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mossman35
06-06-2011, 06:59 AM
So I picked up my 2011 335i coupe at the end of Feb, but it had sat on the dealer lot since the previous July as far as I can tell. Since the weather here in Vt is still pretty crappy through May, I finally got around to doing a detail on the car. I was a little confused about where to start since this is a brand new car, but has seen a little bit of winter weather.

Now for years I have always polished my cars by hand using Mequires products mostly. I just bought a porter cable and some Menzerna products. I wanted to be able to save a little time and get better results This is what I did. Let me know where I can improve things, although I am very happy with my results. By the way, my car is Silver so it must be a lot more forgiving than a darker color.

1. Wash car.
2. Clay bar entire car using Mequires clay and Mequires polymer quick detailer.
3. Used Porter Cable and Menzerna PO85RD (Micro polish). I used a white lake county polishing pad.
4. Finished with Menzerna Power lock polymer sealant and black lake county pad.

I am thinking of another coat of sealant in a week or so. I also might try a coat of Carnauba over the sealant but I am not sure because I want to apply a coat of sealant in a few months (Sept) before winter sets in.

I am thinking I should have used the black pad with the polish and a blue finishing pad with the sealant to finish. Not sure here. The white pad doesn't have much cut either.

All in all the car looks awesome. The porter cable was very easy to use and got the job done. No scratches (from hand polishing). The car looks much better than when I picked it up and will be much easier to maintain I am sure.

Ilovemycar
06-06-2011, 12:12 PM
It's spelled Meguiar's, not Mequires. You're not the only one, so many people can't spell this most well known of brands, but Mequires is a unique one. :p

1. There are washes and there are washes, check out Gilmour guns, two bucket method, grit guard. I recently did a double foaming after reading about a pro detail here, on a weekend job.

2. I like Meguiar's Pro Mild, but haven't tried their other clays. For lube, I heartily recommend Optimum No Rinse, and that's coming from someone who probably has several kinds of QD in possession. ONR happens to be very economical too, while having multiple capabilities. For that matter, I enjoy the Optimum car wash with my Gilmour, and it has replaced my Meguiar's Gold Class wash, which I'll probably end up giving away.

3. Ok, but you need more than one pad.

4. Nice, but I would use more than one pad.

When you put a 2nd coat on, it would be best to do it the next day. If you wait a week, or any significant time, you'll likely have contaminants on your car again, that you'll be basically mixing in with the sealant. Sure after a wash, it's probably minimal, but why not do it immediately post clay and polish?

Black and Blue don't have any cut, you have to get to at least Green, so far as I know, with the color scheme I am familiar with.

Once you get to green and beyond, it's a matter of the overall combination, not just color alone. The factors include: the machine being used, the orbital speed selected, the actual polish/compound/liquid being used, the pressure exerted by you, the size of the pad (smaller has more cut), and then finally the color you are concerned with.

Of course, it's better to err on the side of caution, and it's better that you didn't have enough cut, rather than cutting more than you are ever needed to. Needless to say, there is experimentation involved towards gaining the experience and knowledge. I'm gaining it all the time, and have a long ways to go myself.

IOW, mask off half a panel, start out small, wipe, compare in BRIGHT LIGHT like sunlight, halogens, something, but not a shady area like your pics. If there are still remnants of swirl marks, etc, then you step up the game. If you are using aggressive compound, aggressive pad, with aggressive pressure, and you still can't get rid of them all, you then might think about getting a paint meter or hire a pro, so that you know that you have sufficient cleacoat left.

White pads are a good color choice for jeweling polishes. If you need more cut, try more pressure and/or higher orbital speed. But remember, you really ought to stock up on more pads.

mossman35
06-06-2011, 01:00 PM
It's spelled Meguiar's, not Mequires. You're not the only one, so many people can't spell this most well known of brands, but Mequires is a unique one. :p

1. There are washes and there are washes, check out Gilmour guns, two bucket method, grit guard. I recently did a double foaming after reading about a pro detail here, on a weekend job.

