I am concerned that there hasn’t been enough disagreement here on this blog on religious topics, e.g., whether mask use by the general population reduces or delays coronavirus infection (masking K-12 students doesn’t help, according to the CDC, but let’s order it anyway!). So it is time to introduce the topic of wax, polish, and other paint treatments.
An aircraft mechanic here in the Florida Free State swears by Nu Finish for boats and planes and says that it actually does last for nearly a year. This product is top-rated by Consumer Reports as well, being super durable and almost as easy to apply as the other top-rated product, Meguiar’s NXT Generation Tech Wax 2.0.
Here are the patients:
- 2005 Cirrus SR20 with original white paint plus some decals. It looks reasonably good after a wash, but could be glossier. The plane has lived in a hangar for its whole life, but is exposed to the sun for days at a time when on trips.
- a 2022 Chevrolet that will be arriving soon. It will be garaged, but exposed to the sun when driving and this might be a car worth handing down to the kids so they can remember when internal combustion was like before President Harris banned it
(Our beloved 2021 Honda Odyssey won’t get any treatment because it is leased and will go back to Honda in January 2024. When turned in, the 2018 Odyssey still had new-looking paint despite never having been treated in any way.)
Both Nu Finish and Meguiar’s claim to offer UV protection. Does anyone have experience with these? Each bottle is supposed to be enough for one regular-sized car? So you’d need two bottles for a pavement-melting SUV and three bottles for a four-seat airplane? What kind of rags do you use for application?
Also, what about ceramic coatings for paint? I haven’t seen an objective comparison of this expensive process (many $thousands for an airplane) versus spending $7.59 every year on Nu Finish. The people who make money applying ceramic coatings swear by them, but consider that the people who made money putting COVID-19 patients on ventilators back in the spring of 2020 also said that was the best possible medical idea. If ceramic coating is such a great idea, why don’t Ferrari and Rolls-Royce do it at the factory?
A friend owns a car wash/detail operation. Here’s what he had to say:
We do lots of detailing on exotic cars etc. c8 [Corvette] more impressive in person than just about anything. Gm also finally figured out how to make a good looking interior. The detail shop team prefers c8 over Mclaren’s!
Be sure to get a ppf film on hood and ceramic coat as soon as u get. Worth money. GM paint is quite soft. As a result they pick up swirl marks easily.
[follow-up after I queried “Ceramic coating is not a snake oil scam? What about for airplanes ? We had some exotic formula tested on a square in our PC-12 near exhaust stack. Made no difference in glossiness or ease of cleaning.”]
Not snake oil at all.
Works 100x better than wax. The key though is the paint correction step. You have to buff paint to a very smooth finish then seal it.
The airplane stuff is a joke bc airplane paint is garbage in most instances. On cars you are actually sealing the clear coat.
The cost for ceramic on a car isn’t the coating, it’s the labor on the buffing step.
It really helps with acid rain degradation dulling of clear coat on east coast.
He’s smart and I respect his opinion, but I can’t get over my Efficient Market Hypothesis question: If ceramic coating makes sense, why isn’t it the final step at the car factory? The paint shouldn’t ever be smoother than when the car is brand new, right? Why not apply the magic elixir when the paint is new and doesn’t need the expensive “correction” step?
The PPF film that he mentioned is made by 3M, so that suggests it isn’t a total scam. On the third hand, despite the heavy truck traffic on the roads here in Florida, there doesn’t seem to be enough gravel to create a significant paint chip risk. God ran out of rocks somewhere in Georgia? And, again, if this is such a great idea why don’t they put it on at the factory, at least as an option?Full post, including comments