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Old 10-27-2014, 05:15 PM   #15
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Once it has the swirl marks, how do I get them out, short of paying a pro shop?
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Old 10-27-2014, 05:46 PM   #16
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Newmar says that the microfiber rags become harmful after a few washings because the fibers break down and become more abrasive. New ones are probably OK, but who keeps track of washings? I use lambswool to wash and either cotton terry cloth or old 100% cotton t-shirt rags to polish and wax.

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Old 10-27-2014, 06:08 PM   #17
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Thank you EPA for our new and improved paint !
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Old 10-27-2014, 06:19 PM   #18
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Most clear coat finishes need to be baked.

Some are available that do not need baked, but those take a while to get completely harden.

I let my rig go unwashed for a month before I gave it its first bath. (I did spry it down) Then I washed it down with a lambs wool pad and rinsed with a vinegar water spray.

Now I do the same and dry with a real chamois. Haven't noticed any swirl marks.
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Old 10-27-2014, 08:39 PM   #19
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fastcat, just wash it and then apply a good coat of a pure carnuba wax with no cleaners. That is what the detailer told me to do and it got rid of 99% of the swirl marks. I used Mcguires carnuba wax which went on/off real easy but it still took me about 16 hours (over several days) to wash and wax my MH. You won't believe the difference in how smooth the surface area waxed will be.

I have washed it two times since the last waxing and so far no swirl marks. I also got some overspray of some kind of road oil when we were passing a road construction area in northern Nevada, and it came off real easy, probably due to the good coat of wax.
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Old 10-27-2014, 08:48 PM   #20
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I don't think Newmar ever said to use the microfiber clothes on their finishes. Nothing I got with the rig nor downloaded since said to use anything but organic fibers and no brushes.
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Old 11-04-2014, 02:04 PM   #21
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Funny, one of the leading high end suppliers of detailing products, Griots Garage, recommends many micro fiber products.
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Old 11-05-2014, 07:18 AM   #22
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Funny, one of the leading high end suppliers of detailing products, Griots Garage, recommends many micro fiber products.
You are right. All of the sellers recommend microfiber. Real lambs wool pads are harder to find.
I just received a wool pad from Marry Moppins, and it is very well made.

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Old 11-06-2014, 10:30 AM   #23
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I got into the automotive appearance and refinishing business in 1988, attended every workshop and educational seminar I could find, became a distributor of both detailing and car wash products, and in 1996 became a nationally certified detail instructor. I retired in 2006, so my knowledge may be a little outdated. The industry has two major problems. Along with far too may hucksters peddling smoke and mirrors, there’s an unbelievable lack of knowledge by people that you’d think are supposed to know, and they answer questions they’re ill equipped to handle. Salesmen and service managers fit that description, and believe it or not, most body shops.

The process of cleaning, polishing and then protecting finishes requires a combination of both chemical and mechanical action. The goal is to slow the natural aging process that will degrade the surface no matter what you do. Soaps and solvents will help loosen particles, mechanical action will sweep them away. Chemical abrasives will aid the mechanical process in removing surface scratches and waxes and sealants require both application and removal.

Not unlike clear coat, when microfiber cloth was introduced to the industry it was heralded as the “savior” and would revolutionize the processes used. While that may be a stretch, it has proven to be one of the better tools at our disposal. The only two problems I’ve seen with them are that they can be difficult to clean, and will sometimes create static electricity that will attract things to them that can create scratches.

Depending on the surface you’re starting out with, they may or may not be the best choice for applying a protective coat. All waxes and paint sealants contain a degree of solvents, cleaners and polish. If the surface you’re working on needs polishing and your plan is to one-step it, microfiber is not the best choice for application. A cotton applicator will work better as the more aggressive surface will aid in the polishing process. If the surface doesn’t require much polishing, microfiber will be fine. As for removing the wax/sealant, they’ll almost always work great. The exception being, if you one-stepped a finish that really needed a three step process, the result will be less than satisfactory. But that’s not really the fault of the cloth as it’s simply revealing problems you didn’t see before.

In every case I’ve ever seen where a microfiber cloth supposedly scratched the paint, it was either a contaminated cloth, or a surface not properly prepared. In the case of surfaces not properly prepared, it wasn’t really the microfiber cloth but that when the process was completed the surface now showed scratches that were already there. Yes, I am a big fan of microfiber cloths.

Carnauba wax in its pure form is so hard you can barely cut it with a knife. While many advertise “Pure Carnauba”, if you read the label they have solvents in the formula. Without them, if you were able to somehow get the wax on, you’d never get it off. When queried, they’re response is, “the only WAX used is carnauba”. The reality is, good synthetic paint sealants surpassed conventional wax years ago.

Wool bonnets were great ‘back in the day’ of non-clear coat paint. Aggressive in nature, they reduce the effort required in the ‘mechanical’ part of the process. They should not be used on a clear coat surface, and just about all paint today is clear coat. To find out if your paint is clear coat simply take a cotton cloth and wax or polish a small area. If the rag turns colors, it’s not clear coat.

