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Old 19th November 2013, 18:49   #1
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Default All about Car Polishing

Car Detailing can be broadly classified into 5 stages:
  1. Washing
  2. Decontamination (Clay, De-Tar, De-Iron)
  3. Paint Prep (Compounding and Polishing)
  4. Protect (Wax, Sealant or Coating)
  5. Interior Detailing
  6. Maintain (Maintenance Washes, Quick Detailers)
In this thread, we will focus on Stage 2 and Stage 3 - Decontamination and Paint Prep.
Stage 4 is being discussed here. (All about Car Waxes & Sealants)


Automotive paint could either be Single Stage or Two Stage paint. These days, two stage paint is more common and it has a color coat at the bottom and a clear coat on top. The clear coat protects the color coat from swirls, scratches and marring. Vintage and classic cars usually have a single stage paint where there is no clear coat. Even today, some of the brands offer certain colors in Single Stage paint.

Polishing your car is likely to be the most dramatic effect of any detailing stage. Done correctly, you should not only lift years of ingrained dirt and grime but also knock years off the vehicle's looks. Polishing is a broad term for a range of processes designed to either remove or mask sub-surface paint defects and greatly enhance surface gloss in readiness for sealant or wax protection. Sub-surface paint defects are any forms of damage that are cut into the uppermost layer of the paint on your car. These include swirls, scratches, stone chips, water spots and acid etching caused by bird droppings.

Scratch
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Etching from bird droppings

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Damage from stone chipping
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Water Spots
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Decontamination

Decontamination could involve all or any of these steps:

Detailing Clay
- The paint on your car is constantly under attack from several contaminants like Tar, Brake Dust, Tree Sap, Rain deposits etc. These contaminants may contain metal particulates that can penetrate the clear coat to attack the paint below. These contaminants then oxidize, and they allow rust to spread. Detailing clay is a substance that is designed to remove bonded contaminants from paint, leaving the paint smooth as glass; allowing easier and more fruitful applications of polishes, glazes, sealants and waxes. Detailing Clay is wiped gently across the paint which needs to be lubricated with a lubricant such as a Quick Detailer spray.

Detailing clay is usually available in three grades based on the level of aggressiveness - Mild, Medium and Aggressive. A newbie should always start with a mild clay.

Traditionally, Clay has been available as a clay bar wherein you need to knead it and then use it. However, there have been recent advancements in clay technology and now it is available in several forms such as a foam block, Clay Towel or a Clay Mitt. Either way, the idea is to keep the panel wet by using a Quick Detailer and gently rubbing the Clay to remove any contaminants; without applying any pressure. If you are using a clay bar and drop it by mistake, you may need to discard it. This is where the new foam block and clay cloths score well as they can simply be rinsed off and re-used.

A few popular brands of Clay are:Wash the car prior to using the detailing clay and always keep the clay and the paint well lubricated. Do not apply any pressure while using it.
Here's a small video on using a detailing clay

De-Tar Tar spots are particularly visible on white cars and can be easily removed by using a dedicated tar remover like Carpro Tar-X, Autofinesse Oblitarate or other brands. Some people have used WD-40 successfully but I haven't tried it. Dealers and service centers usually use diesel to remove tar spots and there are arguments to support that the chemical composition of branded tar removers is more or less the same as diesel. I would say that you do your independent research on Google and based on your budget, pick your poison.

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De-Iron Bonded metal contaminants can migrate to your paint and cause corrosion. Carpro offers Iron-X and Bilt Hamber offers Korrosol to remove such contaminants.

