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Posts Tagged ‘Ivan Rajic’

A year ago we teamed up with Big Media Productions in their series portraying the Dodge Viper.  Two Dodge Vipers were brought to use for a thorough paint correction and coating.  We performed a 2-stage paint correction on the vehicles and then protected the paint with a long lasting protective coating.

Recently, our episode on correcting and protecting paint was completed and can be viewed on Youtube so please check it out and let us know how you like it. We’re very happy with how it came out.

 

Here’s a quick article I wrote for Detailed Image a while back highlighting some tools/accessories that I like to use on an almost daily basis.   Some of My Favorite Detailing Accessories include:

Clay Bar Storage Container

These little containers can be used for claybar, but also other items like storing steel wool, small screwdriver bits, nuts and bolts, etc.

Plastic Razor Blade

These plastic blades are great for removing stickers from cars, but also cleaning wax residue and dirt from hard to reach areas between panels.

Disposable Floor Mats

Whether in a shop or home garage, these are great at keeping the vehicle carpets and mats clean from footprints, especially during winter time.

Pressure Spray Bottles

These work great for just about any liquid and are much easier on the hand as you don’t have to constantly pump the sprayer of a typical spray bottle.  Just build up some pressure and they’re good to go for a little while.

Speedy Stone Pet Hair Remover

This stone works VERY well on removing pet hair as well as other fibers from the carpets and upholstery.  A must have if you transport animals.

It seems that 95% of the time we are doing some level of paint correction and applying a protective coating to a vehicle.  That is our specialty and what most clients need for their vehicles.  However, we also do quite a few additional services.  These include interior detailing, headlight restoration, paint protection film (PPF), etc.

In this case, we were asked to bring back to life some old and weathered headlights on a client’s Chrysler Pacifica.  The car came in dirty, so we were hoping most of the haze on the headlight would wash off.

LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(1)Unfortunately, much of the haze was in the actual headlight lens and would need to be thoroughly corrected.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(2)

A close up shows the damage from regular driving and road debris.  This not only looks bad, but can greatly limit the light output of your headlights and be a huge safety concern. LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(3)

LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(4) We decided that in order to correct these headlights, we needed to fully sand the plastic lens and then polish them to perfection.  First, we masked off the adjacent paint to protect it.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(5)

We then completely sanded the lens leaving a very hazy finish.  This was required in order to remove the deep scratches, chipping and faded layer.  LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(6)

Sanding was followed by two stages of machine polishing in order to correct the haze and bring back perfect clarity.  We were extremely pleased with the results as the lens looked almost brand new.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(7) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(8)

Even up close, the headlight was near perfect and improved greatly over the previous condition.  The fade was gone and light output was now 100%. LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(9)

We normally apply a protective coating after a headlight restoration, which keeps the lens from fading for up to a year, sometimes more.  This time though, the headlights turned out so well that the client decided to have us apply some protective film before we put the coating on, for even better protection and preservation.LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(10) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(11) LUSTRBlogHeadlightcorrectionChrysler(12)

The protective film (PPF) is only visible if you’re a few inches from the lens and looking around the edges.  Otherwise, it’s invisible to the naked eye and looks great on the headlights.  Not only does it allow light through easily, the film helps to protect the lens from UV radiation as well as daily road debris causing damage to the headlights.

headlight restorationNeedless to say, our client was extremely pleased with the results and we were as well.  The photo clearly show the huge improvement made by correcting the headlight.  These headlights are now protected for years to come and only maintenance will be to replace the film for under $100 after a few years depending on how it wears.

For these headlights the protective film investment may not have been a “must”, but when you consider most cars these days come with HID headlights and many luxury manufacturers charge well over $1000 per each headlight, it becomes a great investment.

You can see some a full list of our car detailing and additional services on our Services page.  Don’t hesitate to call or email us with any questions or to schedule your appointment today.

Paint correction is our specialty at LUSTR and we always try to do our best with each vehicle.  We educate clients on what’s possible and what’s practical when correcting paint on various vehicles.  Sometimes multiple stages of polishing can yield a perfect finish, which provides the best looks and paint quality.  Other times a single stage polishing detail will greatly improve the finish, make it look great and be practical as well as economical for a daily driven car.  In the article Different Levels of Paint Correction I try to explain in depth the amount of correction we’re able to accomplish and what it means for different vehicles.

Different levels of paint correction

This Audi A7 belongs to a regular client, who comes roughly once every 1-1.5 years for paint correction and protective coating application.  In this case we also replaced the Xpel PPF/clear bra on the hood due to it being fairly worn after almost 2 years of use.  The car required two stages of paint correction to achieve a nearly perfect finish, which we then protected with the 22PLE paint protection coating.  The A7 came out extremely glossy and is now well protected for 1-2 years with the paint coating.  We apply the 22PLE paint coating on top of the Xpel PPF both to make it look glossy and offer great protection, making it much easier to clean going forward.  For the complete article, please visit Audi A7 Paint Correction Detail & 22ple Paint Coating Application on the Detailed Image Blog.

