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  1. #11
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    Re: Help with new BLACK Dodge Challenger

    Mike, thank you so much for your thorough response. I truly appreciate it. I actually wrote a reply earlier this morning, but it did not show up for some reason. I will figure it out eventually. Lol!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Nice story thank you for sharing. I hope and am confident you're wife appreciates your follow-up work after the sale by now taking ownership of the appearance maintenance of her new super cool car!
    You are most welcome. She is ecstatic with all of the research and work I have put into it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Lots of places sell stuff, what separates Autogeek from the rest is the education aspect of our business model. Our customer care support staff are also top notch, hopefully no one ever needs help from customer care but for those times when it is needed it's nice to have top notch people you can rely on to do the right thing.
    I agree 100%.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    I can tell already you've been reading and watching videos. No doubt you've come across multiple, multiple times where I explain how a car looks all comes down to how the paint is "touched". I know it sound super simple but it is the reality of it.
    I definitely have seen that, and I am a believer for sure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Just curious... was that purchase decision made after reading this article?

    Here's what you need to get into machine polishing - Recommendations for a beginner by Mike Phillips
    In fact it was. That one along with quite a few other articles, videos, and other information.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    And thank you for taking the time to join this forum and create your first thread. In my opinion, this is the best way to get "more" help. With this forum myself and others can "easily" share,

    • Pictures
    • Videos
    • Links to more information
    • Format our replies using headings, bold text, italics, etc.,
    • Plus put all of the above information in a linear format that makes it easy for the human eyes to read and absorb.


    You just can't do the above with other social media platforms like FB, Instagram, Twitter, SnapChat... And the "environment" in these other social platforms in my experience tends to be a tick on crude and vulgar side. Okay for some I guess.
    I agree 100% again. This is a fantastic forum and the information couldn't be better. Thank you again for sharing your wealth of knowledge.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    I's say that's a wise choice. Coatings are the new hip thing that everyone's going mad over and I agree they have their place and I in fact use a coating on one of our cars, but they are not the end-all, be-all the uber hype makes them out to be. For a daily driver, a one-step cleaner/wax is a great way to go and the way I take care of our other car.
    That was the direction I was originally leaning. Then I started reading and watching a lot of your stuff and I came to the same conclusion as you in the end.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    3D HD Speed uses amazing abrasive technology. You are going to be impressed with what it can do on black paint. And here's the deal. Any product that works great on black paint works great on all paint.
    I can't wait to try it. Now, if the weather will cooperate. Lol!


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Yes. There's a number of things you can do to make working outside easier. If you live where it gets really hot then start early in the morning. When working on car paint, work smaller sections at a time and wipe the excess residue off the paint immediately. Clean you pad often. Have lots of clean towels. Have a roll-around cart that is clean to set your towels, tools and product on.
    I actually read your material on the subject. I will definitely be using these tips.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    You want to treat these matte graphics like a newborn baby, that is GENTLE in everything you do. Washing, drying, wiping and overall in anyway you ever "touch" them.
    I have definitely already seen that this is the case. I will be doing exactly that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Yeah... while they look cool... they are a pain in the butt to live with, work around and take care of. My guess is the cool-factor will wear-off as time goes by. While not an option when buying a new car, in the custom car world, the way to do it right is to put all graphics under the clearcoat. Then you get the "look" without the "work".
    Knowing what I know now, I would definitely rethink the vinyl stripes. The funny thing is, the stripes weren't really a deciding factor on the car purchase. She was really wanting the blacked-out look. Unfortunately for me, the only one they had with the blacked out wheels and badges (and it was a fantastic deal) had the graphics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Here's my recommendation... in order...
    Thank you for your recommendations, I really appreciate it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    1: Yes tape off the edges.
    Given your next recommendation, would you tape them off in a block? In other words, don't worry about the gaps and just make a single straight line with the tape along the edges?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    2: No - don't worry about the thin strip of paint in-between the graphics. At least don't worry about machine polishing it until you bring up your skill level for working by hand or if these sections are at least an 1" wide you're ready to purchase a machine with a 1" pad to do the work for you and even then, being a daily driver I wouldn't. Maybe just carefully use a finger or two to gently rub some HD Speed over them and then wipe if off and in the future - ALWAYS touch these areas uber carful, (washing, drying and wiping).
    This is a relief. I was really sweating how to properly take care of those areas.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    3: If you use a matte care product before you polish the paint you probably won't be able to get the tape to stick to the matte graphics to then protect them. It's a damned if you do, damned if you don't type situation. I'd say tape off and polish first and the remove the tape and apply the matte products.
    I hadn't even considered the aspect of the tape sticking. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Most important - when working around the edges of the matte surfaces, even when taped-off, TAKE YOUR TIME. BE CAREFUL. And in the great advice Mike Pennington from Meguiar's always shares with others and taught me to share with others...


