I’ll start off this way: Sorry I’m late 🙁
I’ve gotten several misty eyed queries about where my annual car detailing post is. Well this year I had to work on my birthday for the first time in almost 6 years. Thus my post is delayed a few days – and here it is! This year I’m trying something new: Klasse – the famous German engineered synthetic polish and “wax sealant”. My brother-in-law bought me a set for Christmas and I have been patiently waiting for the chance to use it – well here it is. I’ll be running through the following steps:
- A wash with my new Pinnacle ultra wash mitt using Pinnacle Bodywork Shampoo
- Clay bar with Pinnacle Crystal Mist and Pinnacle Clay
- Treatment with Klasse All-In-One polish base.
- Treatment with Klasse High Gloss Sealant
- Full waxing with Pinnacle Souveran to top it off with that ultra-wet
I’ll be doing all of this work on my 2012 328i, which now has about 19K miles on it. This will be the first real waxing I’ve given this car. Last year I was still to busted up about my Turbo-X to give a crap, but I’ll make up for it this year. My 328i has proven to be a great car – a wee bit underpowered and perhaps kind of “mainstream”, but overall it is a great car to drive, gets fantastic gas mileage (30.5 MPG), and has great electronics. It will be interesting to see how the mineral grey paint responds to all of this.
Like every year – this will be a running blog!!! Updates after each step.
Operating Room Prep!
Well – yeah I can’t over emphasize cleaning up the garage before starting. You’ll be clay bar’ing, waxing, sealing, etc. in here later. Now is the time to clean it out so that you are not kicking up dust and dirt into the wax.
Washing and Prep
Nothing to see here – just a standard wash today. Luthien did get me a new wash mitt to replace my lambswool one. I’ve finally decided that a poly mitt is superior to lambswool. I’ve gone back and forth for a while on this one. With a ploy mitt, little hairs don’t get caught and ripped off, stuff does not tend to get “stuck” in the hairs, and the poly simply holds more suds. Plus I think perhaps death for the poor little sheep just to wash my car is a bit crappy.
Washing can only do so much. After a year of bugs, snow, rain, mud, goop from who knows what, your paint has tons of crap stuck to it that just refuses to budge with even the best car shampoos. It is quite amazing how good the wash does. Here’s a gallery of goo that shows just what is left after a wash:
Pretty nasty – check that bug squish on the headlight. Some of the marks on the hood look like dents into the paint – but they are not. They are bird turds or tar.
Clay Bar – Pinnacle Clay and Crystal Mist
The next step is to move the car into shade, have lunch and a couple of beers (Harp Lager and a Bellhaven Wee Heavy in my case) to let the car cool off, and then start the clay bar. This step will remove all that crap. Its important to take your time and use lots of detail spray. I went thru a bottle and a half of spray! Crystal Mist is pretty expensive – Meguiars Quick Detail is also quite good and cheaper.
I had to go over a number of places a few times. Patience is the best thing. Keep spraying lubricant and just keep gently rubbing. Don’t press hard – and resist the urge to use just a fingernail. If your arm is getting tired you are either a world class whimp or you are pressing too hard.
Every year I’m just shocked at how much junk is removed by the clay – check it out! Holy smokes. I’m really pleased with how well the bar removed material near the rear wheels – I thought this was paint damage, but no – it was just stuff stuck on hard.
Here’s a few shots for how the same areas look after clay bar.
I’m a virgin with this stuff – so we’ll have to see how it goes. My understanding is that you want to apply as little as possible of this stuff, while still covering the car. I’m doing this with a poly pad just like waxing. Its a bit difficult going trying to balance having enough material on the pad to glide it easily and not having too much on the car. It also dries fairly quickly so its not possible really to go back over it.
Well I think the best thing to do is to squeeze out a quarter sized amount and work it into the pad and then apply it. Really work it in each time you put it on the pad and then spread it on the car.
Its also a good idea to have good lighting – I don’t. Good lighting will really help to see your coverage. In general I think this part went well and the car is nice and shiny. Onto the next step!
Klasse High Gloss Sealant
Alright – this one was kinda hard. Either I put way to much or way to little – I’m going with way too little. It seemed pretty difficult to buff out this stuff. It seemed to me that perhaps I had streaks from too little material. I’ll see in the morning I suppose. I buffed and buffed – at first I was worried that I had scratched up the car, but I think it was the product. My guess is that I didn’t use enough. Well – I have to wait 12 hours and its not like it looked horrible or anything. Here’s a few pics from where I ended today. Tomorrow morning will be a bit of Souveran 🙂 My arms are tired – yo Sensei wax on, wax off.
Wax On – Wax Off: Souveran Carnauba
At this point – what the heck! Might as well go for the best that you can get. I f I had time I would do 3-4 more Klasse Sealant treatments, but I don’t so Souveran will be the way to go now. I’ve applied Souveran a bunch of times to cars. It is a great wax that goes on easy and off pretty easily, however this time it really was a dream. I had the entire car waxed and buffed in about an hour. Coming off with a high-wet gloss – the wax was very easy to slide off. I did tape up the various rubber surfaces, but that’s pretty easy on this car because there was only the pieces around the windows to worry about. While putting the wax on I noticed that the wax had the same basic properties (haze) as the Klasse so I think all the blogs pointing out that Carnauba will “yellow” your clearcoat whereas Klasse won’t is crap.
Anyway…I’m pleased with how the car came out, although the grey does not pop like black, especially in photos. I did my best. Here’s a gallery: