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Thread: Dan's Garage - 2007 Mazda RX8 - Red - Opti-Coat

  1. #1
    Caffeine Fiend's Avatar
    Caffeine Fiend is offline Resident Gloss Monster
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    Default Dan's Garage - 2007 Mazda RX8 - Red - Opti-Coat

    I have something a little bit out of the ordinary in terms of a write up for this one. The owner, a keen photographer, stayed for the full day to observe and take pics of his baby being detailed.

    A lot of people aren't keen on this sort of thing going on while they're working, but I quite enjoyed it. It's not often you get an owner taking such a keen interest in this sort of thing, so it was quite refreshing to have someone watching. It also meant I had someone else to take photos along the way, which left me to get on with the job of making cars prettier

    I also had the opportunity to play with my new glossmeter, which I'll include pics of below. This is already proving to be a handy tool to be able to show incremental improvements in gloss as the detail progresses.

    For those unfamiliar with how a gloss meter works, here's a quick 101. Gloss meters basically measure reflected light off a surface. In basic terms, the more light that is reflected, the higher the level of gloss. The measurement for this is in Gloss Units (GU). Though GU goes up well over 100 units, the standard measurement/calibration is black glass with a defined refractive index which is normally between 90 and 100 GU at 20 degrees light angle. The 100+ measurements are normally reserved for highly reflective metals etc. For gloss-painted surfaces, the standard range is from 70GU to about 95GU (90+ GU is considered to be extremely glossy for painted surfaces)

    Your average gloss meter normally has three light sources at three different angles. 20 degrees, 60 degrees, and 85 degrees.

    60 degrees is the midrange measurement for medium gloss levels. Normally the 60 degree reading is the one that should be used when it reads between 10 and 70 GU
    85 degrees is for low gloss levels. If the 60 degree measurement reads below 10 GU, then the 85 degree figure is the one that is used for highest accuracy.
    20 degrees is for high gloss levels and the measurement that we as detailers would generally pay the most attention to. If the 60 degree measurement is higher than 70GU, then the 20 degree figure is the one that is used for highest accuracy

    So in this example:



    The 60 degree figure is 85.5GU. As this is above the 10-70GU range for 60 degrees, we use the 20 degree figure for highest accuracy. So in this case the reading for this panel that we pay attention to is 73.3GU (which as a gloss level is ok, but not great and definitely not as good as it could be as you'll see later)


    Anyway, on with the write up


    Here is the car as presented. The current owner has owned it from new and has taken exception care of it as you can tell from the photos below.






    The wheels had minimal oxidation on them



    There were however some tar spots that were welded onto the paint near the arches



    These had to be removed extremely carefully with a metal razor blade as several spots resisted the standard removal methods (TarX, Citrus cleaner, plastic razor, mineral turpentine). Fortunately the metal razor popped them off with zero damage to the clearcoat

    APC soak of the wheels




    Before



    After (with the help of some brush agitation)




    Foam soak




    Getting into the side vents also. These can get pretty manky on some RX8s over time



    After a two bucket was and clay you can really see how well the car has been cared for




    In under the lights, the car showed some minor swirling. Very little when you consider the car is six years old. As I said to the owner as we were going over it,

    year for year, this is one of the best kept RX8s I've ever seen.














    Paint depths across most of the car ranged between 130 and 160 microns:














    With the exception of parts of the boot which registered in the high 90s.



    And the bonnet which was resprayed








    So some awesome paint levels to work with, meaning a high level of correction would be achievable. Something quite rare these days for a Mazda RX8
    Last edited by Caffeine Fiend; 01-07-2013 at 03:05 PM.
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    Caffeine Fiend's Avatar
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    Now we move on to the post-decontamination gloss level readings. This is the baseline we will use for the paint correction

    The average across the car was low to mid 70s GU (at the 20 degree angle)













    First stage on the car consisted of Orange CCS with S17+ on the Rupes. One to two passes for most areas. Some sections of the boot and bonnet requiring three passes.




    After finishing the roof, another gloss reading was taken. We now see a significant jump in gloss up to high 80s:



    Quite impressive to have what your eye sees actually quantified into figures also.


