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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
An old but useful and informative post left behind by an old trader. :)


KNOWLEDGE IS POWER, Clay, Claying, Lube etc
I have seen a few posts about claying/lubes and i hopefully can clear a few things up for you.

The Clay looks like this...

How do I know if I need to clay?
Run your hand across the surface of your car, paying special attention to the front end and lower panels. If you can detect rough areas or gritty or bumpy spots, your car s paint is contaminated and you need to clay.

What is a Clay Bar?
Clay bars have been used by professional, car enthusiasts and professional detailers for years. Clay bars offer a superior alternative in removing the rough surfaces contaminants that can settle in and on your paint. Our Super Premium bars are non-abrasive and are capable of safely and quickly remove surface contamination, rail dust, industrial fallout and overspray by pulling if off the surface. Claying is a process to decontaminate the paint, and restoring that smooth feeling to your paint.

What can contaminate your vehicle surface?
1. Brake dust - particles produced from the friction of brake pads rubbing against the rotor. This metal on metal friction disperses tiny particles of bare metal into the air and on the highways, freeways and virtually everywhere. Constant movement of vehicle propels it in to the air and dispenses it over the vehicles surface.

2. Industrial fallout - another word for pollution, industrial fallout is a by- product of our surroundings. It comes from industrial businesses and factories as well as diesel vehicles and even airplane fallout.

3. Rail dust - produced from the friction of train wheels against railroad tracks.
Over 75% of new vehicles are shipped by rail. Nearly all new vehicles are contaminated as soon as they leave the factory.

When Should You Clay Bar?
You can clay bar your car as often as you wish or simply prior to waxing or polishing your vehicle. To acquire the best smooth as glass touch and feel result it is ideal to always clay bar your vehicle prior to application of wax, glaze, polish or paint sealant.

How is clay different from polishing or buffing?
Many people have never hear of clay baring because for a while clay bars were only available to professionals. Claying is less abrasive then polishing or buffing the surface. Claying actually pulls out foreign particles and contaminants that have embedded themselves in the paint.

Polishes are intended more to be used as cleaners for paint, such as cleaning the paint, filling swirls and scratches, restoring and maximizing shine by smoothing over sharp edges.

Do I need a clay lubricant?
Yes Yes Yes ! Clay bars absolutely need some kind of lubricant to work correctly. Without lubricant clay bars cannot move freely over the surface and work as intended. Without proper lubrication a clay bar will catch on contaminants, pull them across the surface and possible scratch or mar paint. Clay bars are such intended as to work with proper clay bar lubricants. Clay lubes are formulated to lubricate the surface allowing the clay bars to glide more freely across a surface. Lubricants aid the clay bar in lifting particles and alls the clay bar to move freely from raking roughly across the paint and causing possible scratches.

Can you use soap as a lubricant?
No! Lubricants are formulated to work with the clay bar and will not impact the integrity and cleaning ability of a clay bar. Shampoos and car wash soaps may damage the clay bar leading to deterioration, which in turn will limits its cleaning ability and shorten its life span.

Specially formulated clay lubricants are formulated with uniquely engineered surface lubricants to allow for superior gliding of the clay bar and provide a slippery protective layer that clay bars can safely glide across.

There are many types of clay bars that are more or less cutting, much like polishes.

If your paint work is sealed and waxed properly, you should not need to do this procedure more than once a year.

Clay bars, regardless of how harsh, will always cause more marring in the paint work, and therefore should be used before polishing, not before sealing and waxing. Most polishes are designed to leave a suitable surface for sealents to bond to.

In terms of the technique, you should spray one panel (dependant on size) at a time, with lubricant. Warm the clay bar up and mould it into a ball. Flatten with your hand to create a soap bar shape, and then proceed to push this in straight lines across the paint work. NEVER use circular motions. If the clay bar starts to stick, use more lubricant.

If you drop the bar, do not reuse it as it is contaminated. to help save your bar, put a blanket under the panel your working on which may help if you do drop your bar, but dont stand on the blanket/towel as stones,dust from your shoes will transfer...

Once a bar becomes dark/stained from use, it can be used on wheels and/or glass after than its fit for the bin.

Hope this is of help and clears up how to clay....may do snow foam next...!! only took me 3 hrs to write this one up...:ILU: and feel free to PM me with any questions..
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