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View Full Version : please help, jetblack swirls/scratches


johm_330Ci
03-18-2002, 06:05 PM
Hi,

I've been pretty good with cleaning my cars in the past, but this is my first black car. I've studied carcareonline, the wax test, etc.
I have 3m ihg'd, waxed, used 100% cotton, etc. I've even started gaining the confidence to post on boards like this, attempting to help newbies... but...

my car is covered in swirls. rubbing my finger across my paint causes scratches. geez. 3m ihg does not work. it just seems to sort of grease the scratches and make the car shiny. the swirls are most noticable in direct sun and direct artificial (non flourescent) light. should i invest in an orbital buffer? or is the only way out to clear coat my car every year? It's really buggin me, because I've tried to be so anal about my car's paint.

any expert help would be greatly appreciated. thanks.

johm_330Ci
03-18-2002, 06:08 PM
you can't see the swirls in the pic, but up close, it's bad :(

Dr. Phil
03-18-2002, 06:12 PM
Have you tried a machine polish? I believe some of the more exp guys around here have suggested it:dunno:

If nothing else give car care a call, Larry was very helpful when I had some questions

in_d_haus
03-18-2002, 06:38 PM
Ya gotta face facts...you cannot rid yourself of swirls especially in a black car. Yes you can machine polish and have the car looking like a black mirror....till ya drive it. You just have to live with some of it unless you can park the car in a museum and never move it, or touch it as you mention.

Sorry bud! Car looks great though! :thumb:

thewaxtest
03-18-2002, 07:52 PM
You can get rid of the swirls, trust me! I have had a black car for many years - takes work, but it can be done.

If you have AOL IM, send me a PM with your screen name, we'll chat!

Nick325xiT 5spd
03-20-2002, 05:58 PM
I have to say that I've given up. I wash it, wax it every now and then, and leave it at that.

As a sidenote, blackfire SUCKS! It wears off almost instantly. Suppose I'll order Zaino at some point.

Nick

JPinTO
03-21-2002, 06:48 AM
I had 10 years of driving black cars:
1991-1997 Black Eagle Talon AWD
1997-1999 Black Saab 900 Turbo

That was enough... the cure is shown in the picture below! Titanium Silver!

As much as I would like my next car to be black and salivate at the beautiful picture you all have of black cars, I can't bear to get another black car.

I realize that it's better to have a car that looks 90% as nice as black 100% of the time, rather than a black car that looks good 5% of the time when it's clean, and kills you to look at the remainder of the time when it's dirty.

Black is a detailing nightmare, it's always dirty, especially in winter when your car becomes a salt monster. Silver is easy to keep looking good.

The picture you see below is of a car that travelled 2000 miles when that picture was taken (Toronto -> Colorado) and was detailed for $1 at a spray car wash. Can you tell?
http://members.roadfly.com/jpinto/JPinTO+2000+323i+SP+4.JPG

Nat Brown
03-22-2002, 09:57 AM
Originally posted by johm_330Ci
my car is covered in swirls. rubbing my finger across my paint causes scratches. geez. 3m ihg does not work. it just seems to sort of grease the scratches and make the car shiny. the swirls are most noticable in direct sun and direct artificial (non flourescent) light. should i invest in an orbital buffer? or is the only way out to clear coat my car every year? It's really buggin me, because I've tried to be so anal about my car's paint.

I know you said you use 100% cotton towels, but I suspect your towels are the problem. You can use the "burn" test to see if you're really using 100% cotton towels, but I recommend ditching cotton towels entirely. I use a California Water Blade followed by microfiber towels to mop up what's left.

To fix the problem you'll likely need to have the paint buffed out, as mentioned, but to avoid future problems, be extremely careful what touches your car.

I also recommend using Zaino because of it's non-abrasive nature. With wax you would normally use an abrasive polish (3M IHG) followed by carnauba wax. Zaino applies in two coats without abrasion or swirls. Also remember to apply products in up-down motion instead of circular motions. It does make a difference.

--gary

Intermezzo
03-22-2002, 10:49 AM
Originally posted by JPinTO
[B]I realize that it's better to have a car that looks 90% as nice as black 100% of the time, rather than a black car that looks good 5% of the time when it's clean, and kills you to look at the remainder of the time when it's dirty.

Great looking car!!

I know what you are saying about black. I have a black 330I myself (actually, my wife's) and it used to look incredible right after washing but after just a few days, it became covered in dust.

The best way to keep a black car (or any colored car) looking nice every day of the week is to do a QD every one or two days. I do it and my car looks 'just detailed' all the time. It works very well. Not only will this allow you to keep your car very clean all the time, it will reduce your car wash frequency, help keep stains and contaminants from getting embedded into your paint, you'll be washing a much cleaner car when it comes time to do a wash (thus less swirls) and finally, this procedure will allow your protectant to last much longer (less car washes), especially if you use a carnauba based QD on a carnauba'd car.

I'm with thewaxtest about the swirls. They CAN be removed from a black car as long as you use proper technique.

Nat Brown
03-22-2002, 11:38 AM
Originally posted by Intermezzo
The best way to keep a black car (or any colored car) looking nice every day of the week is to do a QD every one or two days. I do it and my car looks 'just detailed' all the time. It works very well. Not only will this allow you to keep your car very clean all the time, it will reduce your car wash frequency, help keep stains and contaminants from getting embedded into your paint, you'll be washing a much cleaner car when it comes time to do a wash (thus less swirls) and finally, this procedure will allow your protectant to last much longer (less car washes), especially if you use a carnauba based QD on a carnauba'd car.


Absolutely. I've got a new Jet Black 330i and I use the California Duster followed by the Zaino Gloss Enhancer spray with microfiber towels for the hood. I do this daily and it always looks clean. The wheels are another story, but most people don't notice those.

--gary

Plaz
03-22-2002, 01:58 PM
Is it a BadIdea(tm) to use the Cali Duster to remove brake dust from my 68Ms?

Intermezzo
03-22-2002, 02:02 PM
You can use the CA Dash duster to dust your wheels, but don't ever use the duster again on anything other than wheels.

I QD my wheels about twice a week using a Microfiber Mitt and a small bucket of water. I have the stock 330I rims which are an incredible PITA to clean and this method seems to work well for me.

Nat Brown
03-22-2002, 02:04 PM
Originally posted by Plaz 330i
Is it a BadIdea(tm) to use the Cali Duster to remove brake dust from my 68Ms?

Scary. If you had a California Duster devoted to your wheels, sure, go ahead. but I'm not sure the dust will come off very easy with one. They make mini-dusters.

--gary