Let me say that I'm new to X's and being able to modify for fun. I'm a farm gal that use to drive nothing smaller than an F-350. A few months ago I downsized to an Xterra and haven't looked back.
Meet my little rig: Matchbox. I'm starting off with something easy and work my way up. All of the plastics were faded and the bars well oxidzed, stickers peeling the whole works. I spent quite a bit of time researching what everyone else has done, products used and results. Many thanks to all of you who have posted in the DYI and GraveyardGraphics.com.
My first step was to contact Todd at Graveyard Graphics for my stickers. I wasn't happy with the grey on grey thing that Nissan had done and I wanted something a bit brighter and eye catching. I know the poor man thought I was crazy with my request, but hey, I'm a red head, I like to try things outside of the box so to speak. Todd made some great suggestions and stickers were on the way ASAP!
Last weekend I removed the rack and got it cleaned up. The bars were hand sanded to the metal and wiped with acetone. They were so oxidzed I knew if I didn't sand to the metal I'd have to be re-doing this project later. The plastics were just a rub down with the acetone. I then primed with the Dupli-Color Adhesion promoter for the plastics and self-etching primer for the bars. I wanted to go with a flat gray on the bars, however, my NAPA store didn't carry a bumper paint in grey any and I didn't want to wait for the next shipment. I went to wal-nut world and found a metal hammered finish grey that I liked much better.
After everything was prepped, the painting process took only a few hours. You can speed that process up if you wait the minimum time frame. I took time between coatings to do other things. The temps had cooled down to mid 70's around here so I gave it a few days to dry in the shop. It sure felt naked driving around without it.
Dupli-Color Adhesion Promoter CP199
Dupli-Color Bumper Coating FB105 Flex Black Bumper
Dupli-Color Self-Etching Primer DAP 1690
Rust-Oleum Hammered 7213 Silver for the bars.
A note that I'd like to add about painting is to slow down when applying. If you haven't painted much, get an old can of paint and go practice on something. My husband had to remind me you want it wet but not running. If you go too fast you will create overspray or can make it look like a 'can' job.
This weekend I put it back together and applied the AWESOME stickers. Another note here is to remember to write down which screws go where. You can also cheat and take pics as you dis-assemble things. I'll admitt here that I didn't take enough pictures and had to find on the internet what bolts went where (head hung in shame), lol
Oh yeah, forgot to tell you that the stickers are with an yellow "X" and reflective. Way too kool at night. Many thanks to Todd for his work. The stickers really added to the look I was wanting.
You can also see more pictures of the process in my build album.
Under mounting brackets.
Putting sticker on.
Sticker after ;0)
And the grand finale!
Sticker at night.