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  1. #1
    Migue's Avatar
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    Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Sorry about another "clay" Thread . I Searched for 15/20 minutes on the specific question(s) I have but couldn`t find an answer:


    How do you manage (If possible) to clay (skip polish) and then wax/seal without marring ? I`m designing my most basic detail package without offering machine polishing and would like to know since i`m just used to polishing/correcting every car I`ve Clayed so far. Should i always just use the mildest form of clay available to avoid marring/scuffing/dullness of the finish? Or just seal/wax without Claying ( which i would hate to do knowing that the surface is not prepped to my standards and bonding will not be as good)?


    I recently purchased the mild and medium Nanoskin "Clay" Sponges and eager to try them out. Of course i plan on keeping traditional Clay in my supply.

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions/tips/feedback!

  2. #2
    ShaneB's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Just stick with the fine grade stuff and you should be ok. Do a small test spot and see if it will cause marring. If not, go ahead and do the whole car. I wont seal/wax a car without claying first.

  3. #3
    Darth Camaro 12/27/15 Don's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    I don`t think the clay itself is what causes marring, rather it`s the stuff the clay picks up that makes the marring, and each car is going to be different. I think you should do what you think is best for you and your business. If you are more comfortable claying AND polishing so be it. Just examine the surface first, it might have only been lightly contaminated and polishing is not needed.
    Don M

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    of a 2013 Camaro LS
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    Darth Camaro


  4. #4
    MiVor's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    I think you can clay w/o marring if you have a good clay, lube, and a good process (turn and kneed the clay often). I feel you really only want to polish when it`s really necessary as you`re grinding off a fine layer of clear coat that protects the paint. In many cases a finish really doesn`t need to be polished, but almost all cases will require contaminant removal with clay that washing alone just doesn`t do. So let your conscience and your eye be your guide. Also, in some cases, maybe just some panels (like the horizontal surfaces) are in need of polish...or just the areas around wheel wells that get beat from splatter...so maybe you clay the whole ride, but only polish selected areas???
    Especially for sealants (and coatings) you might also wish to consider and factor in a pre-cleaner after claying to ensure the best adhesion.

    -Mike
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  5. #5
    Pay Attention Boy... RTexasF's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Don`t miss out on the folks that only want to pay for a simple wash, vac, & wax. It`s easy money, for the most part, and can bring in more customers. I did a hand wash, vac, exterior windows, wipe the dash, and Stoners More Time aerosol on the tires. The wax was Optimum Spray Wax. Base the price on the size and condition of the vehicle. Clay was not part of the regimen. Prices started @ $35 for Corolla/Civic sized vehicles and went up from there. These could be knocked out in an hour. A Suburban obviously takes more time so that would cost more.

    That`s what the customers wanted so that`s what they got but it was done correctly and they were pleased enough to return on schedule. Additional services were easy to sell once I gained their trust.
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  6. #6
    Migue's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Thank you all for the feedback. Light Spot Polishing sounds like a good idea to include if adding clay services and I wouldn`t want to miss out on the easy wash/wax jobs that could bring in repeat easy cash flow. Indeed It is what the customer wants so in the end, i`ll just have them bring it back for more until they`re ready for that full AIO Polish on the full exterior. i was thinking about doing the $35 wash/light interior/ wax but only as a maintenance to vehicles i have cleaned already. Any first timers will need to get a thorough cleaning of interior/exterior before getting the "membership" / "maintenance" lower price.
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  7. #7
    MiVor's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Quote Originally Posted by Migue View Post
    Thank you all for the feedback. Light Spot Polishing sounds like a good idea to include if adding clay services and I wouldn`t want to miss out on the easy wash/wax jobs that could bring in repeat easy cash flow. Indeed It is what the customer wants so in the end, i`ll just have them bring it back for more until they`re ready for that full AIO Polish on the full exterior. i was thinking about doing the $35 wash/light interior/ wax but only as a maintenance to vehicles i have cleaned already. Any first timers will need to get a thorough cleaning of interior/exterior before getting the "membership" / "maintenance" lower price.
    What are you thinking to charge for that first time, through cleaning?

  8. #8
    Migue's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Quote Originally Posted by MiVor View Post
    What are you thinking to charge for that first time, through cleaning?
    Thinking around $60 ( ~2 hr Job if it`s a trashed vehicle), which if it`s a beat up car, I know in order to get results i want it`ll take me around the 2 hr mark at the moment. i did a few daily drivers every weekend for the past 3 weekends or so and taking time of each step/area of the process. I`m not done setting up my prices for good since i`m designing my Menu with services.

    -Full interior Vacuum
    -Dusting of all interior surfaces
    -Wipe down/clean door panels/ interior hard surfaces.
    -Dress interior
    -Windows
    -Clean Doorjambs
    -Exterior Foam/Pre Wash
    -2 Bucket Wash
    -Scrub Clean trim/crevices with brush(es)
    -Wheel Houses
    -Tires/Wheels
    -Dress all exterior trim & tires
    -clay then Wax/Seal (additional price potentially)

    Then a maintenance wash ( once within the month or sooner ) on a car i have cleaned very well should only take about 1hr to do interior/exterior clean up/wash.