2. I like Meguiar's Pro Mild, but haven't tried their other clays. For lube, I heartily recommend Optimum No Rinse, and that's coming from someone who probably has several kinds of QD in possession. ONR happens to be very economical too, while having multiple capabilities. For that matter, I enjoy the Optimum car wash with my Gilmour, and it has replaced my Meguiar's Gold Class wash, which I'll probably end up giving away.

3. Ok, but you need more than one pad.

4. Nice, but I would use more than one pad.

When you put a 2nd coat on, it would be best to do it the next day. If you wait a week, or any significant time, you'll likely have contaminants on your car again, that you'll be basically mixing in with the sealant. Sure after a wash, it's probably minimal, but why not do it immediately post clay and polish?

Black and Blue don't have any cut, you have to get to at least Green, so far as I know, with the color scheme I am familiar with.

Once you get to green and beyond, it's a matter of the overall combination, not just color alone. The factors include: the machine being used, the orbital speed selected, the actual polish/compound/liquid being used, the pressure exerted by you, the size of the pad (smaller has more cut), and then finally the color you are concerned with.

Of course, it's better to err on the side of caution, and it's better that you didn't have enough cut, rather than cutting more than you are ever needed to. Needless to say, there is experimentation involved towards gaining the experience and knowledge. I'm gaining it all the time, and have a long ways to go myself.

IOW, mask off half a panel, start out small, wipe, compare in BRIGHT LIGHT like sunlight, halogens, something, but not a shady area like your pics. If there are still remnants of swirl marks, etc, then you step up the game. If you are using aggressive compound, aggressive pad, with aggressive pressure, and you still can't get rid of them all, you then might think about getting a paint meter or hire a pro, so that you know that you have sufficient cleacoat left.

White pads are a good color choice for jeweling polishes. If you need more cut, try more pressure and/or higher orbital speed. But remember, you really ought to stock up on more pads.

Thanks for taking the time to give some feedback. I actually looked up the spelling of Menzerna, but didn't think anything about Meguiar's. :rofl: It reminds me of my pet peev when people refer to the "Infinity G35" rather than the Infiniti G35.. :thumbup:

Anyway, I did use one white pad for the entire car, and one black pad for the entire car. I'll have to try to remember to switch pads more frequently. The pad was working really well so I didn't think to change it. I did use Poorboys pad conditioner before starting so maybe that helped. I actually bought 8 pads total with the kit I purchased. 2 black, 2 white, 2 green, and 2 orange. The orange and green are only for friend or families cars.

My goal is to never use a strong cut, but try to stick with the lightest possible. Since the car is new, I am hoping that will be easy to do if I keep up with it. I am going to try the Optimum no rinse as clay lube. I keep seeing it mentioned.

I haven't gone as crazy as to use a foam gun but I'll give it another look. Thanks.

thekurgan
06-06-2011, 01:48 PM
Nice job. Agree on the carnuba. On Titanium silver and space grey, I found the Dodo White really added some pop to the paint in the sunlight.

mossman35
06-06-2011, 02:03 PM
Nice job. Agree on the carnuba. On Titanium silver and space grey, I found the Dodo White really added some pop to the paint in the sunlight.

So I know I can put Carnuba over a sealant, but I can't put a sealant over a wax.

My question is, if I go ahead and put the Carnuba over the sealant now, when can I put another layer of sealant on?? Ideally I would use the Carnuba now, again in July, and in August. Maybe stop in August, and put another layer of sealant on during the end of Sep or early October? Is that an issue? How long do I have to wait is the part where I get confused.

This assumes I am not going to take every thing off and re-polish, etc in Sep. Ideally I would just like protection for the upcoming harsh VT winter. Then start from scratch next spring.

I would rahter use sealant for winter since it lasts longer and I really can't do much to the car from Nov through May (except wash).

Ilovemycar
06-06-2011, 05:21 PM
Thanks for taking the time to give some feedback. I actually looked up the spelling of Menzerna, but didn't think anything about Meguiar's. :rofl: It reminds me of my pet peev when people refer to the "Infinity G35" rather than the Infiniti G35.. :thumbup:

Anyway, I did use one white pad for the entire car, and one black pad for the entire car. I'll have to try to remember to switch pads more frequently. The pad was working really well so I didn't think to change it. I did use Poorboys pad conditioner before starting so maybe that helped. I actually bought 8 pads total with the kit I purchased. 2 black, 2 white, 2 green, and 2 orange. The orange and green are only for friend or families cars.

