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      02-17-2010, 08:31 AM   #1
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Painted inner Tail light- 2008 M3

I've never liked the look of the pre lci tail lights and really wasn't sold on the blacklines. Before I put down $$ on some new lens I thought about doing a DIY and masking off the white area and painting the rest of the lens red. Here's what I considered:
- I'm probably going to get other ones anyway so if they turned out bad it would just up my time frame
- pretty much anything is better than the stock look
- I could give it a shot and at least give the community some feedback on the process

So during ht recent blizzard we had here in Mid-Atlantic I went to town. I purchased Testors candy apple red transparent spray paint from Michaelís and an automotive clear coat from Autozone. I removed the lenses which took about 3 minutes. You just pop out the push connectors hold in the trunk liner and remove two screws that allow the lens to be removed.
I cleaned the lenses with rubbing alcohol.

The lenses themselves offer a natural area to be masked so that the reverse light area is still white. Itís pretty easy to see it based on the contours of the lens. I masked it with two type of painters tape and then masked off the entire lower red portion of the lens.

Then I took my time spraying about 4 coats with about 1-2 hour between coats. For a better result I should have wet sanded in between. I know this now but didnít during the project.

I then sprayed 2-3 coats of clear.

The result? Pretty decent I would rate it a 7. Color is a bit more opaque than the stock lens but it matched some of the areas around the edges. The finish is a bit irregular which Iím going to try to wet sand when itís not so cold and I feel like tackling it again. Total cost? About $15.

Here's a crappy cell picture. I'll take some better ones later.

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      02-17-2010, 10:24 AM   #2
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not bad... something different for sure. although it might look better on a red car like mine. but A+ for the effort.

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      08-09-2012, 04:10 AM   #3
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old topic..but i did the same clearcoat with red color mixed... wetsanded and polished.. now i changed the rear to LCI :-)

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      08-09-2012, 08:54 AM   #4
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Looks good.
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      08-09-2012, 09:18 AM   #5
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It's too bad nobody makes an LCI replica inner tail light (for the trunk). That would allow us '08 owners to buy the OEM outers and the replica inners to get the LCI look without the LCI expense
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      08-09-2012, 09:58 AM   #6
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You should have just gotten the blackline inners.

EDIT: Holy thread resurrection.
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      08-09-2012, 10:28 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by slicer View Post
It's too bad nobody makes an LCI replica inner tail light (for the trunk). That would allow us '08 owners to buy the OEM outers and the replica inners to get the LCI look without the LCI expense
They do make a aftermarket LCI-style taillight for the E90.

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      08-09-2012, 07:48 PM   #8
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Write those all red tails are nice!
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      08-10-2012, 02:10 PM   #9
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Clever of you, definitely looks better than stock. Nice work..

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      08-10-2012, 03:43 PM   #10
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I been waiting to do this for some time, was gonna use ref vinyl, but the testors paint is a good idea.
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