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 Post subject: Car Detailing tips
Posted: Thu Sep 01, 2005 10:40 pm 
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Hi everyone

My desire to share with you, some of my automotive detailing/refinishing knowledge is able to become a reality thanks to this site

Here is the first of many hints and tips, everyone feel free to chime in with any tips you have, there is no way I could know everything
My knowledge comes from years of discussion with america's and europe's best professional detailers and the owner/proprietor of small-medium sized companies who manufacturer today's cutting edge technology products and my own research and development of the latest products from USA, Germany and other parts of Europe.



Tip #1

Washing & drying

To reduce or eliminate wash induced marring/swirl marks etc, use three buckets
Fill one with your chosen body shampoo/conditioner using at least two litres of purified or rain water and very warm tap water
The second with warm tap water and use the third for washing your wheels
Keep this one only for this purpose

Warm water acts as a wettening agent and sure is handy on cold mornings
Today's shampoo's act as conditioners as well and some even add a protective layer or polymer sealant.

Do a really good pre wash rinse on your wheels and arches(use a high pressure gun if you have it)
Keep it moving when doing wheel arches, you can strip the black protective coating off if you hold in one spot for long enough.

Use a sea sponge, microfibre or sheepskin wash mitt to shampoo your wheels, dunking into warm water bucket to quickly clean it a couple times with each wheel

Don't wet the body before doing wheels, paint is porous and it will open, absorb the water and then if not dried, will leave water spots which can etch into paintwork and this requires machine buffing in most cases to get out.

Hose off the shampoo from the wheels and then do pre wash rinse of body
Use vertical and horizontal angles with the gun or hose, do not aim straight at the paint as this can cause impact scratches or marks

If your door jambs are greasy/dirty, spray a paint safe degreaser or citrus cleaner (lanotec citra force comes to mind) in them and spray high pressure to clean, remember to do short sharp sprays, you don't want your interior to be saturated.

You can bathe your car in shampoo solution/suds by soaking your wash mitt/sponge in shampoo and then use low pressure and aim it at the mitt which should be vertical to nearest panel
Do this a couple times and then there is no need to use a foaming gun or shampoo tank of karcher etc which always seems to clog up even when I diluted the product.

To remove bugs, soak the affected areas with low pressure water for a few moments and leave to soak in.
Then finish off pre wash rinse with a high pressure blast from side on

Dunk the mitt/sponge in shampoo bucket and apply a 6 inch line of shampoo to a microfibre mitt (if using that)
Then start washing the roof first, followed by front windscreen,bonnet, rear windscreen and then boot
To prevent marring paint, clean the mitt/sponge in bucket of water after each panel or every second if car is reasonably clean
You may need to apply shampoo to the mitt a few times before it lathers up
They do not create lathery suds like a conventional sponge but are far safer

After the boot, do the left or right side of the car and then the opposite and front bumper
Make sure you wash in the shade, water spots are a higher risk in the sun

Once finished washing, rinse off the shampoo using a hose with no nozzle or trigger gun attached. Rinse the body in the same fashion as washing
Roof-fr screen-bonnet, rear screen,boot etc
Doing it this way allows you to use less water to remove shampoo and leaves less water on the surface which saves drying time
A hose with trigger gun or a pressure gun on high or low pressure creates more suds and leaves thousands of water beads sitting on the surface

With this completed, it's time to dry
When using a chamois, clean after each use as it will absorb more water and to make new ones thirstier, blast them with high pressure for a few minutes to take the slick feeling out of them.

Keep it flat and fully open and glide over all panels
Dry the windows first as this stops water spots, even bigger problem on glass
Then do the panels in same process as washing

Always dry your door jambs, engine bay, fuel filler area as well ,using a separate chamois if you have one
This keeps everything clean, dry and stops rust in it's tracks

You can also use microfibre chamois which you can wring out or in my opinion, for best results -an ultra microfibre waffle weave 60 x 90cm drying towel
Some of these have silk binding and can dry most cars by itself and will outlast a chamois by years

You fold twice or more if you wish and simply wipe in one direction, each panel
I fold twice and hold one corner and wipe from left to right
When that section gets pretty damp, I re fold to a dry section and can do this many times due to it's size

