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Hot Rods Painting and caring for the finish for a ( Black) car

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by blazedogs, Jul 13, 2020.

  1. blazedogs
    Joined: Sep 22, 2014
    Posts: 470


    My favorite color for any car is black. When it,s clean and polished they are beautiful. That is the color of my Model A which I painted myself with basecoat /clearcoat. The problem as most of you know that have a black car any swirl or scratch on the paint will stand noticeably. Even washing ,cleaning and waxing if using the wrong cloth , dirty cloth,wrong cleaner or wax will leave very fine swirls in the paint
    My question, for those of you that have a black car, what wax or polishing compound are you using to avoid this ? gene
    dana barlow likes this.
  2. Slopok
    Joined: Jan 30, 2012
    Posts: 2,651


    Black is not a color, Black is a JOB!:rolleyes:
  3. Black_Sheep
    Joined: May 22, 2010
    Posts: 1,267


    I wash with a clean microfiber cloth, dry with a soft cotton bath towel. For the past few years I’ve been waxing with Collinite Insulator Wax. I apply using an orbital polisher with a foam finishing pad and buff with microfiber towels. Buffing the sides with an up and down motion and the rest of the car in a front to back motion helps minimize the appearance of swirls. Zaino Brothers has a detailed explanation on their website that really seems to make sense.
    jnaki likes this.
  4. i.rant
    Joined: Nov 23, 2009
    Posts: 3,254

    1. 1940 Ford

    Quality microfiber towels make a huge difference in how your finish will appear whether it’s washing,drying, waxing or using detail spray.
    Both California Car Cover and Griots Garage have everything you’ll need and the cost is minimal.
    The only area of my car terrycloth towels come near are the powder coated wheels or the chassis.

  5. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,994


    upload_2020-7-13_11-33-9.png 1958

    The standard wax for most hot rodders in the 50s and 60s was Vista Car Wax. It was cheap, could be found anywhere and did a good job on most cars. There was no comparison in detailing the 51 Oldsmobile sedan to detailing the black 1958 Impala. There were more curves, nicely designed panels, and custom touches directly from the factory that made this 58 Impala stand out anywhere. When the Impala was fully cleaned, shined, and buffed, it was like a deep, dark lagoon depth in the black paint. Show quality, but a daily driver to high school and the drags.

    When we had our first black car, it was a 1958 Impala. waxing was with a very soft cotton cloth, removal was with a soft white cotton towel and the wax was the top brand of the day, Cadillac Blue Coral wax. I still have the original can and wax from back then taking a nap in our garage detailing drawer.
    upload_2020-7-13_11-41-19.png original 1960
    The Impala got a Vista Wax detail at first, but, we had to be careful with the direction and time it took to wipe on and off. It shined, but if left on too long, it left marks on the surface. It was also very gritty, so care had to be taken when during the application portion. No wheel buffers, but just a very soft fluffy white cloth was necessary. And rotating a clean white cloth did the best as it tended to clog up the weave with a wax build up. It was not a job without errors, but the wax did the job.
    The smile says it all…after my hard work as the “go to, detail, wax guy”, it was all smiles. Plus, it was my job for a meager salary and being taken places, without using the local bus.

    Then at one car show, we saw a Cadillac Blue Coral display and that changed the whole waxing scheme. As the newer waxes came on the market and car shows, we changed over to Cadillac Blue Coral Wax. As difficult as Blue Coral wax was, it left the best, deepest shine of any wax product at the time.

    Finally, the Classic Car Wax took over the detailing as it was easy to put on and take off. The Cadillac Blue Coral made the deep shine, but was a bear to take off. The Classic Car Wax protected the surface with its high content of Carnuba. I bought my first can in 1962 and recently opened the last one I had saved over the years.
    upload_2020-7-13_11-43-59.png original 1962
    Currently, these two “old guys” only come out when a chrome or stainless steel item in the house needs a buff or two. Also, what little chrome or stainless that is in/on the actual cars get a touch of nostalgia for the smells.

