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Discussion Starter #21
Hmmmmmm... never realized this about the paint. Could I use a clay bar on this car at all or is that a no? I'll follow your method next time I get a decent day here weather wise. I wish the rear panels were easy swaps.. mine has a decent scratch in it. Where is best to get touch up paint for this?
 

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Discussion Starter #22
Also I can use my damaged fender and door to test stuff on the paint and practice repairs. Woohoo
 

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Assuming the door is in otherwise good condition, I'd get it and then figure out how to deal with cosmetic issues. Ideally, you'd want a door where the window is working properly, and the door locks work, so you can just attach the door and go.

Changing the lock to match the other locks on the car is a further project. If you use your fob to lock/unlock then you can probably leave it, since you can always unlock the passenger door if something goes wrong with the remote.
 

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Hmmmmmm... never realized this about the paint. Could I use a clay bar on this car at all or is that a no? I'll follow your method next time I get a decent day here weather wise. I wish the rear panels were easy swaps.. mine has a decent scratch in it. Where is best to get touch up paint for this?
I used a 3M product to polish, Finesse-it II Polish 051131-39003. around 2200grit IIRC. It's supposed to be a machine polish but I used it by hand with great results. The last time I tried to buy it it was hard to come buy as my local body supply had closed (looks more available o n-line now). So, I went with Menzerna Final Polish II which was around the same grit or a little higher (maybe 2500)... unfortunately it is also no longer available but they do have similar products.

Note that I do work by hand... no machines... I'm not that good that I trust myself with a machine.

If you haven't done this in a while (or ever) , I would start lower on the grit scale using something like 1500 or 1800 grit. Other wise is will be very labor intensive. A rougher grit to finer will actually get a better look by cutting the rough defects to be less severe then polishing those. If you can't find a specific polish, you can even use Turtle Wax Polishing Compound (not the Rubbing Compound) as it's around 1500 grit. Go light with the buffing and it will work. Probably good after you remove those stripes too. Most of these product polish better as they dry to a haze so buff until it shines. Final polish with a clean cloth.

Top coat with something the same day so that it doesn't start oxidizing again. FWIW, if you use a newer type polymer or ceramic coating you can avoid hard buffing effort involved in wax removal and save some manual effort.

As for the clay bar, a lot of detailers swear by it. I don't like the idea since it seems like you're just rubbing the grit you pick up back into the paint. Never really understood the attraction. I tried it once and tossed it. But, to each his own.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Awesome! Sorry for late reply. I've been crappy sick for nearly 3 weeks and finally recovering. I'm definitely following your advice here. Now I'm set back with the axel and alignment issue, so I guess the paint polishing will be done in the spring. Hoping to pick the door up in next few weeks and swap the door and fender so it's at least secure. I need to slow down a bit. I've been getting some anxiety over it all. Need to remember to just tackle each project one at a time and be patient.
 
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