I hate wringing chamois out
Best of all these drying towels don't leave lines or streaks and are safer for your paint, they are almost impossible to scratch your paint and will not reduce slickness or strip your wax or sealant protective coatings

The smoother your paint is, the easier they will dry the paint

To add slickness and top up your protectants, use a quick detail spray after each wash
Make sure to use one that actually adds protection, not just removes finger prints and dust

Happy washing.
More tips tomorrow

Matty

 

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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 12:05 am 
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hey man those are some awesome tips....no wonder why im not happy everytime i wash my car. cant wait for tomorrows instalment
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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 12:21 am 
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No worries mate, I enjoy doing this, it's my goal to change people's belief that it's really hard to detail cars. It does take some time but is theraputic and rewarding when you stop at the lights alongside the same model car and there's is clean but dull and yours is sparkling and better than new

 

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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 10:59 am 
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Great post matt, looking forward to seeing some more. Thoroughly enjoyed 'talking detail' the other day.

 

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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 12:50 pm 
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Ride: falcon au series 2

Location: sydney
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that's great stuff mate im deffinately printing that page off lol

 

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 Post subject: Overpolishing your paint
Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 9:12 pm 
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Tip #2 - Don't always need to polish

For more years than I can remember, whenever a new mark, scratch or other blemish showed up on someone's car, they got out the silicone enriched polish to remove them

This tradition should now be ended

Overpolishing your paint, especially clearcoated finishes is the biggest mistake people make
I know a friend of mine who has a red ED XR8 and the paint in some sections is so thin you can almost see the primer and other sections are only primer.

He polished it very regularly
Six years ago I was told by a supposed professional detailer to polish in winter and wax in summer
Now yes in theory this is ok but back then and even further back, most polishes were pretty aggressive.

The best method is to clean the paint and then restore and enhance it and apply multiple layers of protectant
By following the wash regime I have posted above, the chance of adding swirl marks etc will be seriously reduced

However if you find some new blemishes, try a paint cleanser first
There are many on the market and most do a really good job of removing bug residue, blemishes, some swirl marks and enhancing shine again.
These do not remove any paint and can be used heaps of times
If that doesn't quite do the job, move up to a non abrasive paint enhancing product such as Clearkote Vanilla moose or Klasse ALL in One,
Vanilla moose is an oxidation remover for any surface plus a paint hand glaze like no other which removes any final swirl marks, very minor scratches and restores a dull or hazy paint job
All in one is a cleaner-polish-sealant that prepares paintwork for the Klasse Sealant Glaze acrylic sealant
The polish is extremely fine

Vanilla moose can be used by machine or hand on paint, glass, plastics, vinyl and even tyres, all in one on most surfaces including household ones by hand only.

Once the paint is cleansed, re seal with a paint protectant
Naked paint is asking for trouble nowdays

If any of the above products don't help, then find a wet look soft polish that takes the minimum amount of paint off and is solvent and VOC (organic compounds) free
My favourite is Dinitrol 7020, made in sweden
By hand or machine it is outstanding.

Every 4 to 12 months depending on where you drive and how many coats of sealant you have on, you should re seal the paint.
One coat is good for 3-4 months at best, three to seven will give 12 - 15 months but you should still use a QD after washing


Best regime - wash weekly unless the car is garaged and covered by carcoon or sheeting etc
Use QD spray afterwards, cleanse paint when necessary, clay when the paint becomes a little on the rough side or you can see little red dots in the paint.

Handy hint - rub your clean, dry palm lightly over some panels, if it makes any noise or a sound similar to air escaping from a punctured tyre, it's contaminated and should be clayed

Happy motoring

 

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Sept 5 - ressurecting the AU XR Falcon and back in the car scene

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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 9:53 pm 
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Dude this is awesome stuff your writing up here! :) Keep up the good work mate. LOL catch ya tommorrow :D

 

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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 10:46 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Ride: 98 AU1 Tickford XR6 VCT - galaxy

Location: Virginia
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Dude, have you got power real close to where your car is parked at home - I might bring the rotary.

