me

Later Apex said:
Nick,

No Offense but I'd find a new car detailer if I were you, or at least one who actually knows something about the product.

Hard to get off? - No, I can strip a car in minutes, a pro in less time, if someone took 12 hours it was because of the beer.

Discolors? - No, at least not in the 7 years I've had the film. I think the stuff is guaranteed for 5, and how long do you keep a car on average?

Large/Fast rocks - Anything large enough or fast enough will DENT your car, but guess what, it will dent less than if you didn't have the bra. I had a muffler bolt - yes BOLT - fly off a car on the track ahead of me and at 100+ mph it tore the material but stopped short of getting to the paint. You must be hitting some really large rocks or traveling at more than 100mph more often than me. :)

Hard to wax around edge? - No - get ZAINO and wax from bra towards paint, and easy enough to wipe away anything that gets caught along the edge. Don't use cheap waxes.

Repaint - Hmmm matching paint on a repaint - overspray - seems like that option has its own fair share of potential problems.

Dealer Markup is steep - OK I'll give you that, the dealers are making $300+ off these installs and yes you could have it done for less elsewhere.

But I'd still recommend getting it done.

Of course there is no right/wrong answer here, but just don't make up your mind on the MISINFORMATION that your car detailer provided.
:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,116 Posts
If only we could convince more women to wear a clear bra too....
 

·
Forum Founder
Joined
·
29,083 Posts
Just a note. I have been told that the markup on this film from Lotus is actually pretty low. I was told a number that was silly low. So either they are lying to me (always a possibilty!) or the majority of the cost of the film is indeed as they told me, in the labor.

I was quoted a film price on a do-it-yourself deal for just under $500. And before people jump up and yell about how you can get film for another car for $300.. the Elise has some differences in terms of cuts, waste, and number of pieces (like the sills, sides, etc).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
I agree with you Randy, $500 is the price I expect to pay for the clear bra not through the dealers.

Full warranty, guaranteed installation, on all panels same as Dealer install.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
I don't know about the $500 price. I paid $600 to have the nose of my Mach 1 covered... and that was an excellent price in the LA area. (that included frontal area of the bumper (not full bumper), edge of the hood, headlights and foglights.) For $1000, the Elise gets significant coverage all over its body. That sounds like a bargain to me. I had planned to clear-bra the car and the estimate I got (to cover less than what Lotus is offering) was over $1,800.

I have had first-hand experience with the clearbra product and I'm 100% sold on it. My friend (who I gave a set of clearbra nose protectors to for his '03 Cobra) laments that he didn't install it due to the numerous rock chips he's already endured in 7,000 miles of driving.

As for waxing... my friend works as a contractor to Mother's car care products (www.detailguide.com for more info on detailing your car with Mother's products.) All of Mother's cars have clearbra and none of them have any issues with wax build-up along the edges. It all depends upon the material you use to wax your vehicle.

BTW, wax should NEVER remove your clearcoat. If it did, you might have been using some wax with cleaner/polish material in it. That's why I like using Mother's 3-step system. I use the cleaner independent of the sealer/glaze, then follow-up with the carnauba wax. Yes it's more work... but it's worth it.

Bob
 

·
Forum Founder
Joined
·
29,083 Posts
The 500 price I mentioned is for cut material only. I would expect to pay a bit for a complicated installation.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
6,941 Posts
>>>none of them have any issues with wax build-up along the edges. It all depends upon the material you use to wax your vehicle.<<<

For sure! On a car like the Elise with it's black trim here and there it's important to use a product without the usual white residue. My favorite is P21S / S100 which has done quite well in independent testing. No white residue ever, and very easy on / off. Lasts about 2 months and had the best appearance in some tests.

Stan
 
1 - 20 of 94 Posts
Top