    Previous post:

    Back when Classic Car Wax first came out, we were at the LA County Fair in Pomona. There was this guy with a black hood on the display table for all to see. He poured lighter fluid on the hood and lit it on fire. After putting it out, he told us to touch the surface. He was trying to impress the teenager girls that were with us. No way… It was too hot. So, he cools the hood down with a cold wet towel. Then he threw his dry towel across the black hood and it slid all the way across and onto the table top.

    The surface was as deep as before the fire and he added another coat of Classic Car Wax and told us to come back in 20 minutes to check it out. When we came back, he told me to wipe it off. It came off easily and the shine was superb. I bought my first can right on the spot. The 58 black Impala paint surface never looked so good. Easy on, easy off, with the deepest shine in the whole cruising scene in Bixby Knolls. I kept all of our cars in a shiny condition using Classic Car Wax until they quit making the product in 1975. Pure Carnuba wax was the main ingredient…

    “Curtis L. Bruner, who is the person who created Classic Car Wax back in 1962.

    - It was not made by Pennzoil/Quaker State/Sopus.
    - MSDS ingredients did not include jet fuel light or hydro-treated petroleum distillates.
    - It is not manufactured any more. Curtis Bruner grew the company for 12 years to the point where it was being made/sold in 110 countries. Then, because they were growing at 100% a year, he needed money and got involved with a financial snake who ultimately squeezed him out of the company. It then took 12 years for the company to fail.
    - regarding whether or not contemporary offerings will yield superior results and durability....He says that he doubts it, they would not have the same ingredients. We used a high percentage of carnuba. This was back when beeswax cost 10 cents a pound, paraffin was 6 cents and carnuba was $1.89 a pound.”


    These days, it is Collinite wax for all of our cars. The cars are not black as that paint upkeep was a bear back then and with us being as old as we are, a simple wax on/wax off is best for the car and me. Collinite lasts a lot longer in our salt infused So Cal coastal environment. But, then again, both cars get a lot of rest, inside of a closed garage being “locked in place.” @Black_Sheep has all of the modern cloth/wax ingredients for a wax on/wax off job. But for any surface, we never used a buffing wheel. Again, a liquid wax will make things simple and easy, but won’t last as long as paste wax. 1958-60 technology vs 2020 contest, old vs modern, modern has it hands down. YRMV

    Blue Coral was the best...but hard to take off if you were not concentrating...That is one thing I have saved from 1960. I still have the original can and the bits of Madras Cotton Cloth , I used to wax my 58 black Impala. It had the deepest shine for a black car. I used one of those dusting rags (out of a can) every day after school and it did not scratch the finish. Recently, I use a little Blue Coral on projects here and there. But, the smell is very distinct. I have always kept the Blue Coral in one of my dad's 60's wooden cigar boxes, toothbrushes and all.
    upload_2020-7-13_11-44-46.png upload_2020-7-13_11-44-57.png


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jul 13, 2020
  6. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 7,801

    Bandit Billy

    1. Professional detail once a year at the end of spring so they look good during summer in the PNW (last year it was on a Thursday as I recall)
    2. Hand wash only, silicone blades and compressed air to remove water
    3. Liberal use of detail spray after every wash with clean or new MF towels
    4. Avoid the California Car Duster (my detail guy calls it the California Car "Scratcher")
    5. Never use dryer sheets when washing/drying your microfiber towels.
    My new 2020 Silverado is black and it replaces the 2006 Silverado that was black. These are dailies and they get dirty but I always keep them shining.
    warbird1, Tman and GordonC like this.
  7. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 5,562

    from Ks

    I let the owner worry about it when I send it home. LOL. IMG_3619.JPG
  8. partssaloon
    Joined: Jan 28, 2009
    Posts: 507


    I've been using Adams polishes for the last couple of years. Just finished this with an orbital on my 48 which is Black Cherry.
    Just Gary and dana barlow like this.
  9. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 27,029

    Jalopy Joker

    if black was easy to maintain everybody would have a black car
  10. I've got 3 of them...
    VANDENPLAS and dana barlow like this.
  11. dana barlow
    Joined: May 30, 2006
    Posts: 4,400

    dana barlow
    from Miami Fla.
    1. Y-blocks

    I've used Gloss Black Rust-Oleum enamel with hardner ,buffed out after a month,from first paint job in 1959 ,an every job tell now on my old hot rod.
    Found in all that time,the very best shine comes from a pretty girl asking to sit in my 28 hot rod.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2020
  12. blazedogs
    Joined: Sep 22, 2014
    Posts: 470