 

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Sept 5 - ressurecting the AU XR Falcon and back in the car scene

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Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 10:49 pm 
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Ride: BF MKII XR6 Turbo

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Yeah i do dude, umm unfortunatey no room in the shed for my car but thiers a power plug in thier that works :D LOL spraying off those damn bugs soon at Jumbos so i will get the XR looking half decent for ya atleast. :D Oh btw check out my thread in the off topics section about the possible Cruise route :)

 

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 Post subject: Leather - finished or not
Posted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 10:50 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Ride: 98 AU1 Tickford XR6 VCT - galaxy

Location: Virginia
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Most modern automotive leather is now clearcoated (FINISHED) to protect it from damage due to the lack of tender loving care

Conventional oil based cleaners and hide food treatments will not be able to penetrate the leather and clean,nourish and protect it
The thickness of the clearcoat depends on the brand of car, the more expensive cars tend to have more

To find out if your leather is unfinished or clearcoated, do this simple test
Put a few large drops of water onto the surface
If it rolls off and wipes off, leaving the surface the same as before, it's clearcoated
Only when water darkens the leather is it unfinished

New Mazda 6 luxury sport cars have finished leather
Contrary to popular belief, saddle soap is not good for cleaning automotive leather


These are my favourite leather products in no order
This is not meant as spam

Leatherique
Effax
Leather Master
1Z leather care
Four Star
Pinnacle

 

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Sept 5 - ressurecting the AU XR Falcon and back in the car scene

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 Post subject: Foam pads
Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 11:04 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Ride: 98 AU1 Tickford XR6 VCT - galaxy

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When your foam pads get pretty flat and real dirty and even machine washing doesn't clean them up and restore them, try this

Fill any plastic container with 50 ml of shampoo and enough water to cover the pad.
Leave to soak for about an hour or more and then remove pad and empty container

Fill container with water and soak pad some more
Then remove pad and wring out all the water

Your foam pads should now be really clean and back to their original shape.


Handy Hints - Glass

For the smoothest glass around, clay all the windows inside and out using an ultra fine or regular grade detailing clay bar and a good Quik detail spray or dedicated clay lubricant

Then use a glass polish by hand (microfibre app pad or foam pad) or machine buffer to deep clean it
If you want to get rid of any swirl marks or scratches, a paint polish/swirl mark remover such as Menzerna Intensive polish or Final Polish I or II will do so

To enhance, I have used clearkote vanilla moose and Klasse All in one with great success and even P21 polishing soap

To make the glass stone chip and bird crap resistant, Klasse Sealant Glaze can be multi layered with one coat applied and then removed 4 to 24 hours later and a new coat applied several hours later or 24 hours for best results.
It is an acrylic paint protectant that will last up to 12 months and can also be used on plastic, vinyl etc


Some glass polishes leave dusty residue or make rubber/plastic trim turn white
To prevent this I have sourced and now use these

Once you have applied the amount of layers you want, after each wash use a quik detail spray that leaves a thin protective coating which tops up the level of your sealants

SONUS Glass & Chrome Polish
P21s polishing soap
Menzerna
Clearkote Quik shine
DP final gloss booster
DP spray sealant

 

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June 9 - Sept 3 - in boise idaho USA
Sept 5 - ressurecting the AU XR Falcon and back in the car scene

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Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 11:08 pm 
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Power: 197 rwkw

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Aurora 98 are you a fan of Rain X?

I use that on glass inside and out. Works like a charm.

 

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Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 11:14 pm 
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Yeah i use Meguires Glass cleaner works pretty good but its harsh on those black plastic rubber bits around the window :shock:

 

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Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 11:46 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Ride: 98 AU1 Tickford XR6 VCT - galaxy

Location: Virginia
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Timmeh - not really
It does help no doubt about that but I'd prefer to stick with acrylic sealant
I've got quite a few layers of it on there

Super polymer sealant or wax can be added over the top of that

PPG aquapel is another new product that claims to protect glass.
Glass is porous so it's worthwhile protecting it.

 

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June 9 - Sept 3 - in boise idaho USA
Sept 5 - ressurecting the AU XR Falcon and back in the car scene

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Posted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 11:47 pm 
Getting Side Ways
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Age: 44

Posts: 894

Joined: 7th Nov 2004

Gallery: 3 images

Ride: 98 AU1 Tickford XR6 VCT - galaxy

Location: Virginia
SA, Australia

XR fan - I will give you a demo with the new waffle weave glass towels - you won't believe how quick you can do your glass

 

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Sept 5 - ressurecting the AU XR Falcon and back in the car scene

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