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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I bought my 2014 Mazda3 s GT sedan in November 2013. I got it in deep crystal blue mica with the almond leather interior. It also has the $1600 tech package, so it does not have the radar cruise control.

Over the past couple months I have been busy installing and getting the following mods:

CorkSport interior LED kit
Viper Ultra 27% tint
Mazda alloy pedals
Plasti Dip on the wheels and chrome trim, electric lime green base with 2-3 coats of violet metalizer
Debadge rear

Future mods:

Rho-plate for the front when I finally get my plates
CS SRI (when they come out with the 2.5L version)
Oracle halos for the headlights (maybe, haven't decided yet)
Different color schemes with the trim and wheels. Next one will probably be bright orange
???

The following are mods I have done prior to starting this thread:

6 Dec. 2013 - Plasti Dip front emblem

I removed the front emblem from the car and dipped it with electric lime and violet metalizer.






8 Dec. 2013 - wheel dippin'

I dipped the wheels on this day. It was a terrible day for dipping, only about 17F and with snow everywhere. I was also a n00b at plasti dip, so my first two coats were WAY too thick and ran. I didn't keep the can warm as I went around doing the wheels, so they progressively got more texture as the can would cool down. Also, the tires had snow in them, which would melt and drip onto the rim causing problems. Snow was also blown onto the rims after the first coat, introducing more texture. I pretty much did everything wrong, lol. But by the final coats, I was warming the cans along the way and doing thinner more even coats, so from a distance they looked ok. And the color looks great :)





11 Dec. 2013 - alloy foot rest

I bought the Mazda OEM alloy pedals and foot rest. On this evening, I installed the foot rest. It required removing two trim pieces, which I did easily with my fingers. Then I had to make two holes in the carpet; I used a box cutter. Then it was a matter of peeling back the carpet, placing the back plate behind and the alloy foot rest on top of the carpet and screwing the foot rest to the back plate, sandwiching the carpet. I replaced the trim pieces and voila! One alloy foot rest :D







12 Dec. 2013 - alloy accelerator pedal and dipping the fog light rings

On this evening, I tackled two small projects--installing the alloy accel pedal and dipping the fog light chrome rings. The accel pedal was easy. I just followed the directions, drilling holes according to the template and with two bit sizes (pilot hole and big hole). Then you just plop in the nuts and screw them in, holding the alloy cover in place.




Dipping the chrome fog light rings was easy too. I removed the fog light trim piece using a tape-wrapped flathead screwdriver (start prying from outboard side of trim). With those removed, it was easy to push in the tabs to release the chrome plastic pieces. Then I dipped them and installed everything in reverse order.






14 Dec. 2013 - Dipping front wheels (again), front chrome trim and rear badges

On this day I had planned to re-dip all four wheels, but peeling them turned out to be more labor intensive than I expected. The dip was thin on the sides of the spokes and in the lug holes, so those areas took a lot of time and effort. Because of this, I only peeled and re-dipped the front two wheels. I also masked off the front grille for the big chrome trim piece. That piece is very easy to dip. On every edge there is a gap which allows for worry-free peeling once it has dried. This time it was a dry day, a bit warmer, and I had a better idea of what I was doing, lol. I did nice, thin, even coats while keeping the cans warm in my jacket, so it all turned out nice this time. I did learn that even though plasti dip can be buffed off of the car, it's a lot of effort if you don't mask the car very well. There was a fine mist over most of the car, and heavier in some areas nearer the dipped parts. In the end though, the result was stunning.








15 Dec. 2013 - Alloy brake pedal

Of the three pedals, the brake pedal seems like it would be the easiest. There are almost no tools needed, no holes to cut or drill. But it turns out that rubber is extremely difficult to get onto the brake pedal. I tried on two previous days using the instructions, then finally resigned to the fact that I am not strong enough to do it myself. So I ended up cutting the lip off the bottom edge to make it fit on easy. Then I used Amazing Goop contact cement to secure it there. I have written a how-to guide in the 2014+ how-to section if you are interested in more details. But I finally had all my alloy pedals installed :)






24 Dec. 2013 - Dipping the chrome window trim and trunk lip protector, and debadging

Christmas Eve was a nice day, so I decided to get rid of the last remaining chrome/silvery elements--the window trim and the trunk lip protector. I had bought tape and drape, so I was prepared to better mask-off my car. Unfortunately, the window trim is nowhere near as easy to dip as the front chrome trim was. There is a black plastic piece on top of it which touches the chrome piece. There is also a rubbery gasket underneath it which has a gap in some places and touches the chrome in other places. I ended up taping both above and below very carefully to peel when the last coat was still wet. I had also bought some whit plasti dip to try as a base coat. While it did work well and allow me to do fewer coats of electric lime, it also showed on the edges of the trim after peeling the tape. There were also a few spots where the dip was thick and/or I just did a bad job peeling and they turned out crappy. The white base coat made those areas looks even worse. When I do my next color scheme, I will not use a different color as a base.







