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I'm a pretty handy guy, and generally like to do my own maintenance, repairs, and mods. This is my first time really owning a nice car, and I want to do my absolute best to make sure that I keep these cars looking their absolute best. I've painted a car in the past and used my dad's old Milwaukee polisher (it's a heavy beast), to buff and polish the painted car. For my V Wagons, the TG car is in good shape, but spent it's life outside in the AZ sun. I'm planning on clay barring the car this weekend, but I think it'll take a bit more than a clay bar and wax to bring the paint back to like new. I know there are a lot of other options for buffing/polishing both in hardware and fluids. What would you guys recommend? I'd need to get a polisher/buffer (don't know if an orbital is the best device to use?) and what products and pads are the best and easiest to use? Figure I'm basically starting with nothing.

The black car has some really faint scratches, but overall the paint is in excellent shape. The Gray car is going to need more love, it's got some blotchiness, and some swirl marks in the paint.

Thanks,
Steve
 

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If you can run a rotary well, you can use it for corrections. If you want an inexpensive DA, harbor freight. Its noisey, but it works. You can pack more grease in the bearings to help with the noise. If you want to spend some coin flex or rupes. Of course there are plenty of offerings in price points in between the 2 extremes like griot or porter cable.

I like menzerna polishes. For menzerna heavy cut 400 on a cutting pad. I prefer microfiber (either rupes or griot boss) for cutting, but foam (I use lake country orange) works fine too. I run super finish 3500 on a white LC polishing pad. Don’t be suprised if the 400 finishes out like a polish though.
If the swirls aren’t bad, try the a polish on a panel and see if that gives you the results you want.


Once done, clean with carpro eraser or the likes to remove oils from the polishes. You can even use diluted rubbing alcohol around 30%. Then top with wathever product you wish (wax, sealant, or coating).
 

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I’m a detail guru/paint Nazi. It’s much easier to do well than you’d think. Don’t skimp on prep time. The better you prep the better the result. Check out detailedimage.com they have great boutique products at on the shelf pricing. Videoss to walk you through the processes. You can also get samples of high end products so you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get started. Menzerna Einzett Glanz,dodo juice, chemical guys are all great products that are inexpensive and work .
 

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I just bought a Porter Cable with all the standard recommended pads (starters kit) from AutoGeek for $150. Now I just need it to warm up so I can get to work on the Z06 and the V.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I’m a detail guru/paint Nazi. It’s much easier to do well than you’d think. Don’t skimp on prep time. The better you prep the better the result. Check out detailedimage.com they have great boutique products at on the shelf pricing. Videoss to walk you through the processes. You can also get samples of high end products so you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get started. Menzerna Einzett Glanz,dodo juice, chemical guys are all great products that are inexpensive and work .
So I don't have any sort of orbital/polisher at the moment, I was eyeballing the Rupes Bigfoot, but that's a lot of Cheese. I'm not afraid to spend money if it's worth the investment, but also don't want to spend money just to spend money. I'd like to stay with a pads/polish from the same manufacturer just to be sure that I'm using the right stuff together. These cars are the nicest things I've owned and don't want to mess up anything. Also I've seen what a bad polish job can do to black paint... Don't want that either...

Thanks for the recommendations.
 

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I just bought a Porter Cable with all the standard recommended pads (starters kit) from AutoGeek for $150. Now I just need it to warm up so I can get to work on the Z06 and the V.
When you get out and use it, Would you mind coming back to let me know how it goes?
 

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There's a guy here in Montreal that has a very busy youtube channel for detailing, paint correction, ceramic coat etc.... He gets so much traffic because he makes a youtube video out of every cool car he does so he's in demand and charges a pretty hefty price. I wanted him to do my car.. until he told me how much!

Anyway, lots of info on techniques, products, polishers etc.....

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCE0kcuDlwjfP2982jVH6WkQ
 

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maybe if he spent more time working and less time making videos he could charge less lol
 

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There are some cheaper options but a portal cable is a great start. Not enough power to burn through paint with a beginners touch and unaggressive pad. Lake country pads are my personal favs. They are fairly inexpensive too. Even a cheap/inexpensive polisher will work fine to start by using the correct pad and polishing compound. I’d look for a inexpensive route first. To be honest not everyone enjoys doing it. Then it gets maddening because as you correct the paint you find more and more������! I’m stuck on a oil/gas site for a few more weeks. I’ll in box you a cpl suggestions to try.
 