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Last edited by noopster : 29th November 2013 at 14:47. Reason: Please refer Rule#11
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Old 25th November 2013, 18:13   #2
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Default Paint Preparation (Compounding & Polishing)

Types of Polishes

Compounds – These are the most aggressive polishes available and are used to correct deep scratches, severe swirls and to work on neglected paint. Compounds work by using abrasives and cut your clearcoat to remove paint defects. The abrasives in compounds are either SMAT (Super Micro Abrasive Technology) or DAT (Diminishing Abrasive Technology) technology. It's pretty much like it sounds, one stays micro, and one breaks down or diminishes. The SMAT is newer, and seems to work a bit better as far as removing defects and leaving a nice finish in most instances. However, some DAT polishes finish better than most SMAT polishes. Compound when used with aggressive compounding pads will cut quickly and hence should not be used very often. Traditionally, compounding has been a 2 step process where step 1 is to compound and step 2 is to use a finishing polish to remove the haze caused by using the compound. However, certain modern compounds are capable of being used as a one step process.
A few examples of compounds are – Meguiar’s Ultimate Compound, Scholl Concepts S3 Gold, Optimum Hyper Compound, Menzerna FG400, Carpro Fixer, 3M Fast Cut.

Polishes – Polishes are available in several abrasive grades from medium to light. They work on the same principle as compounds but the size of the abrasive particles is smaller and hence polishes have a lower cut than compounds. Medium cut polishes are used to permanently correct mild to moderate scratches, swirls and etchings while finishing polishes are used as a secondary step after using a compound to remove the haze or marring caused by the compound. Finishing polishes are also used to create a high gloss surface that can then be protected by a wax or a sealant and they have a very fine micro abrasive which is not capable of correcting any paint defects on it's own.
A few examples of medium cut polishes are - Optimum Hyper Polish, Optimum Polish II, Scholl Concepts S17, Menzerna PF2400.
A few examples of finishing polishes are - Meguiar's Ultimate Polish, Optimum Final Finish Polish, Scholl Concepts S40, Menzerna SF4500.

All in Ones (AIO) – AIOs as the name suggests are All in One polishes that allow you to polish your car in one step. Some AIOs are non-abrasive while others have varying proportions of micro abrasives. A typical AIO will clean the paint using chemical cleansers, polish it using micro abrasives, have a few fillers of finishing oils and leave a layer of protection behind that may be in the form of a wax or a sealant. While AIOs are sometimes used by professional detailers who want to detail a lot of cars where time is of the essence, these are also used when one has already corrected the paint previously but the paint needs a thorough cleansing before the application of a fresh layer of protection. The durability of protection offered by AIOs varies across brands and some barely last a week while others offer good durability for a couple of months.
Examples of non-abrasive AIOs - Klasse AIO, Zaino AIO, Werkstat Prime
Examples of abrasive AIOs - Optimum Poli-Seal, Optimum GPS, Meguiar's Paint Reconditioning Cream, Scholl Concepts A15, Duragloss 501, Bilt Hamber Cleanser Polish, Dodo Juice Need For Speed, Auto Finesse Tripple, Werkstat Prime Strong

Pre-Wax Cleaners - Pre-Wax cleaners are used to clean the paint prior to applying a fresh layer of wax or sealant and where no paint correction is desired. Most of them chemically clean the paint and leave some finishing oils that add to the gloss when topped up by a wax. When using a sealant, you will need to do a wipe down using IPA or a cleaner like Carpro Eraser or Bilt Hamber Cleanser Fluid. This is because Sealants typically bond well to bare paint while waxes are less finicky. Some pre-wax cleaners may have very fine micro abrasives added to aid the chemical cleaners.
Examples of non-abrasive paint cleaners - Dodo Juice Lime Prime Lite, AutoGlym HD Paintwork Cleanser, Sonus Paintworks Cleanser, Victoria wax Lite Cleanse
Examples of abrasive paint cleaners - Dodo Juice Lime Prime, Dodo Juice Supernatural Micro Prime, R222 Gloss Enhancing Paintwork Cleanser, Auto Finesse Tough Prep

Filler Heavy Polishes – These come in handy when you are working by hand. Autoglym Super Resin Polish is almost the first choice and the most recommended filler heavy polish worldwide. It gently cleans the paint, has very fine micro abrasive, fills in most minor imperfections and leaves a layer of acrylic protection behind that is compatible with most sealants and waxes.