After peeling the tape. Notice the crappy edge on top.






Debadging was fairly easy. And I like it a lot better :) But for those of you with a genthree hatch, there are holes behind the 'mazda' badge.

Before:


After:



27 Dec. 2013 - Touching up window trim and wheels

Along the way, I peeled the dip off the centers of the wheels where the black part is. This means I left dip on the mazda emblem. But unfortunately to do this, cutting was involved, so they had started to develop some lifting. I used the dip repair kit (basically just solvents and paint thinners) to re-wet those areas and smooth them flat. Now there is no lifting :D

I also used a small foam brush to touch up the window trim. As you can see, I sprayed into little art dishes to get the dip and apply it with the brush. The touched-up spots are a little lumpy, but not too bad. It's easy to miss them, unlike the big chrome and white spots that were there before.







And finally, here are some pics I took of the car as of the end of 2013:
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Yesterday while I was looking through Oracle's LED lighting products, I thought of a new project :). I bought an RGB LED strip, an inline RGB LED controller, and a magnetic SPDT switch. With these parts I believe I can place the LED strip on the bottom of the driver's door and rig it to turn on when the door opens.

I will probably get the parts this week, at which point I will test my rig and see how well it will work. If it works and I can install it, I'll buy the parts to do the rest of the doors. I will also post a how-to guide.
 

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And so it begins. I'm lookin forward to what you do with your car, along with all the other Gen 3 build threads.

This Generation Mazda looks like It'll have some extreme potential once more thing get released for it, along with peoples own creativity.

IMO, I'd go ahead and change the plasti dip to red / orange. I'm not feeling the green. But to each his own.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
And so it begins. I'm lookin forward to what you do with your car, along with all the other Gen 3 build threads.

This Generation Mazda looks like It'll have some extreme potential once more thing get released for it, along with peoples own creativity.

IMO, I'd go ahead and change the plasti dip to red / orange. I'm not feeling the green. But to each his own.
Yeah, I have always loved the deep blue/lime green combination. But it is very love-or-hate. I may change to orange this summer, when it's warm out. Plasti Dip is cheap, and doing the wheels and all that trim only takes about 6 cans (probably less, more with metalizer and/or some other finish). I think with the orange I'll try the blue metalizer to see if I can get a better iridescent effect with that combo.

As an update, I bought LED bulbs for the fog lights, to bring them up to a 6000K bluish white. They will be here later this week. I thought about getting 8000K, but for that you need an HID kit, and I'm not as comfortable installing that yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
:D Today I dipped the side mirrors. The easiest way to do this is to remove the body-color 'garnish' and dip it that way. The service manual says to remove the glass and press on the tabs with a screwdriver, but a previous attempt taught me that was very difficult.

I found it was easiest to pry off the garnish with a flat head screwdriver. I started in the outer corner (by the turn signal light if you have it) and slowly worked it out enough to pry it off (some force is needed!). There are eight tabs holding the garnish on (three of them are in pairs), and prying it off with this method will likely break one of them. Each garnish had lost one tab, though oddly not the same one. After dipping, they both snapped on just fine and are very secure.

Edit: added 2 more pics.
 

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Yeah, I have always loved the deep blue/lime green combination. But it is very love-or-hate. I may change to orange this summer, when it's warm out. Plasti Dip is cheap, and doing the wheels and all that trim only takes about 6 cans (probably less, more with metalizer and/or some other finish). I think with the orange I'll try the blue metalizer to see if I can get a better iridescent effect with that combo.

As an update, I bought LED bulbs for the fog lights, to bring them up to a 6000K bluish white. They will be here later this week. I thought about getting 8000K, but for that you need an HID kit, and I'm not as comfortable installing that yet.
HAH! That's very creative. I've never even thought of that lol. Now I'm definitely looking forward to how that comes out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
HAH! That's very creative. I've never even thought of that lol. Now I'm definitely looking forward to how that comes out.
Dipping the mirrors? Yeah that was a good idea, it turned out well. As for the method of removing the garnish, I got that from this forum in a post for the gen two mirrors; removing them was also difficult with the tabs, and that post recommended prying it out with force. The new mirrors have more tabs than on the gen two, but it still works :)
 

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Dipping the mirrors? Yeah that was a good idea, it turned out well. As for the method of removing the garnish, I got that from this forum in a post for the gen two mirrors; removing them was also difficult with the tabs, and that post recommended prying it out with force. The new mirrors have more tabs than on the gen two, but it still works :)
Not the mirrors, even tho they came out nice. I was talking about the orange plasti dip with blue metalizer for the fluorescent look. that's what was creative haha
 

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Discussion Starter #9
LED fog lights

Today I installed the LED fog light bulbs. They look great!

