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Surf City Barrier Reef Wax


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#1 SCoach

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 05:43 PM

A week ago, I got an email from a member of my British Car club. He was trying to sell a Buick LeSabre and asked if I would detail it for him. I had made an offer to club members for the month of June to do a basic cleanup on their classic British cars for $100. No paint correction or anything, just a cleanup. Idea being a wash, interior wipedown, and an AIO. He knows he can't get that deal, but we settle on a price based on pictures of the vehicle.

Saturday I head out with my gear to do the car. I show up at 8am. It's about 90F and the sun is rising quickly. I decide doing the interior before it gets sweltering is the best course of action. I open it up, and realize I am in trouble. It's classic late 90s Buick. Tons of plastic, bad fake leather, and 117k miles on the clock. I don't think the car has ever had the interior cleaned. The center arm rest looked stained. I'd find out later it wasn't. The buildup of sweat was so thick it looked like the console was a different color. Anyway, I clean up the interior, and do the wheels and tires. It's after noon, and it's 102 with a heat index of 106. There is no shade on the property. I call it a day, and decide to come back Sunday to tackle the outside of the car.

In thinking about my arsenal, I've got sealants, and I've got AIOs, but the only wax I have is a rather expensive paste, and I am NOT going to use that for a quickie pre-sale cleanup. I want something quick and easy. So I decide to try the Surf City Barrier Reef product. I've heard others on various forums sing it's praises, and I've had excellent experience with their other products. So I grab some at the local Pep Boys.

Sunday morning, I am on site at 7am. It's only 95F when I arrive. I jump on the car doing a 2BM wash and forgoing the normal pre-soak. I just don't have the time. I spray the engine down with Surf City Grime Destroyer cut 3:1. I use the Daytoma Speedmaster Brush to get that all cleaned up, and spray it down. The car gets dried with a WW towel after being misted with DP Rinseless mixed at clay lube ratio. Car comes out very nice and clean. I spot clay a few areas, and then apply the wax.

This is the first time I've waxed without polishing, and it felt like I was cheating. the wax went on very nicely. I applied wax on one full side of the car, then went back and buffed it off. Came off easily. I quickly finished up the car. The surface gloss was amazing for what I had done. Essentially a wash and wax on a car with 117k miles. It needed a 2-step polish at least, but that just wasn't going to happen.

I dressed the tires and wheel wells, took some pics, and went home.

I will say this. Given what I saw from the Barrier Reef product today, I give it my full recommendation as a liquid carnauba LSP. Absolutely amazing results from it. I am going to detail my car again in July, and this will be my topper over Poli-Seal. I will also use it on the classic cars I will be doing in the coming weeks. Looks like I am going to be prepping a Triumph TR3 toward the end of July, and an Austin Healey 3000 also in July or August.

I have pics and they will be uploaded in the morning.
1991 Range Rover Black on Tan (gotta submit to the before and after contest)

2002 Subaru WRX Midnight Blue Pearl

#2 Chicagoareanew

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 05:48 PM

That's good to hear; I've been curious about that product for a while. I believed their claims that it's easy to apply, but I was unsure about how good it would look after the fact.

#3 SCoach

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 05:56 PM

Best $20 I ever spent on an LSP. But you can imagine how thirsty this paint was. I don't think the owner had ever waxed the car. It was a swirled mess. I was going to buy some p21s to prep showcars with, but I am going to hold off on that for a while and see how this product does. I don't think for a minute it's going to be as good as P21, but at less than half the price, it'll certainly be good enough for the non-concours level stuff I am doing.
1991 Range Rover Black on Tan (gotta submit to the before and after contest)

2002 Subaru WRX Midnight Blue Pearl

#4 Chicagoareanew

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 07:00 PM

I'd love hear more about it, after you use it on cars that aren't in such bad shape. From what it sounds like, anything would sound good on that old one.

#5 SCoach

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 07:04 PM

LOL, probably true. I was really going to do my hood today in a 4-way test. I'll have to save it for later. I was beat.

I think I am going to test Wolfgang Sealant, Liquid Glass Sealant, Poli-Seal, and the Surf City Wax. I could probably add in some CG 50/50 and Klasse Twins. We'll see.
1991 Range Rover Black on Tan (gotta submit to the before and after contest)

2002 Subaru WRX Midnight Blue Pearl

#6 zmanz

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 07:29 PM

it's on special at:
Surf City Garage

#7 Chicagoareanew

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 08:07 PM

Even with shipping and handling it comes out cheaper at that store rather than buying it in person, great find! Now I'm wondering if there's anything else I should get there...this is dangerous lol.

#8 Legacy99

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 08:39 PM

SC Grime Destroyer, Glass cleaner and Hot Rod Detailer are other great products.

#9 blucpe

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 11:04 AM

you should definitly try their hotrod detailer protectant. i was amazed, it's as good or better than fk425 imho.

#10 SCoach

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 11:22 AM

A couple of photos...

This is what I was dealing with on the interior. 50/50 of the arm rest:

Posted Image


This is how the engine cleaned up:

Posted Image


Trunk reflecting after NO POLISH and SC Barrier Reef:

Posted Image


Hood reflections, again no polishing at all on 117k mile paint:

Posted Image


Final Shot:

Posted Image
1991 Range Rover Black on Tan (gotta submit to the before and after contest)

2002 Subaru WRX Midnight Blue Pearl

#11 SCoach

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 11:25 AM

SC Grime Destroyer, Glass cleaner and Hot Rod Detailer are other great products.


I take the Grime Destroyer on every detail I do. Absolutely stunning product for making quick work of engines, undercarriages, door hinges, and anything else with stubborn dirt.

I used it 3:1 on the engine in these photos and only needed a single application to do what you see here. There was over 100k miles of grime on that motor that was absolutely erased in one application of Grime Destroyer cut 3:1.

Proof is in the pictures.
1991 Range Rover Black on Tan (gotta submit to the before and after contest)

2002 Subaru WRX Midnight Blue Pearl

#12 Chicagoareanew

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 11:17 AM

I have the grime destroyer too, and while I like it a lot and will continue to buy it, I don't think it's as strong as automotive formula goo - gone. I know some people are going to cringe at the thought of goo gone making something for cars, but it's the absolute strongest thing I've seen to remove tar.
I have to detail my engine, and I was going to either use the grime destroyer or p21s all purpose, but since I just found out today that Nissan Altimas are very prone to having problems with engine detailing due to the large amount of electrical things in the engine, I'm pretty certain that I'll have to go with grime destroyer. There is just no way that an all - purpose will be strong enough to clean my engine without blasts of water. I'd need your guys' opinion on whether I should cut the grime destroyer or use it full strength. Keep in mind, I can't just wash out the engine with water or else I'll have problems. so I'm wondering if that means that using something like GD will be flammable or something if I can't remove it completely.




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