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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently purchased my car around a month ago. It is Obsidian Black with around 20k miles. The car is in great shape but there are small scratches from improper washing, etc... from the previous owner.

I have a guy who is a professional mobile detailer who is starting work on a 3-stage detail that he says will take 3 days to complete. The reason this all started is because I am getting ready to have a clear bra installed this Monday. I recently had the front bumper, hood, and fenders repainted by Lexus to have a rock-chip free car to prepare for the clear bra. Well, the painters did an excellent job but the detailers weren't the best. There were wet sanding marks present as well as some buffing marks due to using too abrasive of a pad. Rather than taking it back to the lexus detailers (probably some kid getting paid $8/hr) who I didn't feel comfortable working on the car once again; I got a detailer who came highly recommended by multiple car enthusiasts.

I can't wait to see the finished product but more importantly not be so afraid to drive the car. For the last month I've been EXTREMELY cautious with it since I had to wait 30 days between the paint and getting the clear bra on so the paint could fully cure. I did not want to pick up a rock chip in that time so I was a football field behind anyone on the highway.

Anyways, I just thought I'd make a thread to document the whole process and I'll keep everyone up to date with plenty of pictures.

BTW, here are some of the other cars he's done:





 

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Um I'm not sure if the black has a clear coat or not... I know some older model Lexus cars did not come with clear coat on the black.

Look into it. I googled "lexus is black clearcoat" and found some CL postings about it.

That could get messy if the detailer doesn't know that lol.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Um I'm not sure if the black has a clear coat or not... I know some older model Lexus cars did not come with clear coat on the black.

Look into it. I googled "lexus is black clearcoat" and found some CL postings about it.

That could get messy if the detailer doesn't know that lol.
I've looked into it. Our IS-F's w/ Obsidian Black paint are a 2-stage paint (Base coat, clear coat) I've confirmed this with the painter who performed the paint on the front bumper, hood, and fender. Also, with the detailer, and just backed it up with this thread (http://www.clublexus.com/forums/is-second-generation/323093-once-and-for-all-is-obsidian-black-single-stage-paint-on-our-2is.html)

Day 1 is done. He started around 9:45 this morning and finished up around 5:30. He completed the wash, and 1st step on the polish for the majority of the car. Still has the passenger doors, fender, and trunk lid to do. Tomorrow will the the second stage of the polish.

Here are a couple pics of the day. I only had my iPhone to take pics with but he will be sending some higher-res before and afters that he took with his actual camera at the completion of the job.



 

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looks good so far...looking forward to the finished product..

I still see that wire hanging down from your V1...get out there and hardwire that beast..now that we know what wires to use it'll take you 10 minutes.
 

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Gonna look beautiful, the problem is keeping it that way. Good luck with future washing, I'm ever so careful on my USB but just can't avoid small micro scratches.

For an LSP you might want to consider blackfire wet diamond, this stuff is amazing. I've tested Klasse, OptiSeal, Blackfire, Meguiars NXT, and Swissvax, and Blackfire turned out the best by far. A coat of blackfire, wait a day, and then a coat of some nice wax.

Here's a pic of blackfire applied:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
looks good so far...looking forward to the finished product..

I still see that wire hanging down from your V1...get out there and hardwire that beast..now that we know what wires to use it'll take you 10 minutes.
I tried today. I broke my ebay kit that had the stiffer wires that easily plugged into the socket so then I tried a phone cord but the wires were so fragile that they would bend and wouldn't go into the socket. That plus I didn't know where I would route the wires when the plastic covers were put back over the plug.

Gonna look beautiful, the problem is keeping it that way. Good luck with future washing, I'm ever so careful on my USB but just can't avoid small micro scratches.

For an LSP you might want to consider blackfire wet diamond, this stuff is amazing. I've tested Klasse, OptiSeal, Blackfire, Meguiars NXT, and Swissvax, and Blackfire turned out the best by far. A coat of blackfire, wait a day, and then a coat of some nice wax.

Here's a pic of blackfire applied:
Damn, that looks good.

Washing is going to be done with the two bucket method and with Optimum No-rinse and clean micro fibers. (Came recommended from the detailer) He also recommended using Adam's Americana wax (what he uses) but I don't know about spending $65 on a bottle of wax :(

I just assume I'll have to do a polish (hopefully not a 3-step) every year to keep up with the finish.
 

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I tried today. I broke my ebay kit that had the stiffer wires that easily plugged into the socket so then I tried a phone cord but the wires were so fragile that they would bend and wouldn't go into the socket. That plus I didn't know where I would route the wires when the plastic covers were put back over the plug.



