Black Raven Paint and swirl marks
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Cadillac ATS General Discussion Forum Discussion, Black Raven Paint and swirl marks in Cadillac ATS Discussion Forums; Any suggestions of how to get swirl marks out of the paint/clear? It appears that some swirls have appeared from ...
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    cullama213 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    Any suggestions of how to get swirl marks out of the paint/clear? It appears that some swirls have appeared from one of the washings!

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    bmbutler is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    You will want to find a good detail shop that are experts in getting swirls out. Not impossible, but full detail job. Check out autogeeks website for their forums. Lots of great information..

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    bravnik is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    I just received my new buffer and pads yesterday. You can buff out the swirls yourself as it just takes a bit of time and patience to do it. The end result is that your car will be a mirror and you did it yourself and saved a few hundred bucks that a detail shop will charge.

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    Hoosier Daddy's Avatar
    Hoosier Daddy is offline Moderator
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    Quote Originally Posted by cullama213 View Post
    Any suggestions of how to get swirl marks out of the paint/clear? It appears that some swirls have appeared from one of the washings!
    As mentioned, get it detailed OR get a DA and do it yourself.

    But more important is figuring out exactly when and how it happened because you can only get them out a few times. The clear is very thin. The swirls are scratches in the clear. The only way to get rid of them is to remove some of the clear until all of it is level with the bottom of those scratches. And the clear is NOT just for shine its also UV protection for the color underneath. You do NOT want to have to remove clear over and over as you get new swirls. You need to figure out how to avoid them. Until you have that figured out, I would NOT have them removed because its better to have it keep happening to the layer of clear that's already damaged rather than start on the next layer.

    You mentioned you think they got there from washing. Unless you are taking the car thru car washes that use brushes or drag something over the paint, it's more likely you got them from the drying after the wash or when using a quick detailer between washes. Unless you are blow drying the car (e.g.: http://www.amazon.com/Metro-Vacuum-MB3CD-Blaster-Motorcycle/dp/B0002SPCGC) after its washed, the swirls are probably from a small amount of dirt that was missed in the wash and then ground into the paint by whatever was used to dry the car.

    Its a fact of life that you will get swirls unless you pay big bucks for a detailer to wash your car or you learn to do it yourself the right way. For most colors, the swirls are barely noticeable but dark non-metallic colors show them much worse and black is the worst of all.

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    JoshuaDav is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    I have the warranty plan where the Caddy dealership will detail the car every 6 months... but I also never realized that you could get these swirls by going through the automatic drive through car washes that use the touch brushes. Man, I wish someone would've told me that before I used one a few times. I have some subtle swirls on my black raven already and I'll avoid using that in the future.

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    gfxbt is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    As I'm sure it is apparent, it is easy to end up with swirls in non-metallic black paint. Dirt in any material (cloths, etc.) that you rub on the car will scratch the paint. NEVER drop the sponge, drying towel, etc. on the ground then pick it up and continue using it. Swirling is very common after automatic non-touch-free car washes. I would definitely avoid automatic non-touch-free washes. Additionally, I avoid all automatic car washes - even the touch free ones use abrasive solvents that can damage the paint. It's probably overkill to avoid all automatic washes, but better safe than sorry.

    Best thing to do is wash it yourself. I use a microfiber sponge and wash the sponge thoroughly after each car wash session. I use regular towels to fry the car (but with black raven, you might want to use microfiber). I wash the car every week (weather permitting in winter months - more like anytime it gets close to 40). I also try to wax the car with a synthetic wax (I prefer NuFinish - no good reason, it's just what I use) at least once a month. It is much easier to keep the paint looking nice than trying to make it look nice after it has already seen years of abuse. Also, if you park the car in bright sunlight (i.e., not in a garage, you live in the south, etc.), you may want to wax as frequently as every other week to help protect from the sun. Make sure you aren't using something too abrasive when you wax frequently, just something to protect the paint and maintain shine. Black cars are a pain to maintain, but when you do, they look great.

