Adding Protective Coating on the Wheel Wells - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 05-27-2015, 07:45 PM   #1
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Adding Protective Coating on the Wheel Wells

Hi group, I was wondering whether or not anyone has added a protective coating to the wheel wells of their Escape. The coating I am thinking of would be similar to the spray of bed liner in the box of a pick up (i.e.: rhinocoating). The reason I am asking is I would like to protect the fiberglass in the wheels wells from getting damaged by rocks while on the non paved roads (I.e.: the Dempster Highway from Whitehorse to Inuivik). I am only contemplating doing the wheel wells as the bottom of the trader has the insulation blown on it. This might take a beating but it is easier to spray on more foam versus fixing a crack in the glass.

If anyone has done it, could you advise me of the following:

1. What product did you use?

2. Did it serve its' purpose and are you happy with this modification?

3. Would you put it on again on a future trailer?

Thanks. And for those going to the rally, have a ton of fun!!!!

Regards

Scott
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Old 05-27-2015, 08:40 PM   #2
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Scott,

I am going to get my wheel wells done also. If you have the front box it has the Rhino lining type coating on it. I have seen it on many fiberglass trailers fronts for ski sleds etc.Check with Escape on the type they use etc if you like.

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Old 05-28-2015, 09:34 AM   #3
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Scott,

I am going to get my wheel wells done also. If you have the front box it has the Rhino lining type coating on it. I have seen it on many fiberglass trailers fronts for ski sleds etc.Check with Escape on the type they use etc if you like.

Cypher

I dunno. While I like the idea of protecting the wheel wells from debris, cracks, etc, I also like the nice smooth gel coat for ease of cleaning.
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Old 05-28-2015, 09:53 AM   #4
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ETI will coat your wheel wells

We had ETI coat our wheel wells with the same stuff that goes on the storage box. It is white, and rough. It seems to do a good job of protecting the fiberglass from rocks etc. when we have gone over some gravel roads that I wish we had avoided. It is hard to clean, but on the other hand, it is the wheel wells. I tried to see if it could be done in a contrasting color (black), but that wasn't possible.

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Old 05-28-2015, 11:58 AM   #5
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I figure you just wait until the wheel wells are too ugly to endure, and then get them coated.
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Old 05-28-2015, 12:02 PM   #6
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We had ETI coat our wheel wells with the same stuff that goes on the storage box. It is white, and rough. It seems to do a good job of protecting the fiberglass from rocks etc. when we have gone over some gravel roads that I wish we had avoided. It is hard to clean, but on the other hand, it is the wheel wells. I tried to see if it could be done in a contrasting color (black), but that wasn't possible.

Leon
This is what we're thinking of doing as well. Hubby wants to protect the area *before* any dings and such get in there. Do you remember what you paid for it? (Yes, I know the price can change, but at least it's a good estimate.) Thanks
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Old 05-28-2015, 01:12 PM   #7
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Would spray on truck bed lining work, or would it not be good for fiberglass.
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Old 05-28-2015, 02:07 PM   #8
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This is what we're thinking of doing as well. Hubby wants to protect the area *before* any dings and such get in there. Do you remember what you paid for it? (Yes, I know the price can change, but at least it's a good estimate.) Thanks
I just asked Crystal about this since considering it. She'd emailed:

Rock protection in wheel wells. Cost?
$300 – do note that the tread on our tires is not so aggressive that debris would be thrown up and necessitate this addition

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Old 05-28-2015, 02:08 PM   #9
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Would spray on truck bed lining work, or would it not be good for fiberglass.
It's been applied to fiberglass by many people, but of course, surface prep is required if you want to make sure it adheres properly. Probably scuffing up the gelcoat with some coarse sandpaper would work.
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Old 05-28-2015, 03:17 PM   #10
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I just asked Crystal about this since considering it. She'd emailed:

Rock protection in wheel wells. Cost?
$300 – do note that the tread on our tires is not so aggressive that debris would be thrown up and necessitate this addition

My main concern for getting get wheel wells protected was a video I saw of a trailer that had a blowout while going down the road. I don't remember if it was a scamp or a casita, but the strip of tire that was flapping against the body did serious injury to the trailer. My recollection is that the owner didn't notice the blown tire until there was smoke coming from the wheel.

