On today's top-do list I have a Saab 9-3 Vector that needs a shining up. The plan is to wash it and make the paint look as good as it can get. But the car is silver so seeing any scratches is downright impossible. And get pictures of them? Forget it. It also looks somewhat clean from a distance.
That's not the case though, the car is hands down the filthiest one I have ever worked on. It's not full of mud and things like that. Just dirt and grime that's almost glued to the clear coat. It's pretty weird as the interior is in great shape and very clean.
As you can see it doesn't look that bad on the pictures or from a distance. But trust me, I have a 50/50 picture that will blow your mind. Anyways, I always start of with the wheels, this is no different.
I rinsed them down first and then applied the Maguire's Wheel cleaner. I like this more than I did the first time I used it, but I still prefer those cleaners who changes color. It just gives me more satisfaction. After the cleaner had been sitting on the wheels for a minute I used soapy water, brushes and a wash mitt to clean the rim off. Turned out pretty well, the wheels went from a "gold" look to shiny silver again.
With the wheels looking good the paint was next. Rinsing the car down didn't even make it a tad bit cleaner. Everything was still stuck and the water falling off the car was clean. I used some Maguire's Bug & Tar remover to try and easy up the shitsoup. As usual I went to work with two buckets and a washmitt. I'm back to using the Maguire's NXT car soap again.
Even after the bug & tar remover I had to basically scrub a long time to get the dirt off. My wash mitt turned black after this wash. The dirt was so stuck to the clear coat I had to go over a panel two or three times. Even after scrubbing for a while there was still dirt stuck to the paint. This car needs some clay, badly. Just look at these spots.
I used my Maguire's clay to get most of the contaminants off the paint. Under all the dirt the paint was looking alright, some scratches like you would expect. But the layer of salt and dirt had somewhat protected the paint from scratches.
Since I'm saving the last drops of AMMO Jeweler's Polish for that 951 Cab I had to get something else. A quick trip to the local Maguire's dealer got me some new fine polish to try out, Maguire's Ultimate Polish. This is meant as a pre-waxing buffing compound, it's also non-abrasive from what I can see. I used this together with my Rupes LHR15 and a MF cutting pad from Maguire's.
The results from this product was ultimately good. It left a pretty good shine, but I feel it didn't take away as many scratches as the AMMO Jeweler's Polish does and still leave that great finish. But it works, and it works great. I was working in small areas and my helper wiped off the left over residue as I moved to the next area. I was on a tight schedule so having a helper proved very successful.
After getting all the residue off we moved on to sealing the paint with synthetic wax. I' waiting for a package containing AMMO Skin and Reflective Paste so I'm using Sonax Extreme wax for now. As usual application is done to the entire car before wiping it off. Due to my deadline the wax was only on the car for about 20-30 minutes.
When getting wax off it's important to use a lot of MF towels. Once the towel is full of wax, change it out. And always buff the entire car to a high shine with a fresh one when you're done. And make sure you get all the wax out of every nook and cranny, especially emblems and panel gaps.
After a long day of detailing the car is looking great. I still have work to do on it so expect this and the Scirocco to be back. Both need an interior shine up and some more exterior work.
Next time I should be working on that 951 in a different location. I'm really looking forward to it!