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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well I finally got to do it. You reading Jay? You were curious what my thoughts were going to be.

Let me tell you, I feel like I've had my *** handed to me. My legs are shot. I will say one thing, it's good I've been going to the gym semi regularly the past couple months because if I hadn't, there is a possibility I'd be dead.

It is a wretched, lengthy, drawn-out process.

It took me 11 hours. I started about 2:30 P.M. and I did not wrap up until about 1:30 A.M.

And I still only got two coats of Z2 on, with Z6 in between the two Z2 layers.

11 hours?! Yes. And I was not slacking. I vividly recall moments of running around, literally, actually, trying to hasten the process.

Here's what I did ... nothing out of the ordinary I don't believe, but it is what it is.

Pre-soaked the car.
Washed it with dawn.
Washed it again with the dawn sponge with just warm water.
Rinsed the car.
Dried the car with a microfiber waffle weave towel, only to realize I didn't need to after I spent all that time doing it because I had yet to clay.
Cut up a clay bar into 4 sections.
Filled a squirt bottle with Zaino car wash.
Clayed the car with the Zaino car wash as lubricant.

Let me tell you, it's amazing how much crap the clay picked up. I found a whole arsenal of stuff embedded on the rear bumper in particular. It's like stuff floated down onto it and just never moved and worked itself into the clear coat. I was never sure what to think of claying prior to actually doing it, now I'm a believer. "Just because you can't see it, don't mean it ain't there."

Washed the car with Zaino car wash to remove the film the clay leaves behind. (man, this stuff smells good.)
Again rinsed the car ...
Again dried the car ...

At this point the Insight essentially looked like it did on the lot when we picked it up.

Finally get the car into the garage about 30 minutes before dark.
Applied Z2 with a Zaino applicator. However, I've read so many horror stories about people laying it on too thick that the car needed stripped clean again so I was paranoid as hell and took it slow.

After the Z2 was dry (not too long, used ZFX in conjunction.) I buffed it out with a 100% cotton towel supposedly made in the USA.

Went over the car with the Z6 gloss enhancer spray and wiped it off. Quicker said than done, like everything else. I was trying to get everything perfect and right the first time.

Applied another round of Z2,
Hand-buffed like everything else the Z2.

Still had some Z2 left in its 2oz bottle so I Z2'd the alloys as well a coat and buffed them.

I polished ALL windows and exterior plastics, exception being the front windshield.

So ... after all that #@%!, how do I like it?

I noticed the second layer of Z2 made it look even better. After I did the 1st coat I told myself no way in hell am I getting to #3 tonight - but after seeing the result of the 2nd coat, I was genuinely curious enough to go for the third final coat in a 24 hour span (but my knees, body in general, vetoed.)

The first coat made the car shiny.

The second coat amplified it and even in lower light conditions you cannot escape the reflection of things around it. I haven't even had this thing out in the sun so far. Looking forward to seeing it in natural lighting.

I was buffing out the second coat and swore I had a streak on a couple different occasions. So, there I went, trying to buff it out but it wasn't budging. Turns out it wasn't a streak, it was the reflection of something from the ceiling. I felt "owned," or a fool, however you want to roll with it.

I did take pictures. But I haven't got them off the flash card yet.

The bad: I ran across at least two spots on the paint that have been cut due to flying debris. And there is one dent on the roof from something just above the driver side door, looked like maybe a ball bearing bounced off it. You cannot see it normally, but now that the car looks like a sheet of glass it's noticeable if you look at it from an angle.

All in all I'd have to rate the paint at 98% perhaps 99% still yet.

Additionally, there are two rock chips in the windshield. One is actually a good size, the other half of it. These need filled in with resin or something at a glass shop. Hopefully it isn't going to cost too much.

More bad: Wife locked my *** out by the time I got home. I don't know what that's all about yet. Thankfully I had a flashlight on me and went in through an alternative route.

The good: I won't have to repeat that entire process until fall sometime. I can just wash it, dry it, and go to town with additional coats if I like, which I will sometime, preferably sooner the better!
 

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Excellent. One of the hardest points to make with a potential Zaino user is that you've got to put some heart and soul and heavy dose of elbow grease into it. And if you don't want to do it right, you're wasting your money. And now that you've gotten this far, it's easy to keep it nice.

You'll never have to clay again, as long as you Z6 regularly, wash when needed, and do the Z2 every once in a while.

Perhaps, next weekend you can wash the car, put on 3 coats of Z2 with ZFX and see how much deeper the shine gets. You'll find the Z2 goes on really easy with additional layers. You might even become addicted and put a few coats of Z2 after every wash.

At minimum, use the Z2 a few times per year. I'm sure that you'll want more.

One final thought. The next time you're you walk by a Prius in the parking lot or stop next to one at a stop light, take a moment and look at all the surface area and think what it would be like to Zaino that puppy. It might surprise you.

And thanks for posting the results.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have a whole new level of respect for people who have show cars. I've mentioned before I did auto detailing for a detailing shop for a half year once when I was younger, but we never went to a portion of the length I did yesterday.