Damn, that looks good.

Washing is going to be done with the two bucket method and with Optimum No-rinse and clean micro fibers. (Came recommended from the detailer) He also recommended using Adam's Americana wax (what he uses) but I don't know about spending $65 on a bottle of wax :(

I just assume I'll have to do a polish (hopefully not a 3-step) every year to keep up with the finish.
Still gotta be careful with ONR. I use it too. The dirt will cling right to the mitt, have a hose running and use a nozzle on the mitt to get all the dirt off, a seperate bucket wont do the trick alone. Ur still going to get scratches though it's just inevitable, just wash in small straight lines so you don't get swirls, small scratches aren't as ugly as swirls.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Day 3 has begun and it should be completed this afternoon. There weren't many pics to take after Day 2 since my camera phone doesn't get very detailed pics and the car looked just the same in the pics as after day 1. I will however be getting my friend to do a shoot of it with his DSLR shortly after the work is completed...

I did get the clear bra install moved up to tomorrow at 9:30am. Can't wait to drive it around tomorrow. Hopefully the weather clears up since it's been off and on raining for the last 2 weeks...

Also, I just got all my exterior lights in the mail. Will be putting in my Garax 6000k hid headlights, V-LED 6000k DRL's and parking light. And also my 3000k HID fogs. All this is going in on Wednesday or Thursday.

I love this car!!!!
 

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I tried today. I broke my ebay kit that had the stiffer wires that easily plugged into the socket so then I tried a phone cord but the wires were so fragile that they would bend and wouldn't go into the socket. That plus I didn't know where I would route the wires when the plastic covers were put back over the plug.
That sucks DSG, I tried to hardwire in my '05 4runner today (just so I could move the V1 over to that car easily if I take it on a road trip) and I also tried using a regular phone cord and I did get it to work but the connection was not secure at all (like you said the wires are fragile). I believe there are little connectors you can buy to attach the phone cord to so that it will make it work. basically they are little sticks with a loop at the end to hook the phone cord on to (I saw somebody post it online somewhere and I'll post it if i find it).

As far as routing the cord I routed mine back up toward the roof and then put the plastic stem covers back on and then looped back down to the V1. I secured the excess wire to the mount using a velcro strap normally used for organizing computer and TV cables. I've attached a couple pix to help you see what I did.

EDIT: just in case you're wondering the little red square that you see on the cord is just the double sided tape that came on the cord (i didn't need to use it but i just left it there since you can't see it)




 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's all finished up. Clear bra and all. Detailer finally finished up Saturday (day 3) at 9:30pm. He was there ALL day. He is the epitome of a hard worker and is a stand-up guy. I consider myself very picky with cars but he takes it to the next level.

Here are some pics of the finished product.

Wetsanding the hood to get some fairly deep scratches out.


Clear bra install


Installed (can't even see it unless up close)












 

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that looks really nice!!...I'm trying to decide if I want to do a bumper/hood repaint and do clear bra...mines in pretty good shape so it's hard to justify it at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks guys.

Baron, I'd say if it ain't broke don't fix it. Only reason I got mine done was because I threw it into the deal with Lexus as part of my purchase. If bought out right you can probably expect to pay around $1200+ for paint and $600ish for the clear bra. IMO, $2k is alot of money spent on something that is probably not necessary at this point with your car. Pay to take off your secondary cats and mufflers and slap on some headers instead ;)
 

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WOW, that looks GREAT!!! I will likely be repainting the front of my ISF within the next year or two, and installing a clear bra...should have done that from the getgo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
WOW, that looks GREAT!!! I will likely be repainting the front of my ISF within the next year or two, and installing a clear bra...should have done that from the getgo.
Yeah, these cars are rock magnets. It wasn't so much big rock chips on mine but TONS of very small ones that made the black paint look like it always had a constant dust on it, even fresh after a wash.
 

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Thanks guys.

Baron, I'd say if it ain't broke don't fix it. Only reason I got mine done was because I threw it into the deal with Lexus as part of my purchase. If bought out right you can probably expect to pay around $1200+ for paint and $600ish for the clear bra. IMO, $2k is alot of money spent on something that is probably not necessary at this point with your car. Pay to take off your secondary cats and mufflers and slap on some headers instead ;)
good advice...yeah, I don't really fee like spending $2k right after buying the car...I thought about working some extras into the deal but I'm pretty sure I got the car at the dealers rock bottom so I'm happy...I'll wait to do a repaint when/if needed in a few years.
 

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Looking good. I will probably do the same to my IS-F when I buy it.

I will be curious to see how it was washed. (Just say NO to car washes!!!)
 
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