I think this was discussed about a year ago on the forum, and someone posted a link to a myth-busters video of truck bed lining material withstanding some explosive force. Probably my tires will never blow and it will not be a useful thing, but just in case...
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Old 05-28-2015, 05:39 PM   #11
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We were on gravel roads a few miles and drove slowly. Still had smooth wheel wells when we sold. We used 303 Aerospace on them and the trailer. The first time we had to clean the wells before using 303, that was one big job. After 303, we could wipe them down in 5 or 10 minutes with a wet sponge even if caked in mud, and they were as good as new.

The protective coating would involve scrubbing with a brush back in there and would never get them clean. There is enough of that to do on the box already.
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Old 05-28-2015, 05:46 PM   #12
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Hey,

If you go to a regular truck bed lining place they can do colors. As for waiting till damage from rocks makes the wells ugly or penetrates through the gel coating it is possible for moisture to build up in the deeper chips and freeze in the right climate doing some more damage. Albeit it would take a long time to do serious damage it is dependent on the roads and climate traveled and how often.

Yes the myth busters did test it: https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q=mythbusters+rhino+liner+episode and if you watch the weather chasers the TIV
https://www.facebook.com/TornadoAlleyTIVis coated in it also to withstand debris hits.

I personally see no reason not to do it if you wish. As for the tires not throwing stuff up yeah umm I have never ever had a set of tires that did not at some point throw at least some debris up. Cleaning it is easy deck scrub brush it is how I clean the front box :}

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Old 05-28-2015, 06:18 PM   #13
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I did ours - there are pictures and the steps I did to get it to stick posted here somewhere and I am firmly convinced it prevented damage to our wheel wells when we had a tire explode - that story is here somewhere too - I'm too lazy to look up the links! I wasn't worried too much about rock damage, I didn't want my wheel well destroyed by a tire blowout.
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Old 05-28-2015, 07:15 PM   #14
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Can you see any benefits with your eyes using the 303? Or it is just insurance protection for the UV and gelcoat like Reace mentions, protect the gelcoat from UV. thanks.
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Old 05-28-2015, 07:25 PM   #15
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Can you see any benefits with your eyes using the 303? Or it is just insurance protection for the UV and gelcoat like Reace mentions, protect the gelcoat from UV. thanks.
I would say that here could be little UV protection of the wheel wells because of their location out of the sun basically. We used 303 all over the trailer, no wax. It all looked the same when we sold as when we bought, as far as I could see. Don't know how much UV damage there would be to see in four years, if any. We had it three.

We used a cover also but very little of the time.
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Old 05-28-2015, 07:54 PM   #16
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I did ours - there are pictures and the steps I did to get it to stick posted here somewhere and I am firmly convinced it prevented damage to our wheel wells when we had a tire explode - that story is here somewhere too - I'm too lazy to look up the links! I wasn't worried too much about rock damage, I didn't want my wheel well destroyed by a tire blowout.
Eric, if it saves your wheel well, that is worth it for you. I don't like the stuff and like the smooth wheel wells (I think I aspire to Alf's clean wheel wells). Am supposing that insurance would cover such damage, at least I hope so. Of course, you have a single axle. Don't know how that matters on that, if it does.
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Old 09-11-2015, 11:19 AM   #17
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I dunno. While I like the idea of protecting the wheel wells from debris, cracks, etc, I also like the nice smooth gel coat for ease of cleaning.
Just drove the Kane Valley Road, which is gravel and runs through cattle country, with free range cattle everywhere.
I would not want to clean cow pies off of a Line-X coated wheel well. It's bad enough on the smooth gel coat.
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Old 09-11-2015, 01:15 PM   #18
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J
I would not want to clean cow pies off of a Line-X coated wheel well. It's bad enough on the smooth gel coat.
Yah, gotta agree with you on that one. After picking up wet tar in Alaska mine looked hideous. I kind of dreaded cleaning them. A little varsol and a scrubbie and lots of elbow grease and now they're spotless. If they'd been textured I think the clean-up would have been more difficult.

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Old 09-11-2015, 02:14 PM   #19
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I can't see tar on mine. Guess I'm just weird since I like the look of the wheel wells better being black, than the stained white they kept becoming. The other side still has some pieces of melted rubber imbedded into it from the blowout.
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Old 09-11-2015, 03:21 PM   #20
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I can't see tar on mine. Guess I'm just weird since I like the look of the wheel wells better being black, than the stained white they kept becoming. The other side still has some pieces of melted rubber imbedded into it from the blowout.
I didn't realize you had a blow out AFTER you did the wheel wells. Was there any damage beyond the melted rubber imbedded in the material that you sprayed on?

Here's a video about LineX protecting against blasts
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