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Detailing tools for a noob.

 
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Old 07-17-2009, 10:55 PM
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Detailing tools for a noob.

Hey everyone. I'm interested in starting to seriously detail my car( and maybe others...you know some side cash ) and I was wanting to know what your guys' list of essential tools is for detailing. You know if someone handed you a box and said go detail that car with only what you can fit in that box what would you include? I know I could probably google it or find some detailing forum, but hey I trust you guys. So ready, set.....



















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Old 07-17-2009, 11:23 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

I start with a wash. For that I use a product called Style Magic, which is a water-wise washing solution, and it comes with it's own specific chamois that it was designed to work wiht. This is good for a place with limited water reserves such as here. After the wash, I keep the Style Magic handy because I use it as a lubricant for the clay bar. For my car I use a 3M mild bar, because it wasn't really bad but you might need something a bit coarser, probly get a professional's opinion on that.

Never, never, EVER use a claybar without lubricant, as it will destroy your paintwork. And I cannot say this enough: WATER IS NOT A LUBRICANT! Start on the horizontal surfaces (roof, hood, trunk lid) and work from there, always keeping the surface nice and lubricated.

Next get a good quality polish, because the clay bar has just taken everything off the paint, so you need to do something to protect it straight away. I'm using an AutoGlym paste polish atm and it is quite easily the best thing that I've found. I apply it with a microfibre cloth, again starting with the roof and working down, applying polish to every panel of the car, and the bumpers, side skirts, et al while being careful not to get any on the tyres or the grey plastic.

Then I run around and take it off, with another microfibre cloth. The longer the polish is left there, the better it will work (in general, there are some products that leaving it longer than a few minutes is detrimental to the finish, but if that's an issue then you proabably shouldn't be using it as a polish anyway)

It's a good idea to use a paint protectant about now, though I don't usually. The one I reccommend is Tough Seal.

Then I use a quick detailing spray to finish off the bodywork. Currently I'm using Driven Quik Detailer and apply it (diluted solutiion) from a spray bottle and use another microfibre towel. If microfibre isn't handy, then a good terry-cloth towel will do the job.

For the tyres, I use Meguires Hot Shine, applied with their applicator sponges (the yellow ones) and for the grey plastics I use a secret solution that my dad made, that consists of baby oil and a bunch of other stuff. His best mate runs a crash shop and wasn't happy with the range of products for use on that kind of surface, so they spent a number of months perfecting thier own solution.

**There is a lot more you can do than this, but this is a good starting point for somebody who hasn't done a lot of detailing before. If you plan on using an orbital or rotary polisher to help you then make sure somebody competant shows you how to use it, as you can quite easily burn the paint and get the opposite effect that you're after.

**The products mentioned work very well in the Australian climate, in your area you may need something a bit different. In colder areas wax based polishes can be good, but they don't work too well in hotter places.

**Never, never NEVER use a silicone based polish or othe car care product. Almost all of the cheaper products on the market are silicone based, and they're crap as a result. Remember the law suit that went against Armour All recently? It was totally due to their use of silicone in everything. Silicone also sticks to everything and should you ever need paint, the paint shop will need to work extra hard to remove it.
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Old 07-17-2009, 11:28 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

3m rubbing compound- for hand glazing, terry cloths wipe on glaze wipe off. milwaukee buffer *no autozone buffer* polishing buffer pads, black magic on rims and tires use sponge aborbs that wet look good, rain-x glass spray,aromorall interior F1 cleaner, turtle wax ice car soap..hope this helps EDIT: when u wash the car and u reach into the bucket and soak up the soapy water, lay a mesh filter across the top of bucket, so every time u go and wipe down the dirty car and go grab more soap, u dont put that dirt into your clean bucket of car soap
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Old 07-18-2009, 10:50 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brash22 View Post
I start with a wash. For that I use a product called Style Magic, which is a water-wise washing solution, and it comes with it's own specific chamois that it was designed to work wiht. This is good for a place with limited water reserves such as here. After the wash, I keep the Style Magic handy because I use it as a lubricant for the clay bar. For my car I use a 3M mild bar, because it wasn't really bad but you might need something a bit coarser, probly get a professional's opinion on that.

Never, never, EVER use a claybar without lubricant, as it will destroy your paintwork. And I cannot say this enough: WATER IS NOT A LUBRICANT! Start on the horizontal surfaces (roof, hood, trunk lid) and work from there, always keeping the surface nice and lubricated.

Next get a good quality polish, because the clay bar has just taken everything off the paint, so you need to do something to protect it straight away. I'm using an AutoGlym paste polish atm and it is quite easily the best thing that I've found. I apply it with a microfibre cloth, again starting with the roof and working down, applying polish to every panel of the car, and the bumpers, side skirts, et al while being careful not to get any on the tyres or the grey plastic.