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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    Some suggestions:

    1. Don't wash with dish soap, ordinary cleaners or even most store bought car wash solutions. The first two will strip any wax or sealant and all of them do a poor job of suspending dirt so it doesn't scratch the paint while washing. Use a cleaner from one of the detailers web sites that has good reviews. These are actually cheaper to use than the store bought crap because they are so concentrated. The main benefit is they coat the dirt particles with a slick buffer between them and the paint. Rinse as much dirt off as possible before washing the car. Consider a foam gun for black cars to let the dirt soak in the suds for a short time before washing.

    2. Never put the mitt, sponge, cloth back directly into the suds bucket after using it on the car. Either use a second bucket of clear water to rinse it first or rinse it with the hose before getting more suds on it.

    3. Make sure you get all the dirt off. Even the tiniest amount on the paint or on an adjacent part the drying material may touch will get ground into the paint by the final pass when the paint is basically dry. If you really want to be safe, buy an high power heated air dryer and the dirt can't be ground in. These make it practical to do frequent not-so-perfect quick washes without swirling the paint.

    4. Instead of or before waxing, use a polymer sealant. They are harder than wax so protect better against swirls from light contact. But they are thinner than a good wax so might not protect as well from harder contact. A top sealant will even be shiner than a top wax and some purists wax over them to soften the shine. A good sealant will cost more than most waxes but not as much as you might thnk based on the cost of a bottle because a very small amount is used.

    Here is a picture of a black car (roof) with a good sealant (BlackFire Wet Diamond):


    BlackFire by Hoosier Daddy, on Flickr

    That procedure does not address contaminants imbedded in the paint or eliminate any need for polishing. So its a good idea to clay bar as needed (most places once a year is enough or more than enough) and use a cleaner/polish when needed. But if you keep a good layer of sealant on the paint the need to polish can be almost totally eliminated because most contaminates never touch the paint..

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    Stevo Supremo's Avatar
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    yeah my black raven already has some marks FFS.. its never even seen a car wash, and I used brand new wash stuff to when I bought the car, two bucket system, microfiber wash mit and a sham..

    black just @#$@%@ sucks!!..

    but my god it looks sexy when its clean.

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    AtlantaGuy00 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    My Black Raven DTS had to be compounded to get swirls out. I was unhappy about that, but the car is an 2007 so it was to be expected. Now I hand wash only.

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    Hoosier Daddy's Avatar
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    Quote Originally Posted by Stevo Supremo View Post
    yeah my black raven already has some marks FFS.. its never even seen a car wash, and I used brand new wash stuff to when I bought the car, two bucket system, microfiber wash mit and a sham..
    Don't rule out the dealer causing them while prepping the car for delivery.

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    Stevo Supremo's Avatar
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Daddy View Post
    Don't rule out the dealer causing them while prepping the car for delivery.
    yeah it really could be a number of things.. I mean its not totally obvious, they're very very VVEERRRY feint.. but I know they're there.. so it'll bug me.. ugh.

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    rustybear3 is online now Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    One of the very reasons I avoid black cars....they show every little mark, looks dirty after a rain, and needs to be constantly maintain...plus hotter then hell in the summer. I had one....it was my last!

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    Stevo Supremo's Avatar
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    my last cobalt was black.. I wasn't gonna get this one black after that.. but then I saw a pic of one with 5% tint and had to have it.. *sigh*

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    I'm dying to get my black tinted.

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    Major7 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Black Raven Paint and swirl marks

    The best method to reduce swirls is to hand wash your car yourself and rinse the wash rag (I recommend a microfiber mitt) repeatedly. So far, so good on my black raven with this approach. My ATS has a much more durable paint job than my black 2009 Mercedes C300, by the way.

    You basically have three choices once you get swirls: you can have it done professionally (my recommendation) at a detail shop, you can learn it yourself, or you can live with it.

    If you go DIY, there are some helfpul videos on youtube. Search for: How to Remove Swirl Marks From Your Car. I don't know if I can post a link here, but it's http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fjE6DhzL9U

    I bought a wheel from Harbor Freight and it works quite well. Just remember, if you mess up, you can ruin the paint job.

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