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When I bought the car it seemed pretty clean to me. It was nice and shiny and what I thought was very white. I got her home and after I did a simple wipe I realized she wasn't really white but a light yellowish color. I washed the car and now it was really white, but it felt really rough to the touch. I decided to purchase a clay bar kit and after almost 2 hours of labor the car I thought looked good now looks amazing. The paint is baby soft and is now a true white.

The clay bar was turning from white to green every few swipes I made. I ended up having to do each part of the car at least 3 times a piece to remove everything. It seems as though my car was kept outside and never washed.

 

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Sweet!!

Make sure to follow this procedure up with at least a good coating of wax. If you clay bared it, the wax is now gone. I always follow the clay bar up with a "wheeling" out polish (Meguiar's swirl remover and 2500-4000rpm wheel) to get all the "spider webbing" out, then Meguiar's NXT wax, hand applied and taken off with a microfiber towel. Then once it's been hardened in the sun for a day, a quick light orbital buffing with Simoniz Paint Protection (apply no pressure to the orbital, just swipe it across the paint) and wipe with microfiber. The Simoniz step will make your light color "pop"! For dark colors, use an aerosol glass cleaner to help get all the left over Simoniz off so you don't leave streaks! Then its photo time!! ;)
 

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I also did the clay bar for the first time this weekend and love the way my red GXP came out. I followed it up with the Zymol liquid wax and it is silky smooth now. Wish I would have tried clay in the past.
 

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2009 Mysterious GXP Coupe #100
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When I clay my car (usually once a year. Did it this weekend and took hardly anything off) and wax it, it's downright slippery afterwards. Put a cloth on the hood and it slides right off
 

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I went back yesterday and ran my hand over the whole car and found some spots that were still not as smooth as I wanted so I redid the clay bar in those areas. I then used swirlx on some areas that needed it. Once I was done with that I went ahead and applied the wax. It took forever but man the car looks and feels really nice.

I have 1 question though I have a few redish/orange almost like a rust color circles on the hood. The claybar won't take care of them and running my nail over it it doesn't feel to be raised up any. Does anyone have any ideas on what this could be?
 

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I have 1 question though I have a few redish/orange almost like a rust color circles on the hood. The claybar won't take care of them and running my nail over it it doesn't feel to be raised up any. Does anyone have any ideas on what this could be?
How big are they? Pictures?
 

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The greenish crude gm was taking off was likely pollen. If you're not familiar, organic compounds such as pollen, tree sap, bird crap, anything natural will play heck with your paint, particularly clear coats.

The clay does a great job of taking out those particles that get embedded in your clear coat. But as others above have posted, ALWAYS follow up with wax. At least once per year I generally:

Wash
Clay
Buff
Wax
Seal

The paint protectant is a good idea also. I personally have used Klasse paint sealant since we bought the Sol a little more than a year ago. Sealants can be tricky because if you over apply it's a pain in the butt to buff off. I may reapply the sealant later this year but since applying in March, the car still looks pretty damn nice after just a soap wash and chamois - almost like the day after I applied the sealant.

As for the microfibers and chamois - I go through at least 2 chamois a year because I never use one more than twice without washing. Microfibers get washed after every use. Buy GOOD microfibers - you'll be amazed at the difference in quality over the cheap "buy a bundle" specials at Wallyworld. As for the clay, I keep at least two bars handy, because if one touches the floor, it's done.
 

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But as others above have posted, ALWAYS follow up with wax. At least once per year I generally:
Mine gets the "royal treatment" at least twice a year, once in spring and once in fall (usually mid October). And then of course if there's any major cruise or car show. But those are generally a quick wax and Simoniz.
 

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When I clay my car (usually once a year. Did it this weekend and took hardly anything off) and wax it, it's downright slippery afterwards. Put a cloth on the hood and it slides right off
This is exactly the way it should be!! My '98 Mustang still looked brand new when I sold it last fall.... That's why I sold it for so much with the mileage I had.... $5600 for a car that had 145k....
 

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When I bought the car it seemed pretty clean to me. It was nice and shiny and what I thought was very white. I got her home and after I did a simple wipe I realized she wasn't really white but a light yellowish color. I washed the car and now it was really white, but it felt really rough to the touch. I decided to purchase a clay bar kit and after almost 2 hours of labor the car I thought looked good now looks amazing. The paint is baby soft and is now a true white.

The clay bar was turning from white to green every few swipes I made. I ended up having to do each part of the car at least 3 times a piece to remove everything. It seems as though my car was kept outside and never washed.

Good work. I showed the wife your car and she loves it in that color. She says I can have my SLY back if I buy her a white one. :lol:
 

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Since I just got my car, I'm realizing how there is little to no orange peel in the paint especially after the clay. I too have a couple of spots that won't come out. I figure it was bird poop that sat on the car before I had it. When I looked at the carfax, I was amazed to see that my car sat on the lot for a year!
 

