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Discussion on how to keep your car shining bright and make them heads turn..

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Old 07-25-2010, 02:39 AM   #1
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Absolute noob.

figured this is the right place to ask..

I have sitting in my garage a boring '06 TL in anthracite metallic.
Lately i've been getting the idea to give it a good wash and follow up with a waxing, yet i am at a complete loss as where to begin.

some questions that come to mind:
- keeping in mind a budget that can't get out of hand, what kind of products (and where to buy them) would i need to purchase for an effective job? doesn't need to be spectacular, but a decent looking shine would be great.
- steps? i hear many people talk about claybar etc..

and any other tips would be great.. --> optimal weather condition to do it in etc.

cheers!

ps. what method do you guys use when hand-washing your cars?
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Old 07-25-2010, 10:42 AM   #2
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Two bucket method for hand washing. One to wash the dirt off into, and one for your car soap.
You can buy pretty much anything you need from www.autowerkesexclusive.com
I'd go get some Mothers claybar from Canadian tire or something, it's simple to use:
Just rip one of the bars in half (one of the two packs it comes with is way to much for one car) and kneed it out into a pad. Fold it up and re-kneed the bar after each panel or so, or when you can see it's becoming contaminated enough that you think it might need it.

Then a nice sealant and wax from Autowerkes Exclusive would do you well, like the Blackfire wax/sealant combo, that's what I have.
A polish would be great to, if you apply it after the claybar, but before the sealant and wax.

There's always more you can do, but if you don't want to spend all day on it, claybar/sealant would work well enough. I'm not the greatest expert on all this though, so if anybody wants to correct me, step right in.
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Old 07-25-2010, 12:01 PM   #3
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in case he did not watch the video, make sure you use lubricant when claying, and don't cheap out on it otherwise you risk marring your car.
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Old 07-25-2010, 03:41 PM   #4
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noob question: can you clay, seal, wax outside? in the open...since theres always pollen flying around etc. and wont it get into the the sealant/wax
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Old 07-25-2010, 06:45 PM   #5
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Yes you can do it outside as long as its not too hot out. With the temps we've been having lately, I'd try to wash it after dinner one night and then clay/seal the next am.
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:13 PM   #6
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whats the difference between wax and sealant? Which one do you apply first?
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:31 PM   #7
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I was in the same situation so I went and talked to Ken http://www.autowerkesexclusive.com/
recommend some stuff spent around 80 bought everything I needed forgot tire shine tho
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Old 07-25-2010, 11:58 PM   #8
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whats the difference between wax and sealant? Which one do you apply first?
Waxes are typically in a paste form and are mostly natural ingredients. They tend to look better on darker colours as they are great for increasing depth and wetness. Some nubas will mute metallics, but not all. They can be a little more finicky to work with and typically don't have the durability of the newer sealants but there are exceptions. Sealants on the other hand are synthetic and man made. They are extremely easy to use ( apply, let haze over and wipe off) They are great for lighter solids and metallics as they will make the paint extremely reflective and bright. Two sealants that do look great on darker colours are Gloss it Gloss Finish and Menzerna Powerlock. Both have amazing depth and wetness for sealants. Durability for most sealants will fall into the 3 month area for one coat. Most guys will apply the sealant first to get a durable base layer down and then follow up with a wax.
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Old 07-26-2010, 12:45 AM   #9
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noob q:

i have a black car, so i should claybar and wax or sealant? i've had my car for almost 2 years so i should be doing this stuff?

also, if i use claybar but dont wax or seal it after, im destroying paint?
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Old 07-26-2010, 01:09 AM   #10
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noob q:

i have a black car, so i should claybar and wax or sealant? i've had my car for almost 2 years so i should be doing this stuff?

also, if i use claybar but dont wax or seal it after, im destroying paint?
you should clay one a year or twice a year. depending on if you garage your car, daily driver, etc. polish is a good idea if you have swirl marks.