Well I woke up today and I didn't hurt as bad as I thought I might. I was walking down the hallway last night to the bedroom and I was telling my legs just a little further and I'll give you two the rest of the night off, just get me to the bedroom.

I'm already looking forward to next weekend to wash it with the Zaino car wash and give it a couple more layers of Z2 w/ Z6. :D

It would be a lot more fun to do it when it isn't cold outside. It was about 40F when I did it yesterday. I took my jacket off a couple times because I was getting hot. By the time it made its way into the garage and out later past midnight it was snowing outside. It was in the 70's last week!

I see why some people on autopia.org aren't into Zaino. It's a whole lot of work. It has a learning curve though, I learned a lot yesterday. Future applications should not take as long. That's why I went slow initially, to learn what I was doing. I'm ordering a California Duster soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Holy Metallic.

I just finally got to take a good look at it with natural daylight.

The Metallic POP's.

When we first got this car, the metallic's seemed very dull.

Now it's like you're being assaulted by sprinkles on an ice cream cone. The metallic sparkles look like a firework show.

Awesome!
 

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It's great that you took the time to do this! Have any pics?

Maybe next time you can also do a polishing step (M105/M205 depending on how severe the marring is) between the clay barring and the waxing step. It sounds to me like you did this all by hand. No wonder it took you so long!

Invest in a good dual action polisher. Some people like the Porter Cable (PC) 7424XP, but the Flex VRG 3401 works so much faster although it is more expensive (I think I spent $300+ on mine). There is simply no feasible way you can actually polish out swirl marks by hand. You can literally make 20 passes by hand (spending 40 minutes) on a 2X2' section and not get the result that a dual action polisher can give you in one pass. Waxing with a dual action polisher should not take more than 20 minutes to apply the wax, and about the same amount to remove it with a good microfiber towel (+ however long you want to wait for your wax to cure).

Looking forward to seeing your pics!

PS, the California Car Duster really is a bad idea. Maybe it works well for lighter color cars, but by its nature, pollen dragged across a paint surface without lubrication causes marring. The best thing you can do is just hose your car off every now and then. Do not touch the paint in between regular washes! (You mentioned autopia.org, read Accumulator's posts about pollen!)
 

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Really Looking forward to pictures. I am not impressed with the insights paint, and once it warms up I will be doing at least a claybar and wax. Ive heard a lot of good things about zaino and Im sure the time was well spent.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
No swirls. What I applied is a polish. I didn't wax anything.

Pics? Trying to get a hold of them. They were not with my camera because I left it at home on accident. I wish I knew the quality of the pics, hopefully they don't suck.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Pics. Meet Happy. Two layers of Z2 with Z6 in between. Will see if I can capture some of the metallic popping in daylight this weekend after some more layers in the daylight.





 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yay! Have to admit it feels good to get a compliment from a Zaino peer. ;)

Thanks for your Zaino thread Jayemtee.

It gave me a lot of practical information to make use of.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I wanted to note that I varied on the Z2 applications.

For the initial round of Z2 I used about one oz. (measured with the ZFX applicator bottles, one holds 2oz, measured this with an electronic scale, too.)

Problem was, it was hard as hell to actually see it on the car. I actually carried a LED flashlight around in my pocket to take out every now and then to see if I failed to provide Z2 coverage. Basically, all I had to go with was a thin, essentially transparent film.

It was a really big pain in the *** because usually more is better, but I have always read that using less Zaino = Win.

On the second coat of Z2 I used about 1.25 oz ... which is way too much according to many persons. But, I didn't really care at the time I was sort of experimenting. I would just have to buff it out more. Hey, I'm still an amateur with the stuff and when I actually get to apply the stuff in the daylight perhaps it will be easier to see coats go on.

Nonetheless, killing the car with the second coat of Z2 I had no problems buffing it out by hand. It was just over 60F in the garage with heat being provided by a wood burning stove.

I bought three cotton towels at Big Lots ($2.50, $4 & $4) "assembled" in New Jersey that I cut the trim off of. I did the "CD" test on them. The only thing that scratched the CD was the trim (hairline scratches,) so I cut the trim off the towels with scissors. This was when my wife said I had an OCD problem.

In between the two coats of Z2 I got the Z6 Gloss Enhancer Spray and would spray the middle of one panel I was working on and spread it throughout the entire panel, then move on to the next.

Anyway, these products go on easy and come off easy by hand. It would likely be a legit problem if you tried to use, say, an entire 2oz bottle on a car the size of the I2. 1oz is definitely enough. The majority of my time spent was attempting to be meticulous.

I also had a water problem. Water was persistent with dripping out of the mirror assemblies. A leaf blower sounds pretty damn enticing, or putting my shop vac in reverse to blow rather than suck. However without a leaf blower, I will likely just get some paper towels and slide it around the mirrors into the assemblies to absorb as much water as possible so it isn't as much of an issue.

