olliesgrandad

Lexus Self Healing Clearcoat

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Having just had a paintless dent removal on the tailgate of my RX450h I had an interesting conversation with the guy who carried out the repair about the special clearcoat that Lexus use. 

He has been doing paintless repairs for 16 years and had not heard of this coating. 

This made me think about the coating and how it is maintained. Apparently it works for around 5 years before the molecular structure hardens. 

I know people here probably use polishing machines and abrasives to get a good finish, but in reality should be using non abrasive cleaners and protectants to avoid damaging the special coating as minor scratches should mend themselves if the topcoat hasn't been breached. 

Certainly where my car has been repaired the paintwork has 'healed' leaving no trace of repair. 

I certainly will continue to use non abrasive 'blacklight' on my car and resist the temptation of running my 'Cyclo' polisher over it 

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and the original paint finish on my 24 years old steed with 227k miles too is brilliant with very little attention with polishing etc

always best to leave the Lexus original finish alone if possible imho

Malc

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Certainly my paintwork, at almost two years old, shows little if any signs of 'swirl' marks - albeit I use a very careful washing process.

I was told by Lexus to park it in the direct sun occasionally as this allegedly helps the 'healing' process. Lexus Swindon have heat lamps in one of their workshops to do it manually where required. No idea if that's all true, but so far so good!

Now, if they could just make the paint more resistant to stone chipping too...😳

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this may explain why I am having a nightmare correcting the paintwork on my IS300h

Mine is very badly scratched and marred, if there is a self healing topcoat im guessing mine has stopped working 

its taken me a day to do the boot lid and another day on the drivers wing.

 

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Try 3m Ultrafina either very very slow speed or by hand. Worked for me.

Sent from my Pixel 3a using Tapatalk

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Just ordered some along with the ultrafina se,going to try it on mine as I have some swirl marks and chip stone marks and see how I get on👍

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Hairdryer works well for getting bird poo etching out - the theory being it restructures the molecules back to how they were before it happened

Of course it only helps in terms of fine swirls

Sonax perfect finish works very well for me. 

 

 

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I first heard of self healing clear coats in the world of Bodyshop Insurance repairs some years ago when Mercedes made a big sales promotion about it.   

The reason why there   never will be  a car  produced that can withstand normal everyday use without the inevitable swirls, light scratching, marring and holograms is because whether the top coat is considered a  hard or soft  lacquer it is a chemical mixture at the end of the day and man made.    The thousands of products that promise to transform paintwork are merely temporary fixes including ceramic coatings which is technically liquid glass which, as we all know, can still suffer from self or accidental swirl marks and the like.  

You only have to watch YouTube to see  two and three bucket wash experts, snow foaming,  clay barring,  machine polishing (Rotary and Duel Action)  and every combination of polish and wax and yet car paintwork  still requires maintenance to keep it looking good.   Concours condition cars are exactly that, something that is little used and for show.   Lexus cars have great quality paintwork in the main and the colour is a prime factor  in minimising the signs of damage. My car has  solid black paint out of choice and requires detailing properly every six months even with a GTechniq ceramic coating.   If you touch paint you mark it, even a fingerprint will leave a greasy mark.  Only when we get round to creating  an invisible protective shield that forms around the car when you turn the key can we all enjoy perfect coachwork.   Till then keep detailing.      

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On 4/23/2020 at 9:17 PM, SH20 said:

I first heard of self healing clear coats in the world of Bodyshop Insurance repairs some years ago when Mercedes made a big sales promotion about it.   

The reason why there   never will be  a car  produced that can withstand normal everyday use without the inevitable swirls, light scratching, marring and holograms is because whether the top coat is considered a  hard or soft  lacquer it is a chemical mixture at the end of the day and man made.    The thousands of products that promise to transform paintwork are merely temporary fixes including ceramic coatings which is technically liquid glass which, as we all know, can still suffer from self or accidental swirl marks and the like.  

