"Tankslapper" film vs. "3M" film
We often get asked the difference between the Tankslapper and 3M materials, here's a quick run down.
The 3M film is adhesive backed, the "Tankslapper" material is not, The 3M film
can adhere to a greater degree of contour (because of the adhesive), has a slightly better shine, is harder at the surface, and is less likely to stain because of it. The Tankslapper material can be removed and replaced over and over again, the 3M film is once on, and off once.
The 3M film is more difficult to install where harsh contours are involved, but at the same time, once installed it will not move or roll back regardless of the abuse it is subject to. On the other hand, the "Tankslapper" film can pull back along the edge if not cared for or installed properly.
In our Total Protection kits, the frontal and lower areas of the bike always get cut in the 3M film because of its stain resistance and staying power over our static material. In other words bug and road tar can be cleaned off with polish. In addition, with the advantage of an adhesive holding it in place, it isn't going to be disturbed by sand, gravel and stones that so often attacks that area of the your bike's bodywork. In fact, in order to damage your paint finish with this pliable material in place, it would first take penetration that would break or dent your bodywork.
For other areas of your bike like the top of the tank or the tail section, the "Tankslapper" film is a good alternative because it does just as good job of stopping abrasion from contact with rider and passenger, while at the same time helping to keep the overall cost of our "Total Protection Kits" as low as possible.
For tank only use, our recommendation is to go with the less expensive "Tankslapper" kit. In most applications, (with the possible exception of aggressive track day use) it looks good and works great. But if you insist on the "best", with the least maintenance and the best overall look, "3M's" urethane protection film should be your choice.
So you've had our kit in place for a few years and it's time to trade-in or sell your bike. If you've decided to remove the film to show the prospective buyer that the paint on your bike is as it was the day it was new? The "Tankslapper" film can be removed in an instant, no special tools or conditions, and of course you can reinstall it if you wish. The 3M film is easily removed as well. What's needed is some warmth form the sun and a finger nail to get it started at one edge. Once you have enough of it up to where you can grab it your fingers, stretch the rest of it off by tugging it in the opposite direction from which it is releasing from your paint or lens. In this way, the adhesive will stay with the film. The only residual evidence of the films application at that point will be the absence of damage.
IMPORTANT: While the tankslapper material is an excellent, inexpensive solution for preventing abrasion damage to your paint's surface, it is not intended to prevent damage from fuel or chemical spills. In the event the film should come into contact with these substances, while refueling for example, you must immediately removed the effected piece of film from your bike and wash it with soap and water, at that point it will be ready to reinstall. Failure to do so will result in damage to the film and possibly your paint finish.
This is of particular concern to tank bag users because typically that portion of your kit often surrounds the fuel inlet on your tank.
Here is a precaution to try when refueling: Upon initially removing the gasoline nozzle, allow a few seconds for the residual gasoline to drain from the nozzle before bringing it over your tank. Do this again when you finish refueling, giving the hose a chance to drain and stabilize before you slowly pull it out of your tank.