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E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 10-03-2007, 02:44 PM
nowack500 nowack500 is offline
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Mein Auto: 1996 E36 328i
11 Year Old Paintwork Needs A Wake Up

I have a WHITE '96 model 328i and the previous owners obviously had no respect for the poor car! The paint and bodywork are in excellent condition for the cars age and history but the paintwork is a bit dull. I know theres a shining beauty under there somewhere! Does anybody have any tips on how I can get that "wet" looking shine to the paint? Ive tried basic polishing but that last a couple days and its back to normal.

Also, the light grey leather is a bit stained.....Any way to get it looking good as new after all these years?

Thanks in advance for ANY replies guys.

(Oh, and a re-spray isnt an option for a while!)
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  #2  
Old 10-03-2007, 04:04 PM
SCANDINAVIAN13 SCANDINAVIAN13 is offline
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PM Bimmer_Angel or just wait. She'll find the post eventually and help you out.
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  #3  
Old 10-04-2007, 06:44 AM
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jason_recliner jason_recliner is offline
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There are a squillion teflon / silicon based polishes that give you the desired wet look.
I've still got one - McGuires I think - bought it for the previous car 11 years ago, used it once.
It was good, I'm just a lazy bugger.

As for the leather, someone once suggested a cut down nail brush and had awe inspiring results.

Having light grey leather myself, I used an uncut one (gentler) and WATER, with ONE drop of that 'hand detergent' that frequents kitchen sinks (mostly just sodium laurel sulphate) in the bucket as a gentle surfactant. Never trusted leather cleaners that make things slippery.

- Keep the leather just slightly wet (i.e. more than damp), a little loose water makes effective cleaning.
- A sponge on hand to keep soaking up the dirty water.
- Gentle circling and patience will get you nice looking leather.
- I spend a couple of hours for the whole lot. Worked VERY well.

Hopefully your previous owner never painted your seats with water based grey paint.

[Edit:] If your leather wears thin in the grey coating, I think it preferable to let it age visibly but gracefully, rather than have a dodgey looking attempt to cover it up. Think Sean Connery versus Donald Trump.
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Last edited by jason_recliner; 10-04-2007 at 06:47 AM.
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  #4  
Old 10-04-2007, 07:26 AM
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efanton efanton is offline
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If it has been neglected for that long then before it was even touched by pollish again I would use T-cut. (this is a mild cutting paste incase our american cousins have never heard of it).

It will bring down to the original paint work and then I would start pollishing.
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Last edited by efanton; 10-04-2007 at 07:28 AM. Reason: polish do not pollish their cars
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  #5  
Old 10-04-2007, 12:57 PM
nowack500 nowack500 is offline
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Thanks for the quick help folks!
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  #6  
Old 10-04-2007, 11:21 PM
Silvercat Silvercat is offline
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Originally Posted by nowack500 View Post
Thanks for the quick help folks!
Careful with T-cut - if you go through the clear coat you will get problems. Also avoid silicone polishes at all costs - if you ever need a respray they will cause problems. Silicone is an excellent lubricant that is veeeery difficult to totally remove. Suggest you have a Google at Car Detailing.
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  #7  
Old 10-05-2007, 02:19 AM
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Bimmer_Angel Bimmer_Angel is offline
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Hi Nowack500

Agree with Jason in that there are loads of products out there but the tried and tested ones are the best. Also agree that Meguires have a fab range of products. Look at their website where you will find a step by step guide to getting your car looking her best.

I personally use Zymol. They sell a kit [which equates to approx 250$ / 125 GBP - don't know what that is in SA money]. The kit contains shampoo, leather care cream, luxury microfibre cloth, and, amongst others, a HD Cleanse. It looks and smells exactly like Bailey Irish Cream Liquer! It is hard work but it is worth it because it claims to remove residue off paintwork before you apply the Carnouba Wax - also included.

Again, look at their website to see the range of products and their descriptions.

