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Hou

Clay Bars

16 posts in this topic

Do you use a clay bar? Many people do not know what a clay bar is in terms of automotive use. But once you have used one you will be amazed at the difference it makes plus the dirt it brings out.

Now take my MR2. This was washed, polished and Harly Waxed 2 months ago. We took stock of our new clay so thought we would try it out on the MR2 which was still rather clean. We cleaned the bonnet using a microfibre washmitt and then rinsed and dried.

Cleaning the bonnet

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Cleanish

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Clean clay

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Dirty clay from small section that looked clean

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It brought that dirt out of a 30cmx30cm section of bonnet. :thumbsup:

More details about clay bars can be found here: Ninja Clay

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I first used a Meguiars clay bar kit about a year ago on my then owned Nissan Primera.I thought that car was clean until I clayed it and was amazed how much engrained dirt there was.I polish my cars on average once every 2 months or so,so I didn't expect such a difference after I clayed and polished/waxed the car but the finish for a 12 year old car was superb.

By contrast,when I bought the Corolla a few months ago the non-metalic paint was a bit flat looking but responded quite well to a monthly polish routine on top of weekly washing.About a month ago,I thought I would try claying the bodywork as I was not happy with the depth of the shine as well as dreadful swirling by the poor cleaning technique of the previous owner.Sadly,not a lot of dirt came from the bonnet and front wings(the only parts I managed to do before the weather started turning nasty) and although there probably is a "deeper" shine than before,the finish I an after still eludes me :crybaby:

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It is very good stuff although for swirls you really need it machine polishing to get it looking it's best :(

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Hi, I see your post about the 'Clay Bar'. I use Maguiars & it's the dogs dangleys. To give yourself some comfort in its abilities, do half a panel with the clay bar, then polish the complete panel, the half you do with the clay bar will be so much smoother.

I noticed another reply that mentions you can't beat a mechanical polish. Perhaps true for the final finish, but you do remove some of the top coat with a mechanical polish - The clay bar will just remove the grit on the paint, leaving you a clean surface to polish. I have also used a clay bar from Bilt Hammer, but it was harder to lubricate with just water.

I also use the Meguiars 3 stage polish. Stage 1 paint cleaner - unlike T-Cut this does not remove any paint. Stage 2 - polish. Stage 3 Carnnuba wax.

Until recently I wasn't convinced with the Carnnuba wax, but after polishing the bonnet of the car, I waxed half of the bonnet 3 times. Whilst the initial shine looks little different, you will notice a big difference the next time you wash.

One last thing on the Clay bar. I recommended its use to a work mate & he has used it on his Sierra Cosworth - a few quids worth of motor, now almost every time I see him, he raves about the finish he got on his car.

Happy valeting.

Steve

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Hey Steve,

Nice post, only just seen it!

The point I was making about the machine polish was for the removal of swirl marks and defects like that, which you can mask with a polish but for actual removal you need a machine :thumbsup:

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I have just used Maguiars clay bar for the first time on my Corolla and as you have said Steve I was pretty much knocked out with the results followed by a full wax polish (carnuba) being silver I suppose it doesn't look much different to normal but the paint is super super smooth. I reckon I have spent about £60 on kit to clean the car but I am sure I will soon get my money back compared to using the local Polish car wash :thumbsup:

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Claying a car removes all the bonded contaminants from the paintwork. IE Tar , Traffic film. Oil residues. Bird lime that is in visible to the eye and just about every other crap that finds its self onto You cars bodywork..

Claying will make the paint much smoother to the feel and I do it before commencing Machine polishing as the Bonded containments will mix with the polish and prevent it from breaking down... Although just claying alone will really help clean a car ...

There are many degrees or cutting abilities in different clay bars . Some will cut very quickly others will cut very slowly.. All are very safe and will not cut through the lacquer unless You go mad !!

Always lube the panel by mixing a 50/50 mix of detailing spray and water into a spray bottle. No lube will increase the chance of marring the paintwork....

This thread gives a wee insight to polishing ect.. Feel free to ask questions on that thread if I can help as I wont miss them there..

http://www.toyotaownersclub.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=127259&st=0&p=1133029entry1133029

HTH

Wee Charlie.

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I use Bilt Hamber soft and regular clay bars on my cars. I've found after using lots of different ones they work the best for me as all you need is water as a lube. So after the Power wash with the Nilfisk and snow foam lance the HD wax goes on. HD isn't the best of my Wax collection, but it does work well with the Toyota paint. My mate has gone made and has a £6000 a pot wax! But he's just got far to much money to spend on gear! But a last he gets it re filled for life! You'd have to for that kinda wonga :thumbsup:

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Great stuff. I had a 16 year old Nissan Pulsar after I got it used my maguires clay bar and polish it came up a gem. I always re washed mine then double waxed it for a great shine. It's hard work but every 6 months it makes a real difference!

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How effective are clay bars for removing bugs? During the summer our vehicles get coated in dead bugs and the heat helps to bake it into the paint before I get a chance to wash the vehicle.

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Anything that is on the paint work apart from tar and glue because it makes a mess of the clay bar so try to get them off first.

Try to use good wash/wax liquid i use maguires extreme wash and try to get the best part off with a wash and a leather off after otherwise it will make a mess of your bar. In summer i used to do runs to the santa pod and down the strip, so plenty of bugs, rubber,and tar> So when it came time to go to a show them i would wash, leather off, clay bar, wash again, and then polish. But as i said at least once every 6 months made a real diffence. at least once in summer would be enough, also use a good polish with every wash at least once a month, you should build up a barrier to help remove bugs when you wash your car. Thats just what i have found. might not work for you but if you (time/job) spend the time to clay it properly and use a good polish/wax should keep a great finsh on your car. Made my 17 year old nissan look like new the results after a harsh winter where just amazing!

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I used to use Meguiars clay bars and thought they were pretty good, but since then I started using Bilt Hamber clay and it's far better IMO with the additional benefit of using water as lube instead of spending stupid amounts of money on dedicated lube!

If you want a great clay bar, I'd recommend Bilt Hamber!

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I used the Meguiars clay bar kit on the M3 in spring, I was amazed at the difference!

It needs it again now it's filthy :(

I dont think I'll bother with the truck because the paitwork is beyond shocking. Plus I can't reach half of it without step ladders :D

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I used the meguirs clay bar properly for the first time a couple of weeks ago. Afterwards I did polish and wax the car and I am amazed at the amount of 'stuff' the clay bar pulled off and how smooth the finish was

IMO one of the best bits of cleaning kit I have spent money on

Just out of interest though, how long/much should a clay bar last if used say every 6 months? Its kept in the original plastic case (wrapped) but intrigued nonetheless

My plan was to clay bar once then keep topping up the wax layer every couple of weeks, which hopefully should stop anything sticking to the car and make it easier to clean again as well

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I've read these posts with interest. The results look really good and I would like to try going over my Yaris with a claybar. One thing i'm not to sure of is that when I bought my car I had the supagard paint protection put onto it. So my question is would the claybar remove the supagard from the car??

Any thoughts?

James

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Hi there, I to have used the Mg clay bar on my own avensis , which has super gard without any problem. I then wash with md gold class shampoo dray and de tar with Autoglym tar remover. Hose off with a power wash. Then clay bar and dry car. I then use mg stage 1 and 2. For stage 3 I use gold class wax and not the there stage 3 product, leaves a better finish. It is a long process, but the results are worth It.

Regards

Allan

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