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Thread: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

  1. #1
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    Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    All correction has been made and paint is back to showroom "new". Regular & proper washing is being done. No signs of correction is needed and it's time to apply a fresh paint sealant. Which option would you choose?

    Option 1:
    1. Clay
    2. Paint sealant

    Option 2:
    1. Clay
    2. Polish
    3. Paint sealant

    Option 2:
    1. Clay
    2. Cleaner/sealant (all-in-one)

    In short, I am concerned applying a polish or cleaner/sealant (AOI) on existing paint in great condition will cause more damage than just applying straight paint sealant.

  2. #2
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2002mrhill View Post
    All correction has been made and paint is back to showroom "new". Regular & proper washing is being done. No signs of correction is needed and it's time to apply a fresh paint sealant. Which option would you choose?

    Option 1:
    1. Clay
    2. Paint sealant

    Option 2:
    1. Clay
    2. Polish
    3. Paint sealant

    Option 2:
    1. Clay
    2. Cleaner/sealant (all-in-one)

    In short, I am concerned applying a polish or cleaner/sealant (AOI) on existing paint in great condition will cause more damage than just applying straight paint sealant.

    well I see that all of your options have clay in them. So if you clay chances are really good that you will need to use a polish as there is a good chance that there will be some marring from the claying process. Also if you use a good polish and a light polishing pad then I doubt that you would do any harm to the paint at all. something like M205 or a menzerna fine/finishing polish. Then of course before you do the sealant wipe it down with diluted IPA mixture and then do the sealant.

  3. #3
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    I hear you on the M205...I have used Megs Ultimate Polish which is very similar. It seems not very abrasive. I've just always went on the side of not using abrasives unless needed. So I'm thinking I'd be safe to use UP with a very low cut pad, not too many passes and at lower DA speed. Glad to know you think the polish would be a safe path, thank you!

  4. #4
    Senior Member oneheadlite's Avatar
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    Just to check - have you inspected the paint (baggie test) to verify you do need to clay?

    Chances are if the car has been out in the world it'll need to be clayed, but you don't say how long it's been since it's last correction and sealing. If it passes, I would think you then you can skip all forms of abrasive (clay included), and go right to reapplying your sealant.
    Riff and Dan Tran like this.

  5. #5
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    So it is bad to clay then go directly to a sealant for possible marring caused by the clay? Rule of thumb if your claying is to follow with a polish?

  6. #6
    Senior Member rlmccarty2000's Avatar
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    Yes.

  7. #7
    Senior Member oneheadlite's Avatar
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    Since clay is a form of abrasive, it's pretty much inevitable that you'll induce some micromarring during the clay process. So you'd then want to follow up with a polish.

    That's why I was wondering if you've confirmed you have contaminants that require claying - Everyone's situation is different. The life my car lives (high daily mileage, all weather, parked outside near trees at work, etc), it's a strong candidate for having a shorter clay interval.

    For someone in better conditions, that clay interval could be drastically longer. You wouldn't bother claying (again, due to risk of inducing marring) unless you had to.

    For me, the claying process starts with the baggie test. If it passes, on to the next step.

    It also doesn't hurt to do a quick baggie test after you clay too, so you can calibrate your expectations for the future. There was a thread on here recently where someone was struggling getting a smooth baggie test, but come to find out there will always be a certain amount of texture you can feel.

    (this is all just my opinion on the matter - looking forward to other peoples thoughts)

  8. #8
    Senior Member Desertnate's Avatar
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    My answer is very concrete....it depends!

    The need for a polishing step would be driven by whether the clay bar left any marring and how long it had been since the car was polished last. If you get really lucky with the claying, you might be able to skip polishing for a while, but wax and deep grime build up over time will necessitate polishing eventually.

    Polishing with a mild product once a year should do that much harm.
    oneheadlite likes this.
    Save the Manuals!!

  9. #9
    Senior Member 2black1s's Avatar
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    Based on the description of the paint condition in the original post I'd simply apply the sealant. No clay, no polish, no anything other than wash and wax. Sometimes we tend to over analyze this ####. It's not rocket science.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Kamakaz1961's Avatar
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    Re: Would you skip polishing step given this scenario?

    OPTION 1 is what I would do. If it passes the "BAGGIE TEST" there is no need to clay. Just wash and seal. Enjoy the final detail!
    CJ
    2013 Mustang GT w/Track Pack 6-Speed Manual
    Save the Manual!

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