As for the leather, it is imperative that you thoroughly clean it first before attempting to apply any protective leather treatment. We have just bought a Daimler on behalf of a friend which had dirty, unloved leather. It took me 2 hours of hard labour to clean it. I used a gentle cream cleaner and a nail brush - toothbrush would do just as well but it takes a bit longer - ideal though for getting in between the folds. Wipe continuously with warm soapy water to get rid of cleaner. I also use a towel to wipe dry the cleaned areas. This obviously prevents the leather getting too wet.

Then use a really good quality leather care cream product. I tend to apply - making sure you get in all the creases, folds etc, and leave it overnight to penetrate. Then the next day get a lint free cloth and give it a really good shine. Treat your seats about twice a year as using too much cream can actually have the adverse effect of softening the leather too much.

This Guys has to be the most AWESOME product ever invented. Don't ask me how it works because there is not smell to it, it is like a normal sponge but OH NY GOODNESS - JUST WATCH HOW IT GET RID OF ANY STAINS LIKE MAGIC

Great on leather - will come up like new. If you have a paint mark on your bodywork from a third party, just rub it gently with the sponge and IT'S GONE

A family member has a Touring in silver with a huge green painted streak down the side where 'someone' had a arguement with a gate . It was there for over a year. So when they came last time, I went out with my sponge and HEY PRESTO - IT'S GONE He was 'gobsmacked' !

Get some if you can from

http://www.amazon.co.uk/JML-Magic-Er...ie=UTF8&pf=dvd

Any other tips just ask


x
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  #8  
Old 10-05-2007, 06:31 AM
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jason_recliner jason_recliner is offline
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Angel, that base product is melamine foam, marketed under various names.

I found some promotional stuff in my mailbox once, and recognised it as soundproofing insulation they've found another use for.

It's actually an extremely hard polymer, which makes it a perfect scourer. Because it's so fine, scratches aren't visible. And it can even get rid of crayon.

It has no smell cos there's no agent added, but it does work best slightly damp. And it's real cheap. Buy a massive chunk from a soundproofer for a couple of dollars.
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"The Reclinermobile" - 1995 320i Boston Green
A word on our sponsors: Iridium sparks thanks to NGK. Wheels will shortly be dressed once again by Yokohama C-Drive. Road is lit by Eagle-Eye 6000K HID, supplemented by 7000K CCFL Angel eyes. HB/Fog have selected to go with Philips 4000K BlueVision. Engine parts choose to slip with Castrol's 20-50 GTX2 dinosaur slime, renewed every 10,000km.
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  #9  
Old 10-05-2007, 06:48 AM
SCANDINAVIAN13 SCANDINAVIAN13 is offline
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I was waiting for that.
Thanks, Bimmer_Angel.
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  #10  
Old 10-05-2007, 09:17 AM
Engineer3D Engineer3D is offline
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Hmmmm....

I'll have to look into that too.
The Alpine White just seems so Alpine Gray .

So will the products actually help in getting rid of the old clear coat layer, so that its possible to just get a new clear coat put on, short of repainting?
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  #11  
Old 10-05-2007, 10:26 AM
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efanton efanton is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Engineer3D View Post
Hmmmm....

I'll have to look into that too.
The Alpine White just seems so Alpine Gray .

So will the products actually help in getting rid of the old clear coat layer, so that its possible to just get a new clear coat put on, short of repainting?
Slow down there buddy. I am sure there is no need to remove the existing clear coat. As Silvercat has previously stated you are inviting problems and a huge amount of work if you do this.

I am pretty certain that what we are talking about here is 11 years of grime and muck. You want to remove this and ONLY THIS before polishing to bring out the original colour.

BimmerAngel is known as the 'Queen of Clean' for good reason. I have never seen the product she suggests but if I do I will definitely buy it and try it out. If you cant find it as I have sugested use a mild cutting paste such as T-cut and be VERY gentle. Dont use it like toothepaste you only want to remove the surface grime.

Work a small area at a time with either of the above methods and I am absolutlely certain you will be delighted with the results. And dont forget to post some pics of the finished job, you never know you might get the BimmerAngel seal of approval
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  #12  
Old 10-05-2007, 12:22 PM
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Bimmer_Angel Bimmer_Angel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_recliner View Post
Angel, that base product is melamine foam, marketed under various names.

