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Paint Correction and Ceramic Sealer..

 
Old 02-23-2016, 09:02 AM
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Paint Correction and Ceramic Sealer..

I am somewhat new on the forums and I don't want to come off as an infomercial, but I did want to share my experience with paint correction and a product called Ceramic Pro. I can't tell you if this product is any better or worse than the other coatings, but it sure looks good to me.

I just picked up a 2016 C63S from a local Connecticut Dealer. The car upon inspection was a mess. Because it is black and because the dealership pushes out cars by the minute, the surface of the car had swirls, scuffs, overspray and overall didn't look good. I did say something but, in the end their efforts to try and improve the condition only made it worse, so I just asked them to stop and decided to look into local detail shops and options for my paint.

There are a ton of coatings for cars, I mean dozens. I looked into ceramic pro, opticoat, CQuartz, and more. In the end, the detail shop I used had many different options and based on my requirements and budget, I went with the Ceramic Pro Silver. I wanted something that would require little to no maintenance and I didn't want to wax my car every month either.

I can't say enough good things about the shop I used. If you are on the East Coast and in Connecticut especially, I highly recommend Arkham Shine in New Milford, CT. and Kevin the owner. He is passionate about detailing and is a perfectionist. Two things you want in a detailer. He washed it, compounded it, clayed the car, washed it again and then ceramic coated it. The glass, the body, the wheels, the mirrors, all plastic parts, everything exterior. We did not do any interior applications.

He sent me pics every step of the way and when I picked up the car it was 95% improved. To quote Kevin "if you want 100% then leave the car here for a week with a blank check". In other words, he gets paid to do the job and the car was there for 3 days which is what I paid him for. If I paid him more than he could afford to go over every square inch of the car and then re-inspect it to make sure its 100%. I am very happy with the service, cost and result. Kevin wasn't one of those greedy shops looking to push product or get more money out of me. He quoted the prices, we agreed on a budget and a package and I left the car. When I returned these are the pictures of what I saw.

I will follow up in a couple of months and let you know how the surface has held up and if in fact this Ceramic Pro stops the car from getting those surface swirls and starbursts in the clear. According to Kevin and the website, this stuff bonds to the clear making it super hard, super glossy and highly resistant to just about everything. We shall see but, for now I have to thank Arkham Shine and Kevin for the great job. Now if it would only stop raining/snowing I would like to go out and drive

PS: No photoshop or filters were applied to the pics. Actual unretouched pics.

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Last edited by CT-AMG; 02-23-2016 at 09:06 AM.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:54 AM
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It looks beautiful - of course it is rarely possible to see swirl marks in a photo. Please let us know how it holds up and if swirl mark develop when you wash it. Black is so tough.
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Old 02-23-2016, 01:02 PM
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Looks like your guy did a great job. My last car was black and I vowed to never buy another one because it takes so much care to keep it looking perfect. This ceramic coat you had applied should make your life much easier. As shared in another recent post, I just had the same process performed on my car - paint correction and ceramic coating. But I went with Gtechniq Crystal Serum with an EXO over coat. Supposedly best ceramic coating on the market and comes with a SEVEN year guarantee, but who knows - I am sure they all claim to be the best, but I did like the 7 year guarantee. So far so good. Here's some pics...









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Old 02-23-2016, 01:07 PM
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That looks great! White is certainly easier to maintain, I haven't owned a black car in years and I hear ya about keeping it clean..

Arkham sold both ceramic pro and Gtechiq and he never claimed one to be better than the other. We went with Ceramic Pro mainly because its what he had in stock.
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Old 02-23-2016, 01:25 PM
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Car looks fantastic. Does Ceramic Pro act as a second clear coat ?
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Old 02-23-2016, 01:44 PM
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Here's a link for how Crystal Serum works - I suspect that all ceramic coatings work about the same way.

http://www.gtechniq.com/about-gtechniq/crystal-serum/
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Old 02-23-2016, 01:49 PM
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I did a lot of research on this before I put down this much money. Modern cars use water based clear coats because of the effects the lacquer based clears had on the environment. As a result, the clear coats of today aren't as hard or as smooth or as durable as the lacquer based clears of old.

These new ceramic coatings actually bond on a molecular level to the factory clear coat. Once they are applied they really cannot be removed without serious measures. The new coating fills micro scratches, helps to level out the surface and reduce the "orange peel" effect, adds a super gloss like finish which is much shinier than factory and most importantly it protects the car from minor chips, bird poop, road salt, etc..

