Sunday, July 29, 2012

Some MINI paint maintenance

mini_wax_03Just a quick post regarding some light detailing I did over the weekend on the MINI. I say light, but it took me all day Saturday and no telling how much water I lost due to the high temps. Really by light, I mean all I did was work on getting some new wax on the MINI, cleaned up the black trim some and just a little bit of cleaning on the interior. I did not get into all the nooks and crannies to get them cleaned.

After 110k+ miles the paint was starting to show some age, especially in the form of swirls. I try to take good care of the MINI, washing and waxing it on a regular basis. Still, over time it is inevitable that a daily driver is going to need a little extra attention.

First step was a wash with Dawn so I could get all the old wax stripped off.  Just that step was an improvement. Next I used some Meguiars Ultimate Compound to try to remove the swirling and some other surface blemishes. I was pretty happy with the results - probably removed around 95% of the problems. But it would definitely take something more aggressive to get that last little bit or if I had more severe problems to start with.

I normally use Prima Epic wax, but decided to try some Griot's Best in Show wax this time. That turned out to be a mistake. I'm sure Griot's is good (there are a lot of people that like it) and the problems were probably self-induced. The main issue was it never seemed to haze over like I'm used to seeing a wax do when I read the instructions and they say "wait for haze to form". Thus, the wax ended up way too dry and it was a chore getting it buffed off (I can still see spots here and there where I didn't get it all off). More significant than the hard work, I was most disappointed that the final product didn't look any better than it does. Yes, it is nice and shiny and to the touch I can tell I have a nice, smooth finish. It just does not seem to have any depth or pop to it.

Anyway, below are some pics I was able to grab. When you get really close, you can see some of the blemishes in the form of chips, dings, etc., that have amassed over all the miles of motoring. Still, looks pretty good imo.

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