Popular brands of Polishes

Scholl Concepts

For more than 40 years, SCHOLL Concepts, located in Remseck Germany, manufactures holistic, innovative car care and car maintenance systems for the automotive repair- and paint industry. The ambition to generate the highest paint finish quality, together with our intense commitment and passion to make things perfect, has earned Scholl Concepts the reputation to be the most innovative, most flexible and most capable supplier for holistic paint finishing solutions within and outside the European Community.
All about Car Polishing-scholl.jpg


Meguiar's

What began a century ago as a simple furniture polish laboratory and plant in the garage of founder Frank Meguiar, Jr., now spans four generations of Meguiar family stewardship. Celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2001, Meguiars, Inc. has become one of the world’s leading surface care products companies, providing highly specialized products for almost every conceivable type of surface. Their M105/M205 polish combination is arguably the first choice of newbie as well as seasoned detailers around the world and is capable of correcting most of the defects on any type of paint.There are of course other brands that offer polishes that are either easier to work with, or dust less, or have shorter or longer work time based on requirement or they finish better. However, M105/M205 is still a very popular and very capable combination.Meguiars offer several compounds and polishes under their Consumer line like Ultimate Compound, Ultimate Polish, SwirlX and ScratchX to help you tackle a wide range of paint defects. Similarly, they offer a wide range of polishes and compound under their professional line for professional detailers and seasoned DIY enthusiasts like M105, M205, Paint Reconditioning Cream, M100 and M101 amongst others.Meguiar's polishes use the SMAT technology and the degree of cut in each polish varies. In the following picture, the cut increases from right to left - M205 being their finest polish and M105 being the most aggressive amongst these.

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Meguiar's products are well distributed in India and reasonably priced.They claim that the bulk of their research and R&D budgets are focused on their Consumer line products aimed at the DIY guy who does not a lot of knowledge on how to detail his car.If you were working with Meg's products, you could pick up:

Ultimate Polish - Their mildest polish, capable of cleaning the paint by hand or a DA polisher and has very minimal cut.
Swirl-X - As the name suggests, designed to tackle minor swirls by hand or a DA.
Scratch-X - More aggressive than Swirl-X and aimed at removing minor scratches.
Utimate Compound - Their most aggressive polish in the consumer line and it is actually a compound.

Menzerna

Menzerna have been making polishes and compounds since 1888 and today they are one of the leading OEM polishing compounds for leading auto manufacturers in Germany and rapidly spreading throughout plants in the rest of the world. Menzerna Polishing Compounds of Germany have set new standards for workability, uniformity, performance, and quality. Why else would Mercedes Benz use Menzerna polishes to perfect the finishes on their brand new vehicles?

All about Car Polishing-menzerna.jpg

All about Car Polishing-menzerna-2.jpg

Optimum

Optimum Polymer Technologies, the manufacturer of Optimum Car Care Products, was founded in Memphis, Tennessee, on July 01, 2001 by Dr. David Ghodoussi. Prior to this, Dr. Ghodoussi worked for over 12 years as an Organic Chemist overseeing research and development focused in polymers and automotive paint formulations. optimum offers conventional liquid compounds and polishes as well as the Hyper twins - Optimum Hyper Compound and Optimum Hyper Polish. Both are available in a spray bottle and are very easy and fun to work with. They also offer an excellent AIO - Optimum Poli-Seal. There is a spray version of Poli-Seal called Optimum GPS (Glaze, Polish, Seal). However, GPS has slightly more cut than Poli-Seal.

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Temporary VS Permanent defect removal


These defects can either be corrected by reducing the severity of the defect and then masking/hiding them using polishes with fillers or lowering the level of the clearcoat by using an aggressive polish. The former is a less aggressive approach as it requires less effort and removes a lesser amount of the clearcoat but the downside is that the defects will reappear in a few months after the fillers are completely washed off. The latter is a more aggressive approach but then the upside is that the defect removal is permanent.

Hand Polishing VS Machine Polishing

You may choose to polish by hand or using a machine buffer. A machine buffer may be a Rotary or a Dual Action polisher. A Rotary is generally considered to be more aggressive and it offers faster correction. A DA on the other hand is considered to be safer in the hands of a newbie but takes longer to correct paint defects. It is however better suited for the application of waxes and sealants using a machine, if you intend to do so.

Polishing by hand is a time consuming activity and requires a lot of elbow grease if the intent is to achieve permanent correction. Compared to machine polishing, the results will be limited to some extent. You can easily polish your car by hand if the intent is to clean the paint prior to the application of waxes and sealants. It is also relatively easy to tackle minor swirls and isolated minor scratches by hand. Here again, you can try to achieve permanent correction using an aggressive polish or you can clean the paint using a paint cleanser / pre-wax cleanser and then try to mask/hide the imperfections using a filler heavy polish or wax/sealant. There are several polishes and waxes that have a varying proportion of fillers in them.

Whether attempting to polish by hand or machine, it is always recommended to start with the least aggressive polish and then gradually move up to more aggressive ones if the desired results are not being achieved. This way, you do not unnecessarily remove more clear coat than required and safeguard your paint against damage from aggressive polishes. You also develop a learning curve when you start with the least aggressive polish and by the time you are using a more aggressive polish, you would have gained a certain amount of experience and honed your technique.

Hand Polishing Recommendations

Hiding the imperfections: Autoglym Super Resin Polish with a German Tri-Foam applicator from Sonus, Lake Country or Zaino. Also works well with Scholl Concepts White Hand Puck . Another good polish is Bilt Hamber Cleanser Polish especially when topped up with Bilt Hamber Auto Balm , which is a filler heavy Sealant. Both of them will mask/fill almost anything when used together; that is capable of hiding without machine correction.

Paint Correction: Meguiar’s Ultimate Compound ,Scholl S3 Gold , Farecla G3 Pro Scratch remover with any of the applicators mentioned above.

Gloss Enhancement / Paint Cleansing: Klasse AIO, Optimum Poli-Seal, Zaino AIO, Meguiar’s Ultimate Polish, Dodo Juice Lime Prime, Prima Amigo with a tri-foam applicator or an Orange Hand Polishing pad.

Last edited by Pedaltothefloor : 25th November 2013 at 19:59.
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Old 25th November 2013, 19:06   #3
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Default Polishing Tools

Polishing by Hand

You may choose from any of the hand polishing applicators to apply the polish of your choice by hand. The usual foam wax applicator does not have any cut and if you are trying to clean or correct your paint by hand, you can benefit from the mild cut offered by a coarse foam. A few examples of Hand polish applicators are:

Tri Foam Applicator This is a two sided applicator, one side is typically coarse to give the polish some cutting ability while the other is soft to apply a wax or a sealant. Color schemes vary across brands but you can easily tell the difference between the type of foam on both sides.

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Hand Cutting / Polishing Pad This is a simple foam polish applicator and is entirely made up of coarse foam so both sides can be used to apply the polish.

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Hand Puck
This is a polishing pad with a gripper on top so that you can hold it easily and apply even pressure over the pad.

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Machine Polishing

Several brands like Chemical Guys, Lake Country, Flexi Pads and Scholl Concepts offer a complete range of foam, wool and hybrid pads for machine polishing. Each brand has it's own scheme of colors and the cut level of the pad changes with the color of the pad. More aggressive pads like Wool, Microfiber and Coarse foam are used for aggressive compounding to remove deep scratches and swirls while soft foam pads are used to apply finishing polish to finish the paintwork to a high gloss.

Example -Chemical Guys Hex Logic foam pads are a popular choice with their Yellow pad being the most aggressive while their Red pad is the finest pad for jeweling.

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As for the machine polishers, there are basically two types - Rotary and Dual Action polishers. I decided to start off with a Rotary polisher and you can follow my adventure here
For those using a DA polisher, please post your experience here or start a new thread. There are also another type of polishing machines that work via forced rotation. Flex is a leading brand in forced rotation Rotaries and DA polishers.