    S-L-O-W --- D-O-W-N
    I will make sure to take it really slow. Especially this first time.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Buff & Shine has two pad lines with blue pads,

    • Uro-Tech
    • Uro-Cell


    In both these pad lines, the blue colored foam pad is the MOST aggressive pad.

    My normal protocol when using a one-step cleaner/wax is to test a "polishing" pad first and see if this will create the results you're looking for because you can always get more aggressive.

    The cut of an aggressive foam pad can actually mar the paint in and of itself, so when doing a one step process, when using great product the pad can end up leaving buffer trails or a shadow effect in the paint.

    Which pad line did you get?
    Forgive me for the confusion. I didn't even realize they had other blue pads. I got the 5.5" Flat Foam Pads. These are the pads. Should I rethink using these? These look like a lighter blue than the ones to which you referred.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    So I'd suggest doing a Test Spot using one of these pads first and then inspect the results and go from there.
    I am definitely going to do a test spot.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    I show EXACTLY how to do a Test Spot in this video as well as how to detail a car from start to finish...

    Best video ever on how to machine buff a car from start to finish
    I have actually watched this one. Thank you for including it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    Hope the above helps... and welcome to AGO


    It definitely has helped already. Thank you so much, Mike. I am glad to be here.

  2. #12
    Senior Member osiapstndp's Avatar
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    Re: Help with new BLACK Dodge Challenger

    Quote Originally Posted by soonerrob View Post
    Do any of you know how soft the black paint on these Challengers is?
    Every Pitch Black Challenger I've worked on, including my own, has soft clear coat. The old Brilliant Black and the newer Phantom Black (same color, different name) is medium hardness, based off of my experience. Pitch Black has no pearlized effect. Brilliant and Phantom Black do have pearlized effect.

    In regard to the matte stripes, as others mentioned, they can be damaged if handled improperly. If you want to perform any kind of compounding and polishing against the paintwork be extra careful around the matte vinyl. If you tape around the edges it is absolutely, 100% possible for the solvents/petroleum distillates/whatever to bleed under the tape and stain the below surface. When in doubt, call it safe and stay away from the edges.

    If you have to get in between the two stripes you can try a short nap microfiber towel and a compound or polish. Put your finger on one side of the towel and rub the area vigorously, taking extra special caution to not jut against the graphics. When I do this I still tape off the vinyl. There's a chance that the microfiber and abrasive combo may be aggressive enough to leave behind an unsightly cutting pattern, in which case you can follow up with a light polish and a one-inch foam polishing pad. I like to use the Flex one-inch pads.

    I tried for a bit to find a picture of the last Challenger I worked on where I had to mask off the matte RT Classic side stripes and refinish the clear coat in between the vinyl's shape and intricacies, but I couldn't find a good example.

    With enough patience and time it is possible to get these tiny areas, but you need to decide if it's worth it for you and your wife.

  3. Thanks soonerrob thanked for this post
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