Insulation: Ceramic Paint / Microbeads
- Lizard Skin
- Second Skin Firewall
Ceramic microbeads are amazing things - they're tiny little glass balls, about the size of a hair's-width. Mixed into paint, they create a thick coating that can be brushed, rolled, or sprayed onto your vehicle's metal surfaces. The microbeads in the paint create a thermal and acoustic barrier, without wasting space - the recommended thickness is about that of a credit card. As these can be mixed into any type of paint, a water-based latex can be used to reduce toxicity.
Products such as Lizard Skin are marketed versions of this technology - there's no indication that they contain any different technology. If you're a sucker for brand names, or feel that the expensive pre-packaged goods must be better, go ahead and purchase from LS. Otherwise, you'll save a few hundred dollars by mixing it yourself, or even by purchasing the pre-mixed paint from Hytek or elsewher
There's a lot of discussion about this on the hotrodders.com forum:
The jury's still out on the effectiveness of microbeads. There's no doubt that they do help, but reports from people who have tried it seem to indicate only a small difference. In combination with other insulation types, though, microbeads might help create a very effective total insulation package. With its low cost (for the homemade version, at least) and relatively easy installation, there's little harm in trying it, if you're so inclined!
Where to get it
Next: butyl rubber