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Welcome to part one of my guide to detailing.

There are many ways of going about washing a car. if you have a pressure washer with a "Snow Foam" adaptor then this can be used but you will still need to wash the car anyway.

To start, select you Wash and follow the dilution directions of the bottle, i would warm water for this as it should help lift off the stubbon bugs etc.

Also fill a 2nd bucket with clean water, over the winter months you will see what you've taken off the car in this bucket, your not going to want to put it back on the car.

Rinse the car from top to bottom, then using a Wash Mitt (there are plenty out on the market from MicroFibre ones, longer lasting but shorter pile, to Lambswool mitts, deeper pile but shorter life) work again from the top to the bottom. I personally wash roof and all windows then rinse then wash an area at a time, rinsing after each area. After Each Area is washed, rinse the Wash Mitt in the 2nd bucket to remove all dirt and grit before placing in the clean wash bucket. A grit Guard can be used, this stops any Grit and dirt being rubbed into the wash mitt when rinsing.

Once the body of the car is complete, switch to the wheels, i have an old wash mitt that i use for the wheels, clean the face, reverse and the tyre walls. After this i finish off with the Exhaust.

One final rinse of the whole car, When rinsing (after washing) use an "open Hose", this will help you to dry the car...... I hear you ask, how can you Dry a car by making it wet....Well, if you have a decent coating of wax then using the Open Hose the water will just sheet off and will then result in saving time whilst drying.

Drying - Using a Drying Towel (or chammy if you so wish) work from top to bottom and your done!

Caring for you Mitts and Towels.

these can be machine washed apart from any Natural fibre Mitts (Lambswool washmitt) at a 60c wash without softener. Wash washmitts and drying towels together. do not wash mircofibre cloths with them as Waxes etc can transfer and you will find the preformance of the Drying towel will be happered.

Ok, so you've give your car the mother of all washes, dried it off, stepped back and thought whats next to get the show winning shine.

Surface prep can be broken down into 2 processes.

Process 1 - on surface contaminates cured with Claying.

So how do you know you need to Clay you paintwork?

if you run your finger tips over the surface of the paint and find it is rough to touch then you have bonded contaminates on the surface. these can be Industrial fallout, tar, tree sap and bird lime.

So, you will need the following to start claying:

Clay Bar

Detailer (Lub), you can not use a Quick Detailer that contains wax, for example, Meguairs have 3 Detailers, Quik Detailer and NXT Speed Detailer can be used as a Clay Lub, but the Ultimate Quik Detail can not be used.

Microfibre cloth.

Break the clay bar into half and warm in you hand, then take your detailer, spray on to the surface of the car and with light finger pressure rub the clay across the surface, do half a panel at a time, you will know when all contaminates have been picked up as the clay will glide over the surface, after that wipe dry with the microfibre and move to the next section.

you can clay any surface, so plastic trims can be done so too can any Glass!

Process 2 - below surface defects cured with abrasives.

Does anyone own T-cut?? please throw it away! you may think that your removing scratchs were as you may remove the deeper more visible scratches but leave behind more finer scatches.

now i personally use Meguairs Ultimate Compound, which the mircoabrasives breakdown as you work the product. this is the most abrasive which is idea for working over the whole car, next step down is SwirlX to removeas you would guess swirls in the paint and finally ScratchX which can be used locally on scratches.

So all the products i have mentioned can be applied by hand or by machine with a polishing or cutting pad.

Right on to part 3, you've washed, dried and clayed the car within an inch of its life!

Now it is time to protect the surface.

In claying/paint prep you will have removed all polish and wax.

So the next step is to apply a polish, this will add depth to the colour (Flame Pink will look more like Flame Red!) and feed the paint to bring it back to life.

Normally most of the polishes will be put on the surface then removed before it dries on.

Once you have completed this step then you'll need to seal the paint work with a Wax.

Apply thinnly in overlapping movements so that you cover the whole car then allow to cure, this time depends on how thick the layer is and how warm it is. a good test is to just rub 1 finger across, if the wax wipes off clean then the wax is ready to be buffed off. if it streaks then it needs longer to cure, 15 to 20 minutes at about 15 degrees is normally about right.

While waiting for the wax to cure i normally go around and dress the tyres, Trim and clean all glass inside and out.

This is by all means not the Bee all and End all of Detailing and car care, I'm sure others out there will have different opinions on matters in here.
This is what works for me and this is how i got to the finish articals of any car i post up in this section.

So have fun and lets see your work!:thumbs_up:
 

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tl;dr lmao just kidding thanks!

