September 7, 2006

Peelz

Posted in Commentary, OSX Technical at 6:10 am by Michael Sweeney Media

I got my Apple Peelz for my Powerbook last night and went about to install the various panels right away. The Peelz is a 3M product, clear and feels like a thick vinyl plastic with adhesive on one side. Each panel for the Mac is die cut with two to three panels per sheet. For example, the sheet with the bottom cover also has the RAM cover, battery cover and a trackpad set.

The outline cuts are very clean which allow you to pull even the biggest pieces off without too much trouble. But, on the bottom piece since it has all sorts of cutouts, it stuck together in a few places which required some of the soapy water and careful tugging to pull it apart without stretching the plastic out of shape.

I had a tray of water ready to go with a few drop of soap to kill the surface tension. Which brings up a point of concern, there were not any directions included with the shipment. If I had not read them online, the install would have been blindly which would be a big mistake. For the cost of 2 cent copy, they could have included the directions. So in my case, instead of using a sprayer, I used the suggested cookie sheet to dip the pieces. I did let them drip dry a bit before I put wet plastic on my Powerbook 🙂

What was not said in the directions is that the process takes all night. Without the water, you could not get the parts to line up with them sticking. With the water, they move till the water dries and the edges, particularly the lid edges, will not stick since water keeps oozing out for a few hours. I did the top first but I would suggest doing the bottom first, then the hand pads and then the lid last. Get it all as smooth and centered as you can, working out the bubbles by gently pushing to the the edge with your fingers and using a paper towel to soak up extra water. Once the bubbles are gone, walk away! Thats right, walk away and don not touch a thing for the night. When you get up in the AM, you can walk to the Mac and smooth down the edges and call it done. While I love the matt finish on my Powerbook, the high gloss look of the Peelz doesnt look bad at all and the plastic is very clear, no color tint that I can see. It also offers a slightly “grippy” feel so when you are walking around with the notebook, it does feel more attached to your hand unlike the smooth metal without the Peelz. Now, if the edges stay stuck down, it will be a absolute success.

Thoughts on Peelz:

Peelz is a good idea and the #M product used seems to be a very good choice. I disagree with not having included the directions in the parcel shipped but that is a minor point assuming the user will read them online. The suggested install is very workable but it would be better to have the pieces marked or placed in a suggested install order. As I noted, I think that the bottom pieces should be first, then the wrist rests and finally the lid. A picture or two of the finger techniques with the paper towel to soak up the extra water oozing from the edges. At $50.00 US for the set, it’s pricy and since I really just wanted the lid and wrist pieces, I feel that I had to over buy just to get the two parts I wanted. But, if you want to protect your Mac top to bottom, this product will work well for you.

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