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My Adams Adventure


carrya1911
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My daily driver recently died and I had to pick up a new one. I ended up with a 2007 Dodge Charger in superb shape save for a few minor swirl-marks in the finish. No big deal, right? So I whipped out my Porter Cable and my Meguiar's polishing gear. Five hours later after having lost the buffing pad off the backer four times and seeing little improvement, I threw in the towel.

 

Later that week I was on the Charger Forumz and I saw someone mention Adam's polishes in a discussion about finish care.

 

"Who the heck are they?" I wondered aloud. So I googled. I looked around the Adams site for a while and then I saw the 2nd generation pad system from Adams. The improved backing plate and the design of the Adams pad caught my eye. So I says to myself, "Self", I says, "I bet that would solve the little buffing pad frisbee problem you have with your current setup."

 

...and that is a big deal for me. One of the issues on my Charger was the sharp corners on the hood and fenders. It's darn difficult to polish adequately there because if the bloody pad isn't making full contact with the sheet metal it starts to get off center, and then it feels like you're trying to polish with an unbalanced washing machine. The thicker, more flexible backer looked like it might be just the ticket.

 

Intrigued, I looked around the forums for a while, trying to find out more about the pads. After a while I started to think that perhaps I should give the core lineup a try and see how they work. This was, of course, madness, as I already have a bunch of car care stuff....like several hundred dollars worth...from Meguiars that I had collected over the years. "These guys can't really be any better, can they?"

 

Only one way to find out. I bit the bullet and placed an order for the 2nd Gen pad special, as well as one more of each pad type. In my experience 2 is one, one is none when it comes to polishing pads. I ordered the Swirl and Haze Remover and the Fine Machine Polish package. I bought some of the cookie-monster skin towels, and a bottle of All Purpose Cleaner.

 

200+ bucks. Ouch. (Oddly enough, with today's ammo prices this is about how much it would cost to really bite a bullet.) This week my box arrived and I had the perfect guinea pig project....

 

In 2005 I did a complete detail job on an Inferno red 2001 Dodge Intrepid R/T for some friends. The vehicle had been to a "detailer" who had apparently applied wax with sandpaper judging by the horrific swirlmarks cut into the finish. I re-worked the car with some Meguiars stuff and it looked 100% better...but it still wasn't up to 100%. I couldn't get out a lot of the swirls. They were just too deep for the Porter Cable to do anything with. Still, the car looked decent.

 

Since then the car's finish had not been maintained. No wax. Rarely washed. Out in the elements 24/7, 365. The car looked its age.

 

Nice deep scratches:

 

hoodscratch1.jpg

 

Swirl marks (although nowhere near as bad as they were the first time I worked on the car...thankfully they listened to me and didn't return to that "detailer")

 

swirls1.jpg

swirls2.jpg

 

Water spots:

 

hoodpaint1.jpg

 

Etching from bird droppings:

 

hoodpaint2.jpg

 

...and all the small scratches you could ask for like these on the roof and on the rear deck lid respectively:

 

roofscratch1.jpg

reardeck1.jpg

 

Also notice how dull the finish appears.

 

A badly neglected finish seemed like just the trick to find out whether or not this expensive little box was worth anything or not.

 

So I washed and clayed with some of my Meguiars blue clay and what was left of my gallon of Final Inspection. One sweep of the clay on the hood yielded some fairly encouraging results:

 

dirtyclay.jpg

 

Of course, this was before I started claying around the wheel wells and noticed the tar that was all over the bloody place....

 

After claying, I began working with the Swirl and Haze Remover on the orange pad.

 

SHRshot.jpg

 

It took several passes, a fair level of pressure, and a "6" setting on the magic dial, but eventually most of the paint defects were no longer visible. This door scratch is typical of the sort of thing I was battling against:

 

doorscratchb4.jpg

 

The SHR worked very well on them:

 

doorscratchaft.jpg

 

 

I followed up with the Fine Machine Polish on the white pad using very little pressure and the "5" setting on the magic Porter Cable dial. The end results were pretty good. Once I had the hood done I had figured out what I probably needed to try on the rest of the vehicle. I then repeated the clay/SHR/FMP routine around the vehicle, and followed it all up with the Super Machine Wax. 15 fun filled hours later...

 

The big hood scratch was no more:

 

hoodlight.jpg

 

The roof scratches were gone:

 

hazenpolish.jpg

hazenpolish2.jpg

 

The rear deck lid which looked horrible before started to look a bit better:

 

superwax1.jpg

superwax2.jpg

 

The finish was darker, richer, and clearer than it had ever been:

 

hoodwide.jpg

side1.jpg

side2.jpg

side3.jpg

frontshot.jpg

 

All in all, not too bad. The pics don't really do it justice because it's been cloudy all day today in my area. I've been playing peek-a-boo with thunderstorms and gale-force winds all day. Still, the sun did peek out from behind the clouds just long enough for me to catch this:

 

hoodsexy.jpg

 

I can live with that.

 

The experience overall wasn't as big of a pain in the neck as it was the first time. The Adams pad system made life much easier on this car. These Intrepids are shaped like a jellybean that's been cut in half. There's not a single right angle or straight piece of sheet metal on the whole bloody car except for the rear deck lid. This made using the old Meguiars pad system about as pleasant as a home root canal kit.

 

On top of that, the Dual Action Cleaner/Polish compound I was using didn't like warm weather or a warm finish...and by "didn't like" I mean it hardened into a powder that then was practically welded to the finish. It took a routine of polish a little bit, clean off the welded powder, try to polish more, stop, put the pad back on the center of the backing plate....repeated enough times to make the experience pleasant enough that if we made the Gitmo detainees do it, we would be tried for war crimes.

