Spray vs Plastic Bedliner

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C10_Blackie

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Thanks to everybody so far - you've been a lot of help. Aside from resolving any safety issues my first priority is to get the bed figured out so i can start using it for spring projects.
 

skysurfer

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I did find a good use for the rattle-can spray liner. I've been using Herculiner to coat the underside of my riding mower's deck to keep it from rusting. I'm not as diligent as I should be after I mow, and the wet clippings often get left under the deck. I bought the mower in '05 and the deck is still like new. I have to respray it at the end of the mowing season, but I would rather do that than having to buy a new deck at some point.
 
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85K304SPD

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Just a thick coating of Rust-oleum paint. If you scratch it, you can easily touch it up with a spray can, and when you get tired of it it will come right off.
 

SquareRoot

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Nothing good comes out of a can or a local hardware store. Don't be cheap, pay the $$ for a professional spray in liner. Choose your poison: LineX, Rhino, etc. You get what you pay for. Convince me otherwise... :popcorn:
 

WFO

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The coating I had sprayed on my 03 Z71 21 years ago was done by a friend that contracts spraying liner inside Rail Road tank cars. After 21 years of abuse it still doesn't have any nicks or gouges, and very little fade after being in the Texas sun for most of it's life.

My brother used Line-X a couple of years later, and his was gouged up and fading in about 8 years.
 

JT58

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I much prefer bed liners but try and find one for an 87. No longer made. I have had many bed liners in my past trucks without any issues. Easy to clean and the bed underneath always looks new. There are some scratches from the liner running but no one ever sees it. Just be sure to take it out annually and clean the bed. The only cons are the bed liner is slippery, just anchor your cargo. Another perk is the liner won't scratch your cargo.

Now with that being said I had to paint the bed liner in my 87 with a roll on roller. I stripped the bed from the old liner- what a hard job scraping and sanding. But it came out looking pretty good. I put in a bed mat on top of the liner as the liner material I used was the Rustoleum in a can and it's just OK, seems to scratch easily. I would have gladly bought a bed liner, could not find one anywhere. Spray in liners are also super expensive- they run like 1K or more these days? Painting it on was like $50.00
 

TotalyHucked

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Nothing good comes out of a can or a local hardware store. Don't be cheap, pay the $$ for a professional spray in liner. Choose your poison: LineX, Rhino, etc. You get what you pay for. Convince me otherwise... :popcorn:
100% agree with you here. Unfortunately the one that is in my square is not up to par of those professional companies. It easily gouges/scratches. It's down to bare metal in a couple places. It looks fantastic but is not a good product. I'll be getting it stripped and LineX'd at some point in the future.
 
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JBswth

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I replaced the bottom bolts on the front bed panel with eye bolts, for a low attachment point.

The plastic bed liners tend to cause rust issues.

Years ago I was driving on Loop 610 in Houston in my 79 Camaro, when I saw a plastic bed liner that came out of a pickup, flying in the air about 40 yards ahead of me and heading my way.
I punched it and watched in my mirror as it barely missed my rear spoiler, and a big pile-up of cars behind me.
That's what I was going to say, as plastic traps water, and water causes rust. Spray-on is better in that respect. Plus, back in the day, there was no such thing as bed liners, and we managed OK.

J. B.
 

JBswth

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I've had both. The plastic drop-in liner did far more damage than it prevented. Dirt and sand gets underneath them where it acts like sandpaper, removing paint, then moisture collects in the dirt causing rust. It did the same thing along the top of the bed rails where the liner wraps over the edge. As mentioned above, they're slick and things slide around unless tied down.

The spray-in liner was done by a shop. It was pretty thick, probably 3/16" or so, and was really durable. I didn't notice a battery had fallen over in the bed and it laid there all-day dripping acid. Cleaned it up, and the only damage was a slight discoloration of the material. It didn't eat into the liner at all. I remember the installer telling me that decades from now, that truck would probably be a rusted hulk sitting in a scrap yard with a perfect bed attached. I believe him. When I sold the truck, the bedliner was a big plus for the buyer and made for an easy sale.

I've seen quite a few DIY liners, and they just don't compare to the pro-grade ones. Thinner and less durable, they look ok as long as you never use them.
Step-side owners can gloat about this, as they have wooden bed floor! My brother almost bought a seldom-seen long-bed stepside in 87. Too bad he didn't, as they are as rare as hen's teeth, and the bed sides and tailgate are pretty much the same from 1954 - 87, even later on 1 tonners.

J.B.
 

peats

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Why not just pressure wash it, prime and paint the bed like when it was new? Unless you are doing a high end build this would be the cheapest and easiest route. Scuffs and scratches would just be a badge of honor. This way you can keep an eye on the condition of the metal in the bed.
 

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Step-side owners can gloat about this, as they have wooden bed floor! My brother almost bought a seldom-seen long-bed stepside in 87. Too bad he didn't, as they are as rare as hen's teeth, and the bed sides and tailgate are pretty much the same from 1954 - 87, even later on 1 tonners.

J.B.
GM stepsides changed in 55, 67 and 73.
I've always thought the 66 and earlier ones looked the best.
To me, the worst lookin ones were the GMT400s that had a 2nd step behind the fender and a wide bumper.
If I remember right, the 99 GMT 400s had the same bed that would be on the GMT800s, without the rear step.
 

Bennyt

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Step-side owners can gloat about this, as they have wooden bed floor! My brother almost bought a seldom-seen long-bed stepside in 87. Too bad he didn't, as they are as rare as hen's teeth, and the bed sides and tailgate are pretty much the same from 1954 - 87, even later on 1 tonners.

J.B.
Fleet-side owners can gloat too, as a wood bed floor was available 73-79 for an extra $100.
 

Bennyt

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There are a few companies that make a product that has a removeable hook that goes into a rivnut in the sheetmetal. I installed some on my friend's fathers truck. He used to keep a hook in the center of the bed to attach his dog's lead to and removed and had them at the four corners for when he was hauling.
 

Daron58

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I painted a raptor liner in my daily driver, in October and also put it on the in bed tool box seems to be holding up fine, I didn’t spray it I rolled it, I think I prepped it pretty well thank god for scotchbrite pads and did it for about $150.00 local places wanted $450.00 up, it all comes down to what your needs are, good luck on your project
 

C10_Blackie

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Why not just pressure wash it, prime and paint the bed like when it was new? Unless you are doing a high end build this would be the cheapest and easiest route. Scuffs and scratches would just be a badge of honor. This way you can keep an eye on the condition of the metal in the bed.
That’s not a bad idea, and I’ll give that some thought.
 

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