    I`m not interested in attracting Lowballers/hagglers/price shoppers that will give me more headaches than business. I had plenty of those when i was doing a similar procedure for coworkers a few years ago for very cheap(as part time work), they kept asking for more and each time wanted me to take in less $.
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  9. #9

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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    I have not been able to consistently clay vehicles without some marring. I have dealt with hard , med and soft paints all with varying results. Some have little to no marring and some have substantial marring. I have made the decision that I will not clay unless I plan to at least do some form of light polishing. I don`t want to feel like I have to "tiptoe" around the paint on the car when I am claying it. Most of the time it only takes a very mild polish or AIO with a very mild pad to remove the marring which in turn only removes a very minimal amount of clear coat. I offer a normal hand wax package for those customers that do not want to pay for a polish job. This package does not include claying. If the customer wants claying they have to at least purchase a basic AIO polishing package.
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  10. #10
    Migue's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Quote Originally Posted by bswombaugh View Post
    I have not been able to consistently clay vehicles without some marring. I have dealt with hard , med and soft paints all with varying results. Some have little to no marring and some have substantial marring. I have made the decision that I will not clay unless I plan to at least do some form of light polishing. I don`t want to feel like I have to "tiptoe" around the paint on the car when I am claying it. Most of the time it only takes a very mild polish or AIO with a very mild pad to remove the marring which in turn only removes a very minimal amount of clear coat. I offer a normal hand wax package for those customers that do not want to pay for a polish job. This package does not include claying. If the customer wants claying they have to at least purchase a basic AIO polishing package.

    These were my thoughts as well, I could use that as a selling point to have them upgrade to my AIO polish package. Of course if they just want the wax without Clay/Polish (after i explain to them that it will not last as long or look as good) then I will still just do a really good exterior wash with an Iron X step to help loosen up contaminants and hopefully help with the bonding a bit better.

    I still wanted to inquire about this because I`ve seen so many people state Claying then wax/sealing in their steps when there are also lots of people who will not clay unless they are polishing the full vehicle after. I will just occasionally experiment with it using the lightest clay I can find and see where that takes me.

    Any recommendations for light clay out there feel free to post them please. I currently have Megs (2 Light grey small Blocks that come in black plastic case) , Griot`s Yellow Clay (i`ve heard bad things about it, haven`t tried it yet) and the Nanoskin Blue and Red Clay Blocks/Sponges.

  11. #11

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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Quote Originally Posted by Migue View Post
    These were my thoughts as well, I could use that as a selling point to have them upgrade to my AIO polish package. Of course if they just want the wax without Clay/Polish (after i explain to them that it will not last as long or look as good) then I will still just do a really good exterior wash with an Iron X step to help loosen up contaminants and hopefully help with the bonding a bit better.

    I still wanted to inquire about this because I`ve seen so many people state Claying then wax/sealing in their steps when there are also lots of people who will not clay unless they are polishing the full vehicle after. I will just occasionally experiment with it using the lightest clay I can find and see where that takes me.

    Any recommendations for light clay out there feel free to post them please. I currently have Megs (2 Light grey small Blocks that come in black plastic case) , Griot`s Yellow Clay (i`ve heard bad things about it, haven`t tried it yet) and the Nanoskin Blue and Red Clay Blocks/Sponges.
    I have gotten away from the traditional clay bar for the most part. I have the Speedy Prep Fine Towel and the Nanoskin Fine wash mitt. i really do like the Speedy Prep towel the best. It does a great job at a fraction of a time that it takes with a traditional clay bar. Another great feature is that if I accidentally drop it that I can just wash it out and reuse it. If I drop my clay bar it is pretty much trash.

  12. #12
    Migue's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Quote Originally Posted by bswombaugh View Post
    I have gotten away from the traditional clay bar for the most part. I have the Speedy Prep Fine Towel and the Nanoskin Fine wash mitt. i really do like the Speedy Prep towel the best. It does a great job at a fraction of a time that it takes with a traditional clay bar. Another great feature is that if I accidentally drop it that I can just wash it out and reuse it. If I drop my clay bar it is pretty much trash.
    That`s what i`m trying to do, get away from using a traditional Clay as much as possible, it just takes so long and all the extra time, that`s why i`m really looking forward to trying out my new clay blocks/sponges and if those work well for me, i`m definitely investing in the Nanoskin Mitts. Has anyone here tried Collinite 840? It states it`s a pre-wax cleaner, so I wonder if i could use this instead of claying and then apply Sealant ( and my sealant of choice happens to be Collinite 845).

  13. #13

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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Migue- Much as I like the guys at Collinite and (some of) their products, that 840 is (short version) *NOT* something you want to be using.

    I gather you aren`t interested in doing much more claying, but FWIW I use Sonus SFX for light work, so gentle that it`ll "clay the LSP clean" if you do it right. BUT probably not aggressive enough for decontaminating customer-cars. I had zero problems with Griot`s clay, but I don`t like using their SpeedShine as lube. Eh, if you want clay I`d probably suggest Clay Magic Blue.
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  14. #14
    4u2nvinmtl's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    As other said the fine clay or fine clay towels shouldn`t mar the paint, or you could also decontaminate/clean with CarPro IronX and Stoner Tarminator (or a combination of cleaner first and then a fine clay).

  15. #15
    4u2nvinmtl's Avatar
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    Re: Wax/Seal Without Clay .....Clay and Wax/Seal without polish Question.

    Quote Originally Posted by Migue View Post
    Thinking around $60
    That`s a damn good deal! If I was in TX I`d definitely sign up, sometimes I just don`t have the time to detail my Jeep weekly.

    Local detailers in my area (Montreal, Qc, Canada) are asking ~$60/hr (it`s still a fair price considering they have a garage, products, etc.)
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