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Fixing a million rock chips

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  • Fixing a million rock chips

    So, I'm not sure if it's the design of my car, or the paint used on the hood, but this model of car seems to get a million rock chips on the rood and front bumper. I've seen many other people with the same car have just as many rock chips in front.

    Could also be the location and highway driving, or style of driving? Either way, I don't have the time or tools to pay attention to each little rock chip as some people have suggested doing. I can't tape them all off and work them one at a time. Some are really small, some are big. Some are really close together.

    I've already come to the conclusion that I need to get my hood repainted, but I can't afford it. So in the meantime, I decided, hey what the heck? Why not mess around with it and see what I can do.

    So I grabbed a bottle of touch up paint I got from the body shop when they fixed up some scratches my neighbors caused, or when my car was vandalized (not sure which bottle it was). Anyway, I grabbed that battle and went crazy on my hood. First I wiped the hood down with Dishwashing soap to remove the wax, rinses it with a spray bottle, and wiped with a microfiber cloth. I was lazy, didn't want to wash my entire car so just did the hood this way.

    After that, I tried to cover every single rock chip in my hood. I didn't have the worlds best precision so there's a lot of overlapping. Here's the aftermath:





    Sorry I don't have an expensive camera either, just my junky cell phone. Ugly though, my car has polka-dots now ! haha

    Anyway, I tried to "blob" up some of the touch up paint in the chips to fill them in so i applied some of it several times. I'm not sure how long it needs to dry before "layering" though, it seemed to dry really fast.

    I don't really want to sand my entire hood, can't I just use some Ultimate Compound and a foam pad? I might get a DA soon.

    Also since I just finished, can I apply wax again or does touch up paint need to cure for a while too?

  • #2
    Re: Fixing a million rock chips

    Yikes, looks like your weakest link was the lack of matching paint to start with.

    Frustrating, isn't it? I don't have the skill, nor the supplies to match my own paint, so it is always a bummer when you can't do touch-up work due to something out of your control (ie the supposed matching paint isn't even close!).

    As for what is next, you will not want to sand your entire hood. If you want to level the paint you want to do precise and gentle sanding of the blobs only. Do a test on one first.

    You should be able to remove Meguiar's Unigrit 3,000 grit sanding marks with Ultimate Compound by hand. If that doesn't work (it should), then M105 will be needed.

    Just take your time. If you want to be extra careful, surround the paint spots with tape so you sand them only and not the regular part of the hood.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Fixing a million rock chips

      I'm confused. How could the paint not be matching? It was the same paint they used to repair my paint with previously.

      It shows up easily because I think it's sort of "matte" flat right now, there's no gloss to it. I'd imagine that once I use some light abrasives and polish on them, and then wax, they should blend in?

      As for the wet sanding, do you only use water to keep it wet or something special?

      This is my daily driver so I need to go to work tomorrow with it. I dunno if the paint should be covered in wax. For now I plan to leave it unprotected for a day or so, unless waxing will be fine. It's only been about 2 hours though I thought it would need longer before waxing...

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      • #4
        Re: Fixing a million rock chips

        I don't think the touch up paint is a clearcoat blend. I think it may just be a single stage paint?

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Fixing a million rock chips

          Paint color can really differ from the original color. For example, the shop painted a section of the Porsche the day after the entire car was painted. The section had a brighter look to it and the paint was the same stuff used the day before! They fixed the color problem, but it just shows how hard it can be to properly match the color.

          You cannot really level the touch up paint by using a polish or compound. Wet sanding is pretty much your only option. The best way to lubricate the surface is to use water mixed with M00 Hi-Tech Wash 128:1.

          I would let the paint cure for a week or two before doing any sanding or polishing. Sometimes the touch-up paint can pop off when polishing.
          Chris
          Dasher Detailing Services

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          • #6
            Re: Fixing a million rock chips

            Originally posted by PorscheGuy997 View Post
            I would let the paint cure for a week or two before doing any sanding or polishing. Sometimes the touch-up paint can pop off when polishing.