    A second, finishing stage with the black CCS and 3M Ultrafina yielded even better results.



    Now up in the 90s and the "extreme" end of glossiness for painted surfaces.








    The finished roof:




    Working around the rest of the car











    The gold fleck in the mica paintwork really coming through. Previously the owner was lamenting that this had disappeared from the car some time ago. He was rapt

    to see it come back once again






    Post correction pics

















    A nice night shot

    Caff Mobile Mk1 - 2010 Aluminum Gen II | 2XS SRI | H&R Lowered Springs | cpe 75 Duro Engine Mount | Whiteline Rear Swaybar | Moog "Problem Solver" Rear Endlinks | 3M Carbon Black Tint | Lakin Custom Plates | Opti-Coat Paint Protection | Paint Correction by Me - SOLD

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    Caffeine Fiend's Avatar
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    Some final outdoors pics. The owner took a ton of pics so I've chosen only a few to post up



















    Thanks for looking
    Caff Mobile Mk1 - 2010 Aluminum Gen II | 2XS SRI | H&R Lowered Springs | cpe 75 Duro Engine Mount | Whiteline Rear Swaybar | Moog "Problem Solver" Rear Endlinks | 3M Carbon Black Tint | Lakin Custom Plates | Opti-Coat Paint Protection | Paint Correction by Me - SOLD

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    SarcasticOne's Avatar
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    Too much scrolling on phone, have to look on computer when I get home

  5. #5
    LRRH is offline is gettin' on with it!
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    The gloss-monster's latest weapon against dull paintwork...presenting the gloss-meter! Seriously great work Dan and makes for a change having someone there to take the photos

  6. #6
    SarcasticOne's Avatar
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    Damn, that's one well looked after RX8...
    and looking on phone does not do the car justice!

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    Rob777's Avatar
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    Feck again your work impresses the **** out of me. WOW.

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    99GTT's Avatar
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    Top work!
    Credit to owner for looking after his pride and joy.

  9. #9
    Caffeine Fiend's Avatar
    Caffeine Fiend is offline Resident Gloss Monster
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    Thanks Guys

    Bobby, yeah the gloss meter is a handy device to be able to get a feel for the change to gloss levels with each step. I could have theoretically stopped after the first correction stage. The car was perfectly acceptable, however I've always maintained that it's worth the extra effort to do a final stage purely to amp up gloss. This certainly proves it.

    Visually, as you're working you can tell the difference. When you do that finishing stage the car takes on an almost hyper-real look to it. It sort of reminds me of seeing the super glossy cars in video games like Gran Turismo etc. It just lifts the paint. It's something that I doubt you'd capture on camera. You really have to be there. It's quite bizarre lol.

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 4 Beta
    Caff Mobile Mk1 - 2010 Aluminum Gen II | 2XS SRI | H&R Lowered Springs | cpe 75 Duro Engine Mount | Whiteline Rear Swaybar | Moog "Problem Solver" Rear Endlinks | 3M Carbon Black Tint | Lakin Custom Plates | Opti-Coat Paint Protection | Paint Correction by Me - SOLD

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  10. #10
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    Hmmm. Makes me want to get my car done again!


    Peter "SLIXX"

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    RedDjinn is offline Slip stream
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    Quote Originally Posted by Caffeine Fiend View Post
    Thanks Guys

    Bobby, yeah the gloss meter is a handy device to be able to get a feel for the change to gloss levels with each step. I could have theoretically stopped after the first correction stage. The car was perfectly acceptable, however I've always maintained that it's worth the extra effort to do a final stage purely to amp up gloss. This certainly proves it.

    Visually, as you're working you can tell the difference. When you do that finishing stage the car takes on an almost hyper-real look to it. It sort of reminds me of seeing the super glossy cars in video games like Gran Turismo etc. It just lifts the paint. It's something that I doubt you'd capture on camera. You really have to be there. It's quite bizarre lol.

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 4 Beta
    That's a really nice red deep and glossy! Great work as always, red on this car looks very nice .. very clean car as well owner must take pride in it
    Many want Power not many hold it long.........

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