My goal is to never use a strong cut, but try to stick with the lightest possible. Since the car is new, I am hoping that will be easy to do if I keep up with it. I am going to try the Optimum no rinse as clay lube. I keep seeing it mentioned.

I haven't gone as crazy as to use a foam gun but I'll give it another look. Thanks.

A Gilmour is only $35, free shipping, adds zero time to the process, in fact it might* even save you time.
http://www.amazon.com/Gilmour-75QGFMR-Foamaster-Adjustable-Cleaning/dp/B000XTH1GY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1307405498&sr=8-1

Pads, you have two of each color, make sure to use both when doing the car. Might as well.

I've been meaning to try kurgan's fav, the Dodo Diamond White, but I'm still in a holding pattern atm. It will be bought with my next detailing purchase, I believe.

I am confused on why you would be able to wash, but not apply sealant. IMO, it takes more space to do a wash than it does to do sealant.

You can put another coat of sealant on when the carnauba has worn off. FYI, some sealants are said to last longer than others, too. You can always just clay, and "start over" to be sure. Check out Pinnacle Ultra Poly clay for frequent claying of a car in good shape (super soft, but expensive).

When you feel the hard winter is right around the corner, do the two sealant coats + carnauba, over three days. That should get you at least a few months I'd hope, then sometime again during the cold season, a Pinnacle clay and another coat of sealant? Just the first idea that popped in my head . . .

edit: btw, I picked the brain of another Dodo fan recently, and she said that she believes a key to applying the Hard White Dodo is to have it warm up, perhaps by leaving it in the sun for a bit. This might be difficult when winter is right around the corner, but I'm sure kurgan might have something to offer.

thekurgan
06-06-2011, 07:01 PM
So I know I can put Carnuba over a sealant, but I can't put a sealant over a wax.

My question is, if I go ahead and put the Carnuba over the sealant now, when can I put another layer of sealant on?? Ideally I would use the Carnuba now, again in July, and in August. Maybe stop in August, and put another layer of sealant on during the end of Sep or early October? Is that an issue? How long do I have to wait is the part where I get confused.

This assumes I am not going to take every thing off and re-polish, etc in Sep. Ideally I would just like protection for the upcoming harsh VT winter. Then start from scratch next spring.

I would rahter use sealant for winter since it lasts longer and I really can't do much to the car from Nov through May (except wash).

I believe if you try to apply sealant over wax, it will not adhere. I like to use carnuba for the extra gloss and wet-like pop that sealant can't provide. Sealant in the winter is ok, but I think Collinite super double coat is just as nice and looks better and for me, it protects better as well. I find far fewer swirls come spring if I keep a nice coat of Collinite on the BMW. If I do multiple layers of sealant (Black Fire Wet Diamond is what I've been using), I wait overnight, remove any light dust that may have accumulated and apply the subsequent coat.

thekurgan
06-06-2011, 07:06 PM
edit: btw, I picked the brain of another Dodo fan recently, and she said that she believes a key to applying the Hard White Dodo is to have it warm up, perhaps by leaving it in the sun for a bit. This might be difficult when winter is right around the corner, but I'm sure kurgan might have something to offer.

Being in California, it rarely gets below 40 wehre I live. If it does, and I want to wax, I "carve" some wax out and let it soften indoors on a window sill with sunlight (Kat????), then I "apply" it to a polish pad on my porter cable, as the PC provides some heat while it works at speed 3, makes the job nicer with less fighting with the wax as it hardens too fast on the cool paint.

mossman35
06-07-2011, 06:45 AM
A
I am confused on why you would be able to wash, but not apply sealant. IMO, it takes more space to do a wash than it does to do sealant.