Then I run around and take it off, with another microfibre cloth. The longer the polish is left there, the better it will work (in general, there are some products that leaving it longer than a few minutes is detrimental to the finish, but if that's an issue then you proabably shouldn't be using it as a polish anyway)

It's a good idea to use a paint protectant about now, though I don't usually. The one I reccommend is Tough Seal.

Then I use a quick detailing spray to finish off the bodywork. Currently I'm using Driven Quik Detailer and apply it (diluted solutiion) from a spray bottle and use another microfibre towel. If microfibre isn't handy, then a good terry-cloth towel will do the job.

For the tyres, I use Meguires Hot Shine, applied with their applicator sponges (the yellow ones) and for the grey plastics I use a secret solution that my dad made, that consists of baby oil and a bunch of other stuff. His best mate runs a crash shop and wasn't happy with the range of products for use on that kind of surface, so they spent a number of months perfecting thier own solution.

**There is a lot more you can do than this, but this is a good starting point for somebody who hasn't done a lot of detailing before. If you plan on using an orbital or rotary polisher to help you then make sure somebody competant shows you how to use it, as you can quite easily burn the paint and get the opposite effect that you're after.

**The products mentioned work very well in the Australian climate, in your area you may need something a bit different. In colder areas wax based polishes can be good, but they don't work too well in hotter places.

**Never, never NEVER use a silicone based polish or othe car care product. Almost all of the cheaper products on the market are silicone based, and they're crap as a result. Remember the law suit that went against Armour All recently? It was totally due to their use of silicone in everything. Silicone also sticks to everything and should you ever need paint, the paint shop will need to work extra hard to remove it.
damn thats nice
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Old 07-19-2009, 12:27 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Thanks guys...Wheres all the rest of yous detailers though...LOL.


Anyways. Thanks for the advice brash. should give me a nice starting point.
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Old 07-19-2009, 12:53 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

^^ damm i get no love for the help
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Old 07-19-2009, 02:18 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazer View Post
Thanks guys...Wheres all the rest of yous detailers though...LOL.


Anyways. Thanks for the advice brash. should give me a nice starting point.
Your asking a very general question. Brash has outlined a very nice, fairly in-depth method. 97ROJOBB6 has given a quick DIY wash. ( no offence dude) i do however like the mesh idea. Never thought of that. There is times where i wash my car and it takes a half hour. (97ROJOBB6's method) then a may take 2-3 hours ( brash's method) but other times it can take up to days to detail a car. This is a show shine. I remember one car where I spent 3 hours picking fine hairs out of a black carpet to get that perfect look. Let me know exactly what your looking for and ill be sure to help you out. I can give you a start plan so you have a good general base, a keep up plan. Whatever you like
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Old 07-19-2009, 10:04 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 97ROJOBB6 View Post
^^ damm i get no love for the help
Sorry...


So explain this mesh method, I've heard of similar methods such as having two buckets. One with a filter at the bottom for dirty water and the other for soap. Is that what you are describing?


Quote:
Originally Posted by pfeifer30 View Post
Your asking a very general question. Brash has outlined a very nice, fairly in-depth method. 97ROJOBB6 has given a quick DIY wash. ( no offence dude) i do however like the mesh idea. Never thought of that. There is times where i wash my car and it takes a half hour. (97ROJOBB6's method) then a may take 2-3 hours ( brash's method) but other times it can take up to days to detail a car. This is a show shine. I remember one car where I spent 3 hours picking fine hairs out of a black carpet to get that perfect look. Let me know exactly what your looking for and ill be sure to help you out. I can give you a start plan so you have a good general base, a keep up plan. Whatever you like

Ok, in that case...What I was trying to get from this thread is a general base knowledge. Because I could sit and read a car detailers website or forum for daaayyyssss and still not know where to start. Basic question, What should I buy to start my car care product collection/What are the most basic methods I should know for doing a more than usual wash but not a $400 detail job either. You know, a good starting point.
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Old 07-19-2009, 12:05 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Blue Coral car wash
Kaboom! to clean the wheels an engine bay
Rain-X Window cleaner
Black Magic interior detailer
Q-tips for cleaning in the vents
Mequiar's Wax
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Old 07-19-2009, 03:37 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazer View Post
Sorry...


So explain this mesh method, I've heard of similar methods such as having two buckets. One with a filter at the bottom for dirty water and the other for soap. Is that what you are describing?





