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Discussion Starter #1
I bought a clay bar kit and it included a cleaner wax. The instructions said to use the wax after the clay.

My car is silver so I don't see any swirls or many scratches. My paint looks new although I don't think it has been waxed or polished ever.

I want a good shine/protection with as little steps as possible. I don't have time, or want to work on this each and every weekend.

I am doing this by hand although I may buy a machine in the next few months if I like the results.

Should I clay bar then polish, then seal or wax? I already have the bar, a sealant and cleaner wax, as well as a clear polish/wax that worked well as a single step on a new tundra.

What are the steps everyone else uses?
 

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1959 Cadillac, 1980 Cadillac,Former 2005 CTS-V; now a 2009 V
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if the paint looks good, with no imperfections (read: bug goo, sap, etc.), then there's no need to claybar.

i'd suggest investing in an orbital buffer. must be a random orbital buffer, not a rotary (i.e. not one that you attach to a drill or angle grinder or anything)

take it from someone who's been through hell when it comes to paint and paint restoration. read some of my threads in the past if you want proof.
 

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The key to good waxing is the preperation.

Clay bar it. It doesnt take that long an is totally worth it.

Clay removes the chemicals, residue, acid rain etc etc etc that are on your paint and if your car has never been waxed then you DEFINATLY need to clay bar your paint to givee it a really good cleaning.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Gotcha

Step 1. Clay Bar...Then what?
 

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2005 CTS-V
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My V will be 4 years old soon and the paint is still perfect. I cannot spend every weekend polishing it. My approach since the day I picked up the car has been as follows:

1. I never use any soap or detergent of any kind on the car. This helps the wax to last much longer.
2. I hand wash the car with a wash mit in one hand and a running hose in the other which keeps the surface wet and obivates the need for soap.
3. If I don't have time to hand wash I will rinse it off at a self service car wash using the high pressure rinse setting only.
4. I wax the car once every 4-5 months with Black Magic Wet Shine Liquid wax, It was rated the best by Consumer Reports for shine and durability. More importantly it is one of the few long lasting products that will not add tiny scratches to the paint.
5. I have only used a clay bar on the V once when some tree sap accumulated on it. Claying is the best way to remove stuff from the surface.
6. The V has good clearcoat and unless you damage it you should not need polish-ever.
 

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2005 CTS-V, Black
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I swear by the meguiars products. Been using them for years. Rarely do I claybar my car but once a year...unless I'm about to use the cleaner wax and there is something really tough on it, like treesap or something. I use the cleaner wax by meguiars followed by the next generation tech wax. I don't trust the machines either...I've heard too moany horror stories, so I just do it all by hand. Gives you a little arm workout and I think it comes better, personally. Meguiars also makes this stuff called scratch-X that I used when I first got my V. Took a lot of the hairline scratches out that you tend to see on a black car. All in all meguiars is the best stuff IMO. Make sure you buy like a 20 pack of terrycloth towels though too. A good buff is key, especially on a black car like mine. Good luck.

-Matt
 

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Adam's Polishes all the way! easy to use, can do it in the sun or shade. polish and wax won't leave your plastics white. when you wipe it off no powder like store bought products because of powdery fillers to make them dry faster and fill up the bottle to keep the cost down!

steps to use:
Wash
Dry
Clay
Swirl Remover/Polish
Wax

Adam's website is very helpful and has streaming vids! check it out or email me!

[email protected](dot)com
 

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also forgot to add that if money isn't an issue... check out Swissvax products.... just ordered them to use on customers vehicles... i ordered their new Crystal Rock Wax which was $1100 for roughly 4oz and their Scuderia Wax for about $159 for the italian vehicles i do.... sounds like alot but this stuff is extremly good stuff!
 

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www.zainostore.com

I've used them all and this is the best balance of cost and results. Incredible results on black paint.
 

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Zaino makes the best stuff ever. Even their carwash is better than anything else. Lots of good tips here:
http://www.zainostore.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=TIPS&Store_Code=Z

I didn't think clay bar would do much.....until I used it. Clay Bar is the single best thing to do to make your paint come alive. If you get alot of bugs on the car, or get sap from trees, always claybar it off.

I would always wax/polish by hand, especially if you've never used a buffer/orbital before. Go try it on someone else's p.o.s. first if you want to use one lol.

Wash car (Z-7 I think)
Clay Bar (use leftover soap in bucket so paint is lubricated) if you just use water, clay bar gets messy.
Wash/dry car
Polish (Z-5)
Wax (Zaino wax is best shine/last longest) but use your fav wax.

Sit back and enjoy the shine
 

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if his paint looks new and he has no imperfections on it, then he doesn't need to claybar. it will just be a waste of time.
 

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2010 Thunder Gray 6MT
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Zaino makes the best stuff ever. Even their carwash is better than anything else. Lots of good tips here:
http://www.zainostore.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=TIPS&Store_Code=Z

I didn't think clay bar would do much.....until I used it. Clay Bar is the single best thing to do to make your paint come alive. If you get alot of bugs on the car, or get sap from trees, always claybar it off.

I would always wax/polish by hand, especially if you've never used a buffer/orbital before. Go try it on someone else's p.o.s. first if you want to use one lol.

Wash car (Z-7 I think)
Clay Bar (use leftover soap in bucket so paint is lubricated) if you just use water, clay bar gets messy.
Wash/dry car
Polish (Z-5)
Wax (Zaino wax is best shine/last longest) but use your fav wax.

Sit back and enjoy the shine
Ok you have convinced me! I just ordered up a bunch of stuff from there including that clay bar. :crybaby:
 

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Ok you have convinced me! I just ordered up a bunch of stuff from there including that clay bar. :crybaby:
Hellz ya!! :2thumbs:
You WON'T be disappointed!! Make sure you read the tips section, the big towel helps bigtime. Use tiny amounts (you'll see) of the Z-5 too.
 

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Ok you have convinced me! I just ordered up a bunch of stuff from there including that clay bar. :crybaby:
I have the kit that includes the clay bar, swirl remover, polish, spray sealant, activator, tire dressing, leather cleaner and conditioner and car wash soap. Best purchase ever for my V!!!!

And it came with its own tips and nifty car wash bucket :thumbsup:
 

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I got the mothers kit. Says to use the showtime spray wax to wet the paint, clay bar, dry, and apply showtime spray wax again. Gonna try it out.
 

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if his paint looks new and he has no imperfections on it, then he doesn't need to claybar. it will just be a waste of time.
Claybar isnt really about the stuff you see, its about the stuff you FEEL. So if his paint isnt as smooth as the day it rolled out of the paint booth it needs it.
 

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Claybar isnt really about the stuff you see, its about the stuff you FEEL. So if his paint isnt as smooth as the day it rolled out of the paint booth it needs it.
:yeah: Mine looked GREAT when I got it but I clay barred it anyways. It removed so much debris from the paint that i wasnt aware of. Helps the shine so much after a polish
 
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