I found some promotional stuff in my mailbox once, and recognised it as soundproofing insulation they've found another use for.

It's actually an extremely hard polymer, which makes it a perfect scourer. Because it's so fine, scratches aren't visible. And it can even get rid of crayon.

It has no smell cos there's no agent added, but it does work best slightly damp. And it's real cheap. Buy a massive chunk from a soundproofer for a couple of dollars.
Pirate & I often wondered what exactly it was - now we know - thanks.
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  #13  
Old 10-05-2007, 12:27 PM
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Bimmer_Angel Bimmer_Angel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by efanton View Post
Slow down there buddy. I am sure there is no need to remove the existing clear coat. As Silvercat has previously stated you are inviting problems and a huge amount of work if you do this.

I am pretty certain that what we are talking about here is 11 years of grime and muck. You want to remove this and ONLY THIS before polishing to bring out the original colour.

BimmerAngel is known as the 'Queen of Clean' for good reason. I have never seen the product she suggests but if I do I will definitely buy it and try it out. If you cant find it as I have sugested use a mild cutting paste such as T-cut and be VERY gentle. Dont use it like toothepaste you only want to remove the surface grime.

Work a small area at a time with either of the above methods and I am absolutlely certain you will be delighted with the results. And dont forget to post some pics of the finished job, you never know you might get the BimmerAngel seal of approval
This Magic Sponge will certainly get off things like tar, scuff marks etc but I do not know whether it would be wise to use it all over the car but as has been said, it is such a mild abrasive, who knows I would certainly use it on an inconspicuous area first then go through the paces of waxing/polishing that area before doing the whole car.

I must say that when I used it on my friend's car it did not leave any visible marks neither did it appear to take away any of the original paint but I would use extreme caution nonetheless.

Thanks efanton for your kind comments
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  #14  
Old 10-05-2007, 12:28 PM
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Bimmer_Angel Bimmer_Angel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCANDINAVIAN13 View Post
I was waiting for that.
Thanks, Bimmer_Angel.
My pleasure, kind Sir
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  #15  
Old 10-05-2007, 12:56 PM
supacharged21 supacharged21 is offline
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sounds to me like your clear has scratches and needs to be buffed out with a porter cable orbital buffer. You may even benefit from wet sanding the car in sections and then polishing and finally waxing. It is how bad the scratches are on the clear to determine your method to get rid of them.
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  #16  
Old 10-06-2007, 12:17 AM
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jason_recliner jason_recliner is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bimmer_Angel View Post
Pirate & I often wondered what exactly it was - now we know - thanks.
Amazing coincidence! I just now went and bought a new halogen bulb for my exterior (house) light. Guess what it was wrapped in, inside the box!?

So I used it to clean greasy finger marks from around some light swiches, then went to the car and removed a long term black mark (shoe polish scrape? crayon?) from the rear seat.

It's pretty aggressive though so I wouldn't recommend it for normal use on the leather except for really difficult marks.
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"The Reclinermobile" - 1995 320i Boston Green
A word on our sponsors: Iridium sparks thanks to NGK. Wheels will shortly be dressed once again by Yokohama C-Drive. Road is lit by Eagle-Eye 6000K HID, supplemented by 7000K CCFL Angel eyes. HB/Fog have selected to go with Philips 4000K BlueVision. Engine parts choose to slip with Castrol's 20-50 GTX2 dinosaur slime, renewed every 10,000km.
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  #17  
Old 10-06-2007, 01:02 AM
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Bimmer_Angel Bimmer_Angel is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_recliner View Post
Amazing coincidence! I just now went and bought a new halogen bulb for my exterior (house) light. Guess what it was wrapped in, inside the box!?

So I used it to clean greasy finger marks from around some light swiches, then went to the car and removed a long term black mark (shoe polish scrape? crayon?) from the rear seat.

It's pretty aggressive though so I wouldn't recommend it for normal use on the leather except for really difficult marks.



Don't know if the packaging product you used is more harsh than the Magic Sponge. That is very soft and is perfectly OK for leather - I have used it on my car and our beloved S Type Jag whose seats are 40 years old.

I am certainly going to look out for this sponge from other sources as it must surely work out cheaper.


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