Ok, in that case...What I was trying to get from this thread is a general base knowledge. Because I could sit and read a car detailers website or forum for daaayyyssss and still not know where to start. Basic question, What should I buy to start my car care product collection/What are the most basic methods I should know for doing a more than usual wash but not a $400 detail job either. You know, a good starting point.
ok ^^^ i dont use a filter at bottom, i lay it across the bucket after i have gotton my first batch of soap on wash glove, wash car, then lay the filter across to drain the dirt out the glove and not into the clean water bucket, repeat process eveyrtime u need more soap
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Old 07-19-2009, 04:15 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazer View Post

Ok, in that case...What I was trying to get from this thread is a general base knowledge. Because I could sit and read a car detailers website or forum for daaayyyssss and still not know where to start. Basic question, What should I buy to start my car care product collection/What are the most basic methods I should know for doing a more than usual wash but not a $400 detail job either. You know, a good starting point.

Okay ill try and set this up like a little DIY. Bare with me

What you'll need

- A buffer $20. ( no shop will sell you a commercial buffer so you dont have to worry. You wont be able to get the buffer hot enough to melt or swirl paint. Just be careful and patient until you get the full grasp of how it works)
- Car soap. $7 a bottle. Some brands have been mentioned personally I use turtle wasy Platinum
- Mothers 3 step wax kit $5 a bottle







- Tire shine and rim Cleaner $7 each. I use meguiars
- A vacuum. Anyone will do
- Leather cleaner for dash $7 ( you have cloth seats so this will last a long time) I do Not recommend armour all. It dries and doesnt last. Also smells horrible IMO. Use mothers or meguiars. They both smell good and last a long time
- I dont use glass cleaner. When it gets hot I find windows "haze" up and these products work a ton better and use no chemicals
http://www.norwexhealthycleaning.com...products_id=93

I have ordered these in. I beleive there from Norway but they are redily available in the USA and Canada.

A good car was $Priceless

Now some quick facts:

Never rub dirt off with a dry cloth. Even with a wet cloth be gentle and easy. Its better if you can to let the hose run over it and wash it off.

When using a shammy get it and WASH it out first. If you use bath towels or anything like that make sure to toss them in the drier before hand as to get loose particles out of the towel so I wont scratch the paint.

Take your time. No point in half assing it. You might aswell not do it at all if you cant finish

Lets start: This might be breif so ask questions

1) Get all your supplies. Plenty of rags. Rip up old T-shirts or towel for tires and rims. 3 Buckets, a hose, and your vacuum etc.

2) start dry first. Water and electricity dont work. Hopefully your smart and learn that the first time.

3) okay rip out all your floor mats, open doors, trunk and hit everything with the vacuum. Vacuum first if you use leather cleaner the dust the vacuum shoots out will defeat all your efforts. After everything is vacuumed to your satisfaction get a rag. (make sure to get cup holders, beside the seat, etc. All those spots make a world of differnece. And remember those mats you put outside the car) Spray THE RAG NOT THE DASH. If you spray the dash it gets all over the glass and everthing else. Dont wipe the outher ring off your steering wheel. It gets way to slippery. Constantly flip and fold the rag as to not just wipe dust and dirt around.

4) Interior glass only. Use either those clothes I suggested or glass cleaner and paper towel not a rag. Paper towel gives the best shine.

5) put the mats back in and the interior is done.

6) Exterior time. Now I have suggested a wax kit to you. This is an awesome non commercial kit. It works wonders and its pretty cheap. If you dont feel comfortable with a buffer or dont want to use it, its your choice.

7) grab those three buckets. One fresh hose water, one water and soap, and one epmty. Hose off the whole car and get a hand mit, hit the soap and clean each section. IE. fender, door, etc individually dont move on till each section meets your approval. Each time you go back for more soap get the empty bucket. Put a mess over the top. Set the mit on it and wash it out with the hose or fresh clean water. ( thanks 97ROJOBB6. Tried this today and its awesome) Repeat the soap step until everything is nice and clean. Now hose her down again and use another mit or just a rag. Clean each section again as to get all the soap off. Soap will heat up over time and peel away your wax finish.

8) dry the car off. Those cloths I showed you work awesome but a normal shammy works too.

9) Now before you wax spray your tires and rims

10) Onto the wax. Each step has its own purpose as the bottle shows and describes to you. When applying wax, apply it to the buffer and before you turn it on smear it all over the part your working on. I find it easiest to dived the car into three. Hood fenders bumper as one, mid section or doors and roof as another, then rear quarter, trunk, and rear bumper as the last. Do it section and then wipe the wax off. Go to the next section and repeat. Repeat this throughh all three wax steps and make sure use a different buffer pad for each wax type and a different cloth each time you wipe a different wax off.

