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Applying A Roll On (Durabak) Bedliner
The first thing you are going to need is a nice clean empty bed, clean as in take a pressure washer to it and get out all of the dirt and whatever else is in there.
Now what you are going to need to do is to remove the metal tie down points and drain plugs from the bed. I forgot about the two little rubber seal pieces so they are not pictured here, but they can be seen in some of the other photos still attached. Those will also need to be removed.
The bedliner is not going to stick to the bed without a little prep. We are going to need to rough up the surface a little bit to give it something to grab to. I used 60 grit sandpaper for this, it was the lowest grit I could find locally.
As you can see it is pretty rough, it should do the job nicely.
Now the fun part! Sand your entire bed, anywhere that you plan on having bedliner will need to be sanded. If you skimp on this step plan on having crappy results.
After everything is sanded your going to need to blow out the dust, this can be done with an air compressor or even a landscaping blower. Once that is done you need to wipe it all down with Xylene. Only use Xylene, don't use Lacquer Thinner or Acetone.
After you wipe it with Xylene you will notice the bed has a matte look to it. Make sure you wipe everywhere that is going to get bedliner. Xylene is some pretty nasty stuff, so wear chemical resistant gloves and do this in a well ventilated area.
Now we are going to need to start masking, I strongly recommend buying a roll of this painters paper and using it like I did. If I had not used it I would have gotten bedliner on my paint.
Continue masking, making sure it is all stuck very well and you have nice straight lines. At this point you may notice that I chose to leave my tailgate attached. Doing this will make masking a little harder but overall not too bad.
Now we are ready to start putting bedliner down. Do not be cheap and use a stick to mix it, pick up one of the mixers that attaches to a power drill and use it to mix the bedliner. There is tons of little granules and textured pieces at the bottom of the can, your going to need to mix it for a few minutes until they are evenly distributed and floating in the can.
For the application you are going to need a paintbrush and a roller handle. The bedliner comes with some special paint roller covers that allow for a nice texture, only use these.
Here you can see the texture of the roller covers that are included with the kit.
Now get the first coat down. Don't worry about putting it on thick, your second coat will take care of that. Use the brush to get corners and little spaces you can't get with the roller. Don't brush with it side to side, you need to just dab it up and down.
Many people get scared after the first coat since you will see plenty of paint though the bedliner. Relax, this will go away after the second coat.
People also get scared after seeing the texture, it is similar to the sandpaper we just used to prep the bed. Also relax, this will go away after coat number two.
After that dries for a hour or a little more depending on the temperature/humidity where you are doing it it will be time for coat number two. You can really see things are starting to look better now, a nice consistent texture for the most part and less sandpaper looking texture.
Now you need to pull off all of the masking you did. Don't let the bedliner cure before doing this, you will need to remove it shortly after doing the second coat for best results.
Here is how it looks after pulling off the masking.
Texture looks very good, a lot better then after the first coat.
Clean, solid lines like this can be achieved with proper masking.
Here is how it looks all put back together and after drying in the sun for a few days and after putting bedrail caps on. So far I am very happy I did this to my bed and glad I ditched the plastic drop in that was in the truck before.
For this tutorial I used one gallon of Durabak-18. Durabak-18 has a UV coating already mixed into it that will resist fading, this costs a little more than the regular Durabak but I feel it is worth it. More information as well as ordering information can be found by clicking the logo above.
Here is a video showing how the stuff in your bed won't slide around like it does with stock plastic bedliners. The spray on is unnamed, but it is a professional high dollar spray on. This was all at 20mph with 10lbs of weight in the bucket, the first two have a different bucket since it was a different day but all the stuff inside the bucket is the same. Just showing how skid resistant Durabak also is compared to others.