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Update on "WHAT IS A DETAIL"

This is a discussion on Update on "WHAT IS A DETAIL" within the Showcar and Detailing forums, part of the General Help category; When I started the thread I certainly thought I would get more comments than I did , I didn't ask ...

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    F BODYS RULE maxwax's Avatar
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    Update on "WHAT IS A DETAIL"

    When I started the thread I certainly thought I would get more comments than I did , I didn't ask what is a detail because I didn't Know what a detail was,it was a repetitive question.
    I ask it to see if some of the people that call detail a detail
    really even know what it is to detail a car. Every spring you will see 5 to 6 new shops around the town open up proclaiming to be a detail shop, and some one always ask "think they will get any of your business" I always reply nope they are good for business. I usually end up repairing most of their mess ups. Well back to the topic ,I see many posts on different sites "Just detailed my car" or"Here are some shots of details I have done", When In reality you cant tell much from the pics unless the photographer really knows his stuff and takes pics of the right things , at the right angle you can male any car look shiny, or with the right glare from the camera work magic , and from most of the pics I see ,Even on here ,most every one neglects the small things that actually make a detail what it is, I always see dirty fender wells dirty exhaust tips, and the pinch weld along the rocker panels, just kills the detail. But in some cases you have a car that rarely sees 100 miles a week and then you freshen it up with a wash and wax call it a detail , thats not really a detail at all thats called preventive maintenance.
    Last edited by maxwax; 12-02-2007 at 06:41 PM.

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    Senior Member Z06-Goose's Avatar
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    Certaintly, this forum is not a hang out for professional detailers, at least I've not seen one. There are a bunch of great people here with a lot of knowledge that are pretty much enthusiast about their car, and making them look good just like I am

    So, most of us here "detail" our own car to the best way we see it accomplish our set goals
    I've seen some nice cars here that are maintained cleaner than most detailers can do; Y2KPewterSS and Siggy's Camaros come to mind

    As I said on the other thread, and I quote: "Detailing is basically a complete cleaning inside and out of a car. It's supossed to be show quality workmanship, and includes waxing, polishing and the whole nine yard. It's now a generic term used by people to refer to cleaning and waxing of their car, though not necessary show quality when they refer to "detailing" their own car. Professional shops would understand what you mean by detailing, though you want to be specific as what you want done; exterior and interior detail, or just either or..."

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    F BODYS RULE maxwax's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Z06-Goose View Post
    Certaintly, this forum is not a hang out for professional detailers, at least I've not seen one. There are a bunch of great people here with a lot of knowledge that are pretty much enthusiast about their car, and making them look good just like I am

    So, most of us here "detail" our own car to the best way we see it accomplish our set goals
    I've seen some nice cars here that are maintained cleaner than most detailers can do; Y2KPewterSS and Siggy's Camaros come to mind

    As I said on the other thread, and I quote: "Detailing is basically a complete cleaning inside and out of a car. It's supossed to be show quality workmanship, and includes waxing, polishing and the whole nine yard. It's now a generic term used by people to refer to cleaning and waxing of their car, though not necessary show quality when they refer to "detailing" their own car. Professional shops would understand what you mean by detailing, though you want to be specific as what you want done; exterior and interior detail, or just either or..."
    I agree, even your car looks great,I did not mean my post as a slam in any way, and I do know that this forum is not a hang out for professional
    detailer s, but this is one of the most knowledgeable sites I have visited, so I do regard the reply as a good and legitimate reply, and was wondering if I am the only one that sees the common misconception between a detail and a wash and wax and calling it a detail? because I have customer to come to my shop and expect a detail for $35.00 and then you have to go through the whole spill explaining what a detail really is ,and at that point all they really wanted was a wash job, and hoped that you wold have detailed their car for $35.00.

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    Just me Y2KPewterSS's Avatar
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    Very good thread

    I consider myself a good detailer and have done other peoples vehicles for them in the past. Goose is way better at paint correction than I am and has a great knowledge of detailing. He has done a lot on here to help the members and spur some detailing interest for the site.

    A complete detail for me includes the following:

    1. Pulling all 4 wheels off and polishing the lips and barrel and cleaning the fenderwells while the wheels are off.
    2. 2 bucket hand wash
    3. Clay barring
    4. Zaino PC(mild abrasive for swirls)
    5. Zaino 2 and 5(polish and sealant)
    6. Simple Green to clean the undercarriage and engine bay if necessary
    7. Vacuum interior(shampoo if necessary), Z9 and Z10 for leather, Z14 for plastics and I pull the door sills and dash trim out and clean all of them usually as well.
    8. Glass polished with Z12