Last edited by Pedaltothefloor : 25th November 2013 at 19:31.
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Old 25th November 2013, 20:10   #4
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Default The proof of the pudding is in the eating

All this talk about polishing is not fun without a review of at least one polish.

One fine day in May 2013 when I did not own a Rotary polisher, I reached the office parking at the end of a long day and to my horror; found that somebody had drawn some abstract art on the car's boot with a sharp object.

Fortunately, a good polish with a decent amount of cut and some fillers and a filler heavy sealant had just arrived from UK.

Very desperate to get the ugly abstract art removed from the boot so:

1. Dusted the boot with Jopasu
2. Cleaned with Meg's APC in 10:1 ratio, sprayed on, waited, wiped with hard MF and then rinsed thoroughly with water and dried.
3. BH Cleanser Polish on polishing side of a Gtechniq Tri Foam Applicator
4. Buffed with BH Large MF Cloth that came with it
5. Very happy with what it did to the color of the paint. I think it has more bite than the Autoglym SRP, maybe equal amount of fillers but has a good sealant in it. In fact BH claims that an LSP after this is optional.
6. Sweating profusely, scratches reduced by at least 75%, correction plus masking both put together.

Before

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After the Polish

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One coat of BH Auto Balm

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BH Cleanser Polish

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Pros:
  • Above average paint cleaning ability by hand
  • Easy to work with, spreads & removes easily
  • Doesn't just hide defects but actually corrects to an extent
  • Has some added fillers and they come in handy when working by hand
  • Excellent gloss
  • Has a small amount of sealant in it so can be easily topped up with any sealant or wax. (However, an IPA wipe down is still a good step to ensure sealant bonding when using a sealant from another brand)
Cons:
  • Not available in India at the moment
  • Designed for use by hand, there is no information if it can be used via a machine

BH Auto Balm

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Pros:
  • Excellent gloss typical to a sealant but also tends to darken the color a bit
  • It has anti corrosive properties so a perfect LSP for stone chip sites
  • Smells delicious if you like the smell of a garage
  • Served in a manly tub. No bling.
  • Works well on Chrome, Aluminum & Alloys too
  • Has fillers to fill minor swirls and scratches
Cons:
  • Probably not the easiest paste sealant to work with. Needs to be applied VERY thin on a damp applicator and removed immediately. If you let it dry for a minute, it's like trying to remove concrete from the paint.
  • Claimed durability is only 2 months, less than their flagship wax - BH Finis Wax
Both the products were sourced directly from Bilt Hamber, UK and shipped via Royal Mail. It is not the default shipping option on their website but it is considerably cheaper than DHL.

Last edited by Pedaltothefloor : 25th November 2013 at 21:39.
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Old 26th November 2013, 16:38   #5
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to Technical Stuff. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 26th November 2013, 20:33   #6
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

What a thread! Take a bow very informative and crazy details included
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Old 26th November 2013, 21:36   #7
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Default

To be honest, I had to read it twice before I could start understanding what's written. But very informative guide indeed. Maybe I'll now actually understand what detailers say they're doing All I knew till date was this :


Last edited by GrammarNazi : 26th November 2013 at 22:04.
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Old 26th November 2013, 22:24   #8
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Great thread pedaltothefloor!! Love the details in the thread. A great learning read. Kudos!!
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Old 27th November 2013, 11:13   #9
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Hi PedalToTheFloor,

Thank you for this wonderful post. I'm your true fan and I have been following your posts on gearheads forum as well. Inspired by you, I have started to develop tremendous interest in car care (if not detailing). I own a 2 months/3800km old silver Honda Amaze and would always wish to keep it glossy. But as a newbie, I have certain doubts/queries; hope to get satisfactory answers from you. Here goes:

1. I usually give the car a shampoo (Sonax gloss concentrate) wash every weekend. But in rainy season, the road to my office is full of mud puddles. By evening, the car gets messy with lot of road grime and mud cakes esply the lower parts of doors and bumpers. Any tip/suggestion to temporarily clean the car with minimal time/effort so that I can follow a routine just before I leave for office?