            About that... It's been about 2 hours and I decided to go outside with my original Scratch X and try a few spots.

            On some of them it totally removed the extra paint from around the rock chip.

            Unfortunately 90% of the rock chips are indents still, there's no blob. I dunno if I'll need to do more layers then. This touch up paint is pretty thin.

            Now I'm wondering if I should use this time to do that to the others, or if by doing so I'll accidentally remove the paint from within the chip as well...

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Fixing a million rock chips

              Originally posted by xantonin View Post
              I'm confused. 1.) How could the paint not be matching? It was the same paint they used to repair my paint with previously.

              It shows up easily because I think it's sort of "matte" flat right now, there's no gloss to it. I'd imagine that once I use some light abrasives and polish on them, and then wax, they should blend in?

              2.) As for the wet sanding, do you only use water to keep it wet or something special?

              3.) This is my daily driver so I need to go to work tomorrow with it. I dunno if the paint should be covered in wax. For now I plan to leave it unprotected for a day or so, unless waxing will be fine. It's only been about 2 hours though I thought it would need longer before waxing...
              1.) Because there are so many variables, one can never count on it to be 100%. Is the paint metallic? If so, the amount of shaking given to the paint before applying can cause the flake to rise or fall in the container.

              The brush stroke can give a different lookc ompared to spray.

              Flake can simply lay differently.

              The could have faded since the last repair.

              Get the point? touch-up paint rarely EVER matches 100%. Even the stuff from the manufacturer labeled with the same paint code can be vastly different for all of the above reasons and more.

              2.) Lots of water, and a spray bottle with a pinch of car wash soap mixed with the water. Use it liberally.

              3.) It will be fine exposed. No need to wax.

              Originally posted by xantonin View Post
              I don't think the touch up paint is a clearcoat blend. I think it may just be a single stage paint?
              This is possible. Some have clear mixed in with it. This too could play into the difference in look. As mentioned before, there are just too many variables to know for sure. (One reason I started shying away from this work for anyone but friends and family).

              Originally posted by xantonin View Post
              About that... It's been about 2 hours and I decided to go outside with my original Scratch X and try a few spots.

              On some of them it totally removed the extra paint from around the rock chip.

              Unfortunately 90% of the rock chips are indents still, there's no blob. I dunno if I'll need to do more layers then. This touch up paint is pretty thin.

              Now I'm wondering if I should use this time to do that to the others, or if by doing so I'll accidentally remove the paint from within the chip as well...
              Even though it can become dry to the touch in minutes, it often takes considerable time to dry. Sometimes it takes several days or more baking in the sun to fully cure.

              I went back to finish a job after 3 days and found that the paint I had applied was still incredibly soft.

              You might need more layers, you might need more cure time, or a combination of the two. Problem is, it's pretty impossible to tell you from here (even with pictures). This is one thing you need to get a feel for on your own.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                Awesome thanks for the input. That was what I was looking for, so that answered my questions.

                Few more questions then is the type of paint. Assuming it's a single stage, after how many layers do I followup with clear coat, if at all?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                  Originally posted by xantonin View Post
                  Awesome thanks for the input. That was what I was looking for, so that answered my questions.

                  Few more questions then is the type of paint. Assuming it's a single stage, after how many layers do I followup with clear coat, if at all?
                  Well, the thing to consider is that adding clear will likely darken the area and change the color. If after sanding and polishing the touchup you find it matches, I wouldn't mess with clear. If you find it is still too light, then a light coat of clear would be a good idea.

                  There is no steadfast rule on how many coats, just experiment and see what looks best.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                    I have not used this myself but it looks interesting: http://drcolorchip.com/
                    Life is too short to drive boring cars!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                      Nah I can't afford Dr Colorchip with how many rock chips I have. I got this big container of touch up paint anyway so I figured I'd just use it. It's like 2 ounces I think.

