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theksmith

detailing options for dealing with scratches

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some info on detailing options:

 

  • a speed wax or spray wax will run you around $50 at a car wash and is not worth the money at all in my opinion. it's no different than using a quick detailer type spray yourself and will wash off quickly.
     
  • a carnauba based "hand wax" costs $75 to $100 and will hide some scratches and make things shiny for a few washes. this is what i typically get 3 or 4 times a year. i can usually get them to throw in an interior detail with the hand wax for the $100.
     
  • i don't often trust a car wash detail shop do a machine buff or polish because i've had their level of "professional" ruin paint on a previous rig. however, if  you go this route, to use a clay bar and then machine buff is probably $150, though you can often get a "complete detail" including these steps for $150 to $200 if you negotiate.

    the problem is *if* they do it wrong, the final wax coat will hide any problems for a few car washes and then suddenly you'll start to notice swirl marks all over. it's easy for an amateur to burn/swirl the paint by using too much pressure or speed or by not cleaning things really well before buffing (clay bar is a must beforehand). 
     
  • a true "paint restoration" from a dedicated detailing shop (mobile or otherwise) will cost you $300 to $500. this is how you remove most of the scratches. they will go over your car several times with a buffer and different grades of cutting/rubbing/polishing compound and then finish with a quality wax or ceramic coating. it takes time to do it right (especially with deep scratches like our offroad rigs get) and that's why it's expensive.
     
  • professional "ceramic coatings" are currently all the rage. they run $300+ and are best done on a property restored paint or brand new car, though alone they can hide some scratches for a few washes. these coatings are a replacement for wax offering a deeper shine, lasting longer, and repelling (beading) water and pigeon crap much better than traditional carnauba waxes.

 

 

for reference: i just had Gadget hand waxed at Jackson's car wash, and then went over her completely myself with Chemical Guys HydroSpeed Ceramic Quick Detailer. note that a "quick" ceramic product like i used doesn't have the same level of SiO2 chemical that a professional ceramic coating would, but still helps increase the shine and water beading and should hopefully survive a couple washes at least.

 

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here's a closes-up showing that many of the scratches are still visible, but you can tell she's much shinier overall and looks great from a distance (sorry i didn't get a before shot):

 

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Edited by theksmith
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Great info there @theksmith! Thanks so much!

 

Big fan of Chemical Guys stuff too! I'll have to try out that Ceramic Quick Detailer you were talking about. I haven't tried that one yet.

 

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Some of my favorite products they make:

 

  • Inner Clean - Interior Quick Detailer - does a great job and smells friggin' amazing
  • Silk Shine - this is a "back to black" protectant that I use on all of my exterior black plastic and rubber surfaces. It makes those fenders look brand new with minimal elbow grease required
  • Speed Wipe - this is their glossy quick detailer. It does a great job of giving you a quick wipe down of the Jeep, provided you aren't covered in grit and grime. I normally use it after I've given the Jeep a bath.
  • Spot Remover - great product if you have water that is harder than diamonds, like I do. It's tricky to work with, and you don't want to leave it on too long as it's essentially an acid that is eating away the lime deposits that cause hard water stains. I use it sparingly.
  • Mr Pink - an awsome foaming car wash soap that smells like bubble gum :) 

 

I also have their Extreme Top Coat Sealant with Carnauba, but I haven't used it yet. It's a all-in-one wax and sealant that is supposed to help with some minor scratching.

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@4x4tographer   Thanks for the run down on the chemical guys products.

 

One question, the Inner Clean product leave an “Armor-all shine” on the interior surfaces?  I’m trying to avoid that

 

Thanks

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Just now, jgaz said:

@4x4tographer   Thanks for the run down on the chemical guys products.

 

One question, the Inner Clean product leave an “Armor-all shine” on the interior surfaces?  I’m trying to avoid that

 

Thanks

 

Nope - zero shine at all, and it's not "greasy" like Armor-All.

 

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5 hours ago, 4x4tographer said:

 

Nope - zero shine at all, and it's not "greasy" like Armor-All.

 

Thank you!

Just ordered a bottle 

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i discovered Chemical Guys Rubber & Vinyl Matt Renew product is also great for cleaning rubber window trim.

 

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it seems to almost soften the rubber a bit and so with a little scrubbing it actually reduced the appearance of my AZ pinstriping. it also removed the outer layer of oxidation and left all the trim with a nice matte finish.

 

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i had always used 303 Protectant on exterior rubber and plastics, but it leaves sort of a greasy film - so this might become my new go-to for trim.

 

 

Edited by theksmith
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Well I was not able to correct my paint after the Bradshaw trip so I took it to a professional. The jeep no longer has any pinstripping. Amazing job by a guy named Eddie. If you want a professional job done I highly recommend him. It easy cheap$500 but we'll worth it. His number is 4803054009. Before

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Actual footage from the road to Packer 😅

 

 

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6 hours ago, johnpa said:

Well I was not able to correct my paint after the Bradshaw trip so I took it to a professional. The jeep no longer has any pinstripping. Amazing job by a guy named Eddie. If you want a professional job done I highly recommend him. It easy cheap$500 but we'll worth it. His number is 4803054009. Before

 

where's the "After" photo?

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Here it is. He even cleaned up my fender flares

PXL_20211031_140509793.jpg

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