Whats in your detailing arsenal?

Discussion in 'Detailing Topic' started by Huyzel, Nov 22, 2009.

  1. Huyzel

    Huyzel Member

    Since the detailing thread looks lonely I am going to start one that may help other members in detailing their cars. As we know there is your standard wash and wax which is a good step, but it goes beyond that to some of us. To get your paint as slick as glass and achieve the shine generally requires more then just a good wash and a coat of wax. In this thread please share what you use when you detail the exterior and interior of your car. Any tips as to special tools, products and methods is very helpful. Before and after show off pictures is a plus. Nastyz28.com has always been a good source for new ideas and a site where you can learn new concepts. Why spend time and Google things when its all in house right? With that said lets get the ball rollin. :crazy:
  2. Huyzel

    Huyzel Member

    Alright, to get this started I am going to list the basic tools and products that I currently use that is affordable and can be obtained from your local automotive stores and online.

    Dewalt DW849 buffer
    3M Perfect-it 3000 kit (fine cut compound, swirl remover, and I think ultra fine swirl remover)
    3M Perfect-t rubbing compound
    3m-Performance Finsih
    Meguiars Gold Class paste wax and their new NXT 2.0 paste wax
    Clay Magic Blue Clay Bar and spray
    Meguiars quick detail
    Steel wool
    S100 detailing spray detailer + wax
    Yamaha Silicone spray
    And some other stuff which I will cover.. I know some of the stuff I stated do the same but these are just options you can choose from.

    Lets start off with the exterior...

    A: Wash.
    I use Dawn soap, quality was mit (very important) and the two bucket method when I was my car. You might be wondering what is the two bucket method, well one bucket is for the lower portion of your car including the wheels and the other bucket is for the top portion. This makes sense because you generally have more dirt at the bottom and you don't want to carry any contamination to the top. I've seen companies sell a plastic guard that sits in the bottom of your wash bucket to keep dirt at the bottom which prevents you from stirring it back into the water for like 15 bucks. Save your money and go get a strainer/colander from the kitchen that have holes big enough for dirt to go through and place it at the bottom of the bucket (Dont let the wifey know...). Do not wash in circular motion, this creats swirl marks. Squeegee method is the one to use, side to side or up and down. OKOK so lets move on.. wash the car and rinse it off well in a cool environment away from direct sunlight.

    B: Drying your car.
    I dry mine using microfiber towels because they trap any dirt that still remain after the wash. DO NOT USE OLD TOWELS OR SHIRTS.. i've seen this before.. use that on your dog.. not on your car. Once again use the squeegee method.

    C: Inspection time
    Look at your paint.. take the time and feel it and see if it is smooth or rough. If you haven't done a detail job then you will be able to feel a grit/dirty rough surface. Your paint should be as smooth as glass. Take masking tape and put them over scratches that are major. Anything through the clear coat requires different attention. If you need to touch up rock chips then go to the auto paint store if you have one and have them match up the paint in a touch up container. If you dont have a automotive paint store then you can make due with over the counter touch up paint from your automotive store. Check the rubber moldings, under the hood, door jams, wheel well, trunk area, and gas cap area aswell. Make note of what you need to do and areas that need attention. If your clear coat is messed up and peeling then theres no point in waxing or detailing... just get a paint job..(duh..) moving on..

    D: Cleaning the surface
    Washing isnt enough.. there is still crap embedded into the paint... For that we need to use a clay bar. Clay Magic is the product I use. Meguiars have their clay bar aswell but clay magic seems to do a better job. You use the clay bar with detail spary and run it across the surface until it isnt rough anymore. Work in small sections and follow the directions on the package.

    E: Scratch removal/ buffing
    There are some fine scratches in the clear that cant be removed with rubbing compound. For this I use 2000 grit wet sand paper. Just tear off a little piece 1X1 inch and use plenty of water when you wet sand. You want to sand in a criss cross fashion. This will remove clear coat so dont go crazy with it. You only do this for a few seconds to smooth out the scratch. Rubbing compound will take care of the haze/dull look after you wet sanded the area. When you use rubbing compound you can do it by hand or with a buffer. Dont waste your money on a cheap orbital buffer.. this is great for waxing but to get professional results you need a rotary type buffer or dual action. I use a Dewalt dw849 buffer. It can spin from 1000 rpm to over 3000 I think. Practice and taking it slow is key. However, you do not want the thing going 3000 rpm and going slow.. keep the buffer moving and controlled. Keeping it in one spot or doing it for too long will take off the clear coat or burn the paint. The highest I go on mine is about 1800... for beginners 1200 works just fine. I use 3m rubbing compound products to take out oxidations and swirls. They also make swirl remover aswell which is a really really fine cut compound. This enables you to buff the surface to a high gloss.

    F: Polish
    Polish the surface a optional step but I find worth the time doing. 3M sells a glaze compound that leaves a wet look which is awesome on a black car.

    G: Wax
    I just paste wax, I dont like the liquid stuff because it never yielded a finsih that I like. They even sell wash and wax stuff in one which sucks.. waste of money.. I like the Gold Class and NXT 2.0 Paste from Meguiars. Tip is to leave the can in the sun or warm area. Apply a thin layer by hand. You can use a applicator or your hand. Applying a thick layer to cut corners or rushing makes you spend more time trying to remove the excess wax. I generally apply two layers of wax. It is key to remove all contamination before you wax because the was seals the surface.

    This is just a general outline. Everyones input can get this thread a bit more technical. A few tips that I recommend is taping areas you do not want to wax/buff like plastics/rubber areas. Work in small sections instead of the whole car. This allows you to concentrate on that particular area and make it perfect. If your able to remove headlights and tail lights that makes the job easier because rubbing compound can get into the cracks and leave a crust. Taking off rubber door seals allows you to clean under them. You would be very surprise to see how much dirt and even mold is under there. Detail spray from S100 is great on rubber parts, it cleans them and does not leave that shinney flim which I dont like. Silicone spray used on the under carriage makes them look new and conditions plastic parts. You can also spray it under the hood to make it look nice and new. I use a silicone spray made by Yamaha for their motorcycles and four wheelers. So have fun with it.. if you have questions post em up and Ill answer them or other members can too. I have to get back to work now.. and dont flame me if I am leaving stuff out or didnt word some things right.. I am sure I have.... :rolleyes:
  3. pokey_159

    pokey_159 Veteran Member

    Nov 17, 2009
    St.Louis, MO
    just printed it out and will use..lol i do basically the same thing but never thought about writing it down..thanks for the dirty work!
  4. Mark80Z28

    Mark80Z28 Veteran Member

    Aug 16, 2006
    If you use Dawn to wash your car, you'd better be prepared to wax it afterwards every time. Dish soap will strip wax off! Most pros will discourage anyone from using it- you might want to use car wash soap instead. Also, the 2 bucket method is technically different than you described. One bucket is for the car wash and water (the suds), the other for rinse water. Dip your mitt in the soap bucket, wash a section, dip the mitt in the rinse bucket to get all of the dirt off, dip back in the soap bucket, wash, repeat! :)
  5. Huyzel

    Huyzel Member

    Doing it your way will decrease the contamination.. you will still have dirt in the mit but minimize the contamination.
  6. dynobrat

    dynobrat Veteran Member

    May 28, 2009
    Ontario, Canada
    i just use water no need for soap and if there is even a teardrop of soap is too much :)
  7. bobpon

    bobpon Veteran Member

    Oct 16, 2006
    New Orleans,La.
    Gold class wash, Meguiars clay bar, Nxt paste wax. Also nxt spray to get dust off.

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