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whats the best way To restore faded or oxidised car paintwork


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Depends what tools you've got. The best way is to machine polish using 3m fastcut plus and a swirl remover when done. No matter what anyone else says don't use farecla, things have moved on a long way since that stuff.

A good alternative to tcut is another 3m product called finesse-it. Simlar to t-cut in respect it will remove the top film of paint but much easier to use.

I'm a bodyshop and paint guy so those are the products i'd use. What car, age and colour is it? Modern cars are mainly basecoat and lacquer and thats unlikely to fade on the clear but can fade on the basecoat but there's nothing you can do about that. You can use certain polishes to restore the colour but when the polish wears off you'll be back to square one.

I've not used t cut since the late 80's, i can't believe they still sell stuff. Normally if it's for sale in Halfords you can just assume it's a crap product. Another one of lifes mysteries is how the hell they're still in business.

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Vauxhall reds are notoriously bad for fading. If it looks ok in the rain with wet paintwork then you may be ok but even at that age it should be basecoat unless it was resprayed. The problem is that the basecoat is the colour and the lacquer/clearcoat is just that, clear. So if is basecoat then it's unlikely you'll do much to restore the colour because it's beneath the clear. A way to test is to use tcut/brasso or cutting polish and if no red comes off on a light coloured cloth then the top coat is clear. Clears can sometimes yellow a bit, especially if you don't move it much and the water just sits there on top of paint but with no polish or anything then a red will fade badly because of no uv protection. I get cars only a couple years old that have faded terribly, used to be easy enough to tint the paint but with the new water based paints it's near on impossible now.

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I flicked through that guys videos, not the best guy to listen to. The machine he uses is a DA sander not even a polisher. Machine polishing is about friction between the abrasive compound and panel, the da is the wrong tool for the job. My advice would be to pay someone else to do it rather than sit through countless hours of that guys videos.

For most people it costs a lot to buy the right kit for the job. For instance machine polisher, all about torque and the cheap ones are a waste of time. Mine cost nearly £300 when i bought it and even my back up one cost £200.

Compounds i use cost about £20 litre and i mentioned 2 types but actually have about 8 different types of compounds covering different brands and coarseness. Wet and dry to remove scratches and imperfections and £25 each for a pack of 50 half sheets in 1500 and 2000 grade. 3m 3000 grade trizact pads, about £40 for a box of 15. DA sander with interface pad, £200. And i'm not even a valeter. A good valeter spends more than that just on the paint and i've not even priced the high grade waxes they use.

It can get very expensive to buy the right kit for the job and to be honest, if i want my car valeting it goes to a valeter, i don't do it myself. I have the skills but not the enthusiasm to valet cars.

I know a valeter who charges £200 for a full valet and the guy is incredible, checks every panel with paint thickness gauges and gets every panel like glass and never polishes through. He returns the car looking like brand new inside and out. If you had an expensive car you'd be crazy to even attempt a machine polish yourself, in the wrong hands a polishing machine can be a very bad thing for paintwork.

In the op's case i'd just buy the finesse-it and spend a few hours giving the once over by hand, you'll notice a hell of a difference and it's much easier than tcut. Then just a good wax on top, maybe something with good reviews from ebay , amazon or the like. I don't know much about waxes, in my job we tend to use waxes that don't send silicone airborne so they tend to be nowhere near the quality that a valeter would use.

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Your probably right daz , on something so easy to get wrong it would be worth paying the right guy rather than forking out for all the gear and gunks. But , your lucky as your in the trade and you know someone but finding the right guy to do a job like your m8 is dam hard work just like finding a decent builder

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  • 2 months later...

Any wax will do just to seal the paint and create a barrier between the bird crap and paint. The best prevention is to wipe it off whenever you see it. If you do that early enough it comes off easy. Just keep a water sprayer and kitchen roll in the car. In my job i only use trade waxes that don't send the silicone in the waxes airborne. I'm really not much of an expert in waxes. All i can say is that diamondbrite and those type of waxes that the dealer charges for are a waste of money. It's just a 2 pack wax that you can buy similar for a fraction of the cost and if it actually worked it would cause me no end of problems with prep and paint. Never had a single fish eye or silicone problem caused by it. The worst job i ever did with problems with waxes was for a guy who used to valet cars for a living. He waxed it every couple of weeks for years it just clogged up every abrasive i used on it. It was like enamel, in the end i had to go over the whole car with cloths soaked in cellulose paint thinners just to get the coating off. I don't think a flame thrower would have damaged his paintwork, let alone a bit of bird crap.

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