I have never discriminated when it comes to the makes or models of cars I have detailed. I have attacked 15-year-old Toyota Corolla's with Cheerios stuffed in every fold of the back seat and I have slogged away in minivans covered with dog hair. You never heard me complain. But, now I want to treat myself. If you, or someone you know, has an Audi R8, let it be known I am offering a free exterior wash and detail. I would need the car for a weekend during the summer.
I am in the process of planning out an exciting detailing project that will culminate with a Gyeon coating using their new "Syncro" system. I have no experience using products from the South Korean company, but I have only heard great things. The Syncro system is a two stage process that combines two base coats of their durable Mohs ceramic coating with a durable and flexible top coat of Skin.
I want to thank the owner of Carzilla for suggesting this coating and I look forward to applying it to the Daytona Grey paint on my SQ5. In addition to the Syncro system, Carzilla also supplied me with 1000 ml bottles of Prep, Iron and Wet Coat to ensure I enjoy optimal performance from the Mohs and Skin coatings.
It is no secret to anyone following my work that I have grown quite fond of Leno's Garage products. Recently, a sizeable shipment arrived just in time for summer. I have a number of exciting projects lined up for my summer break, and these products will play instrumental roles in all of them.
I had the opportunity to speak with Troy, the owner of Auto Obsessed in Edmonton recently. Our conversation was focused on the line up of OBSSSSD premium detailing products. I was overjoyed when a sampling of these products arrived on my doorstep a few days later. I am eagerly anticipating putting these products through the motions in the coming weeks and months.
- Paint Finish
- Leather Cleaner
- Leather Conditioner
- Auto Wash Shampoo
- Touch Up
- Wheel Cleaner
- Tire Satin Finish
Here's a little teaser video I shot starring the new OBSSSSD arrivals. I look forward to sharing my impressions of each of these products once I have had some time to experiment with them.
The team at Leno's Garage has created a discount code and I am hoping my fellow automotive and detailing enthusiast friends will use it. You will save 10% off your order by using "RADGARAGE" at checkout at www.lenosgarage.com. I want to thank the team at Jay Leno's Garage and I hope this code will drive some business their way because they have been very supportive of me and my detailing obsession.
Mike from Ohio writes:
"How do you train your "psyche" to overcome a sense of "giving up". This is hard to put into words, so my apologies. Best I describe what I'm referring to. I don't have your talent, skill and know-how to do what you do...but if magically all of a sudden I did have that capacity, I would get discouraged after spending so many hours/days on a car...I would get severely "bummed out" when I take the car out on the road (in the rain) and my perfectly cleaned/detailed car gets dirty again. Hope that makes sense. I'm afraid that is how I'd feel. You have obviously overcome that "problem". How do you compartmentalize your sense of satisfaction when time after time..car after car...dirt, road grime and pollen spoil what you've just spent an enormous amount of time and energy cleaning? Is there a mental trick to it?"
This is a great question, and I have had to reconcile a few things in my own mind to maintain my dedication to car care. The environment in my city is very challenging. The winters are long and messy, and the rest of the year is dusty with a real mix of weather. There are a few ways I deal with the stress and most of them are visible in the way I have designed my garage. Combating the relentless challenges of maintaining a clean car has been made easier by the fact that my garage is a full-service detail facility. I can pull my car in on any day and everything I need to keep it clean is close at hand. My vacuums are easily accessible and I have a wide array of products that work in all kinds of different seasonal situations. By having all the tools and supplies I need at the ready, it allows me to use my energy efficiently.
Also, I just love the process of returning a dirty car to pristine shape. Yes, it may be dirty within seconds after leaving the garage, but that doesn't negate the fact that I had fun making it look brand new again. It is also rewarding to know that the car is still in excellent condition, free or scratches and defects, under the dirt and grime. I am really paranoid about the salt and salt residue embedding in my paint and causing corrosion, so every time I get the paint clean, it gives me hope that rust and corrosion will never claim my current vehicle liked it claimed a few in my earlier years! So, in conclusion, I can keep going no matter the challenges because I have the proper facility and supplies, I like the process, and I enjoy knowing that my car's condition is still flawless under the dirt, salt, pollen, or whatever other menace the world is throwing at me.
Now, if I had a black truck that I had to park outside like my friend, Bryan...that would be whole other story. He gets all my respect!
