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  #1  
Old 08-23-1999, 06:04 PM
Chris C.
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I have a 1986 300E the color is that dark kind of charcoal color. What happens is every time I wash the car I dry it with terry towels, this is were the problem starts, if I dry it agressivly in other words to a completely dry surface I get this cloudy smearing that once it's there it is almost impossable to remove unless I wet the area and start over. now I can use my liquid Silicon wax to remove the smear and the the surface is smooth to the touch. If I don't dry the car I get ugly water spots all over it, which on a dark car really looks bad.
So what's the matter? To much wax build up, wrong kind of car wash detergent, (Pep Boys special), wax is Liquid Polymer Wax. I use baby diapers and terry towels. It's really a piss off, every time I want a decent looking job I have to completely wax the car! Great work out but...

Thanks,
Chris Campbell
Orange County Calif.
86' 300E
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  #2  
Old 08-23-1999, 06:34 PM
Bill Wood's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Johns Creek, GA, USA
Posts: 5,013
1) Switch from Pep Boys car wash to Meguiar's, Zymol or as a last resort Mothers. The better car wash solutions promote water "sheeting" which prevents water spots. Be very careful not to use too much car wash...especially after you are washing your car for the 2nd time after completing this process. Too much car wash solution will remove your wax and cause streaking. Never ever wash your car in direct sun...it will cause water spots and streaking.

2) Dry the car thoroughly with either a synthetic chamois or terry cloth towels. Don't use the same towels that have been used to apply of remove wax or polishes because the residue can cause streaking. Be careful using diapers because many of them have polyester thread in the binding which will permanently scratch your paint and cause swirls. Use the "burn test" to test for poly.

3) Remove your current wax and clean the paint by using Meguiar's #7 Show Car Glaze. Remove with 100% thick nap terry towels. You only need to do this step about every 6 months or so unless your car lives outside. Applying wax to a car that really needs cleaning first can cause streaking.

4) Apply a coat of Meguiar's #26 Hi Tech Wax. This is an outstanding Carnauba wax. Remove with 100% thick nap terry towels.

5) Mist the car lightly with Meguiar's #34 Final Inspection and wipe off with a clean dry terry towel.

---------------------------------------

Now you should be set for simple easy washes. The next times you wash your car, all you have to do is step # 1, 2 and 5. Your car will look concours ready in a minimum amount of time. Step #5 also helps your wax to last much longer.

------------------
Bill Wood - Webmaster
MercedesShop.com, LLC


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  #3  
Old 08-23-1999, 07:04 PM
Chris C.
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Thanks Bill,
My local Pep Boys has all the stuff so I'm on my way.
Your right about sunlight I only wash after the car is cool and in the shade.
I will let you know how it works out.
Thanks again,
Chris
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  #4  
Old 08-23-1999, 08:29 PM
Chris C.
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Bill,
I just started to read the directions on the #7, this is a polish not a remover or paint cleaner. I called the 800# on the bottle and was instructed to purchase either Clearcoat body scub, or Medalion Paint Cleaner before the #7.
So which is better?
BTW The car does live outside, so when you state "it only needs to be done every 6 months" does that mean stripping and then #7 or just #7 then the waxing?
Thanks,
Chris Campbell

[This message has been edited by Chris C. (edited 08-23-1999).]
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  #5  
Old 08-23-1999, 10:25 PM
plbriggs
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How you maintain the finish on your 300E can
become a subjective approach. Each Mercedes
owner probably has their own favorite method
as well as products.

There is a lot of information on the web at
the various manufacturers sites (Meguiars,
Zymol, 3M, Griots Garage, Mothers, Eagle One)
and at retailer sites such as Emmons
Coachworks.

Reduced to the essentials, each product approach will involve washing, cleaning or
prepping the paint, polishing and then waxing.

Here's what works for my black '92 300CE. It's driven daily and lives outside in the north Texas sun. It was purchased used and from its condition I'm sure the previous owner took it to an automated carwash at least once a month in the years before I got it!

An investment in an orbital polisher/buffer will save a lot of time. Mine is made by Porter Cable and is available from several sources.

Always use a high quality car wash. Initially I spent a lot of time with Meguiars #34 and Clay Magic to get the surface really clean. Next was the buffer and Meguiars #9, #7 and then #26. My car has the plastic lower body cladding. For that I use Zymol HD Cleanse and their Detail wax.

Now I wash each week, use Meguiars #34 and as needed use #7 and #26 again. For the rubber and vinyl, I'm still experimenting, but lean toward Zymol protectant for the vinyl and Meguiars Endurance for the tires.

So, don't be afraid to ask other Mercedes owners you meet at shows what they use. You also can always experiment with high quality products.

Good luck. I'm sure you'll find a method that will keep you smiling.

