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New Member from North Cakalacki!!


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Greetings from Havelock, North Carolina! (Eastern part of the state, on the coast, BBQ country!) My name is Aaron, and have been lurking for a while and wanted to thank Adams for providing this forum and to the members that make it a community and share some of their awesome knowledge! While I haven't ordered any products yet, I'm definitely gonna place my order soon! Junkmans videos are priceless!


Which brings me here to ask for help, and plead for some wisdom from some of you guys who have superior detailing experience. I've been detailing for a living now for about 5 years, and part-time for 20. I said screw my $75k a year job which made me utterly miserable, and decided to chase and live my passion/dream. Which is going great, but now I'm slowly beginning to reach the next level, and am a little scared.


What I mean is, I've detailed about every Altima, Accord, Caravan, & Corolla out there. 6 hour, $200 jobs, turn and burn. I know my way around a car, and a DA/rotary, and believe I do a pretty darned good job. Have used "XYZ" products (begins with an M, found everywhere) and have worked fine and did a great job. (And honestly will stick with them for my low-end everyday clients, since they work well in that situation.) But I want to start offering Adams to my nicer/higher-end clients! My clients seem to agree, and now I'm garnering a little attention from some of the big guys. Great right? Well, yeah, but detailing a $30k car isn't quite the same as detailing a $175k car. I'll admit, I'm scared to death. I detailed a clients Mini Cooper S and now her husband saw it, and wants me to detail his 1966 resto-mod Stingray, which just came back from a $140k rotisserie concours restoration (Bill Mitchell Mowtown engine and all.) and a $17k paintjob. (It has been sitting for 6 months though in climate controlled, so the paint should be cured.) I'm super confident in my abilities, but still scared to death since my friggin house only cost $250k. After-all the nicest car I've detailed up till now was a 2010 Roush Stage 3 Mustang. I've never done what I consider a "concours" car before.


To give you some insight, a Chevy dealer up in Raleigh,NC somehow found out about the car and offered him a title swap, sight unseen for a 2012 ZR1. Once my client turned it down, they then countered with an offer of $165k and my client still turned it down. He said it's not for sale since it's been gone for a year and a half, and he wants do a year of shows, and take it to Carlisle, then probably to Barrett Jackson or Mecum's or something of the sort. Wilwood has even called and wants to put it on the cover of their new catalog! Who knows what the car is actually worth!


Well, if your still with me, I've scheduled a 3 day concours detail the first weekend of May. (Day 1=wash/clay, interior; Day 2=polish/trim/glass; Day 3=LSP & Dressing.) Which brings me to my question:


Since there's absolutely no "Correction" to be done, I was just going to wash/clay the car, then fine machine polish & super sealant, then Adams carnuba lsp/topper with Adams DS as maintenance. Am I correct in thinking this path? And even though 7424XP's have touched many a finer car than this, again, since there is no correction, would you machine it or do it by hand? Would you recommend a ISA wipedown before SS & Carnuba or does the fine machine polish take care of this step? Maybe some of you guys who do the big time Porsche/Ferrari/Lambo cars or more experienced detailers can chime in and help out?


Also, would you do a normal Hydrowash with Adams regular shampoo or use a rinseless product with distilled water, or use Adams waterless product? I didn't know if I was being to anal in worrying about etching.


Guys/Gals I want to thank you in advance for putting up with me and reading my novel, but like I said before, just a little worried on an automobile of this stature. I can't thank you enough for the information you can share. If you think this is bad, just wait till I get on here and share with you, and you see the 1959 Porsche 356A concours detail I have lined up for the second weekend in May. I think I just wet my pants a little......


So, I know you've been waiting for it. Here's some Car-porn and the vehicle I will be detailing:













Thanks Again Guys & Best Wishes!!!! Aaron:cheers:


Go Adams!!!

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First welcome! Great story! All I can say is that as long as your business insurance is us to par, then the only concern is your own confidence level. I personally would never take a job on a car like that if I was not covered on every possible base, and did not feel 110% confident in my abilities.


Now as far as keeping the "M" product for your lower end customers, I look at it this way, what do you use on your own car? All my customers, regardless of vehicle type or service cost, get the Adam's treatment. Its a preference thing, but I like to be able to tell people that I use a Made in the USA product from an American small business.


If your doing it for a full time living, and start buying in bulk the costs will really begin to offset, but again its a preference thing.


Best of Luck! & Again Welcome!!

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Welcome Aaron! I'm confident you will fit in just fine here. I think it's super cool you're doing what you love to do.


I am anxious to hear how the others reply to your questions. But, here's my take.


If that was my beautiful Corvette, I would be doing all of the work by hand if in fact there's no correction required. I am a former "M" product user, and while I don't detail cars professionally, I only use Adam's now. I really prefer Americana over any other wax that I've tried.

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One of the many beauties about Adams stuff is that it's all very safe for the enthusiast to use on his/her own cars, whether we're talking about a VW GTI or a 911 turbo. Sort of swinging the PC onto the car's hood, you'd be hard pressed to cause any damage.


I think I'd use the PC with the fine machine polish and then do the rest by hand.


That's one sweet vette, too. Don't forget to stand back and admire your handiwork. :cheers:

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Hey guys thanks for the feedback!!! I really appreciate it!!