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Most clients come to us for our paint correction and polishing services, without knowing exactly what it is that we do.  We recorded this video to show exactly what we do on a daily basis and the results we can get with a thorough and careful paint polishing process.  Below the video is the description of exactly what you’re seeing, so please read it before or after viewing as you wish.  For best viewing select HD and full screen mode.

To explain the video… basically we did random levels of polishing on a trunk that has suffered years of neglect and bad washing techniques.  We divided the trunk lid into four sections.

The first/left/driver side section received one stage of polishing, which would be our Paint Enhancement Detail.  The 2nd section, just to the right, is the actual condition of the paint after receiving a wash.  As you can see in the video, while the Enhancement polishing doesn’t eliminate all the deeper marks, it significantly increases the gloss of the black paint by removing all the minor swirl marks.  This also creates a more level paint surface to which wax, sealant or a paint coating will adhere better and last longer.

The third section received 3 stages of correction and the last section to the right received 2 stages of correction.  In the video, it’s hard to tell the difference between these two sections because the 3-stage section simply removed a few more deeper swirl marks than did the 2-stage, but you have to really look at it with the right light and the right angle to see the difference in this case.  As you can see in the video, between the 3rd and 4th section we put down a tape line to indicate the difference between the Enhancement (1-stage) and Correction (2+ stage) detailing.  The most notable thing of course is looking at the center of the trunk and comparing the original paint condition to the 3-stage polishing that made it practically perfect.

While results may and will vary depending on the paint type and condition, this is typically what we’re able to accomplish with a proper 2-stage Paint Correction Detail, which is mainly what we do at LUSTR Auto Detail.  Whether it’s an Ehnancement or multi-stage Correction Detail you’re after, we’re more than happy to take proper care of your vehicle so don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions or to schedule an appointment today.

Respectfully yours,

Ivan Rajic, Owner and Operator

LUSTR Pre-Detail Assessment

Our pre-detail assessment is yet another tool that we use to provide custom tailored services for each client and vehicle.  This assessment is done in order to determine the client’s concerns and give us a good idea of the overall condition of the vehicle.  While we can usually give a general estimate over the phone or through email, we recommend the client bring in the vehicle to be polished so we can inspect it in person.  This is almost a must for any multi-stage paint correction work.

During this assessment, we will go over any problem areas with the client, use our LED spotlights to check for swirl marks and other defects and measure the paint thickness.  When a multi-stage paint correction is in question, we usually also perform a few polishing test spots to see exactly what results can be expected.  When doing these test spots, we basically perform a full detail on a part of the vehicle, usually hood or trunk.  After a rinseless wash on the area, we will decontaminate it with a clay bar, measure the paint and finally do the polishing to show a good before and after comparison.  We can then better decide on a service based on our recommendation as well as any budget and expectations for enhancing the look of the vehicle.

The pre-detail assessment is a free service and normally takes anywhere from 15 to 45 minutes, depending on how much test polishing is done, if any.  We also like this assessment because we get to meet a new client in person and discuss important topics such as: reason for contacting us/major issues, how the car is driven normally, will it be maintained by the owner or not, etc.  Of course, many times if the time allows, these assessments can turn into 1-2 hour car talk, which we don’t mind at all!

Call or email us anytime with questions or to schedule an appointment for your vehicle’s assessment.

Respectfully yours,

Ivan Rajic, Owner and Operator

In this article I wanted to share some insight on taking proper care of a new vehicle.  Many people have the misconception that new car detailing is not necessary and this can easily lead to quick damage usually to the painted areas.  New vehicles come in various conditions, some needing only a good wash and wax whereas others may need paint correction to remove defects left from the factory.

Take a look at the article on the Detailed Image blog and see exactly my thoughts on the question What exactly should I do with my new car?

This gorgeous R8 came to us practically brand new for a paint correction and CQuartz Finest paint protection coating. It wasn’t in the greatest shape from the factory (holograms and sanding marks), but the dealer also decided to put some finishing touches of their own, such as buffer holograms and swirl marks. Due to the hard Audi paint, it took us 3-4 compounding stages on most deep defects but at the end it came out perfect. Once polished to perfection, the R8 was coated with CQuartz Finest and looked amazing!

Below are some before and after photos of the R8.

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Here’s a question that is asked quite a lot.  From new owners to  long time enthusiasts, many of our new clients contact us asking “not sure if it needs anything, but I was wondering if you could take a look at it?”  Sometimes the answer will be yes, sometimes no and sometimes it’ll be a choice the client might have to make based simply on what they want to do with the car.  Needless to say, it’s very difficult to answer that question without first taking a look at the car and speaking with clients to determine the best course of action.  With that, I wanted to answer the question as best as possible based on my personal and professional experience in the article Do I Need To Polish A Brand New Car? on the Detailed Image Blog.  Please visit the link for a thorough explanation based on a few different aspects of car care and ownership.