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Concours Corner: All About Bras

Pelican Technical Article:

Concours Corner: All About Bras

Bev Frohm

Applicable Models:

Porsche 911 (1965-89)
Porsche 912 (1965-69)
Porsche 914 (1970-76)
Porsche 930 Turbo (1976-89)
Fifth in a Series...

     Let's talk about bra's this month - no guy's do get excited this isn't about Victoria's Secret.

     A lot of people do not like them (women don't either) but they are a necessary evil. Recently a gentleman asked me what to do for rock chips on the nose of his new 911. My first piece of advice was to get a bra; it will reduce the number of chips you get to a negligible amount.

     That started our discussion about using a bra and the pro's and con's that go with it. On the Pro side, the skin of the bra will protect the paint from the normal rock chip. If you have been driving any car on our highways and cross country, you know that pieces of gravel coming up to kiss your car are a fact of life. Even the local freeways are notorious for the amount of junk that is lying on them. If you doubt me during a busy time of the day sit by the freeway for about an hour. Next count how many different trucks carry gravel, cement, bricks, blocks, dirt etc.   Unless the truck beds are completely and securely covered, particles of "stuff" are going to fly from the bed of the truck onto the freeway. Add to this the muck that gets in our tires from the roadway and you have a rock chip frenzy waiting to happen on the nose of your Porsche. For this reason alone, I faithfully put the bra on my 911E every road trip. The bra will also minimize the more damaging chips that can occur. All it takes is for a small rock to get kicked up into the air and you traveling at a rate of speed much faster than said rock. Voila, a major chipping has occurred! If you had a bra on the car, chances are the damage may not be totally averted, but certainly minimized.

     Bra's are sometimes cumbersome and you need to know a few tricks not to damage your paint. First, never never never never, leave the bra on the car when it is wet. The condensation and steam that builds up under the bra will damage your paint. Sometimes the paint turns an opaque color, sometimes the clear coat cracks and rarely do you get away unscathed. Get in the habit of taking the bra off as soon as it gets wet, use common sense but do it as quickly as you can. If the sun were to come out for just a bit, the metal will heat up and steam will occur. I don't think I need to go into the physics, but you get the picture - it isn't pretty.

     Next, when using a bra on your Porsche, protect the fenders and hood from rubbing marks. Because a car in motion flexes, the metal and bra will move. Depending on the type of seams you have on the bra, this could cause surface scratches on the near the lights, fender and hood. To eliminate this, I use soft felt squares anywhere there is a seam touching metal. I use six squares all together, one each for the headlight opening, one each for the top of the fenders and two side by side on the hood. On the hood?? I have the type of bra that fits snuggly on the hood, which with body flex could create rub marks.

     Finally, keep the bra clean. Small particles of dust and dirt can get into the lining of the bra. You will want to make sure you clean it periodically on both sides. If you think some dirt has gotten on the underside of your bra, use a diaper or piece of felt between the paint and the bra until you can clean it.

     If you are still in doubt about using a bra, ask around. I swear by them and at them, there is no easy way to protect your Porsche, but better safe than sorry.

Bev Frohm is the owner of 'Bevees, a 1970 911Tthat has won many concours events in the Southern California regions of PCA.  Her car was chosen by PCNA to represent the 1970 911T at Porsche's 50th Anniversary at Monterey.  Bev is also the web site coordinator for the Orange Coast PCA Region.

Comments and Suggestions:
bw 911 Comments: I had a bra on a RX7 years ago. I found out that it is true, if you don't keep in clean and dry it can do more damage than not having a bra.
I am looking for something for my 911
I would like to get more info on the 3m scotchguard film. How do you apply it? How does it work?
August 26, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Here is the info from 3M:

The recommended vehicle surface temperature and ambient air temperature are both
between 55°F and 90°F (13°C – 32°C). Vehicle should be removed from direct
sunlight. Winds should be below 5 mph.

Surface Preparation For best results, wash hands thoroughly before application to avoid film contamination,
such as fingerprints, which are difficult to remove.

On repainted vehicles, paint must be thoroughly dry and completely cured before any
attempt to apply film to the vehicle is made, in order to avoid film bubbling due to paint
out gassing. Check paint manufacturer's instructions for recommended cure time and

Clean all surfaces prior to Scotchgard PPF application. Recommended cleaners include:
3M™ General Purpose Adhesive Cleaner (GPAC) (3M Part #08984 or #08987), which
contains specially blended solvents* for removal of adhesive residue, wax, grease, tree
sap, road tar, oil and bugs.

It is imperative to follow the adhesive cleaner with a glass cleaner, such as 3M™
Glass Cleaner (3M Part #08888) because it removes all of the adhesive cleaner residual
solvents. Failure to follow this step could result in insufficient Scotchgard PPF

1. 3M recommends using a two-solution application method for optimal appearance and
 Soap Solution – Fill a 16 oz. spray bottle with water and add .6ml (4 drops) of
Johnson’s Baby Shampoo or Aveeno Baby Wash and Shampoo.
 Alcohol Solution – Fill a 16 oz. spray bottle 75% full of water and add 25%
Isopropyl Alcohol (70% rubbing alcohol)*.

Wash your hands before starting the application, to avoid fingerprints on the
The top surface of the film should be wet with the Soap Solution throughout the
application to allow the squeegee to slide across the film.

There are two different squeegee strokes that are used when applying
Scotchgard PPF.

The “Pull” squeegee stroke is the most
common squeegee method to apply
Scotchgard PPF and can be used for the
majority of the application. This pull
squeegee stroke is used to remove the
majority of the solution from between
the film adhesive and the painted

* Note: When using solvents, extinguish all ignition sources, including pilot lights
and follow the manufacturer’s precautions and directions for use.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
Ghostrydr Comments: Just an FYI - the 3M Scotchgard thin-film is amazing. I don't know how it is graded at an upscale concurs event, but if you want to protect your finish - although pricey - it is definitely the way to go.
July 13, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional Info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
Steve Comments: I have a 2010 Porsche and would like to find a bra for it. Any help would be appreciated.
June 30, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Hi there. We sell them right here: - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Bill Bergman Comments: Bev,
I've got a MagBra, maybe the only one made for a 1970 911 - the trunk front is too rounded for the standard MagBra so a vinyl strip was sewn onto the custom-cut sheets and is held in place by velcro under the trunk lid.
Worked great at Autobahn speeds - I am Army, assigned in Belgium.
I left it on too long, I guess. The clearcoat when viewed at a certain angle against the light has suffered.
Have any favorites for clearcoat polish? I don't want to start out with "just anything" and rub thru it.
May 17, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I'm not sure that will help, I think the sun may have damaged the paint. I'm not a huge fan of bras, as they do protect the car, but then they won't match the rest of the car when you take them off! - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Cecil Comments:
Thanks for the Heads Up regarding the Porsche Bra. I just pick up my first 911 Targa and I'm wresling between getting a vinyl bra or the plastic film. I like the look of the vinyl but you covered what I can do to possibly prevent ware marks. Do you have any suggestions as far as Brands that fit best on a 04 Targa..Thanks Happy New Years
December 28, 2009
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts

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Page last updated: Sun 2/18/2018 02:22:55 AM