B.
 

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Good stuff mate
 

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As said, great guide.

One thing though, I was going to buy the Meguairs clay kit, which consisted of: Ultimate quik detailer, 2 microfibres and some clay.

Instead I just bought a bottle of Ultimate quik detailer and some clay as I have the rest and it worked out cheaper.

But
Detailer (Lub), you can not use a Quick Detailer that contains wax, for example, Meguairs have 3 Detailers, Quik Detailer and NXT Speed Detailer can be used as a Clay Lub, but the Ultimate Quik Detail can not be used.
??
 

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Quick detailer is awesome as an air freshener :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
As said, great guide.

One thing though, I was going to buy the Meguairs clay kit, which consisted of: Ultimate quik detailer, 2 microfibres and some clay.

Instead I just bought a bottle of Ultimate quik detailer and some clay as I have the rest and it worked out cheaper.

But

??
Good question david, its because of what goes into the quik detailer, uqd has something in it that will clog up the clay and will stop it from working correctly. Its the same for dodo juice detailers.

Glad you guys have found it useful.
 

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Good question david, its because of what goes into the quik detailer, uqd has something in it that will clog up the clay and will stop it from working correctly. Its the same for dodo juice detailers.

Glad you guys have found it useful.
I might take the ultimate detailer back and swap it from the meg clay kit then. Thanks.

Whats the idea of the ultimate quik detailer spray then? You spray on and wipe off straight after washing instead of bothering with polish/wax all the time?
 

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Isn't the megs ultimate quick detailer included in their clay kit though?
 

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Ahhhh
 

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Discussion Starter #14
on the wax part i got some the other day hard wax and it said to not let it dry on and to buff it off right away so bit confused was some of that simonz
It may well be that this Wax you have has to be applied in that way. I know that the Dodo Juice and Megs waxes i have used all say to apply, allow to "haze" (cure) then buff off.

Ryan, its always good to see someone doing it in a different way, it just proves that there is more than one way to wash a car! i do my Wheels etc last as i do a final rinse which would take any dirt back off the car.

David, your correct, The Dodo Juice Red Mist Tropical i have states that it fortifs (sp) the wax so you can keep the wax protected and it may well last longer. it is like the spray waxes these are really only top up waxes.
 

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Welcome to part one of my guide to detailing.

There are many ways of going about washing a car. if you have a pressure washer with a "Snow Foam" adaptor then this can be used but you will still need to wash the car anyway.

To start, select you Wash and follow the dilution directions of the bottle, i would warm water for this as it should help lift off the stubbon bugs etc.

Also fill a 2nd bucket with clean water, over the winter months you will see what you've taken off the car in this bucket, your not going to want to put it back on the car.

Rinse the car from top to bottom, then using a Wash Mitt (there are plenty out on the market from MicroFibre ones, longer lasting but shorter pile, to Lambswool mitts, deeper pile but shorter life) work again from the top to the bottom. I personally wash roof and all windows then rinse then wash an area at a time, rinsing after each area. After Each Area is washed, rinse the Wash Mitt in the 2nd bucket to remove all dirt and grit before placing in the clean wash bucket. A grit Guard can be used, this stops any Grit and dirt being rubbed into the wash mitt when rinsing.

Once the body of the car is complete, switch to the wheels, i have an old wash mitt that i use for the wheels, clean the face, reverse and the tyre walls. After this i finish off with the Exhaust.

One final rinse of the whole car, When rinsing (after washing) use an "open Hose", this will help you to dry the car...... I hear you ask, how can you Dry a car by making it wet....Well, if you have a decent coating of wax then using the Open Hose the water will just sheet off and will then result in saving time whilst drying.

Drying - Using a Drying Towel (or chammy if you so wish) work from top to bottom and your done!

Caring for you Mitts and Towels.

these can be machine washed apart from any Natural fibre Mitts (Lambswool washmitt) at a 60c wash without softener. Wash washmitts and drying towels together. do not wash mircofibre cloths with them as Waxes etc can transfer and you will find the preformance of the Drying towel will be happered.

Ok, so you've give your car the mother of all washes, dried it off, stepped back and thought whats next to get the show winning shine.

Surface prep can be broken down into 2 processes.

Process 1 - on surface contaminates cured with Claying.

So how do you know you need to Clay you paintwork?

if you run your finger tips over the surface of the paint and find it is rough to touch then you have bonded contaminates on the surface. these can be Industrial fallout, tar, tree sap and bird lime.

