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Restoring old Laquer Paint...Need Help and thoughts...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by fur biscuit, Feb 15, 2010.

  1. Have a car with some very nice old Laquer paint, but it is very oxidized and needs to be really polished and cleaned.

    I am sure there are some recomendations on what cleaning and polishing compounds to use. It also has some old striping that needs to be removed, as I plan on having it restriped, should i just hit it with rubbing compound/ cleaner then wax after wards?

    Being lazy, I am not going to do this by hand, so any buffers that you guys like?

    Finally, need a recomendation on a striper here in the SF, Bay. It is just going to be gold fine the mile ;)
  2. 302GMC
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 6,410

    from Idaho

    Ajax & some sponges, then wax it.
  3. Antny
    Joined: Aug 19, 2009
    Posts: 1,071

    from Noo Yawk

    Clean it real good to make sure there is no grit, then rub it to a brilliant luster with a fine glazing compound. It shouldn't take much to get old lacquer to shine like new. Don't use an abrasive polish, use something very fine like Liquid Ebony or other 'swirl' remover.
  4. Cshabang
    Joined: Mar 30, 2004
    Posts: 2,458


    rubbing compound will cut it the fastest, but be careful esp on your edges, etc...i dont know if id use a buffer, lacquer goes away quick haha. Then use a good wax system...nothing shines like Lacquer

  5. GasserDave
    Joined: Feb 15, 2010
    Posts: 132

    from Sin City

    Careful with the lacquer thinner or acetone to remove any stripes etc. It will reactivate the paint and leave cloth imprints in it any you cannot get them out. The checking , you are stuck with it. There is nothing to be done with it..any visuals would help to, we like them.......
  6. Babar40
    Joined: Dec 4, 2009
    Posts: 313

    from Florida

    I have used a Meguiar Paint Cleaner. Seems to chemically clean oxidation and not by compound grit. Had original lacquer painted Bentley, 1963, black and it shined like a new nickel. Very easy to use. Apply good wax after cleaning paint.
  7. Yeah great idea if you want it kinda dull, scrached and flat.

    Carfully rub it with some modern compound and a wool pad and polish it with some current polish like "finness it" ( I probably spelled that wrong but a pro will know what I mean) and a foam pad.

    But if you have never rubbed and polished a car have someone do it that knows what they are doing. Laquer is very soft and can burn real easy.

    Good luck
  8. carcrazyjohn
    Joined: Apr 16, 2008
    Posts: 4,844

    from trevose pa

    My dad alway's used carcleaner and then meguairs wax .By hand
  9. BTB-Derby
    Joined: Apr 28, 2005
    Posts: 260


    I have wet sanded lighty & then buff with rubbing compound. Don't get carried away buffing.
  10. BRENT in 10-uh-C
    Joined: Apr 14, 2004
    Posts: 502

    BRENT in 10-uh-C

    One thing that you may want to consider is this, ...if the paint is oxidized, then the natural oils in the paint have evaporated. Buffing "specifically" is not what is going to bring back the shine. What will fool you into thinking this is the buffing compound binder on the surface however it is designed to evaporate rapidly after it has done its job of spreading the media in the compound.

    Many polishes on the market now are silicones that are designed for 'polys' which urethanes do not share the same characteristics or needs as lacquer. If I were in your shoes, look for a product similar to Meguiars #7 which has oils specifically designed for this type of paint. Use a soft applicator and start working it into the paint by hand. You will find this #7 polish never really dries and will always seem "smudgy". Allow the paint to soak up the oil a few days between applications, --and do it as many times as your arm can stand, or until the paint does not seem to absorb it any longer. Then you can apply a good Carnuba wax over it to seal in the oil. This will rejuvinate a lacquer job, and since you won't be buffing away any paint, you have more to save for later waxings. My other suggestion is to only use compounding if you have 'peel' that you need to remove, ...and do that AFTER you have replenished the oil back into the paint. Just my 2 cents.....:D
  11. blt2go
    Joined: Oct 27, 2009
    Posts: 551


    i'd have to go with brent and find a paint specific product. as mentioned above most of todays products are geared for urethane paints and don't work the best on lacquers, not to say you can't use them they just aren't designed for it. as for a machine to do the job i would go with a dual action buffer as they don't "burn" through as easy (if machine compounding is what is needed). then finish with a wool pad on an orbital buffer. i have compounded scratches from lacquer with 3m extra cut with a 3000 grit foam pad on a 6" da sander then finished with meguires machine glaze applied with a yellow foam pad and removed with a wool pad on an orbital machine. hope this helps and good luck, and remember lacquer is soft and leaves quickly so be careful and don't be so quick to use a machine.
  12. kustomrace
    Joined: Apr 1, 2004
    Posts: 168


    I just restored the finish the Cougar II show car.It was painted in 1964 and stored since.I tested the paint in several places with 3M dark car foam pad polish.I did it at first by hand,then with a wheel at low speed(heat is not your friend).Roadstar is right "finnesse"(I think I spelled it wrong too) is also an option.I prefer to use foam pads ,but everyone has their fav's.Once it was clean,I sealed it with Imperial hand glaze.I came back about a week later and put a second coat of glaze on.I dust and quick detail it about one a month,since its been on display.
  13. topless54
    Joined: Jul 7, 2005
    Posts: 200


    Thorough washing first. I've had gread success w/ soapy water (a lot) and 2000 grit. bring back the shine w/ a light compound cut a little w/ water. SLOW buffer speed. Wax w/ carnuba.
  14. thanks. will give it ago.
  15. davis574ord
    Joined: May 21, 2009
    Posts: 785


    I have polished alot of laquer and a good scrubbing with soap and water i have had good luck with meguires#2 at a super slow speed with a waffle foam pad low speed is the key word here!! Be careful if its to hard to do with buffer do it by hand ehich i how i do most of them yeah its a lot of work but well worth it so you dont burn the laquer finish you really cant lose with meguires and use their number nine by hand to get rid of the swirls and number seven to finsh with good luck
  16. Bull
    Joined: Mar 17, 2006
    Posts: 2,286


    I'd give our Shine Master polish a go by hand. If that doesn't bring it back, I'd step up to our Finish Cut Compound with a foam buffing pad. They're both petroleum free!
  17. pimpin paint
    Joined: May 31, 2005
    Posts: 4,939

    pimpin paint
    from so cal


    Any photos of the Cougar II show car from today you could share? It was probably one of Ford Motor Co's strongest designs of that era, sad that it never saw production!

    I have to side with Brent -In Tennasee- The silicones contained in today's polishing products don't have any/much pertrolium in them. Solvent based paints like lacquer need such to regain their original depth and shine. Without such, you're polishing the polish, not the paint!

    " Spending a nation into generational debt is not an act of compassion"

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