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View Full Version : Applying wax by hand, does it make a difference?



Expertcarpetcare
May 31st, 2010, 04:48 PM
I see countless videos of detailers applying expensive waxes with their bare hands. Something about the enzymes activating is the most I've managed to pick up.

Can anyone give some more insight on the difference from using your hands to using a sponge, to using a D/A and your opinion of what provides the best quality finish, if any?

Is there a scientific explanation that justifies why applying wax by bare hands enhances the product's effectiveness?

And lastly, can this bare hand technique be used with Meguiar's waxes? Or does it matter?

Tuck91
May 31st, 2010, 05:20 PM
I wouldnt want the oils from my hands on the paint.

Streaking will more than likely occur.

Fly Bye
May 31st, 2010, 05:23 PM
I wouldnt want the oils from my hands on the paint.

Streaking will more than likely occur.





Thats how Paul Dalton applies wax.

Tuck91
May 31st, 2010, 05:26 PM
Thats how Paul Dalton applies wax.








Well, thats the way he does it.

I tried it once and when it came time for removal, some light streaking occured.

Fly Bye
May 31st, 2010, 05:28 PM
It prolly depends upon the type of wax being used.

Fly Bye
May 31st, 2010, 05:32 PM
I have applied Pinnacle Souveran paste by hand, and had absolutely no issue at all.

I don't know if it is a good idea to be handling the stuff with bare skin though :scratchhead1

JaguarXj6L
May 31st, 2010, 05:50 PM
I know a few people who will do that on occasion, but I find a perfectly fine microfiber to be sufficient. If I'm tired, I'll normally switch to my cheapo Walmart buffer.

Fly Bye
May 31st, 2010, 06:04 PM
I prefer a small, round, foam pad, as cloth will absorb, and thus waste product.

J. A. Michaels
May 31st, 2010, 06:56 PM
Myself personally, can not figure out any advantage of applying it by hand.

nothelle
May 31st, 2010, 08:06 PM
It'll make you look cool and make people think you know what you're doing, other than that i haven't been able to see significant difference in result. Plus i waste more product using bare hand and kinda hard to make thin application

Fly Bye
May 31st, 2010, 09:24 PM
The Pinnacle Souveran paste wax can be hard. What I have done in the past is: Pop the whole piece, or pieces from the container, then rub/glide it across the finish. When an adaquate amount of wax is on the finish, put the piece back in the container, and then go back over the finish with a small, round, foam applicator.

It can be hard to get the Souveran paste wax onto a foam applicator, so removing it from the container (and rubbing the product directly onto the paint) makes it really easy to get it onto the finish. I use a rubber glove when handling the stuff, as I don't know if the stuff is harmfull when it penetrates the pores of my skin.

In my case, applying Souveran paste wax by hand has absolutely nothing to do with the end result, but allows the product to be easily applied.

Expertcarpetcare
Jun 1st, 2010, 03:24 PM
I've been applying paste waxes to the soft foam pad of my 110 with a butter knife and spreading it on like butter, then applying it to the car at a speed of around 3.5

So far, nobody sees any benefit to using bare hands hm?
I can see benefit to using the D/A, it applies the right amount, and does it faster and
even helps clean up the paint while doing it.

We used to have streaking problems with dark and black cars after applying wax by hand with foam pad. Since we started using the DA polisher to apply, we have never had a streaking problem. No more frantically wiping down the hood in the lot minutes before the customer arrives because you still see those streaks! Those days are gone :)

FRS
Jun 1st, 2010, 03:53 PM
Nothing wrong with hand application imo.

Waxed many cars in the past using bare hands, all good.

:hotrod2

Fly Bye
Jun 1st, 2010, 03:53 PM
So far, nobody sees any benefit to using bare hands hm?

I've been applying paste waxes to the soft foam pad of my 110 with a butter knife and spreading it on like butter...





You are obviously not using a "hard paste wax".

I guess you didn't read my post.






The Pinnacle Souveran paste wax can be hard.

It can be hard to get the Souveran paste wax onto a foam applicator

In my case, applying Souveran paste wax by hand has absolutely nothing to do with the end result, but allows the product to be easily applied.






:wavey

nothelle
Jun 1st, 2010, 08:44 PM
I've been applying paste waxes to the soft foam pad of my 110 with a butter knife and spreading it on like butter, then applying it to the car at a speed of around 3.5

So far, nobody sees any benefit to using bare hands hm?
I can see benefit to using the D/A, it applies the right amount, and does it faster and
even helps clean up the paint while doing it.

We used to have streaking problems with dark and black cars after applying wax by hand with foam pad. Since we started using the DA polisher to apply, we have never had a streaking problem. No more frantically wiping down the hood in the lot minutes before the customer arrives because you still see those streaks! Those days are gone :)

Now this i agree, D/A enables uniform and thin application, but it waste even more product for me: bigger foam pad, kinda hard to squeeze that wax from the pore, coz of the thickness. As long as we can get it thin, uniform layer: bare hand, applicator pad, D/A shouldn't matter though, whichever makes you feel good...

