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OPTIMA Batteries SEMA 2022 Projects – Part 1

words/photos: Denis Podmarkov 

It Is with great excitement that we get to share this project with you all. Star Shield Solutions has partnered with OPTIMA Batteries for their 2022 SEMA Projects.

What is SEMA? Andrew Boyle said it best: “The SEMA Show is a yearly event that takes place at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. There, the automotive industry’s best and brightest manufacturers and retailers get together to debut all of the hottest car parts in one place.

In addition to the show itself, the SEMA show also provides a number of networking events such as special guests, educational seminars, networking opportunities, and much more. This show typically brings north of 50,000 buyers along with thousands of brand-new parts. The SEMA show is not open to the general public and is labeled a trade-only event.

Many manufacturers, automakers, and retailers unveil “SEMA Cars” that they’ve been working on all year. These cars typically feature brand-new and upcoming parts and are highly anticipated in the weeks leading up to November.”

So we got to work with OPTIMA Batteries on their SEMA Cars, or technically their EV Overlanding builds.

OPTIMA Batteries along with their partners have built a new off-roading experience. The custom R1S and R1T both come with Optima Power Station trailers capable of Level 2 charging. As InsideEVs explains: “The Optima Power Stations are mounted on Turtleback trailers and can recharge each Rivian from 0-80% at Level 2 speeds. Both trailers have Merlin deployable solar awnings as power sources. Furthermore, each Power Station has 110-volt, 220-volt AC, and 12-volt DC outlets which can be used to power and recharge other electronic goods.

One of the trailers, the Kitchen Turtle, also features an electric stove, sink, and 45-gallon water tank (useful, given Rivian recently discontinued the Camp Kitchen). Meanwhile, the Utility Turtle trailer comes with storage space for two motorcycles and plenty of camping gear.”

OPTIMA Batteries reached out to Star Shield Solutions seeking a product that can help protect their Rivian R1T/R1S + trailers when they went overlanding and off-roading. The harsh environments can really harm the paint and can cause permanent damage. We want to give a HUGE thank you to our partners at 3M for providing the Scotchgard™ Paint Protection Film Pro Series Matte for this project. OPTIMA Batteries wanted to customize the look of their vehicles and bring a higher level of protection. The 3M Scotchgard™ PPF Pro series was the perfect option for this project.

Our 3M certified trainer and installer Drew Pyfer started the project with the R1T. 3M already has a kit for this model and our in-house team cut the pattern and packaged the film for the mobile installation. Drew made sure the painted surfaces were clean and free of wax or sealants before starting the installation. Paint protection film creates a protective barrier around vulnerable areas such as front bumpers, hoods, and door edges. It helps keep vehicle finishes from being damaged by rock chips, scratches, bugs, road debris, and punishing outdoor weathering. The whole truck was getting wrapped in 3M PPF, so every inch is protected! The self-healing technology allows minor scratches to disappear when applying heat to the film.

Up next were the two Turtleback back trailers. Since there are no 3M patterns for these two trailers, Drew had to do a free-hand installation. Common on custom projects like this. Each piece was hand cut and custom fitted to the panel. This is where years of experience come into play, Drew knew exactly how to cut and line the film up to the trailer panels.

After a few days of installation, the vehicles were ready to hit the road to SEMA 2022!