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Thread: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

          
  1. #1
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    M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Hello,

    I'm deciding to buy another wax or sealant for my black Mercedes. So far I’ve used Gold Class liquid wax and M16. I can’t say that I’m not satisfied whit these two, but I believe I can achieve better look. In fact, it would be better to post a photo of what I’m trying to achieve:


    Now, I’m stuck between:
    -M26 Hi-tech yellow wax and
    -M21 2.0 Synthetic sealant

    I know that these are two very different product (I’ve read a lot of threads about sealant vs. wax theme), I just wanted to know which of these two products could probably make the same effect as on the photo.

    Lasting is not my priority, since I detail my car regularly.
    I’m only looking only for final step(s), since the paint condition is perfect! I have done claying, cleaning (UC, SX) and polishing (M07) process. Thanks for help.

  2. #2
    Registered Member Marc08EX's Avatar
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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Have you looked into Meguiar's Ultimate Wax yet? I love this wax on black paints! It really makes the paint dark, rich and pop.
    2011 Car Crazy Showcase SEMA Team

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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    + 1

    what Marc said above: Ultimate Wax - long protection, adding depth and gloss to paint. I like paste version slightly better than liquid, JMO.

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    Registered Member Marc08EX's Avatar
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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    ^^ I agree with Greg. I like the paste better than the liquid version.
    2011 Car Crazy Showcase SEMA Team

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    Administrator Michael Stoops's Avatar
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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    It must be said that wax alone is not how you achieve a true mirror finish. If you have paint with a fair amount of swirls, even very light swirls, plus it has some orange peel (typical of factory paint from virtually any brand) and all you do is wax it, you won't come close to achieving maximum results. Not sure where you found that image you posted, but if that car was expertly machine polished first to remove any and all defects, then it likely looked incredibly deep and glossy before any wax was even applied. Prep is everything in this game - the wax is just the final protective coat that can give some subtle differences in overall appearance, but it's not the main contributor to that ultimate gloss and reflectivity.
    Michael Stoops
    Internet Technical Specialist | Meguiar's Inc.
    (800) 854-8073 xt 3875
    mstoops@meguiars.com

    Remember, this hobby is supposed to be your therapy, not the reason you need therapy.

    Please post technical questions directly to the forum rather than emailing or PM-ing me. You
    will get a faster response on the forum, and your question could help someone else, too!


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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Thank you! Now I got it.
    The car is in excellent condition, it has no swirls. The first thing that should be done, is polishing off that factory orange peel. This is why I can’t get that kind of mirror effect.
    I’m not sure what’s the process – is it the same like for removing swirls? Due to very hard Mercedes paint I think I’ll use DA + Ultimate compound + SB 2.0 yellow polishing pad.

  7. #7
    Administrator Michael Stoops's Avatar
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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Quote Originally Posted by Black_MB View Post
    Thank you! Now I got it.
    The car is in excellent condition, it has no swirls. The first thing that should be done, is polishing off that factory orange peel. This is why I can’t get that kind of mirror effect.
    I’m not sure what’s the process – is it the same like for removing swirls? Due to very hard Mercedes paint I think I’ll use DA + Ultimate compound + SB 2.0 yellow polishing pad.
    Well, you may as well give up on the orange peel right now. You can not polish it out. It is texture in the paint that comes from the painting process itself. Swirls and scratches follow the contours of the orange peel, and so do buffing and polishing pads, even wool pads on rotary buffers. The ONLY way to remove orange peel is to wet sand it, and then rotary compound out the sanding marks. This is an extremely advanced process that requires a huge level of skill to accomplish to maximum result. Not only do you need to understand all the intricacies of wet sanding, but you need to be highly proficient in rotary buffing and you absolutely want to have a paint thickness gauge on hand for the entire process.

    The biggest problem, however, is that even if you are skilled at all of the above, factory applied paint generally does not provide enough film thickness to let you remove orange peel safely. The issue arises from the fact that factory clear coat is, on average, only about 2 mils thick (roughly 50 microns) and it's the clear that contains the UV inhibitors that protect the color coat beneath it. This measurement is pretty consistent, regardless of manufacturer. Also pretty consistent is that all manufacturers will tell you that if you remove more than 0.5 mil (12~13 microns) of clear that a full repaint is in order. Why? Because you've compromised the ability of the clear to fully protect the color coat, and you've compromised the overall integrity of the clear itself. This leads to premature clear coat failure and fading of the color coat. This is why we find it a bit amusing when someone decides to wet sand their car, with virtually no knowledge of the process, and then comes back and defiantly asserts that "I didn't go through my clear coat - this isn't so hard". Going "through the clear coat" causes a problem right now. Removing more than you should, even without going through it, causes a problem in several months, maybe a year or two. But it's still a problem.

    Our advice, learn to live with the orange peel, but become proficient at DA buffing so as to refine the finish and create the highest level of clarity and gloss you can. You might be very surprised what can be done, in spite of the orange peel.
    Michael Stoops
    Internet Technical Specialist | Meguiar's Inc.
    (800) 854-8073 xt 3875
    mstoops@meguiars.com

    Remember, this hobby is supposed to be your therapy, not the reason you need therapy.

    Please post technical questions directly to the forum rather than emailing or PM-ing me. You
    will get a faster response on the forum, and your question could help someone else, too!


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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Mike
    That may be the finest answer I have ever read on one of these forums. You just saved people hundreds of hours chasing a finish they can never get. You saved several cars from premature paint failure. And you reminded everyone that they need to work with what they have to get the best finish they can get using top quality products.

    Not every car can be turned into a show car masterpiece, nor does it have to be. You can be very proud of the car you drive and the work you have put into because it will still look better than 90% of the cars on the road.

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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Michael, thank you for taking your time and posting these replies. I’m really satisfied that you’ve expanded my horizons in these ways.
    Although I’ve learned something new, I would never wetsand my car to achieve better gloss, because this is still my everyday car (but still kept in garage at home and at work!) and for that will still need to be polished in the future...

    Now, after regular claying, cleaning and polishing I would still go for the maximum mirror effect I could get, so selecting the right wax is still important. I’m not sure about the Ultimate wax, I should make a research about it. Maybe I’ll give it a try, but as far as I’ve read I’m still stuck between M21 and M26. If you had only these two options, which one would you take for black?

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    Re: M26 or M21 for mirror black?

    Great thread!

    Michael's post should be a 'sticky'...that is really good info and advice.

    Bill

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