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Product mock-up example of 3M automotive masking solutions on a red sports car.
Automotive Masking Solutions for OEM & Tier Suppliers

Effective Auto Masking Tape Solutions Can Help Improve Productivity.

  • Product mock-up example of 3M automotive masking solutions on a red sports car.
    Two-tone Paint Masking

    Bring paint designs to life – we’ll study your process and recommend comprehensive and efficient solutions including products, application methods and overmasking protection.

  • Icon of tape in a circle for 3M plastic part masking
    Plastic Part Masking

    Create sharp paint lines and designed edges efficiently with integrated solutions that include fine line tapes, die cuts, crepe masking tapes and films.

  • Icon of a medics cross in a circle for 3M repair masking.
    Repair Masking

    Details are critical when you need to repair during manufacturing – our masking solutions can help, including critical windshield flange masking.

Two-tone Paint Masking: Balancing Perfection and Speed

More and more customers demand customized vehicles, including two-tone car paint. Undermask and you spend time removing paint, overmask and you have to go back and repaint spots. To keep costs down you need to get it right quickly and efficiently. You also need to understand your process and decide whether to paint the entire body first or just one half. 3M can help by collaborating with you to find solutions that save time and money.

A folded masking film is pre-taped on one edge, then unfolded, and all edges must be taped down to prevent flapping in the wind of the bake over. These films are specially engineered to withstand the heat of paint curing ovens without melting or ghosting the underlying clearcoat, and masking and fine line tapes are designed for clean one-piece removal after exposure to a bake cycle.

  • Product application image of the body of a car for 3M paint body and bake.
    Paint Body and Bake

    Painting the entire body one color first has the advantage of making the roof paint slightly thicker so water will flow away rather than pool at a paint ridge. The speed required on the production line may mean that after baking further masking is done while the vehicle is still warm.

  • Product application image of the body of a car top with masking film for 3M mask front & windshield
    Mask Front and Windshield

    Apply pre-taped masking film 3M™ High Temperature Paint Masking Film 7300 to the front of the vehicle, windshield, and sunroof. While applying, open the masking film out, making sure to secure it with 3M™ Performance Masking Tape 2380.

  • Product application image of the body of a car top with masking film for 3M mask front & windshield
    Mask Back Hatch

    Rear hatches have more complex shapes, making applying by hand hard to do consistently. Die-cuts of Scotch™ High Temperature Fine Line Tape 4737 can be made to match these complex shapes, with tabs to make placement consistent and easy.

  • Product application image of a man putting 3M masking tape on a vehicle.
    On-site Process Support from 3M

    With experts around the world, our Global Automotive Masking team can come to your site to make recommendations and ensure your creative paint designs work all the way down the line. Our collaborative solutions are designed specifically for OEM applications and processes to help save time and reduce expenses while bringing your creative vision to life.

  • High temperature masking film used on vehicle
    3M™ High Temperature Paint Masking Film 7300

    A masking film needs to be gentle on the underlying surface as well as covering it. This product provides excellent conformability and is soft enough to resist scratching the clear coat or other protective layers, yet tough enough to resist temperatures as high as 310°F/155°C for 1 hour during paint cycles.

How Tos

  • Video still with text “Wipe tape down with 3M Plastic Applicator PA-1” as being used on window edge
    How to Create an Outside Curve Tape Line with Masking Tape (1:18)

    See the technique for applying masking tape to an outside corner to ensure complete masking before adding a taped masking film.

  • Text “Put pressure on entire width of the crepe paper tape while stretching it” as worker use it
    How to Create an Inside Curved Tape Line with Masking Tape (1:46)

    See the techniques for applying a narrow masking tape to create a series of curves and a wide masking tape to mask gradual curves.

Product Solution for Repair and Plastic Part Masking

Whether you’re masking plastic parts or making paint repairs on the line, the right mix of products and processes helps your workforce expertly and efficiently create sharp paint lines and designed edges. 3M masking products are engineered to stick firmly to many different substrates, survive the heat of the bake cycle and then remove cleanly to help keep your production efficient.

Masking Tapes

Masking Tapes

  • Provides strong holding power and exceptional high-temperature resistance. Heavy crepe paper backing resists bleed-through.

  • A smooth, heavy duty, mini-crepe paper masking tape that features aggressive holding; excellent for multi-bake paint cycles.

  • For critical paint masking applications requiring a strong hold. Conformable for easy masking around corners, over contours, and irregular surfaces.

Masking Tape Product Details
Product Product Description Thickness mils (mm)
2380 Strong backing is easy to tear and provides one-piece removal 325°F (163°C)
2693 Clean removal from most surfaces without adhesive transfer 325°F (163°C)
401+ High performance crepe for medium temp bake processes 250°F (121°C)
Fine Line Tapes

Fine Line Tapes

  • The polypropylene backing is stiffer than vinyl fine line tapes, while conforming easily around corners. Good moisture and solvent resistance. Used as a layout tape for high value, multi-color and custom painted graphics.

  • Smooth, vinyl backing provides conformability for sweeping curves and straight lines. Removes cleanly. Available in: opaque blue (4737S), translucent blue (4737T) and with a liner (4737TL, 4737SL).

  • A highly conformable tape used to achieve sharp contrast and color separation while painting on highly contoured, curved and shaped surfaces. Holds in depressions, and around corners and edges. Also available with a liner (4735L).

Fine Line Tape Product Details
Product Description Maximum Operating Temperature
218 Balanced conformablity 250°F (121°C)
4737 Provides excellent color line separation 300°F (149°C)
4735 Highly conformable and resists lifting 300°F (149°C)
2800 Excellent for conforming to surface contours 250°F (121°C)
Masking Film

Masking Film

  • Designed for soft flexing. Provides good drape and conformability. Eliminates fiber that can occur with masking papers. Protects where bleed-through of solvents and paints may occur.

  • A high performance, high temperature wide area masking film that is designed to not scratch or damage surfaces and is flexible for good drape and conformability.

  • Eliminates bleed-through — Seals against solvents, enamels, lacquers and paint.

Masking Film Product Details
Product Description Maximum Operating Temperature
7300 Soft flexing film with excellent drape and conformability 310°F (154°C)
7302 Conformable film with good drape properties 320°F (160°C)
7305 Seals strong throughout the high-heat cure cycle 350°F (180°C)

Need help finding the right masking solution?

3M is constantly working to meet the evolving challenges of automotive OEM and Tier suppliers worldwide. If you need help finding an existing solution or would like to talk about specific ideas you’re working on, get in touch with us.