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There are many paint treatment products on the market today. I have been reading several members' threads regarding questions they might have about paint treatment products, and many member's responses to those questions. I am not detailing expert, but I have many years or detailing experience. I have owned many street rods, hot rods, 3 porsches and 4 corvettes. I have tried products of all kinds and have boiled it down to a few that I am totally satisfied with, and all are readily available at most auto parts stores. Shown are my favorites, and I could not tell you which one works the best because they all have the same results. I am convinced that you do not have to spend a lot of money for a good paint treatment. Some advertised treatments run into the hundreds of dollars.. These are advertised as paint correction/treatment products, promising long lasting shines, "professional results", etc. The word "ceramic" and most often used, which conjures up a unique process to justify the price. In the end, the products I will show you will keep your paint looking as good when your car is new, until the day to part with it, however long that will be.

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In all cases, your car should be clean before applying any treatment, detailer, etc. I know their are some products advertised as waterless car wash, but moving around dirt on your paint finish will scratch your finish, no matter how the product is advertised. Clean you paint surface before treating. Ideally, you paint surface is just dusty, and a duster is all you need to prepare your surface for your wax, detailer, etc. If the surface is dirty, muddy, grimy, etc, wash your car. Use car wash soap, and dry the car off. I use detailers like those shown above because I keep my paint pristine and the detailer keeps it looking good. I apply a little wax, like pure carnuba periodically just to keep a wax-protected finish, but typically just detailers keep the wax looking good and protect the finish. I like the smell of Griot's Garage detailer the best. It provides a great shine, but no better than the others I use. It is the most expensive, but you can watch for a sale at your auto parts store (I use O'Reillys) and get it for about $8.99. The Meguires is probably the easiest to use, because it wipes off instantly, barely turning the rag (use microfiber cloths for all your paint treatments). On sale it goes for about $5.99. The Mothers works great, but does not have a good smell, in my opinion, but works the same as the others, Great. The ProtectAll is an aerosol, and I use it on every surface, rubber, chrome, glass, paint, etc. It wipes off easily, and I think it gives the best long term slipperiness on the paint surface. Water beads like crazy, and you can feels the slipperiness for a week or more. The Harley Davidson detailer works great, but sometimes leaves steaks on very dark paint. I typically use it only on my light colored vehicles. I will match the shine of these products with any other paint treatments on the market, at any cost. The secret is keeping your paint pristine to begin with, and then simply keeping it that way. If your paint has problems like fading, scratches, dents, dings, oxidation, paint blisters, etc, you will need more than a detailer and an occasional wax application. You might need one of the many Paint Correction products. I think I am probably preaching to the choir here, because you guys keep your cars pristine. My Black Rose Z51 is a very dark color, and imperfections will show up quicker than on a lighter colored vehicle, so with 21,500 miles on my 2017, paint is still perfect. When new I had a 3M clear mask installed on the entire front end, from the front door edges forward, including headlights and grill facia. All I ever use on the clear mask is one of my detailers. I do put occasional pure carnuba wax on the remaining paint surfaces. Attached are some photos of "my shine". Good luck, be safe and have fun with your toys.

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Nice write-up and results. This as we have seen over the years, is a topic of great subjectivity and opinions, and personal preferences. :cool:
 
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Back in the day, I used to do "paint treatments" all the time, didn't have all these space age detailing products. To take care of orange peel, we used 1500 grit wet sanding, then buff using compound, then a wax. Looked as good back then as it does today.
 

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Hi Norm. I also remember the days when you could "color sand and buff" a new paint job to remove the orange peel and make it look like glass. I color sanded my "triple black" 2000 C5 'vette and it came out beautiful. I have also color sanded all my street rods with excellent results, but unfortunately, today's new car paint jobs have such a thin coat of paint and clearcoat that I would be afraid to sand through the clear coat with even 2500 grit. I would love to color sand and buff my 'vette shown in these photos, but I would be afraid to do so. If anyone out there has experience with color sanding and buffing their C7, I would love to hear from you. Thanks. Phil
 

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Phil, I agree with you on today's paint, I would be afraid to do any wet sanding at all. Now, I just use a mild Menzerna compound when buffing (Griots 5 incher), not too concerned for the mountains to meet the valleys, it comes out quite nice.
 

