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So, I discovered something yesterday.

Before I begin, I want to say, that I take absolutely NO responsibility for any damage you may do to you messing up your grille. To be honest I haven't really done this completely, or even really thought it out. LOL

But here goes.

If you have a chrome grille, and you want to paint it, we all know how much of a PITA it is to get paint to stick to chrome...

Well, here is an option.

First, you'll need,

A razor or exacto knife.

A butane torch, I just took the end off of my portable soldering iron and used that.

LOTS of patients.



I'll tell you how I did it, then I'll try to show you my videos.

First of all, take the grille off of the truck...

Then, turn your torch on, and quickly run it over the chrome. You'll see it bubble up.

Take your razor, and cut a 1" slit into a seam, somewhere you can "mess up", and run the torch over that area quickly. Sometimes, the chrome will curl up, and it makes it easier to grab. And then just start peeling away... It's time consuming, but if you do it right, you'll get the chrome off pretty easy.

The best thing I can tell you, is DO NOT let the chrome get too hot... Once it gets too hot, it'll melt the plastic to the chrome, and it will be TWICE as hard to pull off.

I'll show you some of my mistakes, and some examples the best I can.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Re: DIY: C

My videos suck. Because I did most of the grille, and sharing was an after thought. But I tried to illustrate the best I could... And I messed the title up, so in case I'm not around, and a mod sees this, I'd like it to read...

"DIY: Chrome Grille to Paintable"
 

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Re: DIY: C

thats pretty slick... good idea
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Re: DIY: C







These are some examples of what will happen if you overheat it... I'm sure if it came down to it, you could smooth most of it, and what you couldn't, you could fill it with some bondo...
 

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Re: DIY: C

So, you waste all this time pulling off the chrome, just to have to come back and fill in holes you made with bondo, and then sand, prime and paint plastic which is just as hard to get paint to stick to as chrome? Tripple work, same results...

BUT if one was to do this, I would highly recomend a heat gun...smoother heat and WAAYYY less of a chance of burning the plastic like Jap did.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Re: DIY: C

You could try a heat gun, but I don't think it would work.

Go ahead Mr. Negative. YOU show us how to do it.
 

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Re: DIY: C

You could try a heat gun, but I don't think it would work.

Go ahead Mr. Negative. YOU show us how to do it.
simple. sand chrome with 320 grit, prime with bulldog, prime with primer, wet sand with 400 (if your anal) re-prime, paint with color, 600 sand, re-paint, clear, 600 wet sand, re-clear and polish.

Every step i listed, would have to be done AFTER you peel the chrome, and fill holes with filler (not bondo cause bondo sucks) the only thing different is, in the first step your sanding chrome, not plastic, and your not taking the risk of melting the plastic

As for the heat gun, it will DEFFINATELY work...but I have no clue what I'm talking about, never worked at a body shop or a sign shop:doh:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Re: DIY: C

Tell me this as well. If chrome is SOO easy to paint, why did I call four of the BEST body shops around here, and they told me they do NOT paint chrome? Bumpers, grilles, or anything else.
 

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Re: DIY: C

Tell me this as well. If chrome is SOO easy to paint, why did I call four of the BEST body shops around here, and they told me they do NOT paint chrome? Bumpers, grilles, or anything else.
Well for one, you live in the middle of no where, so I wouldnt expect anything else. Some shops WONT paint chrome, simply because they dont want to be liable if it chips, flakes or peels. i have painted chrome, and stand behind the work I did, and know that it WONT flake or peel, because I did good prep work. As for the chipping part, ALL paint can chip, there is really no way to prevent that.
 

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There's always more than one way to "skin a cat" so to speak. theSLEEPER, way to try something different, that appears to work. I've had good AND bad experiences painting chrome, and I've been doing bodywork and done my share of trial attempts at painting chrome stuff.

IMO, a paintable grille out of the box takes care of all the extra headache, and is worth every dime of the extra cost. Scuff, wash, wipe down, tape off sections you dont want painted, spray, clear, buff/polish if needed, and you're through. Look for either an older XL grille on mine, or an '05+ in the near future.

Now you guys kiss and make up, lol.
 

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This was a chrome one piece Ebay special grill that I had painted white. The grille was suppose to be dipped in a solution that removed the chrome finish.
Its about 6 months old and has 5,000 miles on it with no issues.

Sorry about all the dead bugs.

 
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