    That is not necessarily the steps I follow, just how I listed it out.
    Last edited by Y2KPewterSS; 12-02-2007 at 08:44 PM.
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    Senior Member Z06-Goose's Avatar
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    No sweat. I didn't take it as a slam. Just speaking on my own experience that also support your statement about the misconception
    I have a client that wanted to do a full detail on a white C6 Corvette. He told me over the phone he just wanted to polish the finish. I got there and he told me if I could do the interior as well (yes), and then asked me "how long you think, 2hrs?"
    I just told him 2hrs will be just for doing wheels, tires, and washing
    Anyway, ideally I'd like to have some equipment I don't have to be able to do a professional detail job; a pressure washer with hot water, steam cleaner, carpet extractor, a small lift to take wheels out and do undercarriage, and wheel wells...etc

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    F BODYS RULE maxwax's Avatar
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    Some of the dealerships I have contracts with,have salesmen that look at the detailer like he is the minimum wage man with an IQ of about 39, then upon talking to him,you explain the situation in great detail,You don't sell the car I do, he looks puzzled, and I say If I do my job right ,the car sells itself all you have left then to do is the paper work. If I don't do my job right and you have to explain to the customer why the car looks so bad ,then you, I, and the dealership looses. so why should you think that you are above me? then he rattles on about if I sell 2 more cars this month I'll hit my goal and my commission should be around 2k for the month. So I tell him thats all good and well, I have 2 employees at my shop plus myself ,and one part time employee ,not including regular wash jobs we usually turn 5 details per day @ 150.00 +. THATS $750.00 per day,then you factor in 4 wash jobs @ $35.00 ea about $150.00 thats $900.00 subtract $300.00 per day for pay roll $150.00 per day overhead , that leaves $450.00 per day profit @ 5 days per week thats about $2250.00 per week every week, And I am my boss, so don't look down your nose at me, because I make you and I both a good living.

    by the way the next time I go into the dealership, he has a whole new outlook towards detailers.

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    When I bought my car the owner got one of those 200 dollar details. In.. under..and out... and all around.. I had people argue on what year my car was because it looked so good. They didnt believe it was pushing 10 years old as a daily driver.....

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    Member 346ci's Avatar
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    In my mind there are two types of details, exterior and interior. A detail is truly perfecting every detail of your car and is usually a very time consuming, but rewarding procedure. I think the term detail is used very broadly from washing the car to cleaning and polishing all the bells and whistles. I'm no pro though.

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    Member 99'CajunFirehawk157's Avatar
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    I wish I could find a good detail shop in my area like you guys...I would not hesitate dropping $2-300 on a detail that is has detailed has mentioned above, I just hate bringing my car to just any assclown who does a wash, oribtal or high speed buff, and out the door you go. Any of you guys ever come to Nawlins for any reason and want to make some spend money, PM me.

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    I lika da Chevy's LETHALxLS1's Avatar
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    ^ Thats the main reason I decided to learn about da buffers,buffer pads,paint correction products, and how to use them. I was done taking chances. I started asking Goose a few questions and reading on AG. So glad I did because I bought my car used and the paint was swirled and had many scratches. Now my car is looking great. I am far from a master "detailer" but I do pretty well with my PC 7424 and I learned enough to fix the issues with my cars paint. I am learning more and more every day. Its kind of a hobby to me and I am hooked!

    ** I do understand what the thread starter is saying about "details" though. I use the term very loosely myself. I know one thing thats certain- its extremely hard to find a detailer that knows whats going on-from the experiences I have had. The real detailers are few and far between.

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    Damn, I was just in Panama FL too over bird weekend...

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    Junior Member 1leathalLs1's Avatar
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    a true detail consists of the following

    Take wheels off and clean wheels and fenderwells

    wash car
    handwax
    claybar
    interior clean, shampoo, leather cond
    someplaces actually take seats out and do whole carpet
    engine detail

  14. #14
    Consumer of kraut SiggyZ's Avatar
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    This is a great thread and thanks for the props Goose. I can safely say that recently, I really did do some detail work on my car when I spent hours laying on my back underneath it cleaning and dressing up the undercarriage. There is still more I want to do under there, but it does look alot better then before. I follow many of the same steps as Y2KPewterSS does, short of taking the tires off the car. I believe a detail is just that, what you do to your car that pleases you when you look at it. I don't believe, for the most part, folks on here who use that term, relate it with that which professional detail shops do.

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    Think Spring..... 4get gto's Avatar
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    Don't know if the orginial 1st poster was bragging or complaining but I think with the group of guys we have here if they clean / wax their car up and call it a detail------ then its a detail.........I look at them and they look great...........
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    F BODYS RULE maxwax's Avatar
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    I was neither bragging or complaining I was just trying to verify If any one besides me had trouble distinguishing between what should be considered a detail or a wash and wax. As a business owner the public confuses the two more times than not, and I do agree there are some very nice cars on this site and are very clean.

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