I have the space to do apply sealant, no problem. I just didn't want to re-polish, clay etc before winter. In fall, my main goal is to protect. Where I live you have no choice but to give up on keeping the outside of your car clean from Nov. to March (at least). I just go through the car wash (brushless) to keep most of the gunk off the car. Re-polish, clay next spring.

mossman35
06-07-2011, 06:50 AM
Being in California, it rarely gets below 40 wehre I live. If it does, and I want to wax, I "carve" some wax out and let it soften indoors on a window sill with sunlight (Kat????), then I "apply" it to a polish pad on my porter cable, as the PC provides some heat while it works at speed 3, makes the job nicer with less fighting with the wax as it hardens too fast on the cool paint.

I often wonder what it would be like to live in a place where 40 degrees is cold... :rofl:

Like I said in my previous post it gets much too cold and too messy out to try to keep up with your car. Honestly, it's just too cold and the roads are much too messy to even try. Even if you do get the car clean, it will literally be covered with salt within one day of driving.

I am going to try the carnuba with the porter cable. I find when applying wax by hand, no matter how hard I try, I end up putting it on too thick. Then when I remove it, the towel gets covered with residue and can easily scratch things. I am hoping the Porter Cable allows me to put it on evenly and heat it up as you said. It certainly worked well applying the sealant, but sealant seems easier to work with.

Wash, and Carnuba next weekend!!!

thekurgan
06-07-2011, 06:59 AM
I often wonder what it would be like to live in a place where 40 degrees is cold... :rofl:

Like I said in my previous post it gets much too cold and too messy out to try to keep up with your car. Honestly, it's just too cold and the roads are much too messy to even try. Even if you do get the car clean, it will literally be covered with salt within one day of driving.

I am going to try the carnuba with the porter cable. I find when applying wax by hand, no matter how hard I try, I end up putting it on too thick. Then when I remove it, the towel gets covered with residue and can easily scratch things. I am hoping the Porter Cable allows me to put it on evenly and heat it up as you said. It certainly worked well applying the sealant, but sealant seems easier to work with.

Wash, and Carnuba next weekend!!!

Since you're in Vermont, take a good look at the Collinite super double coat. Lots of East coaters find it beneficial, especially applied before winter sets in. It is not as expensive as the Dodo juice, but it is very tough. When I use the carnuba and the porter cable, I found applying a very thin layer, using a spatula and warmed wax is nice, doesn't go on too thick. I usually look and if I can see the wax before it starts to set, then it's too thick.

chet31
06-07-2011, 09:50 PM
Got a Gilmour foam gun for Christmas, I really wanted to like it, but for me, it's slower.

Ilovemycar
06-08-2011, 11:35 AM
Got a Gilmour foam gun for Christmas, I really wanted to like it, but for me, it's slower.

It can't be by much (one minute at the most?), and even if it was, using a foam gun is still a superior method in terms of avoiding abrasion. Prelubricate the grime and dirt off, having some of it slide off for you before you ever mechanically apply a mitt. I intend to do double foams for just about any detail that is not for my own car, after asking a pro here about his technique. I hope my claybars will last longer too as a side benefit (with less time claying involved as well).

BadboyzTn
06-08-2011, 05:33 PM
I use my Gilmour Foam gun and double foam every time I wash. I rarely have to put my mitt back in the suds. I also use the double bucket & 2 mitt method.

BadboyzTn
06-08-2011, 05:48 PM
Double Post.... Sorry

sonus
06-27-2011, 12:47 PM
I've used double foam on my washes recently as well, and found that with a nice fresh coat of wax on the car (P21S one week prior) my wash sponge was practically spotless throughout washing.

After one pass with the foam, my Gilmour's canister is always still half full (maybe that's bad?), so I figured why not rinse the foam off and go at it once more? It added a little bit of time but it felt worth it when I saw that almost all the dirt had washed off by the time I got to using the sponge.

