Jesse Ransom
Jesse Ransom UltimaDork
8/7/20 3:14 p.m.

I just wanted to see if there was any context for the rather alarming note in Step 8 that "Whether it's a Pebble Beach-winning Bugatti or a humble Boxster, McNair follows essentially the same protocols for detailing the exterior. First, McNair never washes a car. He always cleans the exterior when it's dry, starting with a quick detailer-type product and a microfiber towel."

Emphasis mine. I mean, I'm sure there are exceptions. And as I go to apply this to my MGBGT in the driveway, I'm at least planning to give it a good rinse with the hose to get blown dust off before I do any rubbing of the surface with anything... But I am contemplating letting it dry after just the rinse and then going after it with detailer and microfibers per the article...

Again, just curious about whether there's any context or detail to add there; I mean, every rule has exceptions, and if Tim McNair were tasked with detailing something that'd just finished Baja there would be a rough pass before trying spray detailer and microfibers, but I'd love to understand the continuum a little better, perhaps in terms of what type or amount of filth calls for what measures...

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
8/8/20 7:20 a.m.

He really never washes a car and I don't either anymore. He uses a quick detailer and then a clay bar if needed. As weird as it sounds, it works. I just prepped my Tiger and my Shelby for a comparison story we are working on this week and just wiped them down with quick detailer. I use that stuff under the hood, and even inside occasionally.

Jesse Ransom
Jesse Ransom UltimaDork
8/9/20 1:22 p.m.

In reply to Tim Suddard :

Thanks! I'll give it a shot. I can't say I'd miss traditional washing.

DannyRT New Reader
8/12/20 1:35 a.m.

Been wondering about pure detailing only as well. I scheduled to wash the Mustang this weekend after we installed the parts. Guess I should try it.

NOT A TA SuperDork
8/12/20 10:37 p.m.

I've been a "no wash" proponent for many decades. Especially non daily driver cars that don't see snow, salt, etc.   Every time you squirt water on a vehicle with a hose you're promoting rust. If a vehicle gets wet from rain I wipe it off. A hose gets water in additional places where it wouldn't get wet from rain. AND, those little places the water gets forced into by hose pressure don't dry as quickly because of limited air flow.  Think of areas like behind chrome wheel well trim on 60's cars.

nderwater UltimaDork
8/13/20 8:34 a.m.

So now you guys have me curious.  What are you recommendations for no-wash cleaning products?  What's the best bang for the buck?

procainestart Dork
8/26/20 12:42 p.m.

In reply to nderwater :

I've used Optimum No Rinse for a long time and have been happy with it. That said, I am not an OCD detailer, and I do actually use a hose; however, as with others, I was intrigued when I read McNair doesn't wash a car, and I'm going to try to wash a car without extra water...

Note that ONR's website says that using more than their recommended ONR:water ratio doesn't make it work better.

nderwater UltimaDork
8/26/20 2:06 p.m.

I was gifted a bottle of Aero Wash Wax All.  I'll continue to use it, but I'm not blown away by the results on my Boxster.  I had to work it pretty hard to get some of the water spots off of the black paint, and it left behind a fair bit of the road grime that was on the lower bumpers and rocker panels.  I'll try it with a clay bar with it once I get my hands on some.

NOT A TA SuperDork
8/26/20 2:34 p.m.

I use "Mothers" products. Surprisingly the plastic rubbery replacement tool for clay bars works good. I have a tendency to forget to move my truck (which lives outside) far enough away from my work area pretty often. So I get rust spots from cutting/grinding debris floating onto the truck as well as over spray from doing auto body paintwork floating over on it. Since the truck is white, the rusty specs & primer & other paint specs really stand out if you're within 5' of the truck. So a couple times a year I clay bar the truck (now with the new rubbery plastic tool). Other than that I just wipe it off after rain & wax once a year. I'm in S FL so no winter grime to deal with.

mfennell Reader
8/26/20 3:29 p.m.

I've washed my 360 maybe 5 times in 10 years.  It's never really dirty though.  I bought a gallon of a Blackfire detailer ages ago.  It still looks amazing though it could probably use a clay bar.

My 'real' cars get washed though.  A lot of dirt gets removed with a gentle rinse of soapy water through a foamer, especially if you have a good coat of wax.  I've taken to an initial drying with a leaf blower too, which my 11yo daughter has described as 'the most dad thing ever'.  I dry with a dab rather than dragging across the surface.  My wife and I each bought new cars last year - no swirls on either one yet.

I've seen demonstrations of a number of rinseless products that look like a complete pain.  You soak a bunch of microfibre towels in your favorite cleaner, then fold them times so that you make one pass per clean and wet part of the towel, then dump it so it's not used until next time.



8/26/20 3:48 p.m.

Disappointed. Came here thinking I would find a kindered Cadre of those who  never wash their car. My logic being that since I am going to drive it into the ground anyway, might as well use the money I save to buy the next car. Also frees up a lot of time to work on project cars.


Do carry on.



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