Removing 3M reflective off an aluminum Ford F150

Gary1

New Member
Just looking for any tips on doing this. I’ve been in this industry for 30 yrs. And removed vinyl and reflective a before. When it comes to removing reflective i usually use the MBX tool with the rubber eraser wheel. But I know the aluminum panels will require minimum pressure to not cause any burn marks because aluminum heats up quick. And it’s 3M. The top transparent color separates from the adhesive filled beads. You cannot scrape this because it’ll scratch. But any tips or another way that worked well for you I would be glad to know.
 

Notarealsignguy

Arial is the only font you need
Never tried it but if it's a concern throw water on it as you go. You can do that buffing to keep the paint from getting too hot. I don't think it will be an issue, if the paint doesn't burn off on steel it's not going to on aluminum either.
 

GC Decor

New Member
Have one person use 2 heat guns to get the area nice and warm. As they heat you can pull at a consistent pace. other person slowly pulls at a slight angle. This normally works for us and we have did a ton of police and ambulance. Lots of labor but normally the glue comes with it so clean up isn’t too bad.
 

Dale D

New Member
Steam and pink plastic chisel. Never use an eraser wheel. Last week I had an impatient customer who took there 34 ft c class rv to another shop and used an eraser wheel. They are paying to repaint the whole rv. Burnt paint and gelcoat.
 

Notarealsignguy

Arial is the only font you need
Steam and pink plastic chisel. Never use an eraser wheel. Last week I had an impatient customer who took there 34 ft c class rv to another shop and used an eraser wheel. They are paying to repaint the whole rv. Burnt paint and gelcoat.
Lil chizler. Those things are like gold.
 

karst41

New Member
You do not have experience to do this Job.

Pass It up!
I have striped over 20,000 trucks, and reflective is the hardest.

It requires the just right heat and pull speed.
But any reflective adhesive/metallic clean up is the real danger.
You could easilly be paying to have the truck re painted.

Pass it up.
 

Gary1

New Member
You do not have experience to do this Job.

Pass It up!
I have striped over 20,000 trucks, and reflective is the hardest.

It requires the just right heat and pull speed.
But any reflective adhesive/metallic clean up is the real danger.
You could easilly be paying to have the truck re painted.

Pass it up.
I have the experience. I’ve removed reflective from ambulances but the Ford F-150 panels seemed very thin and I knew heat could be an issue. And was only looking for additional knowledge. It worked out fine with the MBX tool. That’s what I use when removing reflective from ambulances. Truck was stripped and name was changed. Came out very good. I stripe about 35 ambulances a year but usually work on metal fenders and the module panels are a thicker aluminum. All is good.
 

Gary1

New Member
Lil chizler. Those things are like gold.
I’ve used the Lil Chizler tool before but with 3M the top color translucent layer comes off then you’re left with the abrasive beads and the adhesive. Caused a lot of scratches. Used little pressure with the MBX TOOL yes you have to be careful and always use a good wheel and never go past the grooves of the wheel. Once the wheel is too worn out causes too much heat and you get hot spots.
 

Gary1

New Member
Have one person use 2 heat guns to get the area nice and warm. As they heat you can pull at a consistent pace. other person slowly pulls at a slight angle. This normally works for us and we have did a ton of police and ambulance. Lots of labor but normally the glue comes with it so clean up isn’t too bad.
That’s fine if it’s not 3M. 3M separates and leaves the adhesive and glass beads. I would use an infrared 3’ light on a stand on wheels with a timer when it’s not 3M. But when it is, I’ll use an eraser wheel. The ones for the MBX tool not the 1/2” thick solid 3M wheels.
 
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