2. I have Eagle One gel wax which I bought thinking that it is easy to apply. But found out that there is nothing 'easy' about it. Also, since my car is parked outdoors always, I have a feeling that the E1 gel wax is wearing off rather quickly. This has made my life tougher since I have to wax every 3-4 weeks. So I am planning to invest in a better wax with longevity. I don't mind a bit more elbow grease if the wax holds up at least for 1.5 - 2 months. I have zeroed in on Collinite 476 or Finishkare 1000p. Do you have any other suggestions?

3. I always thought that my car is new (2 months) and doesn't need polishing. But after a 1500km long drive, during my recent washing exercise I discovered:
a. A deep scratch like something has rubbed against the paint. It is so deep that I can insert my fingernail in it.
b. A very narrow but deep hole which looks just like the stone chipping pic that you have showed in your post.
Can you please let me know if I can correct it myself (I don't have a DA polisher) or should I take the car to a professional or body shop? If I can DIY it, please suggest a good compound preferrable which is available in India. Also I don't like to spend a fortune on it

4. Which is the best dashboard protectant in your experience which is available in India? I used STP Son of a gun, but surprisingly, I didn't like it so much.

5. Can I use the same STP Son of a Gun spray for tyres as well (walls of the tyres).

6. I usually keep my windshield crystal clear. But when it rains, I observe that with each wiper pass, a light haze/mist appears on the windshield. It lasts only for a second, but still it annoys me. It happens with each wiper pass. Have you had any such experience? Do you have a solution for it?
I use "Formula-1 Glass Cleaner with Rain Repellant" (kinda Rain-x) to clean the windshield as part of my car wash session every week. I also keep a small sprayer of Colins in the car always and use it to clean the windshield when it gets really dirty.

These are all for now. Thanks in advance
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Old 27th November 2013, 12:08   #10
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedaltothefloor View Post
Scratch
I'm thinking of getting my car repainted since it's lost its sheen quite a bit over the last 6 years.

My question is: Is it worthwhile getting a Teflon full-body coating done post the paint job to avoid key scratches made by a bunch of jealous drivers in my building? Or does the solution lie in periodic polishing of the car (as is my current practice)?
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Old 27th November 2013, 12:15   #11
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Superb read and the amount of detail is just amazing. Would be great if you can provide some links to order these in India (online or otherwise).
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Old 27th November 2013, 13:56   #12
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cocooner View Post
I'm thinking of getting my car repainted since it's lost its sheen quite a bit over the last 6 years.

My question is: Is it worthwhile getting a Teflon full-body coating done post the paint job to avoid key scratches made by a bunch of jealous drivers in my building? Or does the solution lie in periodic polishing of the car (as is my current practice)?
Please share a picture of your car with some close up shots to show us any scratches or other paint defects.

There is no such thing as Teflon coating. Dealerships and After Sales Service Centers usually apply a wax and charge you for Teflon coating.

You may not need to repaint the car if there are no major paint defects. A good round of compounding / polishing followed by a good sealant will revive the paintwork and then you can maintain it by periodically cleaning and using a wax or sealant of your choice.
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Old 28th November 2013, 11:18   #13
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Pedaltothe floor,

This is a superb thread. I made a print out and gave it to the guy who usually polishes my cars and he looked at me and said "what?". He did not even know some of the steps or products you have detailed so well here.

Thanks.
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Old 28th November 2013, 11:50   #14
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Pedaltothefloor,

Amazing details and a wealth of information. Way to go! Appreciate the 'eye for detail' too.

