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You know you want to lick the monitor. That’s ok, go ahead (it’s your monitor). Just how good is the polish you get with this 3M stuff?

the mirror illusion requires both gloss and flatness

It really shows at oblique angles, where the color of the panel doesn’t interfere as much with the relefction. Obviously, the trick is that whatever you’re trying to reflect needs to be well-lit, which is why the reflection of me holding the camera didn’t look as distinct as this.

More pics will get posted as I get the case put together. But for now, a few more notes on finishing process. I used a 3M detailing cloth to buff the glaze out. The guys at the paint shop recommended it, and it was a few bucks so I bought it. I don’t know if it worked drastically better than cotton, but it was nice and lint-free, and quite soft, being made from some synthetic material designed for this by the wizards at 3M. The rubbing compound I used was 3M Perfect-It rubbing compound - fine cut. The glaze was 3M Imperial hand glaze (pictured above). The 3M stuff was top notch. Check out their site for some good tips and a product selection matrix.

My overall impressions? This was a nice product to work with. The dry time was fast, which I like. The nozzles on the rattle cans are strange–they have an elliptical spray pattern, but it’s rotated maybe 30 degrees from the vertical, so your spray pattern is oblique no matter how you hold the can. The nozzle on my base coat can was defective–it shot paint out the side (and all over me), but I switched it out with the mid-coat can, and no problems. The primer was very thinned, and several coats may be necessary to get a nice opaque base. But you can recoat anytime, the can says, so no worries. What else can I say about the looks, the pics speak ofr themselves. I bought the paint system from a local shop for about $26. The additional supplies set me back maybe another $20. A little on the expensive side, but my time is pretty valuable compared to that. If I’m spending several hours of my precious time on a paintjob, I want nothing but the best materials available.

update: Here’s some pics of the finished case:

nice and reflective, but not dark enough to look like a mirror

the more oblique angle helps the mirror illusion

that curved bezel shows the Mirage effect best

sanding around the cutout was hard

that top panel came out great

Duplicolor Mirage is a nice system. Using it with 3M finishing products you’re bound to get excellent looking results.

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