I bought them from CorkSport, but they're just generic H11 LED bulbs. Save the money and buy them elsewhere.

For anyone looking to replace the fog lights, follow the directions in the manual. But, in case you're as dumb as me, I'll save you the time: reach in for the fog light bulb from the bottom, not from the wheel well, lol.
 

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Today I installed the LED fog light bulbs. They look great!

I bought them from CorkSport, but they're just generic H11 LED bulbs. Save the money and buy them elsewhere.

For anyone looking to replace the fog lights, follow the directions in the manual. But, in case you're as dumb as me, I'll save you the time: reach in for the fog light bulb from the bottom, not from the wheel well, lol.
Looking real good!! I do love the blue and lime green, it's so original!! :thumbup 1:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
My sister got me a zoom zoom license plate frame for Christmas. Today I dipped it in lime green (of course). I taped off the zoom zoom part, then removed the tape and did one coat of lime green and one of violet metalizer. The stainless steel finish is hidden, but the zoom zoom is still showing.

I don't have my license plates yet >:3 so I cannot install it.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I finally got my trunk light fixed!

So I adapted that CorkSport LED meant for the cargo area of the hatch to fit the trunk bulb socket. Now my trunk is actually bright, I can see things in it :D
 

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Discussion Starter #13
LED lighting the engine bay

Today I installed an LED strip on the underside of my hood. It's a 20" LED scanner, the cheap kind you can get at AutoZone. It has 7 colors and 10 patterns, with adjustable speed. Installation was easy enough. It looks pretty good.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
football

OK, maybe I should've started with the orange. Now that it's the Seahawks and Broncos in the Super Bowl, I'm a little scared. I honestly don't care about football, and just like the colors. But just now, a pickup truck was following me and flashing his hi-beams for a couple miles. Why do people care so much about this? Even if I were a Seahawks fan (clearly I'm not as I didn't know their colors), why does he have to be an asshole?
 

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OK, maybe I should've started with the orange. Now that it's the Seahawks and Broncos in the Super Bowl, I'm a little scared. I honestly don't care about football, and just like the colors. But just now, a pickup truck was following me and flashing his hi-beams for a couple miles. Why do people care so much about this? Even if I were a Seahawks fan (clearly I'm not as I didn't know their colors), why does he have to be an asshole?
Yikes! If it comes to it you can write "NOT a Seahawks fan, GO BRONCOS!" in soap on back window for the next few weeks. Seems drastic but better than getting some psycho who decides to try that again or even damage your car while parked somewhere. That's a really sh*tty thing to have to deal with sorry to hear that. :argh 1:
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)
Yikes! If it comes to it you can write "NOT a Seahawks fan, GO BRONCOS!" in soap on back window for the next few weeks. Seems drastic but better than getting some psycho who decides to try that again or even damage your car while parked somewhere. That's a really sh*tty thing to have to deal with sorry to hear that. :argh 1:
Yeah I'm thinking of getting a Broncos license plate frame for now. I just hope the broncos win.

Edit:

Ok, I just ordered this on Amazon:


That should be clear enough, right? Yay for Prime shipping!
 

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I'm overly cautious so I would probably end up decking my car out with Broncos gear maybe soap too lol. I feel for ya. I want the Broncos to win that much more now and think they will. :yes:
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
I'm overly cautious so I would probably end up decking my car out with Broncos gear maybe soap too lol. I feel for ya. I want the Broncos to win that much more now and think they will. :yes:
Thanks :)

Worse than just driving and parking around town, I have a trip planned. I am leaving next Friday, and parking at the Denver airport (over Super Bowl Sunday!!!!). For this, in addition to that license plate, I will get a couple Go Broncos flags, and put a big sign in my back window that says:

SEAHAWKS SUCK
Coincidentally, I like their colors.
Have a safe trip.
GO BRONCOS

I thought about having a friend drop me off, but I think parking my car there with all that stuff there will be more fun. That, and DIA is at least a 75 minute drive from here. And on a Friday morning, traffic will be slow for part of the way.
 

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Thanks :)

Worse than just driving and parking around town, I have a trip planned. I am leaving next Friday, and parking at the Denver airport. For this, in addition to that license plate, I will get a couple Go Broncos flags, and put a big sign in my back window that says:

SEAHAWKS SUCK
Coincidentally, I like their colors.
Have a safe trip.
GO BRONCOS

I thought about having a friend drop me off, but I think parking my car there with all that stuff there will be more fun.
If done thoroughly you shouldn't run any risk at all. In fact it will probably get a few laughs and smiles. Have a safe trip!
 

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All the plastidip! Haha it looks pretty cool. I never thought of blue and lime green. What's your next mod going to be?
 
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