Phil
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  #6  
Old 08-23-1999, 10:39 PM
Bill Wood's Avatar
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Location: Johns Creek, GA, USA
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You are correct...#7 is just a polish but, I always tend toward the least aggressive methods. #7 does a great job cleaning the surface of the paint and it contains absolutely NO abraisives. Clearcoat body scub and Medalion Paint Cleaner both contain mild abraisives if I remember correctly. If you really need abraisives because you have swirl marks then I would lean toward #9 Swirl Remover.

The other paint cleaning tool I did not mention before is clay. Clay will clean the surface of the paint like nothing else and it is not abraisive in any way. If you feel any roughness whatsoever on the surface of your paint, you need clay. Clay Magic works great so does Meguiar's clay. It will even remove overspray.

Don't get me wrong, I agree with what Meguiar's told you. I am just citing my own personal experience. Without seeing for myself the condition of your paint, it's hard for me to be exact as to your needs.

Stripping is something you should only have to do annually. I would polish about every third time you wax and I would wax once a month since your car lives outside. Wash your car every 10 days to 2 weeks and use Final Inspection each time you wash.

------------------
Bill Wood - Webmaster
MercedesShop.com, LLC


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  #7  
Old 08-23-1999, 11:47 PM
Chris C.
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Thanks Phil,
I have a makita 7" Variable speed buffer, is your porter-cable the same type of unit? I have been afraid to use it on the car because of what appears to be really soft paint.
Thanks Chris.
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  #8  
Old 08-24-1999, 02:59 PM
Chris C.
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O.K.,
I have some clay, do I use it with the finalize product as a lubricant, and do I clay after useing #9 to remove all wax, this seems to mmake sense.
Sorry for all the questions but I got some of the Maguirs jelly car wash stuff and man what a difference! that Westleys bargain brand is pure crap! So now I want to do it all, and the right way. Typical Anal retentive M.B. owner!
BTW Some seagull thought it was nice too, 1 hour after drying the biggest dumpage I have ever seen right smack in the middle of the top, splattered all the way from grill to trunk! I was so happy with the results of the washing I just laughed, oh well stuff happens.
Thanks guys,
Chris Campbell
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  #9  
Old 08-24-1999, 08:08 PM
plbriggs
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Chris,

The real key point on the buffer is its pattern. Is it an "orbital" buffer? Does it make random eliptical patterns? Or is it simply a rotary buffer that you might use for sanding and woodworking. If it is rotary, be very careful. You can burn a hole in the paint without even thinking.

I used the Clay Magic with the Meguiars #34 as the first step after washing. Then I used the #9 since my finish had very bad scratches and swirls. The #7 was next for the final polishing followed by the wax.

Hope this helps. You can also use the #34 to remove the "present" the gulls left from you. I carry some with me for just that reason.
Although our birds are a little different over here.

Phil
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  #10  
Old 08-24-1999, 08:39 PM
Chris C.
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Hey Guys,
Yep, it's a 7" low speed hand grinder style. I checked my tool suppliers and the Porter-Cable is a 6" random orbital unit, about $148.00. What extra pads should I get? After 13 years, and I'm sure the previous owner used car washes, I have small surface scratches so #9 sounds like the way to go.
Thanks again,
Chris
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  #11  
Old 08-25-1999, 04:59 AM
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Posts: 1,342
For pads you should get either the softest foam (on the aggressive end) or 100% cotton terry bonnets (on the more conservative end). I've always used terry but some people swear by foam so it becomes a politics-religion/synthetic-conventional (oil) debate. Just get a bunch of either/both. Orbitals do seem to go through pads rather quickly.

Hope this helps...Lee
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  #12  
Old 08-30-1999, 11:15 PM
Chris C.
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YEAH BABY...
Man what a difference! after 2 days (this weekend) with the Porter-Cable orbital buffer
Clay, #9,#7,#26, My car is absolutly perfect!
Never ever looked so good, even the P.O. was impressed, (My brothers father in-law)asked me if I had it painted!
Thank you, thank you!
Now what can I use for the windsheild, it has just very slight marks from a wiper blade accident, (P.O.). I have seen products, but I was thinking maybe fine cut w/ the buffer? I tried swirl remover, cleaned the glass great, but that's it.
Thanks again Phil, Bill and Lee.
Chris Campbell
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  #13  
Old 08-31-1999, 02:40 AM
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Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Posts: 1,342
Cris,
You can try some "Bon Ami" household cleaner or a specialized windshield scrub at your local autostore. Most of them are apply, agitate, then hose off. Once you have done that you may also want to go over the windshield with something like STP Vision Blade. In my experience it really helps at night in the rain or on the highway. Swapping in a new wiper blade or insert at this time should make the windshield the best it can be.

Hope this helps...Lee
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