One of the products used by some manufacturers, dealers and on ‘show’ cars is glaze. Glaze fills in minor scratches and provides the highest shine possible for paint. If you want something to look amazing, glaze it. The problem is, it is easily removed and then all the irregularities are revealed. Body shops love to glaze a car before delivery and then blame the car wash for scratching or swirling the paint. I’ve also seen car dealers do a crappy job of polishing a car and then glaze it to hide their poor work. Once again, the car wash would be the bad guy.

As I said earlier, there may be some news I’m not aware of, but I’d be suspect of anyone advising against microfiber. At a minimum I’d be asking why their product is more delicate than industry standards. Ask them whose paint they’re using and call them yourself. Possibly because I was in the business, but I’ve been very impressed by the paint manufactures and the knowledge they willingly share. Last I talked to them, they loved microfiber.
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Old 11-07-2014, 10:01 AM   #24
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Gary, That is a great write up, and it makes a lot of sense.

To me, the real question is material hardness..and I don't know how to find the answer. Microfiber is basically made from polyester. So wouldn't the real question be "Is polyester harder or softer than the clear coat finishes used today?"

I would also like to hear your take on "Waterless Washes". I just bought some "Dri Wash-n-Guard". Tried it on a door panel, and it seems good for when there is very light dirt. I think I will always use a "California Duster" first, or if there is a lot of dirt, a quick wash with real carwash soap, and then the DWG.

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Old 11-07-2014, 08:35 PM   #25
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Microfibre/ miracle cloths

I use micro fibre cloths for cleaning lap top computer and tv screens all the time and find them to be the best ever. Also use in my cars, polishing my high end watches and interior of the rv. Best thing I have ever used. Don't believe what the rv manufacturers are telling us IMHO
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Old 11-08-2014, 09:25 AM   #26
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Dan – For me, the question is always “how do we attain the best finish doing the least amount of damage”. It’s not necessarily the cloth that would scratch the surface, but more the particles of contamination it’s dragging across that surface that create the problems. If a microfiber cloth is going to scratch paint, it’ll be those contaminants, not the cloth itself. That’s why in most cases the combination of chemical and mechanical work better. A good soap will soften and loosen particles, lessening the mechanical action required. I personally don’t like any of the ‘dusters’, or dry washes as they leave micro scratches behind.

One of the tools I found helpful when I lectured car clubs (those guys are really anal on “shine”) is a little lighted magnifying glass sold by Radio Shack. Rather than debate whether there were fine scratches or not, we’d simply look at the paint under the magnifying glass after he’d been using a ‘dry’ product. After that demonstration the conversation usually turned to “who makes the best soap?”

Rather than debate the hardness of any product, allow me to divert the discussion in a different direction to illustrate the irrelevancy of that debate. One of the products I sold a lot of is a detailer’s clay bar. While it looked like conventional clay it was chemically different; don’t ask me, I’m not a chemist. To show a need for the clay, I’d have the customer places two fingers inside the cellophane removed from a package of cigarettes and then ‘feel’ the paint through the cellophane. The cellophane made feeling tiny contaminants pretty easy. I’d then use a little soap and a clay bar to remove those embedded specs. Afterward the surface would feel very smooth. By using clay first, the buffing process was lessened saving both labor and the paint. It works so well, sometimes you can totally avoid the buffing process.

The point here is, I don’t believe there’s any question that clay is significantly harder than microfiber. But, using it helped us achieve our goal of doing the least amount of damage.

I no longer sell anything and I’m not trying to tell anyone what to use or not use. One thing I’ve learned is that discussions on detailing products is akin to a holy war. Guys have their minds made up and that’s that. I’m simply suggesting that selecting the ‘right’ tool for the job is the best path. It’s that choice that is sometimes difficult.
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Old 11-08-2014, 01:57 PM   #27
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. Guys have their minds made up and that’s that. I’m simply suggesting that selecting the ‘right’ tool for the job is the best path. It’s that choice that is sometimes difficult.
I am on board with that...I think that everything you stated was basically common sense.

By the way, I have two 2014 Chrysler vehicles (RAM and Jeep). The have only been hand washed by me, WITH microfiber mitts and waxed with Microfiber clothes. And I can't see any scratches in them at all.

Keep up your posts, very helpful.

Dan
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Old 11-08-2014, 03:43 PM   #28
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I like Dan, wash all my cars ect myself and they have never been to a car wash. Our 2012 Camry Hybrid looks better than it did when we bought it and I have only used microfiber clothes on it. And so far after purchasing our MH I have been the only one to wash and/or wax it.

Gary, I was one of the ones that quoted the detailer who told me to never use a microfiber mitt to wash my MH as the full body paint is different from an actual automobile paint( he recommended wool mitt). In reading your posts, which really makes sense, it's not so much the type of mitt you use as it is the soap and wax being used. I can't imagine using a clay bar on the entire MH, what do you recommend as a soap and a wax. Right now I am using Mothers soap with a carnuba wax in it and Mcguires straight carnuba liquid wax(no cleaners)to wax it.

I wash my MH everytime I take it out, which has been 8 times since we bought it, and it is alot of work. Am I washing it too much...(we've owned it since February 2014)...thanks for any help or advice you can give me.
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