    I, m not a authority on paint.If I wanted to paint my car black would I have been better off not to use basecoat (/clearcoat.) It appears that it is the clear that is showing the swirl marks after cleaning ,But then again if one does not use the clear now you have lost the deep depth look ?
    I love the look my car being black but it,s a pain to maintain the finish..
    dana barlow likes this.
  13. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 5,562

    from Ks

    I feel that the best deepest black I have ever seen was a lacquer job. Lots of labor involved and it lacks the protection of the clearcoat as far as birdpoop/stains ect... My next choice would be single stage urethane. It looks the closest to lacquer as far as depth and clean shine. I still feel most black bc/cc clear is kinda a cheap shine. I remember helping a buddy with his black 40 coupe done in many coats of lacquer. The final rub was cornstarch and water . That old coupe looked like you could jump into the paint and swim in it. :D Now on my bc/cc jobs I use a wool pad after I have color sanded with 2000 paper wet. I use 3m perfect it compound. Finish it up with a foam pad and carnuba wax it. Clear is so hard a finish compared to regular paint so if you scratch it with fine swirls it takes work to get rid of them. Cleanliness in your operation is your friend. JMO
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
    warbird1 and dana barlow like this.
  14. dana barlow
    Joined: May 30, 2006
    Posts: 4,400

    dana barlow
    from Miami Fla.
    1. Y-blocks

    I posted back at #11,add some fill in;;
    I repaint my rod only about every 10 years,with gloss enamel, an yes it dose get rust,scratches and dings some that need fix n fill over time an always sprayed in the backyard padio.

    But got too thinking I should say that I've seen too many rods that don't get painted shiny or put off way to long, making much more work;;
    Because of builder,ether thinking it will cost too much or will not live up to wish for perfection.
    #1 First thing I'd like to point out,we nearly all want perfection,but can kill your fun by hunting that.
    #2 is cost,I always had the near zero $ thing,so thought of it this way; I can try something I can afford,and if it dosen't work,do it later better.
    But always know prep is the key,make it smooth,prime,fill,sand two times +more then you thought was needed.
    Then I used Gloss Black, $20 Qt of Rust-Oleum an added hardner,let it be for a month an then buff it. Has always been good,not perfection,but good. So sand paper,primer,filler cost more then 2x what the Gloss Black did.
    Point being,you can if you try do it for much less and be riding around. In the end,if your prep sucks,a can of $1000 shiny will not save it!
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
  15. lippy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2006
    Posts: 5,562

    from Ks

    Great points Dana. I hesitate to give too much info on a message board. Bodywork and painting a car is something that is learned by doing. What works for me may not work for someone else. If you have a bodyman local you can trust I say approach him and ask. If he's a decent guy he will help you. I can tell you all day long how to do it and what to use but I can't do it for you as much as I would like to. LOL. Lippy
    dana barlow likes this.
  16. impala4speed
    Joined: Jan 31, 2010
    Posts: 260


  17. I used base coat without clear. It's a long story, so I'll skip some of the details. It reminds me of an early Ford factory lacquer paint job. It's never perfect, but has about 75%-80% shine, which I like. It's vulnerable to chemicals and rock chips. It does go gray in a few months, so I spray it with Turtle Wax (Wax & Dry) every once in a while.

    Someday I'll fix it... (yeah right).

  18. borderboy1971
    Joined: Oct 20, 2008
    Posts: 747

    from Canada

    I'm sure different types of paint need different types of care and waxes etc. Of which I'm no expert at all. But I can say that with my black OT truck, I have found turtle wax black ice to work surprisingly well. I realize it's a gimmick product (designed for black paint), but I was impressed. Although I'm not sure if it's available anymore.
    dana barlow likes this.
  19. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 6,260


