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Hi,

I just got a 04 Carbon Black/Cinnamon coupe and I need tips on detailing/cleaning/waxing the interior/exterior. What products do I need, how can I keep from getting swirls, when should I start detailing?

Should I go with the new Meguirs NXT or should I stick with Zaino for CB? Also, how can I keep the leather looking new? Also, I was going to pick up a clay bar, but is it too early to start clay barring?

What kind of towels should I use for cleaning/waxing/etc. and where can I get them?

I'm a total newb, so any help is appreciated.
 

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manav said:
Hi,

I just got a 04 Carbon Black/Cinnamon coupe and I need tips on detailing/cleaning/waxing the interior/exterior. What products do I need, how can I keep from getting swirls, when should I start detailing?

Should I go with the new Meguirs NXT or should I stick with Zaino for CB? Also, how can I keep the leather looking new? Also, I was going to pick up a clay bar, but is it too early to start clay barring?

What kind of towels should I use for cleaning/waxing/etc. and where can I get them?

I'm a total newb, so any help is appreciated.
These are a lot of questions... (you may want to join Autopia.org and look at the new waves).

I personally like Wolfgang on darker metallics.

http://www.autogeek.net/kitspecials.html

It is like Zaino (it is a synthetic polymer) but I think it provides a warmer finish where as Zaino can look cold and sterile. It's all what you like best. Just know that people that have used Zaino have either: 1) said they would use Wolfgang in the future or 2) stayed with Zaino but still said Wolfgang was a great product. I haven't heard anything bad said about Wolfgang on Autopia. I've used it, it is easy to apply and take off. The pre-wax polish works great but is a little difficult to spread, but nothing horrible.

Leather you are going to want to clean and condition frequently. To clean you can mix up 1 part Woolite to 6 parts water. It works well, and is gentle. (I love that color combo you picked, by the way - awesome choice). As for leather conditioners, I have used UV2 on everything from a lexus IS300 to a mercedes S430 without a problem, and it isn't a phenomonal product, so you can be sure most products would work well on your leather. I've seen the Zymol stuff at target and it looks good. Most important is to keep it well conditioned so it doesn't crack. BMW leather is very durable, from what I have seen-- as is most German leather (well, Mercedes uses NAPA which isn't that great...but i'm not getting into that). :)

Clay barring a new car is a good idea. Any time a car is shipped, there is a lot of dust and contamination that gets imbedded in the paint. Sometimes you'll notice on an older white car that the paint is getting orange spots of rust that is on the surface. That's what clay barring will prevent. So, since you're going to be doing all of this work, you might as well do a little more and clay bar it first. :)

Towels towels towels. Never use regular polyester bath towels on a car--polyester was made to be pound for pound stronger than steel and it will micromar your paint. Microfiber is the way to go. I'm a huge fan of Pakshak microfibers (http://www.pakshak.com/) Amazing quality and durability, and free shipping. Get a waffle weave for drying your car--you will not regret it!).

Also, use a wash mit (Walmart Concordia lambswool are surprisingly soft and good), not a sponge, to wash the car. Use two buckets, a bucket with the car wash soap, and another with clean water. Dunk the mit in the soapy water, wash a panel, and put it in the clear/clean water and rinse it out well. Then put it in the soapy water. This will keep your soapy water clean and reduce the chance of rubbing grit onto your car.

Now, when washing, you want to work from the top of the car down (from cleanest to dirtiest, basically). Do the hood, roof, and trunklid first. Then do the fenders and the doors from the bumpstrips up. Then get below that and the bumpers last. It's for the same reason you should use two buckets--you don't want to be rubbing things from the lower parts of the car onto the higher more visable parts). :)

Ok I hope this helps. :) :)

Various pictures of wolfgang on darker colors from Autopia:


:)
 
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