If you click, on "Automotive and Tires" on the main page of the Costco website, you will see a large advertisement for the QuickJack portable lift featuring a stunning photo of my old SQ5 in my garage. Over the years, I have been fortunate to have formed some wonderful relationships with some of my favorite retailers. The team at QuickJack and I have enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship since I first added a QuickJack to my garage back in the Spring of 2016 and I am pleased to see these amazing shots getting some good press.
I am confident there is no place worse, no place more challenging, no place more frustrating to keep a clear clean than Calgary, Alberta in winter. Even with my garage converted into a detailing studio, I just can't keep up. But, I won't stop trying. Here's a video that demonstrates how I go about keeping a tidy interior despite Mother Nature's efforts to ruin me.
Hand washing a car in the garage may not be everyone's idea of an epic Saturday night, but I had been looking forward to this all week. The Flames were up against the Hawks and I had a dirty SQ5 that needed some love and attention. Here's a video that demonstrates how two or three hours in a garage can be quite enjoyable and productive. Enjoy.
I recently performed a "no rinse" wash on my SQ5. The weather here has been cold and sloppy so a no-rinse wash is about all I can do to keep my car clean. Here is a video I put together demonstrating my wash process when it is too cold to use my typical 2-bucket wash system. In addition to cleaning my SQ5, this video shows how I quickly clean my garage floor ahead of performing the no-rinse wash.
The final in my 3-part "Prepping + Detailing" series is complete. I am very happy with the results. I didn't apply a coating like I had originally planned. I simply ran out of time and energy. I used Menzerna's Power Lock so that should give me good protection until I can find the time to apply my GTechniq C1 Crystal Armour. In the meantime, here's the third and final video:
It's been almost a month since my 2018 SQ5 came into my life and here is a list of ten things I really appreciate about this new generation of SQ5:
I loved the old engine with its raspy growl and supercharged ferocity off the line, but I am really coming to love the new 3.0 litre turbocharged V6 and its silky smooth responsiveness. I am enjoying watching the digital turbo boost gauge light up when I mash the accelerator, too. I have been breaking her in gently, but the little jaunts I have been able to squeeze in indicate this engine is a fine piece of mechanical engineering. I look forward to seeing it perform in the mountains in a few weeks.
The first generation SQ5 was weak in the tech department. The second generation does a nice job of catching up to the competition. There were actually a few technology options I didn't select such as the collision avoidance and traffic sign recognition systems. The virtual cockpit is a sublime feature that finally brings the SQ5 to the next level in terms of cool tech. I can scroll between various speed/tach layouts and customize the side readout to audio, telephone, car systems, etc. Finally, Audi has made it possible to store your smart phone in the centre console instead of hiding it away in the glove box. There's even two USB ports in there! The addition of Apple Car Play means I can have the car read and send texts remotely. But, by far, my favourite innovation is the reminder the car gives me that my smart phone is still in the car. I can't count the number times this thoughtful features has saved me a walk back to the car.
I really like the diamond stitched leather seats in the SQ5. They are the perfect combination of sporty and sophisticated. I almost went for the red leather interior package, but I am very happy with the black leather with contrasting white stitching.
It has been just over a week since taking possession of my 2018 SQ5, and the obsession has already begun to take hold. I am infatuated with this SUV. I only have 250 km on it, but I love it more and more each time I get behind the wheel. I am very happy with my colour choice. I have polished the Daytona Grey Pearl using Jay Leno's Garage newly introduced line of polishes and I am very impressed with the quality of the finish. I have always been a fan of Audi paint, and this car is no exception. I still have some work to do in terms of coating the paint with the GTechniq system, and I am aiming at the weekend to complete that stage. After that, it will just be a matter of detailing the exterior since we have been experiencing some foul weather. I have put together two videos that demonstrate some of the processes I have been using over the past week to dial her in. Feel free to "like", "share" and comment.
I kicked my summer break off by detailing a friend's 2016 BMW 435i ZHP. He has had the car for about a year now, and he takes pretty decent care of it, but it needed a bit of love. He's out of town for a week so he left it with me to work my magic. Here's a video that demonstrates the process I followed.
My two weeks of holidays have come to an end. I really enjoy the vacation time we teachers get, and I was able to accomplish quite a bit in terms of the garage and SQ5. I performed an extensive detail on two friends' cars as well as a thorough detail on my own. I had the opportunity to experiment with almost all the products sent to me from Jay Leno's Garage and I have to admit, they are spectacular. I am still in the process of collecting my thoughts on their performance and I will be posting my review shortly, so stay tuned for that. I helped a friend swap over to his summer wheels using my QuickJack, and I also swapped over to my Spring/Fall setup.