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I also have the Porter Cable 7424XP. Bought a proper backing plate, and Lake Country pads. Cutting, polish, and finish. I use it with Meguiar's products. It is amazing. Has no problem bringing back faded single stage on my old stuff, and making modern clear look like glass.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
There are some cheaper options but a portal cable is a great start. Not enough power to burn through paint with a beginners touch and unaggressive pad. Lake country pads are my personal favs. They are fairly inexpensive too. Even a cheap/inexpensive polisher will work fine to start by using the correct pad and polishing compound. I’d look for a inexpensive route first. To be honest not everyone enjoys doing it. Then it gets maddening because as you correct the paint you find more and more������! I’m stuck on a oil/gas site for a few more weeks. I’ll in box you a cpl suggestions to try.
Thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I also have the Porter Cable 7424XP. Bought a proper backing plate, and Lake Country pads. Cutting, polish, and finish. I use it with Meguiar's products. It is amazing. Has no problem bringing back faded single stage on my old stuff, and making modern clear look like glass.
Jay, Thanks for the info. When you say proper backing plate, what you do you mean?
 

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I run a Rupes lhr15 among a couple other brands that I use for smaller areas. DA’s are very forgiving, unlike rotaries. Two of my nieces who had never ran a da were able to correct their car’s paint with minimal instruction. For pads, I use Lake Country, Rupes, or Griot Boss pads on the Rupes. For correction products, I’ve used menzerna, griot, and meguiars with the rupes. They all work.

Now is the rupes worth it? For me, yes, but I make $ off of it, and the smoothness of operation over less pricey options helps my hands not to get as stiff/sore due to arthritis. I got a long throw to knock out the larger panels quicker.
Is it worth it for you? How often do you plant to use it? The problem with long throws are the areas where they can’t get. Ex) You’ll probably want a 3” pad at the largest and shorter throw for the front grill area among other tighter spots.
 
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You can do nice work with rotaries IF you know how to use them properly. I started with rotary back in the early 90's with wool cutting and polishing pads (buying and selling cars through college on the side). I cut through my fair share of paint edges until I learned to master it. However, for most cars and enthusiasts, the technology of DA polishers is the way to go. Almost impossible to cut edges and curves.
For the occasional polishing the Porter Cable is good. I went with the Shurhold DA. It has a long throw and is very smooth. I like where the speed dial is located too.
https://shurhold.com/collections/dual-action-polisher . I think it's a good upper middle ground machine
Been using Lake country pads. It made the beast shine perfectly. Lots of Rag Company Microfiber towels too!
Meguiars M105 and M205 can pretty much accomplish anything you need done.

I actually did what most would never attempt....to wet sand the entire hood, fenders and bumper. I was on the fence of painting it as it had some bird poop staining in areas form PO along with micro chips and the dreaded orange peel that I HATE on these cars. Wet sanding along with Dr. Color chip.....and many hours it turned out great. I had to rotary polish back to shine, then the Shurhold did the rest.
I ended up putting PPF on front clip and bumper to protect it all.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
You can do nice work with rotaries IF you know how to use them properly. I started with rotary back in the early 90's with wool cutting and polishing pads (buying and selling cars through college on the side). I cut through my fair share of paint edges until I learned to master it. However, for most cars and enthusiasts, the technology of DA polishers is the way to go. Almost impossible to cut edges and curves.
For the occasional polishing the Porter Cable is good. I went with the Shurhold DA. It has a long throw and is very smooth. I like where the speed dial is located too.
https://shurhold.com/collections/dual-action-polisher . I think it's a good upper middle ground machine
Been using Lake country pads. It made the beast shine perfectly. Lots of Rag Company Microfiber towels too!
Meguiars M105 and M205 can pretty much accomplish anything you need done.

I actually did what most would never attempt....to wet sand the entire hood, fenders and bumper. I was on the fence of painting it as it had some bird poop staining in areas form PO along with micro chips and the dreaded orange peel that I HATE on these cars. Wet sanding along with Dr. Color chip.....and many hours it turned out great. I had to rotary polish back to shine, then the Shurhold did the rest.
I ended up putting PPF on front clip and bumper to protect it all.
That's great information! Thank you for the time to write it down. I'll check out the PC and the Shurhold.
 
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