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View Full Version : Where should a newbie start?



the mean fish
Feb 20th, 2010, 08:06 PM
I'd appreciate any advice you guys out there might have for me, I own a black fiberglass 38' 5th wheel toy hauler (Work & Play) and it's in need of a lot of TLC. It's an 06, I purchased it used in 09 and I'm pretty sure the previous owned never did much more than wash it a couple times. Since I got it it's begun to look a lot worse, I guess the TX sun is taking it toll on the black.

It looked ok when I got it in Jan 09

http://hphotos-snc3.fbcdn.net/hs099.snc3/16652_227285483848_525268848_4208726_3175095_n.jpg

http://photos-g.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs099.snc3/16652_227285478848_525268848_4208725_500502_n.jpg

Since then the front and rear have gotten pretty oxidized along with the 2 side doors. The full sides of the trailer actually look good except for a few small spots.

I took it to Cali last week and really started to notice how bad it's looking, especially the front cap and rear doors. There aren't many scratches to be seen, just haze and oxidation.

Here's some shots from us loading for the trip.

http://hphotos-snc3.fbcdn.net/hs166.snc3/19379_354392688848_525268848_4966310_8069128_n.jpg

http://photos-a.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs166.snc3/19379_354392693848_525268848_4966311_8307037_n.jpg

When I got home I took it to a local detail shop where I have my truck washed and they did a test spot on the rear door. I'm not sure which Meguiars product they used but in about 30 seconds that 2' square looked better than the trailer ever looked. They quoted me $1300 to detail the exterior of the trailer, I'd much rather spend a couple hundred on the tools and products and do it myself.

I'm familiar with amateur car detailing but I've never dealt with fiberglass before. I guess I need to know where I should start. I'm looking for advice on a nice buffer setup to cover large perfectly flat areas of fiberglass since this thing is flat and square as it gets. I'm also looking for input on how much product I'll need, the trailer is 38' long and about 9' tall on the sides.

Here's a full shot of the beast.

http://photos-f.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs186.snc3/19379_354392668848_525268848_4966308_2555085_n.jpg

:wavey

Michael Stoops
Feb 22nd, 2010, 10:53 AM
First off, welcome to MOL!

Picking up a G110v2 Dual Action Polisher is going to make your life much, much easier here! Don't be afraid of this tool - it has plenty of power to remove oxidation and scratches but it's also incredibly safe and very easy to learn.

You'll also want to pick up several W8207 yellow foam polishing pads and at least a couple of the W9207 black foam finishing pads. Use the W8207 pads with Ultimate Compound, working just small areas at a time (about 2' x 2' only) and work the product for a couple of minutes, wiping off while still wet. Work around the trailer in sections like this, then go back with a W9207 finishing pad and M20 Polymer Sealant or similar.

We're recommending these two products for various reasons. The Ultimate Compound is inexpensive and easy to find locally, plus it is incredibly effective and leaves a very nice finish while removing even heavy oxidation, swirls, scratches, etc. It's based on our top line M105 Ultra Cut Compound but in a more user friendly formulation. It's only available in 16 ounce bottles, but you should be able to correct the entire trailer with just 2 or 3 bottles.

The M20 Polymer Sealant is a long lasting polymer wax, but it also offers good cleaning ability. That means that if you use it regularly it will help to keep future oxidation at bay and prevent you from having to do the full two step process every few months. You can even try applying it with the yellow polishing pads for a bit of extra oomph to remove very light oxidation that might start showing up in a few months of Texas sun. Use it every 3 to 4 months and you should be able to keep the trailer looking great year round.

You can pick up the Ultimate Compound at most local auto parts stores but the buffer, pads and M20 will likely be online orders for you.