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Fluid Film application on a JKUR

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  • Fluid Film application on a JKUR

    I hate rust and corrosion. It seems like dealing with the effects of these things always multiplies the difficulty and time consumption factors for any repair or modification work.

    I bought my JKUR new off the dealer lot and did not opt for any extra undercoating at the time of purchase. Although I know undercoating can make a big difference in resisting rust and corrosion most applications make it difficult to access stuff like bolt heads, etc., (since it covers them up) and also can't be applied to things like joints and bushings, etc. I decided to try Fluid Film as an alternative to undercoating on this Jeep.

    Fluid film is a lanolin-based treatment that basically encases metal parts in a "goo" of material, sensibly blocking it off from corrosion and oxidation, etc. Since it never totally dries it has a bit of "healing" capability - it can supposedly flow to fill in areas scratched away by contact with rocks, etc. The stuff has good reviews on various 4x4 forums, etc., though it has some caveats, ,such as an ermm... .."Sheepy" odor (it is a lanolin-based material) and a limited lifespan (requiring bi-annual application for best results).

    In this thread I will attempt to detail the application of the project to my JKUR. The same basic principles shown here can work for a CJ, TJ, YJ, etc.,

  • #2
    The nice thing about this material is that it is a "single part" product, with no need for mixing components. It's also available in both aerosol form (I've seen cans for sale at NAPA as well as Lowe's, etc.) and also a more substantial application kit. Since I have a medium-sized compressor rig in my garage I ordered the application kit, which includes an undercoating-type gun as well as a gallon-sized container of the material, plus a few other tricks to help make things easier to do a good job. I ordered my kit off of Amazon.

    the_box by Trevor C, on Flickr


    • #3
      I got my Jeep in March but it took until May to get a non-rainy weekend day free to do the application. I hit the underside of the Jeep with a car wash/pressure washer to get off what grime accumulated over those 3 months.

      Fluid film goes on a little "greasy", so I put a large tarp under the Jeep to keep overspray from affecting the driveway. Putting the Jeep up on jackstands allows a little more room to work under the truck and also access to the wheel well areas.

      on_stands by Trevor C, on Flickr


      • #4
        I bagged up the brake assemblies to keep from getting any fluid film on them (used just plain old trash bags).

        It's always nice to work on new cars! Look at how clean it is under there!

        covered_brakes by Trevor C, on Flickr


        • #5
          As mentioned previously I used a garage compressor to do this application. After fooling around with the pressure settings on the regulator I found pretty good success running the gun at about 80PSI. My compressor is not a huge "shop type" unit - I think you would have success using anything short of a tiny pancake compressor to run the gun.

          80_psi by Trevor C, on Flickr


          • #6
            One of the neat tricks that came with the application kit is an extension hose that attaches to the gun and allows you to reach deep inside the frame rails, etc. It's basically a length of hose with a brass end that has nozzles pointing out in several directions. You push the hose is as far as you can reach/needed and then trigger the gun while pulling the hose back out slowly. As the hose pulls back towards the opening it sprays the entire inside of the frame rail.

            I put a bit of black tape a few inches from the end of the hose, so that I would have a bit of "warning" before the end came out (spraying):

            wand_tape by Trevor C, on Flickr


            • #7
              Here is a look at the hose in action, just before pullback out of the frame rail hole. You can use this hose to reach into all sorts of areas, like up over the transmission, on the body behind the plastic fenderwells, etc. It's really useful:

              hose_pullback by Trevor C, on Flickr


              • #8
                The material comes out somewhat tinted - the photo below shows a good contrast between the treated area (top) and the untreated area (bottom). This is what I would call a "moderate" thickness application - a lighter coat would be almost invisible and a heavier coat would have a sort of "melted ice cream" appearance.

                film_contrast by Trevor C, on Flickr


                • #9
                  ...and here is a look at the frame and suspension after coating. The material is reportedly safe for rubber parts, etc., so I basically covered everything that I could reach on the undercarriage save for the brake rotors and pads:

                  treated_parts by Trevor C, on Flickr


                  • #10
                    The material has some water shedding properties. The day after I did this application I did a CDJW 101 session at Curtis and played quite a bit in the muddy areas. This picture was taken before clean-off, so you can see the frame and fenderwells are basically "clean" but the tires are all muddy.

                    You shouldn't expect this effect to be permanent however - by the time I did Tin TeePee a couple of months later the frame was getting just as muddy as the rest of the truck. Per users the protective effect remains even after grime starts to stick.

                    clean_and_dirty by Trevor C, on Flickr


                    • #11
                      That's it so far. They say the stuff should ideally be applied twice a year, so I will be putting another treatment on in about a month or so. I suppose the real test of worth will come when I check under there this spring. I will try to update this thread with my findings then.

                      In the meantime, hopefully this helps! I am pretty confident that the same results could be achieved using the aerosol can version of the product, so don't let a lack of a compressor scare you off!


                      • #12
                        Dude - so impressed with this post.. I am big into undercoating and protecting my rig from the elements. I had my undercoating done by ZBart (Spelling?) last year and so far so good. I do like that they offer free yearly touchups. But your job looks awesome!
               - Founder
                        2016 Rubicon
                        Awesome wife...


                        • #13
                          I plan on doing this, though might be stuck with rattle. Anything is better than nothing. Will need to take a wire brush to clean up some rust first