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Hi everyone,

Alex from Moonlight Detailing here. While i'm not a Lexus owner, I thought i'd post up a recent paint restoration we undertook on an ES300.

Mind you, the car was an absolute pleasure to drive. My current car is a BMW 125i (2009), and the ES300 really outshone (pardon that bad pun) the BMW in terms of luxury. The car is quiet, suspension soft but smooth and very simple to drive. The BMW on the other hand is a very tight, accurate vehicle. But I guess the two cars serve very different purposes. It still amazes me how quiet the ES300 is compared to the 3L straight six in the 125i.

So, a client contacted us a few weeks ago regarding getting his Black ES300 fixed up. I was told on the phone it had a few scratches and needed a good detail. I dropped in on a Sunday afternoon to check the vehicle and was then told it had been graffiti tagged and there were huge possum scratches all over the boot! The car is also parked near a coal plant during the day.

I inspected the car, we discussed options and negotiated a price. The car needed two days of solid work.

Process

1. As with all of our corrective details, we started with a wash (heavy suds), continued with a clay bar (which took 2 hours due to the coal residue) and then a secondary wash (light suds).

2. Seeing as though the car needed a significant amount of work, we had 5 woollen rotary pads at the ready and 2 foam rotary pads. We started with compounding the vehicle on a light speed (~1800 rpm) and minimal pressure to test the paint durability. I was very surprised to see that the Lexus paint is soft indeed.

3. Continuing over the bonnet where the largest piece of graffiti was, we kept the bonnet very well lubricated and covered in compound due to the soft paint.

4. After 4 hours of compounding and correcting swirls, scratches, graffiti, acid marring and water spots, I was satisfied with the base layer.

5. Moving onto a machine glaze and very low speed (1000 rpm). This deep glaze specialised for dark paint brought out a beautiful gloss on the new paint.

6. We then proceeded with a hand wax, allowing 2 hours to sit properly and work onto the paint work.

7. Wheels, tyres and wheel arches followed next and came out very well as usual. We clayed parts of the wheels where baked on road grime and brake dust were going to eat away the wheel clearcoat.

Overall the job took 18 hours. We took possession of the vehicle at 5pm, and delivered the vehicle back to the owner at 3:30pm the next day. Yes, two hours sleep!

I really enjoyed the vehicle, and interesting to note the extreme differences between the big German manufacturer paints and the softer Lexus paint. It made it fairly easier to work away the damage.

Some pictures are attached, or you can have a look at the whole album at facebook.com/MoonlightDetailing

Any general detailing questions, i'm more than happy to help out.

Cheers,

Alex

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