    It sure helps to have an experienced body man living next door helping with sanding and blocking before the black paint went on. The 60 Pontiac is straighter then when it left GM's factory. I've had people stop and ask me who did the body work its so straight.
    I've been thinking of waxing it but don't want to cause any swirl marks. Nor sure what wax to use.
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
    dirty old man and dana barlow like this.
  20. Daddy Deville
    Joined: Jan 12, 2020
    Posts: 25

    Daddy Deville

    Dana,your last sentence is pure truth. Prep is by far the most important aspect of a paint job.
    dirty old man and dana barlow like this.
  21. woodiewagon46
    Joined: Mar 14, 2013
    Posts: 1,897

    from New York

    Both my car's are black and I have been using a Meguiar's product called Black Wax. It's formulated for black car's and really puts a shine on my car's. I don't know what is in it, but it has a warning label on it that states that it's "combustable, keep away from flame or heat". I've been waxing cars for 55 years and this is the first wax I've seen that will catch fire.
  22. Baumi
    Joined: Jan 28, 2003
    Posts: 2,765


    My 40 is my only black car, and as much as I love it, it´s always dirty or about to be. I love it for it´s deep shine, but to be honest, I completely understand why people have flat or primered cars.
    IMG_6378.JPG IMG_5392.JPG
    dana barlow, Thor1, Gman0046 and 3 others like this.
  23. Micro clothes and good quality polish, and lots of elbow grease.:D IMG_4634.jpg

    IMG_4229.jpg IMG_3528.JPG
    dana barlow, Thor1 and reagen like this.
  24. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 6,112

    A Boner

    The swirls are the early stages of authentic patina...rejoice and relax!
    Thor1 and Montana1 like this.
  25. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 5,493

    from red oak

    I got over 60 thousand miles on my paint job. Claybar, cleaner wax, swirl remover, Rubbing compound, polishing wax and the final protectant wax. Quick detailer. All Meguiars used on my car, not in that order and not all steps used every year. I skip around a bit. It`s not perfect but is presentable with chips, scrapes and scratches.
  26. 6-bangertim
    Joined: Oct 3, 2011
    Posts: 400

    from California

    The PO went to the lowest bidder short of Earl Shibe for paint on my '57Chevy, used the cheapest material he could lay hands on that was 'automotive enanamel'. Sooo, it fades fairly quick without s car cover in my driveway. Thankfully, I have a H-F D-A sander with a set of foam pads when it gets away from me!

    That said, I'd try Maguire's cleaner-wax for starters. If it needs more, try Maguire's liquid polishing compound. It didn't do much for my black, but might be enough for you. Next step would be Turtle Wax polishing compound - dries much SLOWER than Maguire's Ultimate Compound, cheap, works well with my D-A. Maybe sacrifice a microfiber towel for an applicator. Work in the early mornings, or last couple hours of the day if rubbing outside, make sure the surface is COOL!

    This is a PURE cut n try deal, but let us know what works for you - a lot of us have newer drivers with with 2-stage paint. As you well know - you don't own a black car, you MARRY it! Good luck, hope this is a decent start!
  27. GordonC
    Joined: Mar 6, 2006
    Posts: 2,409


    Guys in keeping with the spirit of dealing with black paint I need some pointers. Paint has been on the car for almost a year or more. Base coat clear coat. I recently painted my louvered hood and wet sanded it and buffed it out and it came out pretty good for a first time effort although I did burn through a couple louvers and a spot on the accent line on the side. I also wet sanded and buffed out my cowl with no problem. My concern is the other areas of the body. The doors I should be good to go on as they are a wide open area but I am worried about sanding the quarters, the trunk lid full of louvers, and the rear fenders. Some areas are too small for the buffer and the accent lines have spooked me. How do you do the areas where you can't really get in there with a normal buffer? Can you do them by hand? A smaller version of the buffer? Not sure how to handle those areas and any suggestions appreciated. Oh, have a 6 inch buffer and used foam cutting, polishing, and finish pads.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
  28. Slopok
    Joined: Jan 30, 2012
    Posts: 2,651


    Buffing is more difficult than painting, find someone to buff for you.
  29. okiedokie
    Joined: Jul 5, 2005
    Posts: 4,307

    from Ok

    I hate polishing and waxing, you guys make me embarrassed. I think my 40 sedan project my get the Montana1 treatment.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020

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