11) Wipe the rims off FIRST and if need be apply more cleaner to get that shine your looking for. Now hit the tires again but do not spray it. This will just get all over the rims your just cleaned. Instead put a fine line around the whole tire. About a half pull on the trigger with the nozzle about a fingers width away from the tire. Grab a fresh rag and wipe clockwise around until all the shine is gone. Dont just wipe make sure its closewise so you get a nice even deep black.

Stand back and enjoy. The wax only needs to be done ever month or bi monthly depending on how much you wash your car and where you live.

I hoep this helps you out. I wrote it really quickly so I wouldnt be suprised if I missed some stuff. I'll go wash the car and think through every step and add to this as I go.
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Old 07-21-2009, 08:47 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Awesome stuff. This helps alot. I think tomorrow Ima go out and assemble the things i need. I.e. products....

NOW. I've seen mentioned clay bar and Carbuna wax. I've used nufinish a couple times so my car isn't in horrible shape, so is clay necessary?
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Old 07-21-2009, 11:41 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

clay bar wouldnt hurt
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Old 07-21-2009, 11:43 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

x2 its a good idea to get a good starting base. And sorry lose the nufinish. That stuff is junk!
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Old 07-22-2009, 12:14 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

instead of nufinish, just use 3m hand glaze to detail the car
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Old 07-22-2009, 01:41 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

yea nufinish didnt give the clean i was expecting.

SO, I guess that means I'll be doing some claying in the near future
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Old 08-09-2013, 10:55 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.



What I use:
-$1 toothbrushes "soft" (10)
-Q-tips with plastic sticks
-chamoises (5)
-home depot microfiber towels ( bag of 20 )
-applicator pads (3)
-soft bristle deck brush (softer than a snow scrapping brush)
-clay bar for stuck on sh!t
-Contrator 20gal bucket with handle.
-Square Milk crate (for sitting and storing your supplies)
-Vacuum of some sort
-Roll of bounty (Do not skimp on using this)

Some car owners appreciate a detailer who keeps buffers away from their cars. Some don't, I do. Mother's power buffer ball is as close as I'll choose

-Meguiars "endurance" tire shine. 4 weeks is the record for staying shiny. No need to clean the tire, just apply straight. Reverses "tire browning"
-Meguiars Deep Crystal purple car wash (little toothbrush to get all the little corners clean)
-Meguiars wax/clay bar kit
-Zymoil leather cleaner and conditioner
-Vinyl / plastic restorer, not armor all.
-Aerosol glass cleaner (no drip/waste)
-Rim cleaner, only because it's someone else's car.

As a rule, do the inside first, so you don't track dirt/water into the car from cleaning it.
The Maguiar's wash can stand alone as a self drying polish, but for show room look, do all the setps.
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Old 08-10-2013, 06:29 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

toothbrushes, microfiber towels, paper towels, cleaners of your choice... water... lol

but yea, everything everyone else has said is good, but i would say definitely look into getting a polisher, and some lubricant, and for extra tips, polish headlights, and oil up the windows to make a smoother glide, ive had people hand me $20-30 bucks because they were amazed at how fast their windows glide after im done
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:03 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

What do you use to make the windows glide up better 95?
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Old 08-14-2013, 10:41 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Thinking lithium clear grease. But that would require removing the door panel. Strange for a detail.
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Old 09-09-2014, 11:53 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

I have been thinking about using silicone grease for the power window channel. I think that would work well for allowing the windows to move up and downward with more ease.
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Old 09-10-2014, 12:04 AM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

Leather Chamois Care

Caring for leather chamois is a must. Good ones are normally soaked in fish oil. And, when you get home after your purchase of your first or yet another leather chamois the very first thing that you must do is clean it. I cannot stress this enough guys. Clean that chamois. To do so, I recommend just grabbing a wash bucket and add a good glob of car wash soap. But, not too much. Fill the bucket up with warm water. Well, enough water to wash the chamois. Wash the chamois like you would clothes. Knead it and wring it out. Repeat the process and you'll notice yellowish color in the water. That's the fish oil that has been soaked into the chamois. Dump the bucket and fill it again. This time without the soap. Rinse it until the water almost runs clear when your wringing the chamois. Lastly, fully wring it out and hang it to dry somewhere clean and dry. After it has dried it will turn stiff. At this point I just place it into a freezer bag and suck the air out of the bag as good as possible. The next time I need to use it, It will be good to go. All you have to do is wet it until its soaked, wring it out and use it to dry your car before you start getting water spots.
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Old 03-17-2016, 10:32 PM
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Re: Detailing tools for a noob.

good read. anyone here who tried the lexol cleaner?
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