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Old 01/03/14, 10:23 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Detailed Detail: '08 CLK63 AMG Black Series

First off,

Happy New Year! I hope 2013 was a great year for everyone, and I most definitely wish the best for everyone in ’14!



Year - 2008
Make - Mercedes
Model - CLK63 AMG Black Series


Custom Detail:
- 3-Step Paint Correction Package
+ IronX Paint Decontamination
+ Headlight & Taillight Polish
+ Ext. Glass Clayed and Sealed
+ Wheels Sealed
+ Basic Interior Detail
+ Leatherique Treatment
+ CQuartz Original Ceramic Paint Protection

It’s been some time since I completed the Restoration on this particular vehicle. Unfortunately, I am just getting around to sharing the work I put into it until now… but I suppose it’s better late than never! Right?

Well, I’ll start of by saying, Wow! I really do love this car! I have always had a soft spot for Mercedes but never really been a fan of the CLK’s. The ‘Black is a different story! Very aggressive-looking and aggressive-sounding, and just all around a joy to look at and work on. Although it wasn’t a walk-in-the-park type of Job, I enjoyed every minute of the ~30 hours put into it!

While I’m sure the previous owner cared for this car (At least I’d like to think so ), the paint told us a nice story of what incorrect wash techniques, lack of protection, and the work of an inexperienced ‘Detailer’ leads to. We discussed a few things about the condition it was in and decided to get it looking near perfect. After having some experience with Mercedes and their super-tough Ceramic Clearcoat, I knew a 3-Step Paint Correction Package would suit it well and take care of almost all defects present. I underestimated the amount of damage the paint had and was a bit surprised after the car was washed, stripped, and put under 1000w Halogen Lights, but it made for a sweet turnaround!
A few upgrades were made to the PC (Paint Correction) Package including CQuartz Original Nano-Coating, which made perfect sense after doing such extensive paint work. CQuartz has sealed in this look and will provide the ultimate protection for years to come!

Be sure to click the Product links to find out more information about them and why they are important!
I hope you all enjoy the amount of time put into this vehicle and write-up!



Arrival:

A solid layer of dust and dirt covered the entire vehicle




Badging needed a good cleaning




A good amount of dirt accumulation behind the plate… a commonly overlooked area


German brake dust is always a tough opponent




Pipes needed a refresh


Rear Carbon looking a little tired and dull



Initial inspection of paint defects showed a whole lot of swirls, random isolated deeper scratches, and holograms. Even under the layer of dirt and existing protection (wax or sealant), an awful lot of problems can be seen. I knew I was in for a treat once a full wash and decontamination was to be completed! You’ll see later in the write-up how only after the paint is completely clean and stripped, and under proper lighting, can you see the true condition of the paint!
The damage seen in the following pictures only gives a glimpse of what is to be corrected…


Swirls on the Roof












Some may be asking themselves… What are Holograms or Buffer Trails?
Well, Holograms (aka Buffer Trails or Rotary Buffer Swirls) are Micro-scratches or swirls introduced into the paint by the rotating action and misuse of a buffer or polisher.

**Important**
Improper use of these machines and poor technique by an unskilled ‘Detailer’ can install these 3D-like defects while actually trying to remove the existing swirls/scratches from the paint!


Though Holograms (or Buffer Trails) were evident on all panels, the angle of the Sun showed them best on the Trunk Lid and Roof. These aren’t the worst I’ve seen, but are a terrible sight to see on ANY vehicle, let alone one of this caliber. Thankfully we’ll be getting this paint dialed in and looking the way it should when we’re through!
‘Diamond Detail’ Guarantees a Hologram-Free finish!


Trunk Lid






Roof Holograms



Wash and Decontamination Process:

Vehicle was given a Foam Pre-Soak to loosen any dirt, Rinsed, Re-Foamed, Hand-Washed using the Two Bucket Method and a Merino Wool wash mitt, Rinsed, and finally dried via warm filtered air through a high-powered blower.


After drying, the paint, glass, headlights & taillights were Clay Bar’d. Clay Bar’ing removes the Above surface contaminants that have bonded to the paint etc. and cannot be removed with normal washing. This step cannot be overlooked before performing any type of Paint Correction!

Due to the heavy amount of contamination, an aggressive Clay Bar was used on the paint…
Before


After Claying a 2’x2’ Section


Claying the Glass


After Claying, IronX Contaminant Remover was used to chemically remove the Below surface embedded contaminants. Once every inch of paint and glass was thoroughly decontaminated, the vehicle was rewashed, dried, and prepped for Paint Correction. *No pictures were taken of this process

Spritz Sealant was applied to the wheels and left to cure





Before Paint Correction, we wanted to treat the Leather seats and door cards with Leatherique and let the oil soak at ~100 Degrees for at least a full 24 hours. Prior to soaking, all Leather surfaces were cleaned using a PH Neutral leather cleaner and a Horse Hair brush, then rinsed down with distilled water.
The Leather was fairly clean on the surface, but needed a full refresh to reintroduce proteins and collagens, and bring back the suppleness and strength!

