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onebadmerc 01-02-2009 04:35 PM

3M masking tape
Is the 3M masking tape at Home Depot, Lowes the same masking tape at a automotive parts store?????

smrat 01-02-2009 06:18 PM

its painters tape, its good for some jobs but if you want to tape out flames etc.. get the 3M fine line

adtkart 01-02-2009 06:19 PM

The blue tape that they carry is useless for automotive painting. You want the green tape.


302 Z28 01-02-2009 06:31 PM

Green tape is what you wan't, do not use the blue tape unless your painting your house. Once you try the green tape you will immediately see the difference.


kenseth17 01-02-2009 06:44 PM

I've used 3m tape from the farm and fleet here, and wally world in the past, instead of running across town to one of the jobbers before. Seemed to work, stick and remove fine to me,and held up to auto paint, but I didn't leave on for more then a day or two. I am talking the natural color stuff 2 buck and change for 3/4 inch and over 3 bucks for 2" roll. I never used the blue painters tape, one owner had a bunch of that stuff inside the car and I wouldn't use it.
I agree though, the green 3m tape is nice, and is what we use at work. Also is semi transparent which is nice when you are taping something and need to razor blade off excess , and being able to see where to do so. Best is to get it at a paint jobber, but then I've seen jobbers sell some cheap crapola before that stays stuck to everything when you tried to use it, and had a cheap ex boss that would try to save a buck everywhere he could.

wildthing 01-02-2009 07:01 PM

i used the tan 3 M tape from walmart to tape my car off when i sprayed the epoxy primer and it did great , was easy to work with. i took it off the next day and had no problems.

Old Fool 01-02-2009 09:13 PM

From the folks that make the tape, scroll to the bottom of the page!

milo 01-02-2009 11:30 PM

After decades of research never considering costs I've found American (brand) tape to out handle any 3/4 inch tape in the world.
It turns. holds,lets go,sticks to it'self hangs on through water and heat cycles simply the best..

3M does account for some excellent tapes for fine line and artwork it's true but have droppped the ball compared to these guys when it comes to everyday automotive masking..


I know everyone has a better answer, but you'll see :thumbup:

onebadmerc 01-03-2009 07:56 AM

I bought some of the 3M blue tape from Home Depot and used it yesterday. I didn't peel anything up when I removed it but it let a little bit of paint seep around the edges in a few spots.

Old Fool 01-03-2009 08:36 AM

Read the 3M page I linked to, they have more than one blue tape and more than one tan or natural tape and they are not all equal.

there are also some tips on using tape properly

I have no idea what is best, that is up to each guy to determine. I just like to see all the options!

CustomConspiracy 01-03-2009 08:49 AM

I have some pretty firm ideas about tape. has been stated, the blue paper like tape at the Depot is for house painting, and I really warn you against using it on auto paint.
They make a blue "Fine Line" for auto work, as well as the green stuff, which is THE ONLY THING I WILL USE when it touches the paint. The tan 3M stuff is also my tape of choice, and I have learned over the years it is just NOT worth the risk to try and save a few pennies.
Just like ittook me years to finally figure out that using news paper as masking was hurting me more than helping because of the lint and various little holes. Now I buy good quality rolled masking paper, and I sprung for a taping machine that puts the tape on the paper as I pull it out. I thought it was a silly luxury, but it has saved me so many hours over the years.
ALWAYS check the date on the tape you buy!
Age and heat are the enemies of masking tape.
That is why I buy from the jobber. They seem to sell a lot of tape and the stock gets rotated, and does not go stale.
If I get an old batch I will return it to them.
My jobber will also call me when he has some old stock, and gives me a reduced price, but I only use it on non critical stuff.
There may be better stuff out there than 3M but I just got tired of experimenting and looking for it.
Good luck to ya!

red65mustang 01-03-2009 08:50 AM

1 Attachment(s)
I have always been a engineering technology junkie....

many moons ago I worked with all the major tape manufacturers to change their bulk tape packaging from paper wrap to the "accordion" bulk shrink wrap and individual rolls shrink wrapped to better protect the tape edges (see pic)

there is a amazing amount of production machinery engineering and product materials design/testing for the different masking tapes (like the listings in that 3M link as a example) to attain specific application results "consistently" with a basically "unstable" (temp and time) finished tape product....

too bad they have to be so secretive,,,it would make a great "How It's Made" segment....

302 Z28 01-03-2009 09:22 AM

I have to go back to an old saying Bell helmets used to have "If you have a $10 head, then buy a $10 helmet". Point is, why spend thousands of dollars on paint, reducer, and catalyst then skimp on masking tape, makes absolutely zero sense to me.

Yes you can use the blue house painters tape, if you don't want sharp crisp lines :pain: .


onebadmerc 01-03-2009 09:34 AM

The blue tape isn't very good, it was the first time I tried it, though it would probably be ok for masking for primer. I didn't leave it on very long, so I really can't say that it wouldn't peel up paint.

Kevin45 01-03-2009 04:45 PM

When it comes to tape, watch what you buy. Like everyone stated, the blue is housepainters tape, used for masking up baseboards, door trim, etc. Yellow is general masking tape and will leave a residue on a car. Advanced, AutoZone and those places sell the green auto painters tape, but it is a huge ripoff. The quantity is just about half of what you get at a jobbers for the same price or more. They put the tape on a larger diameter cardboard roll so the outside looks almost the same size

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