New Member from Michigan
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  1. #1
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    New Member from Michigan

    Hi guys (and gals),

    New guy here looking for information on how to do a paint correction to my 87 Grand National. I have been reading a lot of material on how to bring back some of the gloss and get rid of scratches in the original crappy single stage black lacquer paint. I am the original owner and this car has had a tough life. Yes, I bear the responsibility for the condition of the paint. It was a daily driver for five years. It's got about 100K miles on it now. It had 72K on it at the end of the first five years. I had to drive it through the first northern NY winter because I didn't have a winter beater. After the first winter I was able to store it in a shed through the winters. It's got its share of chips and WalMart parking lot dents. A couple of etched spots due to purple bird droppings. The hood is checked really bad. The trunk isn't much better. I know the paint will never look original (not that it looked that good when new) but I would like to get rid of most of the scratches and swirls. It had the dealer applied paint sealant when I bought it. This thing has been ridden hard and put up wet. Still looks OK from 20 feet. I plan to have someone do some PDR on the parking lot dents and I will touch up the sand/salt blasted rear wheel well trim. I need to deal with the larger chips. Only one it through the primer. Maybe with a little work I can make it a 5 footer. I clay bar'd the paint five or six years ago. I recently bought a Porter Cable 7424XP orbital polisher, some assorted pads, pad cleaner and lube, another clay bar and other misc materials. I bought some mega-expensive wax for black cars. I was playing with the idea of a repaint, but to do it right is big bucks. I figure that paint correction will get me half the way there for way less money. I'll try to post a picture of the car when I get a chance.

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    Re: New Member from Michigan


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    Registered Member BillyJack's Avatar
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    Re: New Member from Michigan

    I've got some experience with similar paint, having owned an '87 El Camino since 1993, with over 100K miles when I got it. It went from a faded, oxidized daily driver to picking up a a show trophy occasionally, still with the original paint. Here's what works for me:
    After a thorough wash and claying, I do an aggressive rub with M07 Show Car Glaze, applying it heavy and allowing it to soak in at least overnight before attempting to remove it. Don't try to remove every bit, just get most of it off and the polishing process will take care of the rest. In the Meguiars line, I'd get some M205, and some Ultimate Compound. Do some test spots with the 205 and a polishing pad and see if that's enough. If not you can go to either a more aggressive pad with the 205 or the Ultimate Compound. Either way, finish it with a soft pad and the 205, or even Ultimate Polish and a soft pad. Definitely research some instruction on machine polishing before you begin and clean or swap pads regularly, every panel or so.
    Do remember that's it only original once, so make it look as nice as you can, but don't polish hard enough that you compromise the thickness of the paint.
    Again, do soak up as much info as you can before you fire up the machine, but that's probably why you've checked in here.
    Ask any questions at all, since there is a free and willing share of information and experience shared here.
    Here's a pic of my Camino just to show I've "been there, done that".

    Bill



    PS. Nice Ride! I managed Buick dealers in the 80's and 90's, so I had about 4 or 5 GN's and a few T-Types as company cars in '86 and '87.
    Never got to drive a GNX, though.

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    Re: New Member from Michigan

    Hi Billyjack. I’ve read a bunch of your posts about bringing the paint on your Elco back. FYI, I also have (2) 59 Elco’s that are my big projects. Hopefully I can get one good, mild custom out of it. The 59 will take some serious metal work.

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