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Since I just got my car, I'm realizing how there is little to no orange peel in the paint especially after the clay. I too have a couple of spots that won't come out. I figure it was bird poop that sat on the car before I had it. When I looked at the carfax, I was amazed to see that my car sat on the lot for a year!
Here's what you do to fix that. Go to Harbor Frieght and purchase 6" Variable Speed Dual Action Polisher this for $59.99. Get the Meguiar's Swirlx and a 6" terrycloth bonnet for the orbital. The Swirlx won't burn your paint unless your really careless. Put some of the Swirlx on the spots (enought to wet the pad) and rub it around on the spot. Turn it on and use an edge of the pad. Run it at like 2500rpm. Once it starts to "grab", it needs more swirlx. Wipe clean, and apply wax by hand. Wipe it off with a microfiber towel. Swirlx is designed to take a lot to do any damage at all to your paint.... Just be careful with it, you should be able to get the spots out.
 

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Ghost's advice is true. You may also want to check out autogeek.net - lots of advice and instructional videos. I bought a dual action polisher and several of their foam bonnets along with some polishing compounds and have had great success with it.

As ghost indicated, most of the newer compounds will break down as you use them to prevent you from "burning" or otherwise screwin' up your finish. If you need really agressive work you'll end up with lambswool and something like 3M Finesse It II - but that can indeed smoke your finish if you're not careful.

The rule is to use the least agressive approach until you get the results you want.
 

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Thanks Chicken! Here's my previous baby at age 14. I never had the paint touched other then when I got it 10 years prior. I had it wet sanded and wheeled, and I did it after that! This is what a car should look like at 14 years old!

 

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nice job...

:thumbs:
 

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Did mine yesterday... first time. Read Turbomangt’s Sticky “Automotive Detailing Basics,” the section titled “Basics-Using a Clay Bar.” It is in the sticky's in the top of this forum.

Everything by hand. Materials used:

One bucket with clean soapy water. Use car wash soap. Not dish detergent.

One bucket with clean wash water.

Mother’s California Gold: Part Number 07240 (Comes with clay bar and detail spray, and one nice microfiber "face cloth"…about 20.00 dollars).

Meguire’s Ultimate Polish Pre Waxing Glaze.

Wax of your Choice

6-8 microfiber application "face cloths"-other materials like T shirts and socks can scratch the finish.

One or two Microfiber drying towels, or a couple of your normal drying towels. Be careful of the materiel you use.

1. Wash and dry the car as you normally would do.


2. After washing and drying the car, get some lather out of your clean soapy water bucket and lather up an area of the car. I started with one quarter of the front clip, top, bottom, around the fog lamp.

3. Break off a piece of the clay bar. Treat it like Silly Putty and get a piece about as large as you would use to copy one panel of a Sunday Comic. One piece will do the whole car. Don't drop the clay. Keep an eye on it. Knead it. Keep it clean.

4. Spray detail spray on the piece of clay. Go to the lathered area and lay the clay bar on the area. Move side to side (I never went beyond an arm’s extension) four back and forth passes. I don’t know why, but that seems to be the magic number. Maybe it’s me, but I can actually feel it grab the sixth or seventh time. Keep working in the same manner across the first quarter of the front clip.

Remember, the clay bar works best when the surface under it is wet. Real wet. Keep the lather up. If you feel too much drag, you're too dry in that area. Either apply detail spray on the clay, or re-lather there. In fact, I would say you don’t need detail spray if you use plenty of liquid lather from your bucket. Really, I think the detail spray is in the kit so you can maintain at car shows and the like. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but before you do remember I said to keep the area real wet.

5. Get clean wash water out of your wash bucket, and wash and dry the area you just clay-barred.

6. Apply polish to the freshly clayed and washed area. Remove polish.

7. Apply wax to the polished area. Remove wax.

8. Stand back and admire your work. Move on to the next section.

Before:



After



The Sly Grey is tricky and the light plays games with it, but the car's finish has been vastly improved. :yesnod:
 

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Rather than using soapy water, I use detail spray and a microfiber cloth to lube and wipe as go. It's less messing and you don't have to do the extra step of rewashing and drying the car.
 

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Rather than using soapy water, I use detail spray and a microfiber cloth to lube and wipe as go. It's less messing and you don't have to do the extra step of rewashing and drying the car.[/QUOTE

Okay, but I thought the purpose of the rewash was to remove any clay residue, no?
 

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Rather than using soapy water, I use detail spray and a microfiber cloth to lube and wipe as go. It's less messing and you don't have to do the extra step of rewashing and drying the car.
Okay, but I thought the purpose of the rewash was to remove any clay residue, no?
You shouldn't be leaving clay residue. If you do, you don't have enough lube and may actually be damaging the surface... the clay should glide over the surface picking up contaminants, not actually stick to the paint.
 
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