 

In similar weather I found (to my VERY pleasant surprise) that the Adams stuff was much easier to work with. The SHR did create dust, but the "dust" was the result of buildup working toward the edge of the pads and then slinging off of the pad. This could be because I was just using too much product, but I had to go over several areas a bunch of times to get the results I wanted. The "dust" however, wiped right off with no fuss. When working the SHR and the FMP into the finish they remained liquid and useable...unlike the Meguiars stuff that went hard the minute they touched the finish.

 

The sentiment that drove me to google Adams polishes in the Charger Forumz thread was that it was easy to work with even on a hot finish. Since I have no way to put a vehicle in any shade, that's another biggie for me. Working with the SHR and the FMP was easy even when the sun occasionally peaked through and heated up the finish. It was nice. I spent the better part of 10 hours polishing this vehicle and I didn't contemplate committing seppoku once during the process. That's progress.

 

All in all, at this point I'm reasonably certain that the Adams stuff (especially the pad system) is a step forward for the Porter Cable equipped car nut.

Edited by carrya1911
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Wow, what a difference, good job:thumbsup:

 

Another thing you may like, is that now that you have a coat of Machine Superwax on, washing your car will become much much easier. I have a white daily driver with a coat of machine wax on it and dirt refuses to stick. Thanks to that layer of protection my washing time has been cut in half.

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My intention is to let the MSW cure overnight and then I'll apply some NXT wax on top of it. I read on these forums that you need to let the MSW sort of "cure" because it behaves a lot like a sealer.

 

EDIT -- Now the downside to Adams products....the reflection in that hood is now so clear that you can see how badly I need to pressure-wash the siding and replace the ties in the flowerbeds.

 

Gak.

 

Edit 2 -- is there any advantage to applying multiple layers of MSW?

Edited by carrya1911
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My intention is to let the MSW cure overnight and then I'll apply some NXT wax on top of it. I read on these forums that you need to let the MSW sort of "cure" because it behaves a lot like a sealer.

 

EDIT -- Now the downside to Adams products....the reflection in that hood is now so clear that you can see how badly I need to pressure-wash the siding and replace the ties in the flowerbeds.

 

Gak.

 

Edit 2 -- is there any advantage to applying multiple layers of MSW?

 

One question for you, if the results are so good with Adam's why would you cover it up with NXT ?

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One question for you, if the results are so good with Adam's why would you cover it up with NXT ?

 

A fair question. The answer would be: 'Cuz that's all I got.

 

My understanding is that the MSW is a sealer, and that there are advantages to adding a decent wax on top of the sealer once it has cured. Obviously the recommended wax would be an Adams like the Buttery wax or the new paste offering....but I don't have any of that.

 

My interest here is trying to armor plate the clearcoat as much as possible.

 

EDIT -- oh, as for the pictures...I'm seeing them just fine. They are from Photobucket.

 

"I say, Madge...I think my HTML code has gone all wobbly..."

Edited by carrya1911
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A fair question. The answer would be: 'Cuz that's all I got.

 

My understanding is that the MSW is a sealer, and that there are advantages to adding a decent wax on top of the sealer once it has cured. Obviously the recommended wax would be an Adams like the Buttery wax or the new paste offering....but I don't have any of that.

 

My interest here is trying to armor plate the clearcoat as much as possible.

 

EDIT -- oh, as for the pictures...I'm seeing them just fine. They are from Photobucket.

 

"I say, Madge...I think my HTML code has gone all wobbly..."

 

And that would be a fair answer :lolsmack:

 

And your pictures look great !!!!!!

 

Not sure why I couldn't see them before :willy::willy::willy:

 

 

Do you know about the Monthly Photo Contest ?

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Adams... Making life easier since 1999... (it was '99 right?)

 

lol

 

Looks great!

 

This is the kind of stuff Adams likes to see...

 

Now throw all the other Meguires stuff in the garbage and buy up some Adams.

 

Chris

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Carrya1911 -

 

What kind of camera are you shooting with? Looks like an SLR just based on the depth and clarity in the pictures.

 

It's a Pentax digital SLR...I believe the K200D, but I'm not sure. I don't know beans about cameras. The lady of the house had a 35mm Pentax SLR and I bought her a digital that was compatible with the same lenses.

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It's a Pentax digital SLR...I believe the K200D, but I'm not sure. I don't know beans about cameras. The lady of the house had a 35mm Pentax SLR and I bought her a digital that was compatible with the same lenses.

 

Great job on the car and welcome to the forum :2thumbs:

 

You should wrap up all that Maguires stuff and give it to the In Laws as a evil prank like i did. They use it and think it is awsome, they have no clue??? And hey i get a chuckle everytime they thank me for giving them all that wax :jester:

 

I have the Pentax K200D, great camera if i could only figure out how to use all the features.

 

:welcome:

 

Steve

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Just so you know.. You will see a difference by ditching the Mcguire's and going to Adams Super Machine Wax.

 

On my car it was like night and day. So much so that doing only one fender with Adam's forced me to do the whole car !

 

So when the McGuire's runs out,, make the move to Adam's Machine Wax. There is NO going back !! ;)

 

dv

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Just so you know.. You will see a difference by ditching the Mcguire's and going to Adams Super Machine Wax.

 

On my car it was like night and day. So much so that doing only one fender with Adam's forced me to do the whole car !

 

So when the McGuire's runs out,, make the move to Adam's Machine Wax. There is NO going back !! ;)

 

dv

 

I actually have two coats of MSW on the vehicle at the moment....nothing else. I'll have access to the car over the weekend again. If the weather holds up I might even add a third coat after I'm through re-working my Charger.

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