So, you will need the following to start claying:

Clay Bar

Detailer (Lub), you can not use a Quick Detailer that contains wax, for example, Meguairs have 3 Detailers, Quik Detailer and NXT Speed Detailer can be used as a Clay Lub, but the Ultimate Quik Detail can not be used.

Microfibre cloth.

Break the clay bar into half and warm in you hand, then take your detailer, spray on to the surface of the car and with light finger pressure rub the clay across the surface, do half a panel at a time, you will know when all contaminates have been picked up as the clay will glide over the surface, after that wipe dry with the microfibre and move to the next section.

you can clay any surface, so plastic trims can be done so too can any Glass!

Process 2 - below surface defects cured with abrasives.

Does anyone own T-cut?? please throw it away! you may think that your removing scratchs were as you may remove the deeper more visible scratches but leave behind more finer scatches.

now i personally use Meguairs Ultimate Compound, which the mircoabrasives breakdown as you work the product. this is the most abrasive which is idea for working over the whole car, next step down is SwirlX to removeas you would guess swirls in the paint and finally ScratchX which can be used locally on scratches.

So all the products i have mentioned can be applied by hand or by machine with a polishing or cutting pad.

Right on to part 3, you've washed, dried and clayed the car within an inch of its life!

Now it is time to protect the surface.

In claying/paint prep you will have removed all polish and wax.

So the next step is to apply a polish, this will add depth to the colour (Flame Pink will look more like Flame Red!) and feed the paint to bring it back to life.

Normally most of the polishes will be put on the surface then removed before it dries on.

Once you have completed this step then you'll need to seal the paint work with a Wax.

Apply thinnly in overlapping movements so that you cover the whole car then allow to cure, this time depends on how thick the layer is and how warm it is. a good test is to just rub 1 finger across, if the wax wipes off clean then the wax is ready to be buffed off. if it streaks then it needs longer to cure, 15 to 20 minutes at about 15 degrees is normally about right.

While waiting for the wax to cure i normally go around and dress the tyres, Trim and clean all glass inside and out.

This is by all means not the Bee all and End all of Detailing and car care, I'm sure others out there will have different opinions on matters in here.
This is what works for me and this is how i got to the finish articals of any car i post up in this section.

So have fun and lets see your work!:thumbs_up:
Some good advice there for those wanting to do basic details to their own cars, though i wouldnt use a chamois on my car (or anyone elses for that matter) to dry it.

60 degrees is too high to wash synthetic microfibres, they lose the plush feel to them if you go any higher than 30 degrees. Fabric softner is a must too! The ones i use have detailed washing instructions and also say they can be dried in a tumble dryer on low heat.. works a treat on mine, if you use one of those softner towels in the tumble dryer it eliminates static build up too :thumbs_up:

A damp applicator at the wax/sealant stage and very minimal amounts will ensure a very thin layer which results in making the removal process very easy.. even in direct sunlight, although its not something i would so myself if you are doing your own car outside the house/on the drive it's unavoidable sometimes.

When removing wax/sealant i find i get a better result if i go round the car taking it off panel by panel then use a new/clean microfibre and go round again buffing up the coating to a high gloss finish then waiting an hour before repeating this process.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Have to agree with you on the chammy! Mine went in the bin a very long time ago and for good reasons too.

Because it does have a pile if there was any dirt left on the car ( missed a bit!) it would sit on the surface of the chammy and scratch the paintwork. A drying towel with its pile will take in the dirt and stopping from scratching.

Interesting on you towel care, meguiars staff say to put them on a 90 degree wash i believe! Also that is without softener!

I didnt really want to go into anything more than manual cleaning, as we have shown there are never a right way or a wrong way.
 

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Have to agree with you on the chammy! Mine went in the bin a very long time ago and for good reasons too.

Because it does have a pile if there was any dirt left on the car ( missed a bit!) it would sit on the surface of the chammy and scratch the paintwork. A drying towel with its pile will take in the dirt and stopping from scratching.

Interesting on you towel care, meguiars staff say to put them on a 90 degree wash i believe! Also that is without softener!

I didnt really want to go into anything more than manual cleaning, as we have shown there are never a right way or a wrong way.
Would assume that your microfibres are megs ones, so the washing instructions will probably be different from one make to another.

Like you say though, theres no right or wrong way to go avout things as every detail is different
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I do have a few megs micros but did also have a big pack of cheapo ones. Megs ones end up being used for anything on the paint work, the others for wheels, glass and interior ( not the same one to do all of that!)
 

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