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Thread: Restored some shine to my paint

  1. #1

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    Restored some shine to my paint

    To start off, my truck is a 1988 Mighty Max. I purchased it for 600 dollars from the original owner about 3 years ago. Bone stock, minus the stereo. He took very good care of it mechanically and kept it clean for the most part. It is originally a California truck but made its way to Kansas in the mid 90s.

    I bought it because my integra became undriveable unexpectedly, and I had to have a running vehicle. I was not a fan of this truck at all when I first had it. I just drove it and maintained it. I bought another integra after driving this for a few months and it sat, and sat. Well that integra got stolen, and to this day has not shown up. So I was back in the max. My biggest issue with this truck is how the paint looked. It was pink, not red. And I decided it was time to fix that. This is not my first mini truck, and I knew i would actually like it if i cleaned it up.


    I used Meguires cleaner paste wax, after clay baring, and came out with a decent shine. I guess I should mention that at this point in time the most detailing I had done was typical hand waxing and clay baring. I liked it so much I had the windows tinted the next day.


    This shine faded very quickly unfortunately. This is probably two weeks after the first coat of wax



    I was at the Mitsubishi dealership one day buying some parts and I ran into a old friend that was a detailer there. Long story short I ended up getting a job there doing the same thing shortly after that. I buffed my truck my first day with some generic swirl remover. I was ecstatic with how well it came out.


    The next weekend I put a fairly heavy layer of Meguires no. 7 on my truck and let it sit overnight. I did this because the no. 7 has feeder oils that soak into the pores of the paint and condition the paint. I don,t have any pictures of this. The next morning I took the no. 7 off and waxed the truck with Meguires gold class paste wax.

    I got better with the buffer and decided it was time to cut and buff my old single stage paint. It took me quite some time to feel comfortable doing that. But it was worth it.


    Here is a side by side comparison. The truck got lowered at some point too.

  2. #2

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    Great story Aaron. The number of times I've seen a car or truck put in the too hard basket because it looked tired... I detailed one messed up Hilux for my sister inlaw that looked like it was destined to be a farm hack, and we ended up selling it for $3,500. Yeah it took me 2 weeks to restore the interior and paintwork: I felt the sting of guilt when the young guy handed over his cash (if he saw it before he would've used the money for a bus ticket) Red is particularly difficult to bring back from the dead. EVERYONE has seen what happens to Hondas (you would think they came pink from factory) Your truck came up an absolute treat!

  3. #3

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    Looks great! I wish I could figure out how to bring back the single stage paint on my 73 New Yorker like that.

  4. #4



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    Unfortunately the New Yorker is enamel paint and won't come back - it was poor paint when new. Your Truck though, should have been base / clear coat unless it was repainted. My 85 Ram 50 was base / clear coat.
    Pennyman1
    The best Dodge that Dodge never made
    Living the D-50 lifestyle since 1980

  5. #5

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    Looks good all shined up.

    What size tires are you running on those Z71 wheels?

  6. #6

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    Nice job bud

  7. #7

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    The fronts are 205/50/16 I believe and the rears are 215/60/16. The fronts are way too small. They came off a bagged mazda, and he had smaller tires up front so he could lay out. I'm putting the stock wheels on to refinish the z71s soon so I never bothered to get bigger tires.

    Pennyman, I cannot guarantee that its single stage paint. But the way it responds to polish, and the fact it turns any and every pad I have ever used red I really believe it is single stage. What I can guarantee is that it has not been repainted.

  8. #8

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    I'm going to put money on it being a single stage paint as it's a solid colour. It was built as a work horse and they were made on a budget. It wasn't til 1990ish they started doing the 'clear over acrylic' paint from factory and it was mostly on metallics. If you've ever wondered why the clear coats oxidise and perish on cars, it's not from direct sunlight exposure and general fallout on the paintwork. The acrylic base coat continuously releases vapour and attacks the clear coat from underneath. It is a cheap ass way of painting vehicles and it has a short life span (if it lasts 5 to 10 years you're lucky)

  9. #9

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    I have the exact wheels and need to get tires for them....bot a lot of info our there when I search.

    I was looking at 205/50's but now I'm not sure if you're saying they're too small.

    I'm wanting a reasonable priced tire but not something with too tall of a sidewall ...truck will eventually be static dropped

  10. #10

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    I'm currently dropped 3 inches in the back. They do rub a little bit on big dips but they are as close to the factory size as I could find so my speedometer was correct.

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