The extra time allowed me to create videos that comprehensively demonstrate the extent I go to when maintaining my ride. Check them out if you have the time:
I finished up a 8-hour detail of a friend's Kia Sorento. I am quite pleased with the results. I was a bit pressed for time, so there's no video for this one. Just a few photos. This SUV is used to transport a dog so lots of time was spent vacuuming. I have a Sonax pet hair brush that does a pretty effective job of loosening the hair, so the vacuuming went well. This SUV is not garaged, so there was a lot of tree debris on the inside and outside which took up a bit of extra time. Enjoy the slideshow.
Leather | Leatherique Rejuvenator Oil
Carpet | Tornador Foam Gun loaded with diluted Griot's Garage Carpet Cleaner
Doors | Jay Leno's Garage Interior Detailer
Dash and Console | Jay Leno's Garage Interior Detailer
Wash | Jay Leno's Garage Vehicle Wash
Wheels | Griot's Garage Heavy Duty Wheel Cleaner
Tires | Jay Leno's Garage Tire and Trim Care
Plastic | Jay Leno's Garage Tire and Trim Care
Glass | Jay Leno's Glass Cleaner
Wipe-down | Zaino Gloss Enhancer
I performed an epic detail on a friend's Volvo XC90 this week. I was able to put almost all the products I received from the team at Jay Leno's Garage. They performed remarkably well. I am still trying some of them out and I will be sure to share my impressions on the JLG line up in a few days. In the meantime, here's the video I made showing the Volvo transformation.
I have three sets of winter liners for my SQ5, and none of them are able to prevent salty water from staining my black carpet. Using a variety of products and equipment, I am always able to restore the carpet but it is such a drag having salt residue on my floor for so many months of the year. How do ordinary people cope? I don't even want to know.
The process involves a thorough vacuum followed by a liberal dousing of Blitz all-purpose cleaner. I let that dwell and then use my Rupes iBrid to work the APC deep into the fibres. Then, I just use a microfibre cloth to dry the area. If any salt has really hardened, I use my Mytee steamer to loosen it up.
I was tired of having my polisher arsenal stored away and out of sight, so I mounted them on the Craftsman pegboard above my workbench. I want to add one more polisher to my collection, but that will have to wait until Father's Day. I also moved my pad collection from my 56" Craftsman to two of the drawers beneath my workbench. Here's a few pics:
A few weeks ago, the Director of Business Development for Jay Leno's Garage contacted me and offered to supply me with some detailing products to see what I thought of them. I am going to be detailing two SUV's next week, so these products are going to be put to the true test come Monday. I plan on doing a video of both jobs. I am really looking forward to it. In the meantime, I have to say I'm quite impressed with the packaging of these items. They look real good on my main shelf! Stay tuned for next week's Sorrento and XC90 details using these Jay Leno's Garage products.
Tire and Trim Care
Microfiber Super Drying Towel
Plush Microfiber Towel
Microfiber Wax Applicator
Blue YoYo Wax Applicator
2 x Black YoYo Applicator
Honestly, I don't know how any retailer can be so consistent as Auto Obsessed. I made my online order late in the day on Saturday, and the package arrived Tuesday before lunch. That's just incredible. I am giving their OBSSSSD line of microfibre towels a try. I ordered twelve and I expect big things! One thing I really appreciated about these towels right out of the box, is the tags are not sewn into the edges, rather they are easy-to-remove stickers. Slick! I also ordered some bags for my Metro Vac 'n Blo vacuum cleaner. I had totally forgotten you need to replace vacuum bags. The new bag has doubled the suction power of my awesome little vacuum. Here's a shot of what I ended up ordering.
Headed over to my favourite local detailing retailer, Carzilla today. Picked these items up. I have two detailing projects lined up for next week. Both of them are family haulers. I have an order from Auto Obsessed scheduled to arrive very soon also. Now that I look at this photo, I wonder if that yellow Rupes pad is too small for my Rupes Mini. I'll have to check on that.
I spent an hour attending to the exhaust tips on the SQ5 this morning. I put a video together that demonstrates the products I use and the process I follow to eliminate the build up of carbon soot on the tips. This is an on-going battle with this car.
I now have three complete sets of floor liners for the SQ5. The latest addition is a set of 3D Maxpiders. I am loving them. They don't offer 100% protection from salty water overrun, but they, by far, look the slickest. Here's a video of me cleaning my new Maxpiders.
Who is Rick?
I'm just a guy who loves his garage, Audi, and detailing so much he blogs about them.
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