                      Back to the rock chips though, I'm having trouble getting the paint to "blob" inside the chip so that I can sand it down after. Seems no matter how many layers I put on, the indent of the chip is still visible. If I can get enough paint in the chip, maybe the clearcoat would blob easier or fill the chip area.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                        Originally posted by xantonin View Post


                        Back to the rock chips though, I'm having trouble getting the paint to "blob" inside the chip so that I can sand it down after. Seems no matter how many layers I put on, the indent of the chip is still visible.
                        Sounds like your touch-up paint is as thin as water? Is that how it pours out of the container? Thin and watery?

                        Keep in mind the body shop was going to spray this through a gun, not apply it by hand so the way they mixed it is for their application process, not yours.

                        I have some matching red paint from the painter that painted my truck and it's as thin as water. It works well to coat over a spot, but not to fill it in.

                        Besides that, the project you've undertaken is for most people the hardest thing to do, (fill in rock chips with touch-up paint), and make it look good when you're done, (that's two things), and it's the 'make it look good when you're done' part that's the hardest.

                        This is why you don't see detailers offering rock-chip repair, it's too complicated to do, it's to hard to make it look GREAT and most people's expectations are too high and they are unwilling to pay what a true Pro would deserver if they were to ever take on a job like this.

                        So for where your at now, good luck with it and for more information read through what's already been posted on this subject in the threads listed in this "Popular Tags" link.

                        http://meguiarsonline.com/forums/tags.php?tag=Touch-up+Rock-chip



                        Mike Phillips
                        Office: 800-869-3011 x206
                        Mike.Phillips@Autogeek.net
                        "Find something you like and use it often"

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                          I think you're right Mike, it's like water. I tried blobbing some on and it ran down so I goofily blotched it up and made a mess. Haha. The confusing thing is he gave it to me in a bottle that has a brush attached to the top. So I never poured it, just used that.

                          I have high expectations for my project but I also will not be disappointed either way since I already accepted the fact my hood will need repainting. However I have time on my side since it's my own car, and I'm free to experiment with it as I please so I'm also prepared for the worst. I put quality into what I do though, so I'm confident if I put my mind to this I can make it come out great. The only thing I may lack is the tools, depending on what this task will require.

                          I've done searches previously before making this topic but I suspect my problem is the paint I'm using. If that's the case, and I'll make sure to double check your link to see if I can read up on anything, but if that's the case should I just pick up some touch-up paint (Toyota has those dual Pen/Brush kinds) from the dealer? Just get some clear coat touch up paint? Or is there anything else I can do?

                          Again, I'll double check your link but figured I'd ask for personalized answers.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                            Mostly what the links discuss is where a member says

                            I want to fix the rock chips and my expectations re when I'm through that it won't look like there were any rock chips, no one can tell I worked on the car and oh yeah, the procedure needs to be easy.

                            Then I other forum members tell them it's real hard to do and make it look like there were never any chips to start with.


                            Try to find some matching touch-up paint that has more substance and apply with a fine tipped brush or a toothpick or something like that so you can better control how much paint you're depositing.

                            There's more in-depth info in the linked-to threads, so I'm not going to retype any of it here.

                            Again, best of luck to you on tackling the hardest thing to do and make look good at the same time.

                            I watched a guy use the Dr.Color Chip system on a Meguiar's black vehicle here at Meguiar's and I was impressed at the finish results, the ease of use for the system and the lack of time and physical work I watched the technician use.


                            Mike Phillips
                            Office: 800-869-3011 x206
                            Mike.Phillips@Autogeek.net
                            "Find something you like and use it often"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Fixing a million rock chips

                              Awesome, thank you Mike.

                              I expect to put weeks of effort into this, with the end goal being simply that the spots are less noticeably then they were as rock chips, haha.

                              I'm reading through those links, I found this helpful: http://meguiarsonline.com/forums/sho...9&postcount=15

                              He mentioned ScratchX, now I'm not sure if that's 2.0 (the post is 2008 so I think it's 1.0), but I'm going to do that to remove the excess paint I applied.

                              My hood has a bunch of swirls so I planned to tackle those, but I decided I needed to at least cover up the rock chips. And that's all I really want accomplished. I just want to cover them up, avoid rust, and look less obvious, but I don't want an easy solution, I want to work for some decent results.

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