For today's Detailing 101 Class we started with a 2013 Hyudai Genesis, color black, well actually metallic black, but we didn't notice the metallic until after we used our Ultimate Compound! More on that later.
The car was quite dirty after some recent heavy rains here in So Cal so we opted to use our Ultimate Waterless Wash & Wax (formerly Ultimate Wash & Wax Anywhere) to clean the hood & remove the loose contaminants. We explained that our Quik Detailer sprays are for light dust & fingerprints, or any other light contaminant. Any level of contaminants beyond light, it is best to use a traditional two bucket wash method, or alternative to traditional washing, like UWWW.
We explained the more-dirty the car is, the more liberally you want to apply Ultimate Waterless Wash & Wax, and also the more towels you should use when using this alternative method of washing.
After cleaning up the hood, we then evaluated for any rough feeling above surface contaminants, and indeed we could feel, and hear them! We of course proceeded to use our Smooth Surface Clay Kit to get the paint feeling smooth again and remove the contaminants. This is a very common problem! Chances are if you have never clayed your car before, it needs to be. To evaluate, feel the paint when it is clean & dry. If it feels rough, it needs to be clayed.
Next we inspected the paint under multiple lighting sources to look for any below surface defects or in other words defects that are "within" the paint. What do we mean when we say "within" the paint? Lets take a look at the below graphic:
Below is an graphic of the different layers of modern clear coat paint finish. At the bottom, there is a body panel, it could be steel, aluminum, fiberglass, carbon fiber, etc. Next is the substrate or primer. After the primer is what is referred to as a base coat or "color coat." This is the actual color of the vehicle. And finally at the top is the "clear coat" which is clear paint. Common terminology for this layer is "Clear Coat." I honestly wish whoever came up with the "Clear Coat" name would have just called it "Clear Paint," because that is really what it is. "Clear Coat" confuses many people. They think it is something different than paint. Anyways, Clear Coat provides the gloss for the color coat, and it also provides protection for the color coat. So lets take a step back here. How do we have ability to remove these defects that are within the clear coat? By removing a microscopic amount of paint. Sounds scary right? In order to permanently remove the defects, we have to remove a tiny amount of paint. The amount of clear paint removed is an extremely microscopic amount. Paint Cleaner & Compounds which are designed for use on modern paint finishes with modern abrasive technology, when applied correctly, especially with a dual action polisher machine, in most cases, the amount of paint which is removed is almost non-measurable or a very microscopic amount. There are certain types of machines & products which the user should use extreme caution, but with a dual action polisher like our MT300, anyone can learn proper technique quite easily, and be on there way to a defect free paint finish, safely.
In order to determine if a vehicle has below-surface defects, inspect under good lighting. Direct Sunlight, Florescent lights in a garage, even LED Flashlights work good, and....YIKES! Swirls, scratches, water spot stains, random isolated deep scratches, you name it. News Flash: this is very common!
We started with our go to combination, Ultimate Compound, applied with a DFC5 Soft Buff DA Foam Cutting Disc, on our MT300.
We tested to see what 3 section passes, at 5800 OPMs, moderate pressure, moderate arm speed would do.
And after only three passes, that's right, one horizontal 50% overlapping pass, one vertical 50% overlapping pass, and another horizontal 50% overlapping pass, the below pictures were our results!
"Hey this is metallic paint!" I actually thought the paint was non-metallic when we first chose this car to work on, & even after cleaning it, could not see the metallic. It was only until we used our Ultimate Compound when we noticed the paint actually had some metallic flake to it. See the tape line in the middle. To the left is before, and to the right is after. Big difference! We adjusted our test spot & determine that 4800 OPMS was suffice, and that 4 section passes, instead of our initial 3, reached our goal.
Next we gave the car owner Jeanaye, a chance to run the MT300, and she did great! She easily picked up the basic skills, working area, pressure, and especially keeping the pad flat & spinning, and was off & running by herself. Love it! This is not always the case, but don't be discouraged, anybody can learn how to use a DA Polisher, it just takes time.
Now for the other attendants to give the MT300 a try.
After Ultimate Compound, Ultimate Polish, Ultimate Wax, and a top coat of Ultimate Fast Finish, we rolled the car out into the little sunlight we had. Darn clouds! But you get the idea. Defect free, full of gloss, & protected. Thanks to everyone for coming out! Feel free to post or contact me with any questions. - Nick