The Z2 never whitened or became noticeably "thick," basically it never looked much different after it dried at least in my case - perhaps I just didn't wait long enough. However, I did wait until I could run my finger across the stuff and no residue was left on the paint. That's how I measured it dried. If it tried to smear, I left it alone and came back later. Perhaps it noticeably dries in the sun - don't know.

Anyway. Can't say how much I love this stuff. It might be painful at first but it's worth it. I only have one coat on the alloy's and they look shiny as hell, too. It's fun watching cars drive by at night and seeing the light circle and shift on the rims.
 

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Wow, that does look great. Great looking color. Mine is white, but I had requested the silver color. I wish my Insight could get a garage covering, but then I'd have to kick my toys out of there!

Take some closeup shots in the sun!

Another advantage of using a dual action polisher to apply waxes, sealants and protectants is that you can use much less product and apply it much more evenly and quickly.
 

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You will find that each additional Z2 coat goes on smoother and faster and uses less Z2. Typically for me, 2 ounces does 3 coats on a fresh clayed car. The first coat uses over half of the bottle, the second uses over half of what's left, and the third uses hardly any, leaving a little for the rims. In time, you'll learn how often you need to Z2 by how much you use and how easy/hard it is to apply. Hopefully you will stay ahead of the game and never really NEED it.

Also, I don't know if you need the Z6 inbetween coats if you are doing multiple layers in one session.

And PLEASE, don't use a dirty leaf blower or shop vac to blow on the car. You don't want to be blowing grit onto your car. Don't blow with anything that you wouldn't blow onto your face. If you insist on a leaf blower, buy a new one dedicated to that task and figure out a way to make yourself an intake filter.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Cool, points taken. Thanks. =)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Got to see the Insight in the rain today.

I've finally got to see what it looks like with water standing on it.

I was not sure what to expect.

The water beads up as "micro-beadlettes." I immediately began looking at other cars parked by it, they all had these large beads hanging out on top of them. Then I looked over the Insight again and all of the beads were nano-sized in comparison.

ALSO ... I was afraid what would happen after I applied Z2/Z6 on the rear windshield. The rear wiper works just fine, didn't notice smearing, zero residue. Water runs off it like it's being chased.

I'll be doing the front windshield now, too.

Sunday can't come fast enough. More Zaino, please! ;)
 

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Very nice! I'm scared to buy now because my wife will want me to do hers too and that Cadillac SRX is a looong car :)
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Washed the car and put another layer of Z2 on yesterday. Didn't even waste my time with Z6 afterward. The whole thing looks like glass the way it is. Didn't see how Z6 was going to improve anything, it may had, though.

It's a pain buffing because if reflections don't fool you, the metallic will. I finally wrapped it up and walked around admiring it and wondered where the hell did all of these white specks come from. Was the metallic.

No mistake about it though, the stuff goes on easy and comes off easy. I didn't even feel a need to spray my applicator with Z6 this time. It just slid right across the paint.

Couple observations from more experience with Zaino.

It's durable as hell. You don't have to be afraid of it coming off when you're soaping and washing the car down with your favorite sponge or mitten or whatever. I went around it lightly with a sponge, washed it off and I still had dirt particularly on the lower half of the car.

So I washed it again with a considerable amount of pressure with my favorite sponge and that did the job and the Zaino still endured it with zero problems.

The temp was up yesterday which resulted in water spots appearing much quicker. These came right off with my waffle weave towel I use for drying with no problem, when I initially thought it might be a problem. No problem at all.

You can leave the doors open and the water drains off faster on the inside door channels which results in less time dabbing up stray water.

I really like how Z2 effectively becomes part of your paint and is durable. It's nice knowing the paint is protected short of projectiles.

I used 3/4th an ounce of Z2 this time for the entire car short short of the front windshield. I had planned on doing the front windshield but instead I decided to just clean it with invisible glass.

I do like using it on the glass however as it has UV blockers for the occupants, not just for the interior. Less prone to get a sun burn from extended travel w/o tint.

It's fun watching the car sit there at night as cars come by and watching the Insight illuminate. Tempted to drive one of my other cars by at night to see what passer-by's are seeing.

I finally got some validation by a neighbor that lives down the way. We met on a one lane road so we passed by each other slowly and I waved and he sat there nodding his head in approval. That was neat.

I woke up early and went outside to see what I had missed yesterday. Found two spots and cleaned the windshield before the wife drove off to work. I'm addicted, just wish the wife understood.

Took me 5 hours to wash and put a layer of Z2 on. I can probably do it in 4 hours next time. I clean and detail even the underside that I can reach with my hand until I encounter plastic or metal.

Next winter is going to turn me into a psychotic mess. Not looking forward to it.

I also got the front mud guards on now also. Still need to install the rear's.
 

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Wow.... I need to start saving. Ive purchased all teh turtle wax ice line and love to spray wax it after a good wash. I love the rainx effect it has on the glass and shine it puts on the plastic pieces.
 
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