Btw I really like the Lake Country Blue Grout Sponge from Detailed Image. I know everyone raves about the sheepskin mitts, but the sponge does a great job of capturing dirt and little particles, and even more importantly, RELEASING them. It's easy to see if there's any dirt on it after wiping it on a grit guard, and another wipe will usually get rid of them. The sheepskin mitt seemed to hold on to things, and if the grit guard didn't wipe them off, they were really tricky to pick out by hand because of the nap.

chet31
06-28-2011, 10:49 PM
It's not the Gilmour gun itself that slows me down. It's the rinsing. I have to wash my car in sections due to hard water. I also have to run the Gilmour full blast to get decent sudsing. Then when I turn it to the rinse setting, the water comes out too fast and a.) does not sheet well and b.) splashes everywhere including the parts of the car I am not washing and want to keep dry. So I have to spend more time drying. Keep in mind, I cannot let anything dry on it's own, or I get waterspots. It was inexpensive, worth a try, but not a winner for me.

sonus
06-29-2011, 05:26 AM
Running the gun at full volume to get foam actually makes sense (it says to do that in the manual, or on the bottle, I forget which). For more suds I found that it helped to shake the bottle vigorously every now and then. To rinse, I use the quick-disconnect valve to take the bottle off the sprayer nozzle, and just use the sprayer by itself. It's very controllable (but takes a little finesse with the handle), and you can get a fine mist or a water jet or a gushing stream. The soap matters too. I've only tried Meguiars Gold Class and Chemical Guys Maxi Suds II so far, but the CG one made way better suds than Megs.

But I guess it doesn't matter much if the water is too hard :( It is very difficult to avoid getting water all over the place. I've tried that method of washing one panel and drying immediately, but I haven't really figured it out. Everything else always gets water spray on it.

You could buy one of these: http://www.ultimatewasher.com/commercial-reverse-osmosis-systems.htm :)

Ilovemycar
06-29-2011, 12:51 PM
It's not the Gilmour gun itself that slows me down. It's the rinsing. I have to wash my car in sections due to hard water. I also have to run the Gilmour full blast to get decent sudsing. Then when I turn it to the rinse setting, the water comes out too fast and a.) does not sheet well and b.) splashes everywhere including the parts of the car I am not washing and want to keep dry. So I have to spend more time drying. Keep in mind, I cannot let anything dry on it's own, or I get waterspots. It was inexpensive, worth a try, but not a winner for me.

Oh I see. I recommend trying ONR. Get a couple of plush MFs, one to buff dry thrown over the shoulder, and the other for washing. All you need it a bucket of water, no rinsing. It works very well, believe it or not. Lots of stuff written up about it. It's my exclusive clay lube; it is very versatile.

For more suds I found that it helped to shake the bottle vigorously every now and then.

Hm I should try that sometime, thanks for the tip.

I've only tried Meguiars Gold Class and Chemical Guys Maxi Suds II so far, but the CG one made way better suds than Megs.


Yeah the MGC doesn't sud much. I should try the CG sometime, my Optimum Car Wash is already starting to get low, and all sizes were sold out at PAC (my last shopping spree).

sonus
06-30-2011, 07:04 AM
Yeah the MGC doesn't sud much. I should try the CG sometime, my Optimum Car Wash is already starting to get low, and all sizes were sold out at PAC (my last shopping spree).

How do you like the Optimum Car Wash? It's really too bad the MGC doesn't suds up much, I love the smell of that stuff, and it's cheap and readily available at the local walmart. I like the foamyness of the CG, but I'm not a huge fan of the smell (I think it's cherry).

Ilovemycar
06-30-2011, 07:03 PM
How do you like the Optimum Car Wash? It's really too bad the MGC doesn't suds up much, I love the smell of that stuff, and it's cheap and readily available at the local walmart. I like the foamyness of the CG, but I'm not a huge fan of the smell (I think it's cherry).

I've only used a few different washes recently, and that said, I like it! I honestly do not know if suds are required to be an excellent wash, but I do like the extra foam the Optimum provides over the GC. Also, because I really like every Optimum thing I've tried (save perhaps the leather stuff because of the smell), I believe I shall be buying a gallon soon.

BadboyzTn
06-30-2011, 08:13 PM
I ran out of Optimum and had to wash my car... So I had to got to Autozone... Bought the Turtle Was Liquid Ice car wash. I had to use quite a bit and it did not foam near as much as the Optimum. However it did leave the paint with a nice slickness.