How to Determine the Best Texture and Thickness for Your Truck, SUV, or Other Recreational Vehicle When Applying Spray Coatings
Applying bed liner coatings to trucks and other vehicles is no longer limited to those used off road. There are many reasons to use these coatings instead of paint, and this market has grown lately. Custom colors are available to match other areas of your vehicle and provide that fully customized look. Exterior vehicle coating is often less expensive than painting, and covers imperfections perfectly.
We often get questions regarding selecting the best texture or thickness to apply these coatings, and will try to provide a little advice in this article.
Applying bed liner to the outside of your vehicle saves you money and highlight the ruggedness of your truck or SUV. Doing these applications yourself requires a little bit of research for a few reasons:
- It’s the OUTSIDE of your vehicle!! … it’s important to get it right
- You want to apply the perfect texture for washable yet rough look
- You want great adhesion for long term functionality
- Colors require a little bit more skill than black or grey but add a fully custom look
General Rules for Proper Texture and Thickness on External Body Bed Liner
The things you want to control are generally durability, texture, and color. The basic rules to consider are usually:
- Keep your coating at about 45 mils max (1/22 of an inch) to protect and accent without looking like a bed liner.
- For durability you do not want to spray thinner than this because it will be too easy to chip/crack if the coating is too thin.
- For texture you are going to want to work on creating a FINE orange peel, which does NOT look like a bed liner when you inspect closely. The idea is that you want the dirt to be falling off of the vehicle.
- The more aggressive the texture, the less washable and the dirtier the vehicle will be. So, think SMOOTH with Little BUMPS.
- You can also apply a top coat or color all the way through the coating for a completely smooth finish.
- If you are doing exact color matching, you will be using our Clear Bed liner mixed with color tint as a top coat to a light grey base coat. This will give you your texture and keep the cost down.
- Tinting the clear all the way through and applying with the powders does not work well. The powder additives for texture control will darken the color too much.
- Although a dull or matte finish is popular, it will also be harder to keep clean. We recommend the orange peel small bump with smooth coating for ease of cleaning.
For additional recommendations, we encourage you to search our FAQs or call tech support for advice at 1-855-545-4900. We will be glad to help you select the best product for your vehicle coating.