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Yeah, that's another problem with the C7's. With all the angular surfaces (ridges, edges, sharp corners, etc) I would be afraid to use a machine buffer because all you have to do is hit an edge with your wool pad and burn right through it. The flat surfaces aren't bad to machine buff, but you have to stay away from the edges.
 

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Paint seems to look much better before the year 2000. Much more smooth. I guess the paint now is water based.
 

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I think you are right. I don't know exactly when they began using water based paint, but it sure does not stand up or look as good as petroleum and lead based paints. I think they may even be using water based clear coat now, although I don't know that to be true. In any case, Corvette has a new paint facility in Bowling Green now, and since 2019, I believe, they have been using the new facility, and supposedly the new paint jobs are better. I have seen the 2019's and they don't look any different to me. I still haven't heard from anyone who has experience with color sanding and buffing the C7 model. I have to believe that someone has tried it. I would be very interested in the results because I would love to color sand and buff mine
 

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I use my sons 1997 Chevy Colorado pickup as my test mule for experimenting with different detailers, polishes, waxes, drying towels ect. The paint color is Silver Birch Metallic and was very neglected by the original owner. Over the course of the last 2 months we have brought it back to better than new condition. I stumble upon this product at my local big box store and figured what the heck, what’s one more detailer in the cabinet.......

I have to admit this stuff has become my go to product. Easy application, non offensive odor, and an excellent beading capability that has shown an amazing durability over time for a detail spray. I have begun using it on Mister Cash as needed and recommend giving it a try.
 

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I think Turtle Wax products are excellent. Although low cost, they perform as well as any other product on the market. Thanks for sharing.
 

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Most of these products pretty much have the same ingredients in their mixture, for instance, Adams products have CMIT/MIT chemicals that produces the shine, as do others, also pretty colors and fruity smells. (from Adam's MSDS)

Just an excerpt from Wikipedia about CMIT/MIT:

" Methylisothiazolinone and other isothiazolinone-derived biocides are used for controlling microbial growth in water-containing solutions.[2] Two of the most widely used isothiazolinone biocides are 5-chloro-2-methyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one (chloromethylisothiazolinone or CMIT) and 2-methyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one (methylisothiazolinone or MIT), which are the active ingredients in a 3:1 mixture (CMIT:MIT) sold commercially as Kathon. Kathon is supplied to manufacturers as a concentrated stock solution containing from 1.5-15% of CMIT/MIT. For applications the recommended use level is from 6 ppm to 75 ppm active isothiazolones. Biocidal applications range from industrial water storage tanks to cooling units, in processes as varied as mining, paper manufacturing, metalworking fluids and energy production.
Kathon also has been used to control slime in the manufacture of paper products that contact food. In addition, this product serves as an antimicrobial agent in latex adhesives and in paper coatings that also contact food.[3]

One isothiazolinone, Sea-Nine 211 (4,5-dichloro-2-n-octyl-4-isothiazolino-3-one, DCOI), has quickly replaced tributyltin as the antifouling agent of choice in ship hull paint. A recent study reported the presence of DCOI in both port water and sediment samples in Osaka, Japan, especially in weakly circulating mooring areas.[4] Of environmental concern, DCOI levels predicted in marinas now are considered a threat to various marine invertebrate species.[5] Isothiazolinones also are extremely toxic to fish.[1]
In industrial use, the greatest occupational inhalation exposure occurs during open pouring. Non-occupational exposure to isothiazolinones by the general population also occurs, albeit at much lower concentrations.[6] These compounds are present in a very large number of commonly used cosmetics.[7] “Leave-on” cosmetics (hand-creams, lotions, etc.) contain 15 parts per million (100 micromolar) of combined CMIT/MIT."


And of course, the proprietary ingredients of the supplier.
 
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