How and where does the Opti-coat stand in this spectrum of things?
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Old 28th November 2013, 12:25   #15
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Default Re: All about Car Polishing

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazer2013 View Post
1. I usually give the car a shampoo (Sonax gloss concentrate) wash every weekend. But in rainy season, the road to my office is full of mud puddles. By evening, the car gets messy with lot of road grime and mud cakes esply the lower parts of doors and bumpers. Any tip/suggestion to temporarily clean the car with minimal time/effort so that I can follow a routine just before I leave for office?
If your car is protected by a wax or sealant, let it get dirty during the rainy season till you can find the time to clean it properly. Having said that, invest in two things - A Jopasu Duster and a bottle of Ultima Waterless Wash. Dust the car daily with the Jopasu before leaving for work. Less dust on the car would translate into a lower opportunity for caking. Secondly, UWW when used properly with a decent MF towel can clean a daily driver in 10 minutes. Just spray and gently wipe. These are two of the best investments you will ever make in car care.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazer2013 View Post
2. I have Eagle One gel wax which I bought thinking that it is easy to apply. But found out that there is nothing 'easy' about it. Also, since my car is parked outdoors always, I have a feeling that the E1 gel wax is wearing off rather quickly. This has made my life tougher since I have to wax every 3-4 weeks. So I am planning to invest in a better wax with longevity. I don't mind a bit more elbow grease if the wax holds up at least for 1.5 - 2 months. I have zeroed in on Collinite 476 or Finishkare 1000p. Do you have any other suggestions?
Trash the Eagle One and pick up either C476 or FK1000P - both are hybrid paste sealants and very durable. More suggestions here http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...-sealants.html (All about Car Waxes & Sealants)

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazer2013 View Post
3. I always thought that my car is new (2 months) and doesn't need polishing. But after a 1500km long drive, during my recent washing exercise I discovered:
a. A deep scratch like something has rubbed against the paint. It is so deep that I can insert my fingernail in it.
b. A very narrow but deep hole which looks just like the stone chipping pic that you have showed in your post.
Can you please let me know if I can correct it myself (I don't have a DA polisher) or should I take the car to a professional or body shop? If I can DIY it, please suggest a good compound preferrable which is available in India. Also I don't like to spend a fortune on it
a. If you can insert your fingernail in a scratch, it needs to be filled up (Body shop / wet sanding / Painting)
b. Stone chip sites will rust if not protected. either use an anti corrosive like Bilt Hamber Auto Balm or add some clear coat to it using one of those Dupont Scratch repair pens. Body shop can fix it for you, if you are going there for the scratch anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazer2013 View Post
4. Which is the best dashboard protectant in your experience which is available in India? I used STP Son of a gun, but surprisingly, I didn't like it so much.
Many options - Carpro PERL, Optimum Opti-Bond Tire Gel, Meguiar's Natural Vinyl Dressing, Ultima Interior Guard Plus, Sonax Interior Protector are all good stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazer2013 View Post
5. Can I use the same STP Son of a Gun spray for tyres as well (walls of the tyres).
Now that you have it, might as well finish it by using on the tires. After that, you can use PERL, Opti-Bond or Ultima Trim & Tire Guard Plus. The Ultima products tend to be my first choice as they offer better durability than most.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amazer2013 View Post
6. I usually keep my windshield crystal clear. But when it rains, I observe that with each wiper pass, a light haze/mist appears on the windshield. It lasts only for a second, but still it annoys me. It happens with each wiper pass. Have you had any such experience? Do you have a solution for it?
I use "Formula-1 Glass Cleaner with Rain Repellant" (kinda Rain-x) to clean the windshield as part of my car wash session every week. I also keep a small sprayer of Colins in the car always and use it to clean the windshield when it gets really dirty.
Trash the Colin to begin with and invest in a decent glass cleaner like Sonax, Meguiar's etc. If you do a waterless or rinse less wash even once a week, you will hardly ever need to use a glass cleaner so invest in a good one and it will last you for a long time. For the wipers, did you check if they need to be replaced? You should clean them with a damp cloth at least once a week. I suspect the wiper blades need to be replaced rather than the need for an additional product for the windshield.

Last edited by Pedaltothefloor : 28th November 2013 at 12:38.
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