Scott, don't laugh, but I don't think I washed my personal vehicle ('03 Silverado) in a year (Hey, it's paid for!). 2 months after I quit my job, I sold my nice car ('06 Acura TSX) and got rid of my toy that was in the process of being restored. (66' Olds 442) Simply because I had to tighten the belt since I wasn't sure how my income stream was gonna be.


My wife drives a 3 year old BMW X3 which is pretty nice, but she hates it when I detail it. She says I'm way to anal attentive, take too long, and drives her nuts, etc.etc.... She runs it thru a touchless bay every know and then, and I grab it and wax it with whatever I have laying around, before she notices it gone. She likes to joke with our friends saying "Now do you think Phil Mickelson's wife could tolerate him showing her how to Golf?" That's why I don't let my husband touch my car." See what I'm saying? Call me crazy if you want, but that's how it is in my house........ LOL


And yeah, my business insurance is decent. My agent tried to close me on a 1 mil umbrella policy, but I just opted for the $500k Garage Keepers. I figured since I don't do any super high-end details, barring the Vette jumping gear and going thru a wall and into the front of a Bentley, I should be OK in that department. And I am real confident in my abilities, been doing this for a while, but just have a little case of the willies since I've never worked on a car this expensive. And since this is a different kind of detail, just second-guessing my route is all. I'm sure I'll be fine, just wanting to get some second opinions and hear from some experts is all.


But guys, don't misconstrue me, I didn't explain myself up there to turn this into a "this" product versus "that" product thread. I should have never mentioned the "M" word. LOL Even though I haven't thoroughly worked out Adams products yet, from what I've read and knowing a few guys who've used it, I'm sure I'll love it. As we all know, even though I'm sure it's well-deserved, Adams is a higher priced, and a premium product. Which means on my enthusiast and higher-end details, I can easily justify it, and keep my P&L's in line. But on a $55 W/D, Vac, and dress, Honda Civic, that would push my ROI/ROS down to 10-15% give or take a maybe 20 tops depending on bulk purchase discounts etc. And we all know that more people like to detail/wash their own cars in the summer, so all of us who do this for a living can kiss those 50-60% ROS's adios till next Oct-Nov. (I average a 15-20% drop in di's or drive ins May-Sep)

And I'm not saying that goes for everyone either, just what I've learned about my 25 mile radius from my locale and area)


So I guess, what I'm trying to say is that taking my competition, geography, costs, etc..... is that I just can't afford to use Adam's on every vehicle unless I raise my prices, and then I have to relook at my whole business plan and marketing strategy. My goals are to run 75% ED's (every-days), 22% enthusiast, and 3% concours. (Which I hit 8 months out of 12 with the exception of my concours which I'm just trying to get started.) Plus dealership business is super wacky, and hard to plan for and pin down on paper! So in the end, I'd like to concentrate, and use Adam's products on 25% of my business model. Since I haven't done one in 5 years ('08), I did just shell out for over $900 on a IBIZ market report for my area, and a dealer friend of mine is gonna let me look at his Autotrader logistics report just to get a feel for where my market stands.........So I'll get that in 3 weeks and have a lookey-loo and get back up to date.


:willy: SWEET JESUS.....did I just get way the heck off heck off track. Sorry guys, went off on a rant, and crazily digressed. My bad.........


Thanks for the replies.......... Anymore more advice out there on what route to take with the Vette?

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Welcome to the family!



I have never done a detail on a car like that, the most expensive car has been my Bride's 2011 GS Convertible Vette. Working to get my hands on a friend's Ferrari 458 Spider, which will be a little step up... :thumbsup::thumbsup:


Having said that, I would do the wash/clay process you outlined and then inspect the paint to see what is needed. With a clear coat I wouldn't have any concerns doing a pass with the Fine Machine Polish with the PC 7424XP. If you were going to be doing any serious correction I would want to have a paint thickness gauge before working on too many high end cars and taking that large of a risk.


Sounds like you are living the dream! :rockon:

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I would include a wipedown with 50/50 IPA before FMP to remove previous products so you can see the true condition of the finish.


I also like Revive (some use gray pad and revive on a PC) after FMP on solid red - seems to give solid red a little extra something. And on that red, definitely go with BG and then Americana over that. You will have a very intense deep 'engaging' (i.e. you can't take your eyes off it) red finish.

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[quote name=LobsterClaws;285375

Scott' date=' don't laugh, but I don't think I washed my personal vehicle ('03 Silverado) in a year (Hey, it's paid for!). 2 months after I quit my job, I sold my nice car ('06 Acura TSX) and got rid of my toy that was in the process of being restored. (66' Olds 442) Simply because I had to tighten the belt since I wasn't sure how my income stream was gonna be.



:lol::lol::lol: OK Im done, Really a 66 442???? That was my moms first car! I have looked for a long time for one of those!!


I know from info from Dylan, and now personal experience that Vette clear on the new ones is HARD!! But being a resto I could not even begin to judge whats on that car! Keep us in the loop on this with TONS of pics!


and again WELCOME!


side note:

Hi and welcome!!!

I have a few friends down in Havelock.


Nice quaint town. LOL

So where don't you have friends Miss Social? :willy:

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