Before


Looking a little dry and brittle




Massaging a liberal amount of Rejuvenator Oil onto the seats and door cards


Making sure to get in the stitching as well


An electric space heater was used to keep the temperature up throughout the night until the next day


We ended up doing Two applications of Rejuvenator Oil due to the Leather being so dry. It sucked up the first round of oil like a sponge!

Here’s what the bucket of rinse water looked like before cleaning the first application Rejuvenator Oil, but after the initial surface scrubbing



-DiamondDetail
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Old 01/03/14, 10:24 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Continued:


After the dirt, salts, body oils etc. were pulled out from the pores of the Leather, this is what our rinse water looked like!
It’s very important to not only keep the surface clean, but to also deep clean your Leather at least once a year to keep them looking and feeling New for years to come!


Taped up and ready for some Paint Correction!


Wheels were covered so that nothing would interfere with the sealant that was applied



Paint Correction:


First off, we started with some headlight and taillight polishing. Many scratches and swirls needed to be removed here.

Before


After


Before


After


Headlights cleaned up



Next thing to come out before the Paint Correction started, was the Paint Thickness Gauge.

**Important**
Our Clearcoats are EXTREMELY thin! In most cases, they are far thinner than a “Post-It” Note! In addition to Holograms etc. By entrusting your vehicle to someone that cannot properly polish your car, they are most likely compounding/polishing off much more of your valuable Clearcoat than what is necessary! You can only Compound/Polish your paint a number of times before you run out of Clear and need to repaint! Keep this in mind, as the ‘Budget Buff’ on the corner for $50 may cost you more than you think!

A Paint Thickness Gauge allows us to see how much paint we are working with, and enables us to perform the Job safely and correctly, while preserving as much of that precious Clearcoat as possible!

Some good readings throughout
























Many readings were taken, not only before Compounding, but also throughout the entire process to ensure safe removal of defects.


Step-1: Compounding


Before


After


Before


After


50/50


A step back


Before


After


Before


After


Before


After


Before. Due to the severity of some scratches around the vehicle, a handful were not completely corrected.


After. Quite an improvement


Before


After


Before


After


Looks like the previous Owner had a maintenance routine of washing with rocks, rinsing with sand, and using a Scotch-Brite pad instead of premium microfiber towels!


Before


After


Before


After


Before 50/50


After 50/50



-DiamondDetail
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Old 01/03/14, 10:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Continued:


Before


After


Before


After


Before


After



Coating & Prep:


Unfortunately, no pictures were taken of the second and third step of polishing but here she is waiting to be CQuartz Coated!


All compound & polishing oils were stripped with CarPro Eraser


Ambient and Surface Temperature noted prior to application as always. Well after Midnight and it was still cookin!




CQuartz Protected


A few glamor shots under the fluorescents











Interior:


Taking care of the Finishing touches and applying a Satin finish Protectant to weatherstripping and plastics




Door panels came out great with the Leather looking and feeling glove-soft




Best seats I have ever had the pleasure of sitting in




Carbon Trim came out great




Ready for business!



-DiamondDetail
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Old 01/03/14, 10:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Continued:


Finished Photos:
























Love this Badge!































And here’s a not-so-great Vid after she's been pampered for the a few days






As always, thanks for looking!



-DiamondDetail


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Old 01/03/14, 10:25 AM   #5 (permalink)
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*Edited*
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Last edited by DiamondDetail on 01/03/14 at 10:31 AM Reason: 1 too many
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Old 01/03/14, 10:39 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Amazing as always. Really need to quit being a jew and get mine done.
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Old 01/03/14, 10:51 AM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Great job brother! Now time to get the Saleen done!
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Old 01/03/14, 11:01 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Dam fine work!
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Old 01/03/14, 11:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Nice work how much does something like this cost?
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Old 01/03/14, 11:34 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Amazing work, as always.

Still need to touch base with you about some trim wrap.
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Old 01/03/14, 11:49 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
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killer work.. car looks brand new again.
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Old 01/03/14, 12:21 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Wow, fantastic. I'm with all the others, i need to get this done. The paint on my V wasn't taken care of and is more obvious in direct sunlight.
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Old 01/03/14, 12:25 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Very nice
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Old 01/03/14, 03:15 PM   #14 (permalink)
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wow!
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Old 01/03/14, 04:38 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Awesome job again Ej! That car is fucking BAD!!!
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