The coating makes the surface "hydrophobic" or in english extremely smooth and resistant to anything sticking to it. This is also why you read that clear bras must be applied BEFORE the coatings, because the surface of the car after application inhibits anything from sticking to it. Not bras, not vinyl wraps, not spray paint, tar, poop, etc..

I am hoping it works and look forward to seeing the results in 2 months.
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Old 02-23-2016, 04:48 PM
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CT-AMG,

THANK YOU FOR THE EXTREMELY THROUGH LESSON ON CERAMIC COATINGS!!!!
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Old 02-23-2016, 05:59 PM
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Ok people... post some price ranges for this stuff. What's with all the secret squirrel nonsense.
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:19 PM
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The prices vary but, you need to keep in mind that the price has to include the paint correction which is probably the most important step.

I can't tell you how the price broke down exactly but, the Gtechniq with color correction was $900 and the Ceramic pro with color correction was $1200.

Now those are base lines. I got the Ceramic Pro Silver which is a two step process with two different products a 9H hard layer and light layer. The Gtechniq is a single process not double and as a result it cost less due to the amount of hours saved in only applying one coat.

Again, both companies sell different levels of product at different price points but, all of the products are essentially the same and the added cost is directly associated with more layers/coats of the product and the time associated with the application.

Hope that helps, you can also google the prices and see what others have paid and what other shops are charging. The prices are pretty standard.
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:30 PM
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Looks great!

I'm a big fan of ceramic pro too, I've had it on my car for about 8 months now. Still looks good as new.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:52 PM
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Anyone on here get the Dupont coating from the dealer? Feel like it's a waste with better options out there.
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Old 02-24-2016, 01:29 AM
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guys I've coated my car with ceramicpro and it was impressive! But seriously I've seen pix from Sonax glass coating , its STUNNING! As I live in the UAE, you might not be aware of the detailers we've got but check out their page on Instagram : Procarcare_
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Old 02-24-2016, 05:52 AM
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Gloss does not come from the coat it comes from the work done before the coat so comparing products this way is bad practice.
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Old 02-24-2016, 05:55 AM
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true zand3rs but imho the product will to some extent have an impact on the final finish.
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Old 02-24-2016, 08:33 AM
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I would have to disagree that the product does not add to the shine of the vehicle. Yes, of course the prep work done before the coatings certainly aids in the final result. However, the "shine" is a result of the smoothness of the surface as well as the way the light reflects off of that surface. Wax alone does not fill in the minor scratches or help to level the imperfections in the clear like orange peel. It is also not as shiny because of the composition of the water based clear.

The ceramic coatings do both of those things. It fills the micro scuffs and scratches, it helps to level the surface by filling in the lows in the surface and if adds a level of shine chemically by bonding to the clear itself.

I can tell you that if you ask anyone who has had it applied to their car or any person who actually applies it professionally for a living, they will both tell you that the shine achieved WITH the product far exceeds any shine achieved without it.

One final point that we haven't touched on is longevity. Even if you could achieve the same shine with a fantastic prep and wax, in a week it would be gone. A week later with the coatings the car will look the same with the same shine so, maintenance and longevity have to also be considered when opting for a ceramic coating.

Again, I reserve the right to change my mind after a few months and seeing the real world results in time but, 2 days out I'm a happy dude
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Old 02-24-2016, 02:54 PM
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The car looks great, especially since black shows every little thing. Always a great choice to get it coated/sealed. Saves so much trouble in the long run.
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Old 02-24-2016, 05:07 PM
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My only concern is that doing this type of coating is a permanent thing; for us that plan to keep the car for a while, what happens if sections of the coating begin to fail (ie: pitting, discoloration, etc.) due to age?

Because this isn't a clear film solution, where you can just take it off and apply a new set, dealing with future repairs on this type of coating could be problematic.

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Old 02-25-2016, 11:18 AM
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looks great in black!
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Old 02-25-2016, 02:06 PM
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If you want to remove the ceramic coating,how difficult is it to remove?
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Old 02-25-2016, 02:58 PM
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I would guess you have to polish it of the paint!
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Old 02-25-2016, 04:01 PM
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Polishing the ceramic coating off could be problematic. I would not want to remove any clear coat.
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Old 02-25-2016, 04:59 PM
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Whoops.
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Old 02-25-2016, 09:14 PM
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So does this mean you don't have to wax the car anymore? Or what is the timeline between waxes?
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Old 02-26-2016, 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Shifter View Post
So does this mean you don't have to wax the car anymore? Or what is the timeline between waxes?
Should not have to wax. In fact, wax can damage the ceramic coating. Wash and detail spray is all that is needed.
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