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Discussion Starter #1
So I just bought my truck about two months ago. I've been trying to balance inexpensive DIY mods with logical utilitarian purchases.

I would love to buy off road bumpers but frankly I have no use for them. My bumper was in desperate need of a repaint and I was extremely irritated with how Nissan made these trucks in a one color or one color with black plastic trim but for some reason painted the rear bumper and bar in the grill silver.

Now keep in mind I've never painted anything this large and that it's all done with rattle can.

So this is what I had to work with. Slight ding from a trailer tongue most likely and worn off paint.



Getting the bumper off turned out to be more difficult than expected as the bolts were fairy rusted. After about an hour with WD-40 and straining my shoulders I got them off. There was also some rust underneath some paint in the underside.





It took me a total of an hour to remove the plastic steps with several breaks in the beginning where I was getting furious. I tried to do some research on how others did it and it was vague with people saying they only broke 3 in the process then taped it down. I developed the technique of using vice grips on the clips. They're more of a rubber stopper. If you can smash down the ridges closest to the bumper service you can pry from the other side with a long handle screw driver or tap them out with a mallet. I only broke one before learning this.



With a mallet and the handle end of a nail spoon I tapped out the dent.



I made a small effort to clean up the rust by sanding and removing old paint, then soaking it in white vinegar with more sanding and a wire brush. I then added a few coats of paint over the pitted areas. This by no means will eliminate the rust, you have to completely remove the effected areas to do that, and like I said I'm a beginner and I'm cheap. Hopefully though, it will buy my bumper more time.



So I then sanded the old paint to rough it up and and applied flat black paint. That was all easy. However, applying a matte clear coat seemed impossible for me. Some areas would get an over spray that would stay white and leave tiger stripes. If I pulled back or sped up my passes it would just look dusty.



After days off coming back to it I axed the clear coat, roughed up everything again, and added a few me coats of black. I painted the steps and tag light OD green. Also, I soaked the nuts and bolts in white vinegar over night and they went in super smooth







I love it! I just hope it all holds up well. I'll see how the paint does for a few months. If it doesn't hold up I'll try a darker black and try to master the clear coat. It has been extremely hot and humid here which may be making it harder for me.
 

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That's such a sweet repaint. I love the color of it with the green. Have you thought about doing the front bumper/running boards? I think I'm going to attempt painting my running boards a flat black. Also thinking about doing the roof rack. I have a 2001 SE crew cab in silver. Hoping the black looks better than having all silver.
 

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Looks great.

What brand of paint were you using? Did the can have the standard round spray pattern or was it one with a narrow fan pattern? You will tend to get better results with the fan pattern type.

With that said, were you going in alternating directions with each coat of paint? I also find this helps any tiger striping issues.

And it being hot sure wasn't helping you.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
That's such a sweet repaint. I love the color of it with the green. Have you thought about doing the front bumper/running boards? I think I'm going to attempt painting my running boards a flat black. Also thinking about doing the roof rack. I have a 2001 SE crew cab in silver. Hoping the black looks better than having all silver.
I'm definitely going to do the running boards to match. I will probably do the roof rack in just black. The running boards seem way easier to remove.

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Looks great.

What brand of paint were you using? Did the can have the standard round spray pattern or was it one with a narrow fan pattern? You will tend to get better results with the fan pattern type.

With that said, were you going in alternating directions with each coat of paint? I also find this helps any tiger striping issues.

And it being hot sure wasn't helping you.
The spray pattern seemed small and round. I did alternate in going across but was inconsistent because I didn't think it was helping. I think next time I'll build some sort of wind block/do it indoors and also wait for better weather.

Thanks for the tips!

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I think I'm going to attempt to do the running boards and the roof rack while on the car. Figured I'd really tape it off well and hold cardboard behind just like painting a house or other detailed stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I think I'm going to attempt to do the running boards and the roof rack while on the car. Figured I'd really tape it off well and hold cardboard behind just like painting a house or other detailed stuff.
I highly recommend removing them. Especially the roof rack because getting the underside will be damn near impossible. As for the side steps, I've only really glanced at how they're mounted but they seem to simple to remove.

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Hmmm. You're probably right haha. I guess I should take them off on second thought. Thank you!
No problem. I was just thinking about how difficult doing the bumper off of the truck was and thought the rack being on would make me pull my hair out.

I've been trying to decide what colors to paint the different rack parts. I was thinking of painting the plastic feet OD green but thought it would look off against the green of my truck. So flat black feet and bars and I'll probably redo the "crew cab" text in OD green.

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I actually took off the crew cab text. I didn't really love it so I stripped it off with a razor blade making sure to keep it all pretty level. I'm making mine completely flat black. I think I'll paint the Wind guard? I'm not sure what it's called but basically the black piece of plastic that says Nissan on the lower right of it. But either way, I think I'll pain that flat black as well. I was tempted initially to wrap my truck in vinyl. My brother runs a company that uses a lot of vinyl so he gets it at wholesale price. However, as a high school student I decided to do cheap stuff first then eventually maybe do that.
 
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