you won't destroy your paint if you don't use sealant and wax, but it'll look the same and you'll strip off any residual protection. if you're gonna spend the time to clay, might as well use sealant and wax. it'll make your car look that much better. especially on a black car.
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Old 07-26-2010, 06:09 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackmeister View Post
noob q:

i have a black car, so i should claybar and wax or sealant? i've had my car for almost 2 years so i should be doing this stuff?

also, if i use claybar but dont wax or seal it after, im destroying paint?
As Stealthfighter said, clay at least once or twice a year. If your car is black, I would suggest Menz Powerlock as its a sealant and is dead easy to use. It also looks great on black. Two coats should easily give you 4 months of protection.
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Old 07-26-2010, 07:36 AM   #12
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Cool, will definately try out the Powerlock. Any other recommended products for a black car?
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Old 07-26-2010, 09:02 PM   #13
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CG Wet Mirror Finish is an awesome glaze. Apply it before your sealant to help mask fine lines and swirls and add a lot of wetness to the paint. It has no protective qualities so must be topped with a wax or sealant.
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Old 07-27-2010, 02:26 AM   #14
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CG Wet Mirror Finish is an awesome glaze. Apply it before your sealant to help mask fine lines and swirls and add a lot of wetness to the paint. It has no protective qualities so must be topped with a wax or sealant.
how does it compare to poorboys black hole? if blackfire has a glaze, how does that compare?
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Old 07-27-2010, 12:23 PM   #15
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how does the ez-creme glaze compare to the wet mirror finish for filling in swirls?
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Old 07-27-2010, 01:27 PM   #16
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So sealants and waxes serves the same purpose? Why is it neccessary to do both then?

I have a dark grey car (the toyota "Graphite Grey Pearl"), would Menz Powerlock give it a reflective wetness?

Also my paint isn't in the greatest condition, running my finger over the paint feels rough, I have access to a polisher, what polish should I use to remove swirls and hopefully restore the paint?

TIA!!!
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Old 08-02-2010, 03:44 AM   #17
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As Stealthfighter said, clay at least once or twice a year. If your car is black, I would suggest Menz Powerlock as its a sealant and is dead easy to use. It also looks great on black. Two coats should easily give you 4 months of protection.
thanks,

theres also another thing i wanted to ask. for some reason i got a rock chip on the hood of my car from driving behind a dumptruck, so i can physically see two peppercorn size white marks on my black car. should i be claying, then adding touch up paint before i proceed to do the sealant? i guess i should be doing this after i clean my car, dry it, and park it back in garage?

i dont plan on polishing it myself because i dont have tools and i dont trust myself with tools. maybe give it another year or two and i'll bring it to someone professional to get it all fixed up.
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Old 08-02-2010, 07:16 AM   #18
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As for the glazes, I recently tested five on a black vehicle we had in the shop. Listed in order of how well they masked the scratches

1. CG Wet Mirror
2. CG EZ Creme Glaze and PB Black Hole
3. Detail Shoppe Wet Glaze 2.0
4. Blackfire Gloss Enhancing Polish

If the paint is in really good shape and you are just looking to add more depth and wetness than the Detail Shoppe would be my choice. This product is awesome in that you can put it on top of a wax or a sealant if you just want to add some wetness and depth before showing it without any issues. It won't last more than a week or so but will make your car look great for the show.
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Old 08-02-2010, 07:19 AM   #19
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thanks,

theres also another thing i wanted to ask. for some reason i got a rock chip on the hood of my car from driving behind a dumptruck, so i can physically see two peppercorn size white marks on my black car. should i be claying, then adding touch up paint before i proceed to do the sealant? i guess i should be doing this after i clean my car, dry it, and park it back in garage?

i dont plan on polishing it myself because i dont have tools and i dont trust myself with tools. maybe give it another year or two and i'll bring it to someone professional to get it all fixed up.
You can touch up the paint after claying and sealing as the solvents in the paint will eat through the sealant allowing it to bond to the surface or touch up the paint first and give it a week or so to cure before claying and sealing.

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