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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-06-2008, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for welcoming me as a New Member

My name is Jason. I own a 2005 C230K. It's all black, inside and out. I was originally viewing a few threads for help, but got so caught up in everyone's inputs, I decided to become a member.

I have a lot to learn about owning the MB experience, and look forward to being a part of this community. Any help that I can offer, I'd be glad to help out. I know likewise I will be needing everyone's help in the future too especially when it comes to body work. The swirl marks are needing some attention in that rich, slick, deep black paint of mine.

Nice to be here. Looking forward to listen to fellow MB drivers.

'The best way to predict the future is to create it..." -Henry Ford


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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-06-2008, 06:44 PM
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Welcome Jason.

I can advise you to check Autopia - Autopia Home or Meguiar's Online for some great information on proper detailing and care for your paint.

You're going to need about $200 worth of junk to get started but you will amaze yourself at what you can do!!

-Bill
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 09:24 AM Thread Starter
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Nice to meet you Bill. Thanks for responding.

Where or with what would you recommend is a good starting point in car care, particularly dealing with swirl marks? The only area that I wish to stay away from is using a machine to buffer. I prefer to do everything by hand. All that I have been doing in the past is applying a good wash, drying, and applying a coat of wax. It has done the trick for me, but the one time I try to cut corners and take the car to get a good washing, they used a machine and now I have swirl marks from what I bet came from the machine they used to buff it. Hence the reason I am trying to stay away from machine buffers. Oh and I am beginning to notice some slight, partial oxidiation on the black trim above the doors. A paint cleaner wax for that?? Any suggestions are very helpful.

'The best way to predict the future is to create it..." -Henry Ford


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 11:07 AM
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You will never get those swirl marks out by hand. You need a machine. There are safe buffers to use that make it nearly impossible to damage your paint. The most popular is the Porter-Cable 7336 (also sold with different model numbers). There is a new version out that some people like better.


Please read this thread: Using the Porter Cable 7424 Car Polisher - Autopia.org
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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I read the article, and it was impressive what it could do and how it easy it made it seem. The outcome on the black Audi at the end was awesome. I'd be nervous about it though. It talked about how polishing with it would strip a thin layer of the paint to rid the imperfections. That's what makes me nervous. i'm scared that i might make the paint worse off. The swirl marks are not that noticeable, and the paint is still in good shape, I would just kill myself if I worsened the paint. I think I am going to have to research more about use of the car polisher, before I break down and buy one. I'll let you know if I do. As far as the slight oxidation I was talking about, should a paint cleaner wax take care of that? Have you had any problems with oxidation?

'The best way to predict the future is to create it..." -Henry Ford


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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 02:14 PM
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The polisher with the correct polish will not damage your paint as much as the wrong polish/cleaner applied too aggressively by hand.

You car has the Nano clear on it which is quite hard.

I do not have problems with oxidation and I machine polish my cars about once a year. My black Jaguar looked better than new when I turned it in after 3 years. My cars are not garaged and live in the Southern California sun.

The other thing to mention is that there are good washing techniques that will keep you from inducing scratches and swirls in the first place. Search Meguiar's Online for the "two bucket method".

People love to load their paint up with Zaino in an attempt to fill in the scratches and swirls. After 14 coats or so they feel satisfied. One month or a couple of washes and it's all gone.

If you're reluctant to attempt polishing, take your car to a professional detailer and let them do it. But please avoid using over-aggressive compounds on your paint.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 04:06 PM Thread Starter
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How do know if products are too aggressive? Are there certain ingrediants to watch for?

So you only machine polish once a year? I thought it would have been more that. When you wash by hand, what do usually use?

'The best way to predict the future is to create it..." -Henry Ford


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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 05:11 PM
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Hey Jason,

Most polishes have a scale that describes their aggressiveness. It's within a manufacturer's line and not consistent at all (not like sandpaper grits for example).

I like Meguiar's products since they are all clearly labeled and you can determine their 'grit' relative to each other.

For your car I would use Meguiar's #83 Dual Action Polish with a medium foam pad on the Porter-Cable set on speed 5. You could start with #81 Speed Glaze which is less aggressive. They say to start with the least aggressive product that gives you the results you need.

But since your car hasn't been polished and it's black, I would use #83 the first time and then #81 after that.

For washing I like any good quality auto shampoo (I stick mostly with Meguiar's).

I wash with one bucket of soapy water and another of clear water. I use a good wash mitt or sponge but I don't typically use a sponge.

You dip the mitt in the soapy water and wash a section of the car, then rinse the mitt in the clear water to get the dirt and grit out without contaminating your soapy bucket.

That one tip alone will keep probably 90% of the swirls off your car since most swirls are caused by washing.

Then rinse the car and dry with clean microfiber towels. Only use microfibers for wiping and polishing. Keep them clean and take off the tags since the tags can scratch the paint.

TIP: don't ever use fabric softener on microfiber towels. It will 'clog the pores' and make them non-absorbent. Some people like to rinse them in diluted white vinegar since it leaves them softer.

*** Don't forget the CLAY !! You need to clay off your paint after washing and before polishing to take the surface contaminants off.

So it's: WASH - CLAY - POLISH - WAX

It sounds like a lot of steps and very complicated but it's simple step-by-step. In about 4-5 hours you will have an amazing car! AMAZING

That's why you need to spend time on the detailing forums. You learn good detailing techniques and your car stays looking new for years longer and the investment is worth more than some lame exhaust tips or blacked-out taillights.

-Later

Last edited by wblynch; 08-08-2008 at 05:14 PM.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 05:17 PM
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I found a Detailing Forum right here at BenzWorld! Detailing and Car Care - Benzworld.org - Mercedes Benz Discussion Forum
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-08-2008, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the advice and steering me in the right direction.

'The best way to predict the future is to create it..." -Henry Ford


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