You only have to watch YouTube to see  two and three bucket wash experts, snow foaming,  clay barring,  machine polishing (Rotary and Duel Action)  and every combination of polish and wax and yet car paintwork  still requires maintenance to keep it looking good.   Concours condition cars are exactly that, something that is little used and for show.   Lexus cars have great quality paintwork in the main and the colour is a prime factor  in minimising the signs of damage. My car has  solid black paint out of choice and requires detailing properly every six months even with a GTechniq ceramic coating.   If you touch paint you mark it, even a fingerprint will leave a greasy mark.  Only when we get round to creating  an invisible protective shield that forms around the car when you turn the key can we all enjoy perfect coachwork.   Till then keep detailing.      

Interesting. So I can use a clay bar on self healing paint and go through the whole process like I would on a car with normal paint? Would love to know what your 6 monthly detailing routine is. 

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Like I said earlier on in the thread,  a top coat, (self healing lacquer or not)  or a ceramic coating will suffer from swirls, micro scratches, marring etc over time as sure as night follows day.

How can it not?.    Take a look at paint work in either bright sunlight or with a quality LED spotlight/torch that mimics sunlight and I guarantee you will see defects even on brand new cars.

Even if you discount micro scratching caused by dragging microfibre towels across the surface you will see swirls caused by washing the car no matter how careful you are.   So for those that advocate a pressure wash first to loosen the dirt followed by a PH neutral snow foam, then  a wash and a clay bar routine, drying and then cutting the top coat  with a Duel Action   machine rather than a rotary to keep the heat down and using the appropriate pad with the appropriate compound  you will achieve removal of swirls and scratches before you  polish the top coat and refine the paint. Then you degrease all the panels you worked on.  Then the application of a wax or sealant will complete the process.   The wax or sealant will usually create great gloss and  the ability to repel  water/contaminates but it is only a barrier for what will inevitably follow as weeks turn into months.  

By definition a ceramic coating is not a lacquer and tends to put up a better fight against  micro scratches, swirls etc.   It will and does mark and my experience is that it can be corrected providing you approach defects knowing it is a ceramic coating.  I have corrected my own car but the defects are no where near what a normal lacquer would show after 6 or 12 months.  The myth that a coating will provide a bullet proof barrier and will not mark in any way has been exaggerated since their launch and all professional detailers who apply them know they have a service life that can be anything from 2 years to 6 or 7 years dependent on the price of the coating. Some Japanese coatings are seriously expensive.    Someone who has their car coated might believe nothing will touch it for years and if that's what they believe that's fine  but 1-2 years down the road that car will have defects.

So a self healing top coat can still be clayed simply because it is a lacquer.  Put your car away in your garage at night or wait till it's dark outside and use a LED torch and get close up and have a good look for the reflection of light from swirls and micro scratches.  They'll be there for sure, more so if you have a dark painted car, less noticeable the lighter the paint colour.   As a final point about ceramic coatings being corrected,  after all these coatings are based on it being a chemical liquid glass,   you only have to consider what exists for the polishing of glass e.g windscreens and glass headlamp lenses etc.  that can be machined polished in stages to remove scratches so why not a coating?          

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Many thanks Steve  very reassuring, I was a little put off by the manual saying do not use any abrasive polish. I also phoned a professional detailer who virtually said treat it as any other car just be careful not to use too abrasive compounds as the paint tends to get “sticky”!

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Bear in mind Nick that a clay bar or clay mitt/cloth will only lift contaminates off the surface of your lacquered top coat and do nothing for swirls, micro scratches etc.  clay bars are a must before any compounding of paint so you don't grind contaminates into the top coat.   

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19 hours ago, SH20 said:

Bear in mind Nick that a clay bar or clay mitt/cloth will only lift contaminates off the surface of your lacquered top coat and do nothing for swirls, micro scratches etc.  Clay bars are a must before any compounding of paint so you don't grind contaminates into the top coat.   

Absolutely, on my previous cars I have virtually used the same procedure as yourself, jet spray, foam, a PH neutral shampoo then clay. From there if I am doing any paint correction,  I use menzerna heavy cut compound with an orange pad , followed by their super finish 3/500 (light green pad)and then chemical guys jet seal all over topped off with a couple of coats of carnauba paste wax ( black pad). I will do the same for the Lexus except I may not use  the heavy cut or if I do use a softer pad.

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