RaskyR1
Jun 2nd, 2010, 06:29 AM
I also find the DA to be quicker and find it gives a more uniform application. I will however apply paste waxes by hand with a foam applicator. Applying it with bare hands just seems silly and it's nothing more than a marketing ploy IMO.

Michael Stoops
Jun 2nd, 2010, 07:05 AM
There are a few very high end (ie extremely expensive) boutique waxes that actually recommend this application method. If you're not using one of those waxes then there really is nothing to be gained by a bare hand application of a wax.

Expertcarpetcare
Jun 2nd, 2010, 06:25 PM
I had a little fun waxing a car by hand today. I was using gold class (LOL) and smucked and smeared it on. I think I need quite a bit more practice, it went on pretty thick and didnt look very pretty when I was done. I also worry about chemical additives getting into my system through the skin so I dont think I would do this every day.

Anyway, I smucked it on by hand as best as I could but it went on pretty thick. I did the other side of the car with the DA. It went on faster, looked better, came off easier for sure. I carefully inspected each side after hand buffing off the excess wax from both sides. Both sides looked nicely waxed. There was no streaking issues on either side of this black vehicle. I carefully inspected for resoloution of reflection and no noticable difference either. Color tone looked the same on both sides. In the end, no noticable visual difference. As far as how long it would last and other factors, only time will tell.

In the end, I think the only real purpose for using hands is to melt the harder waxes that do not apply easily to foam applicator pads, as well as the fact if it is super expensive boutique wax then an experienced "hand applicator" could probably cover a car with far less wasted product than what would have been absorbed by a foam pad.

nothelle
Jun 2nd, 2010, 07:07 PM
I only know a UK based wax (initial RB) that needs hand application, but that's simply because the heat from the hand would activate the oil within, hence easier application just like expertcarpetcare mentioned. Otherwise i'd keep it simple and see which application is better for each wax and easier for me to do. NXT paste is soft enough for me to use applicator pad, i can just squeeze out the pad to have the wax re-appear on the pad surface and reapply it to the panel. Or in case of m16 i'd prefer D/A application just simply because i want that really thin layer for easy removal.

FRS
Jun 2nd, 2010, 07:58 PM
There are a few very high end (ie extremely expensive) boutique waxes that actually recommend this application method. If you're not using one of those waxes then there really is nothing to be gained by a bare hand application of a wax.


.. and also nothing to loose by applying wax by a bare hand.

IMO, it comes to personal preference .. I've been applying the wax both ways, both equally good, with slightly better result in hand application.

In hard to reach spots, it's easier to control hand/fingers then the DA pad.


:bestwishes1

Shizane2002
Jun 6th, 2010, 05:21 AM
By hand like......literally with your hands? O_o

Well....I just fully waxed my whole car on Friday and it actually added swirlies. I used the same method I've always used. Which has always been fine before.

I'm going to try this hand technique. I think it would be okay if your hands are clean. Sounds more logical to use your hands than an applicator.

nothelle
Jun 7th, 2010, 02:24 AM
By hand like......literally with your hands? O_o

Well....I just fully waxed my whole car on Friday and it actually added swirlies. I used the same method I've always used. Which has always been fine before.

I'm going to try this hand technique. I think it would be okay if your hands are clean. Sounds more logical to use your hands than an applicator.

Yes...by bare hand, just like applying lotion to your skin :D Have to at least try it once in your life..........

Shizane2002
Jun 7th, 2010, 07:43 AM
I just did this today. I used #26 Yellow Tech Wax for the first time ever on the car.

#26 is, by far, the single best wax I've ever applied to my car. It had literally made the color deeper, the shine is very bright, it smoothed out the factory orange peel, removed any remaining swirlies, and made water not bead up....but rather form channels and flow in little streams off the car completely.

I've NEVER been this impressed with wax in my 9 years of detailing. Thank you Meguiars.

I also applied this wax by my hands alone. I absolutely LOVE this technique over using an applicator. My hands gave me more feedback in regards to applying the wax. I sprayed Ultimate Detailer on the paint and I then applied the wax so there's a nice layer of lubrication to assist in evenly smooting the wax out.

Doing this by hand is by far the best way to do this in my experience.

Shizane2002
Jun 7th, 2010, 07:45 AM
I just did this today. I used #26 Yellow Tech Wax for the first time ever on the car.

#26 is, by far, the single best wax I've ever applied to my car. It had literally made the color deeper, the shine is very bright, it smoothed out the factory orange peel, removed any remaining swirlies, and made water not bead up....but rather form channels and flow in little streams off the car completely.

I've NEVER been this impressed with wax in my 9 years of detailing. Thank you Meguiars.

I also applied this wax by my hands alone. I absolutely LOVE this technique over using an applicator. My hands gave me more feedback in regards to applying the wax. I sprayed Ultimate Detailer on the paint and I then applied the wax so there's a nice layer of lubrication to assist in evenly smooting the wax out.

Doing this by hand is by far the best way to do this in my experience.