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Thread: Restoring old paintwork

  1. #1

    Restoring old paintwork

    This is a basic guide on restoring the paintwork on your vehicle, the procedure is the same regardless of whether it is metallic or a solid colour.

    Over the years paintwork suffers from all the natural elements including unatural ones, whether that be UV rays, bird crap or other fallout. so no matter how much you wax it all you are doing is polishing the crap not the paint!

    As an example im using a 1986 Caddy that hasnt seen so much as a bucket of water in years, let alone a polish! The paintwork on this Caddy is ideal as it covered in dirt/dust, is stone chipped, has faded, has grinder, bird and other fallout, so its as rough to touch as Gandi's flipflop

    Ok so this is how it looks now, years of neglect


    Wiped down a section with just a wet soapy cloth to remove the dirt


    Now its dried you can work out some of the damage including some bird crap etched into the upper layers



  2. #2
    Ok so now the surface dirt has been removed its time to flat the paintwork down with 2000 grade wet n dry

    (note: you need to clean all the loose dirt off of the paintwork as in the above post before trying to wet flat, otherwise these bits of dirt will scratch the paint like a scouring pad!)

    Use a bucket of warm water with washing up liquid and take a rubber rubbing block with the 2000 and gently rub the paint to remove the surface ground in dirt & chemicals. Dip your rubbing block in the soapy water often and keep away from the corners of bodywork so as you dont rub through.

    Dry it off with a squeegy and inspect; If there are still light scratches or inperfections then continue until they are removed

    Now once you happy with the flatting down and it looks matt but even then your ready for some rubbing compound

    At this point its worth mentioning that you now have the opportunity to removed the orange peel which all vehicles have, removing this will give you a flatter surface and a deeper final shine

    Flatted down with 2000


    Its now time for the rubbing compound (Fareca G3 is strongly recommended)

    Use a rotary polishing mop for this step otherwise it will be hard labour by hand and you wont get the same result.

    Make sure the mop head is damp and that you keep moving so as you dont burn the paint.

    Apply the G3 onto the mop head and then spread this around the area of bodywork you are working on (without power) so thats its fairly even, Mop in all directions and make sure you cover the whole area to bring back an even shine

    Keeping the mop head damp and the speed low will help reduce swirls in the paint

    I masked it off so we can compare after

    Mopped and wiped off with with a soft cloth


    When you happy that you have removed all the scratches left from flatting down and got an even shine then its time to glaze the paint by hand to finish off

    I have used 3M hand glaze for years and really rate it although it was hard work and is no longer available in its original formula So for this I have used Meguires Show Glaze (now owned by 3M!!!) as its the next best thing and its easier to work with. Apply with an application sponge and polish off with a lint free or fibre clotch

    So this is the finished section compared to how it was. this process only took 10 minutes max, and a complete car is manageable in a day

    The white marks you can see are stone chips, the best thing to do about these is to touch them in at the flatting stage; So flat, touch in, flat...



    And thats about it, I will add more if I think of anything
    Last edited by Al; 25-06-2015 at 06:20 PM.

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