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Old 06-11-2011, 09:07 PM   #1
JoeB820
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Member#: 152224
Join Date: Jun 2007
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: State College/ Altoona Pa
Vehicle:
2007 Impreza 2.5i
Urban Grey Metallic

Default Beginner Detailing Questions

So I have been washing, waxing etc. for quite a while now but I now want to get into more detail with my car (Clay bar, polish, etc.) so I have a couple questions.

First off, I'm going to order Menzerna Intensive Polish... From what I read on the website if I apply it by hand it will only enhance gloss but will not remove swirls or scratches. for this a machine polisher is required.
What is the big difference between the $100+ polishers online vs. the cheaper ones I can find at a hardware store for under $50? Will any machine polisher do a better job than doing it by hand?

Another question is Interior,
My interior isn't a major issue however, it does have some spots that i want to take care of.
What do you guys like to use? Ive heard of people using steam and others that just use cleaning products.
I have Blitz 1z APC but what other options do I have for cleaning the interior especially the seats/carpet?

As far as the exterior I think I have the order down:
Wash/shampoo
Clay
Polish
Wax

Any input is appreciated. Thank you!
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:30 PM   #2
BlazeRex
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Massachusetts
Vehicle:
02 WRX 05 LGT
Slow Automatics

Default

You don't need a machine, Ive done a better job without one than my buddies can do with a professional buffer.

Other than that as long as the paints in good shape, clay, then poliosh, then wax will work well.
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Old 06-12-2011, 08:16 AM   #3
awns729
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Member#: 42025
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: ROCKLAND county, NY
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeB820 View Post
So I have been washing, waxing etc. for quite a while now but I now want to get into more detail with my car (Clay bar, polish, etc.) so I have a couple questions.

First off, I'm going to order Menzerna Intensive Polish... From what I read on the website if I apply it by hand it will only enhance gloss but will not remove swirls or scratches. for this a machine polisher is required.
What is the big difference between the $100+ polishers online vs. the cheaper ones I can find at a hardware store for under $50? Will any machine polisher do a better job than doing it by hand?

Another question is Interior,
My interior isn't a major issue however, it does have some spots that i want to take care of.
What do you guys like to use? Ive heard of people using steam and others that just use cleaning products.
I have Blitz 1z APC but what other options do I have for cleaning the interior especially the seats/carpet?

As far as the exterior I think I have the order down:
Wash/shampoo
Clay
Polish
Wax

Any input is appreciated. Thank you!
I have polished by hand a few times with Poorboy's products. Generally, polishes come in a few forms. They can work mechanically or chemically. Paint cleaners are polishes that work chemically, removing water/bird spots and other slight problems in the paint. For very minor issues, these are fine. Paint correcting polishes generally also have a mechanical function whereby they abrade the paint, evening out the clearcoat.

Meguiars Ultimate Compound (SwirlX, ScratcX also) [not sure if these are chemical and mechanical or just chemical], for example, can be applied by hand or by DA Polishers. These with plenty of elbow grease can remove swirls and scratches, but using them with a Porter Cable or other polisher is more effective at doing that.

Polishing by hand won't lead to a swirl free finish if you have swirls and scratches on your paint. Trust me. I've done it. Doing it by hand will improve some swirls and scratches, but it takes a long time. It's going to be spending way more time for the same results as with a polisher. Using a DA Polisher or Rotary (can be risky if its your first time) polisher will. The difference between $100 polishes and $20-50 in store polishers is quality and speed. The $100 spin faster, and can generate some heat (especially rotary polishers). This helps in paint correction.

The $20-50 polishers from autozone are generally better for applying a coating of wax. I'm not sure how much they can help wiht paint correction. I've never used one, but I've heard they don't help at all or sometimes help a little bit. I can't imagine them being worse than working by hand.

Ultimately, I'd say if you want to remove medium or intensive swirls and scratches that are all over your paint, you'd want a polisher or to get a professional to polish it (if they're severe or you don't want to do it yourself).

So, least effective to most effective method for paint correction:

By hand

Cheap polisher
-both of the above methods allow for different pad and polish combos for more or less aggressive correction
$100 Polisher (Porter cable)
-Plenty of pad and polish combos (meguiars 105/205 professional polish is common with different pads for more or less intensive polishing). This method allows for the most variation in paint correction because there are so many pads and polishes available.

Last edited by awns729; 06-12-2011 at 08:24 AM.
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Old 06-12-2011, 09:21 AM   #4
bluemax189
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Join Date: Jan 2007
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2011 WRX
20g

Default

i spent all day helping my friend detail his red 99 a4. we polished by hand and were just able to get the dullness from the clearcoat out. There are still a ton of swirl marks in the paint that annoy me. I used Autoglym Super resin. Doing the entire process by hand makes your arms feel like jello. it got to the point it hurt to pick up the water bottle to take a drink. needless to say it was the longest ive ever spent detailing a car and has convinced me to get a DA.
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