DIY Paint Correction/Coating

Discussion in 'Ford Raptor Cleaning and Detailing Forum' started by pierceography, Oct 10, 2018.

Sponsored By: Adam's Polishes
  1. pierceography

    pierceography Full Access Member

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    So my '19 order is scheduled for the week of 11/05, and being as OCD as I am about vehicle detailing, I'm considering paint protection beyond standard waxing. I've read a lot on ceramic coating, and think that's the best bet, however the $2k(ish) price tag will be hard for me (*cough*thewife*cough*) to justify.

    I've watched a few videos on how to paint correct and ceramic coat a vehicle on your own, and it doesn't seem terribly difficult. It's time intensive, sure, but that doesn't bother me in the least. So I have some questions that hopefully others in the forum can help me with.

    Brand: I'd like to stick to a single brand for everything (corrosion removal, polish, coating). So far, I like Adams the best based on what I've read, but am open to suggestions. What polishes/coatings do members recommend?

    Timing: Correction/Coating is something I plan on doing almost immediately after taking delivery of the truck. Couple questions: 1) Can this be done right away, or should I give the paint/clear coat more time to "settle"? 2) How does climate affect this? I live in SE Michigan, and late November/early December will be cold. I can have the truck in my garage with a heater going, but I doubt I'll be able to keep the temperature above 55 degrees for prolonged periods.

    Technique: I plan on washing, clay barring, removing iron, polishing, and ceramic coating. I've only ever washed/waxed before, and while the videos that are online seem very straight forward, can anyone in the forum offer tips/tricks that may not be evident to a first-timer? And considering the truck will almost literally be right off the line, how aggressive should I be with the polishing? I assume I won't need a heavy corrective polish. How many stages of paint correction will be needed? (I understand this is all subjective based on the condition of the clear coat)

    Polisher: I don't own a machine polisher, and am considering purchasing the Milwaukee M18 7" tool (I'm already invested in their battery line). Any feedback on this particular polisher or recommendations on others to consider?

    And, of course, open feedback is welcome. Thanks in advance for any advice offered!
     
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  2. BajaLaz

    BajaLaz Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    You seem like the type that would benefit from paint protection film. Like yourself, I once obsessed about polished and buffing and all the other messes I could make of my paint doing it myself. Then I realized it was worth the rediculous amount of money it was to fully wrap my Shelby Baja Raptor with xpel. I spent the money and never looked back. Couldn’t be happier. They threw a ceramic coat on top of it. Now all I have to do is wash it and every few months hit it with a layer or carpro reload which is a silica based coating to go over the ceramic.

    Have some piece of mind and get the wrap.
     
  3. pierceography

    pierceography Full Access Member

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    I appreciate advice, but my desire to do this myself is driven primarily by not wanting to spend $2,000 on the paint protection. While I would love to have the truck wrapped (the matte look is fantastic), increasing that $2,000 by 350% is moving this conversation in the wrong direction, lol.

    Thanks, though.
     
  4. BajaLaz

    BajaLaz Supporting Vendor Supporting Vendor

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    Ok whatever you do please don’t get the 7” rotory tool. You will destroy your paint. Use a da polisher to start and eventually get a rotory, buy a hood at a junk yard, and practice. You will burn right through the paint if you are not experienced. Correction should be done in a low humidity setting. Should be a single stage polish, if you need to use a compound or wet sand I would be very upset with your dealer. A product with very low cut for removing swirl marks.

    If you want as little swirl in the paint as possible tell the dealer not to prep the vehicle. They have no idea what they are doing and the wash boy will make things worse.

    Don’t ever go in a car wash.

    Two bucket wash by hand.

    Air dry with blower.

    That’s about all I have.
     
  5. pierceography

    pierceography Full Access Member

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    Thanks for the tips. Everything you mentioned about washing I already do or plan to, but definitely good advice.

    What is the difference between a dual action polisher and rotary? DA is oscillating and/or random orbital?

    I also plan on practicing on my current F150, which is leased and I'll be turning it in when I pick up the Raptor. The tailgate has a lot of swirl marks and scratches in the clear coat, so a good place to practice.

    *edited to correct terminology*
     
  6. crash457

    crash457 I'm Batman Supporting Member

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    New vehicle paint is cured by the time you take delivery, so you are free to detail it immediately. As for sticking with a single line, you're really limiting yourself. You can see some reviews of different products here:
    https://www.fordraptorforum.com/threads/detailing-product-reviews.58466/

    As for cost and time, there is a reason that detailing costs what it does. When I detailed my 2 day old 2017 Raptor, it was 18 hours in total. 14 hours was just polishing. This could be significantly less with better tools. I was using a Porter Cable DA at the time. I have since upgraded to a Rupes Bigfoot and it is smoother and works much faster.

    For a coating, you want the paint as perfect as possible before applying. Also every coating has it's own quirks and differences. Some are very easy to apply while others are very finicky. Take your time and watch a lot of videos before you choose which one to use. There is a lot of helpful info on the Obsessed Garage channel. I recommend watching as many of Matt's videos as you can.
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGRyY0QUPHBdl2EnPphB9WA

    All of that considered, here is my personal recommendation:

    Two bucket wash with a good pH Nuetral Soap like Adam's Car Shampoo

    Iron decontamination with IronX

    Clay with Nanoskin and Glide

    Polish with a Long Throw DA like Rupes Bigfoot or Adam's swirl killer (Porter cable if you're on a budget and don't mind the extra time and the workout it will give your arms). A single step polish should be sufficient on a brand new truck. I like Sonax Pefect finish on a Rupes Yellow pad.

    Wipe down with a CarPro Eraser or IPA to remove the polishing oils.

    Coat with the coating of your choice. Be sure to follow the directions exactly. If you screw this up, you have to buff it off and start over. I don't have a recommendation here as I prefer the look of a good sealant/wax combo and haven't used any coatings.

    Hope this helps.
     
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  7. pierceography

    pierceography Full Access Member

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    Yeah, I certainly understand the reason for the $2k cost... But that doesn't mean I'm willing to pay it, lol. I thoroughly expect the process to take me at least 20 hours over several days, if not longer.

    That's great advice on the individual products. The reason I wanted to stick with an individual line was due to a greater likelihood of "getting it right" with a standard set of products that are designed to work together, rather than piecemealing my own solution together. Your reviews are what I was looking for, so I'm more comfortable purchasing separate brands for the same job now.

    The Rupes sounds like a great polisher, but a little out of my price range (at least to start). BajaLaz strongly advised against rotary (orbital) polishers -- What are your thoughts? The porter cable DA seems to be a popular choice, and is cheaper than the Milwaukee, so I might just go with that.

    Thanks for the feedback (to both you and BajaLaz), very helpful and appreciated!
     
  8. pierceography

    pierceography Full Access Member

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    Any recommendations on polishing/cutting pads? 6" hook and loop, since it looks like I'll be going with the PC DA polisher.

    Thanks.
     
  9. crash457

    crash457 I'm Batman Supporting Member

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    I would advise against a rotary polisher for all but the most experienced detailer. You can burn through clear coat in a heartbeat. Stick with DA. It's hard to do any real damage with a DA. As for pads, I'd recommend Chemical Guys Hex Logic. They are cheap and do a good job. For cutting, the Hex Logic orange pad will work. For finish polishing, go with the white pad. Get multiple pads and switch them out after 2 panels. Foam gets loaded up quickly with spent product and residue. I'd say you want 5 or 6 pads to do the whole truck.
     
  10. TK85

    TK85 Member

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    Look into the flex 3401 also. That paired with lake country pads have always worked for me.
     

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