How to make an oxidized car look great - without a lot of money - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 10:01 AM Thread Starter
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How to make an oxidized car look great - without a lot of money

My '87 Milano is very oxidized (original red) and I was wondering if there is any sort of wax or polish that will spruce it up. I've tried carnauba and it works fairly well but it lasts for about two months. I can't afford a new paint job (a college student on a VERY tight budget.)
Any recommendations at all would be of great help. Thanks.
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 10:38 AM
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Well, you could use rubbing compound or a milder paint polish, like Maguires, depending on how oxidized the paint is. I rubbed out a '62 Pontiac catalina with an exteremly dull paint job with turtle wax rubbing compound by hand and ended up with a very shiny looking body. After waxing the rag would slide off the car from almost anywhere you'd lay it down. Lotta work but worth the results!

Good Luck!
Paul

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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 02:59 PM
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3M makes a "cleaner wax" specifically for oxidized paints and it works very well on oxidized reds. They have a formula for mild, medium, and severe oxidization. I used the medium on a red Audi and would get about 3 months of nice shine and water beading. It is also pretty easy to apply and remove by hand, and even easier with a random orbital.

Joe
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 03:26 PM
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Use WD-40! J/K As Joe said, Meguire's "cleaner wax" works well. Have you had the car wet sanded? That could help, just remember to keep it outta the sun afterwards.
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks

Thanks for the help guys.
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 05:36 PM
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Borrow a buffer. get a cutting pad, and a soft pad. Good liquid wax, and start jamming. That will do the best job.

Sniady
'how the devil do they do that with a live rear axle?'
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-01-2005, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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Question What's a cutting pad?

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Originally Posted by Sniady
Borrow a buffer. get a cutting pad, and a soft pad. Good liquid wax, and start jamming. That will do the best job.
What's a cutting pad?
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-02-2005, 05:35 PM
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its a wool pad. looks like blond fox hair glued to a round pad. it's made for removing minor oxidation, scratches, bird doo doo, etc etc. then the soft pad come's in to clean up the solar rolls that the cutting pad creates. after that a light sheet of wax should be applied, and then removed.

if this is a job you know you won't do, then i'd try using a Clay Bar. It might take some of that oxidation off.

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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-02-2005, 10:11 PM
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Very inportant The old cars had paint you could move around when rubbed and no clear coat. Your newer Alfa has a clear coat and paint that is more like cement. Be carfule as you could cut the clear coat... but if you have to remove it you will have a lot of work because you will have to remove it all to make it look good. But if you do the above with a lot of elbo work it will look better
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-08-2005, 12:34 PM
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I hate to admit this, but one of the best products to use on oxidized cars is Nu Finish, that stuff in the orange bottle you find at the local Auto Zone/Pep Boys/Checker/Wal Mart. It is one of those totally synthetic products that truly is a wipe on/wipe off product.

I used it on my Father-in-Law's hopelessly sunbaked Triumph a couple of weeks ago (sat in the Arizona sun for about 10 years) and it brought the finish back to an acceptable standard. It works best if you do it a second time about two weeks later. You can probably do a Spider in about 30 minutes.

Of course, the "correct" way to do it is to use a series of progressively finer polishing compounds on non-burning foam pads on a random orbital, followed by a protective coat of pure wax. However, at $3.99 a bottle, the Nu Finish is worth a try.

Remember, wax alone cannot restore a finish. The shine is brought back either through mechanical means (the polishing compounds) or chemical means (Nu Finish removing the oxidation). Wax only protects and enhances what is there.

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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-09-2005, 04:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by claykilla
Well, you could use rubbing compound or a milder paint polish, like Maguires, depending on how oxidized the paint is. I rubbed out a '62 Pontiac catalina with an exteremly dull paint job with turtle wax rubbing compound by hand and ended up with a very shiny looking body. After waxing the rag would slide off the car from almost anywhere you'd lay it down. Lotta work but worth the results!

Good Luck!
Paul
Can anything be done with dull flat metalic paint, as far as polish is concerned ?

Phil
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Previously owned
1983 Ford Laser KB, Beige
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-17-2005, 03:56 PM
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I double recommend rubbing compound
I also noticed that the 3m stuff is great on windows.. although i'm not sure if it "should" be done (if careful?)

'82 Spider Veloce - (Megasquirt II V3.0, distributorless EDIS)
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-29-2005, 03:36 PM
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Before trying the abrasive route, I would try a chemical cleaner such as Klasse All-In-One. Alternatively try a mild polish such as Meguiars #80 before looking at a stronger one. Only consider a compound polish if you really need it.
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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-29-2005, 07:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowejackson
Before trying the abrasive route, I would try a chemical cleaner such as Klasse All-In-One. Alternatively try a mild polish such as Meguiars #80 before looking at a stronger one. Only consider a compound polish if you really need it.
I agree, I've seen some amazing results with oxidation and Klasse AIO. If you decide it isn't doing enough, step up to a mildly abbrasive polish. Keep stepping up to slightly more abbrasive polishes until you find one that works. Don't worry about the fact you have bought several bottles... After you have gotten the oxidation off with the most abbrasive product, reverse steps with the milder products. They will reduce the hazing/swirls that the more aggresive polishes will leave behind. 3M, Meguiars, Poorboys all make decent polishes.

Consider buying (or borrowing) a Random Orbital buffer for this job (Porter Cable 7424 is fantastic but expensive). It will save your arms a lot of pain.

Take some before/after pics. If you do a good enough job and enjoy it, you might have a new source of income from the people who see your results (it pays decent for a college student).

I had a lot of neighbors offer to pay me to do their cars after they saw the job I would do on my alfa. You can easily get your money back from the products you purchased.

Remember that wax is just going to protect. Polish is going to restore/remove scratches and swirl marks. A sealant will last a lot longer than a wax but a good wax will put an amazing depth to the color.

If you don't want to spend a ton of time (hours/days) then you can just find a one step cleaner/wax. They aren't bad but if you are looking for an amazing shine, there are better products out there.

Claybar the car to get a really smooth surface...

Wow, I've been rambling for a while. Sorry about the long post. I'm just looking forward to working on my Alfa's paint a little tomorrow.

---Eric

'84 Spider Veloce; '91 BMW 318is; '94 Jeep GC
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 05-30-2005, 04:10 AM
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The Porter Cable is a great investment and is very user friendly. The Klasse AIO can be used to clean most external parts of the car, glass, paint, trim etc. Klasse also sell a sealant called Sure Glaze which should offer protection for up to six months. This can be topped with a wax if desired.
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