Stewie gets TLC


When I originally bought my S2000 (aka ‘Stewie’), in 2008, I became maniacal about keeping it clean and pristine. I learnt how to wash it properly to protect the paint, and keep it as good looking as long as possible.

I also acquired various products, accoutrements and tools to do my own detailing. From a collection of chemicals and the like, to special cloths and buffing pads, I began geeking out in detailing.

While we lived in Tucson, I religiously hand washed it every Saturday, waxed it every 6-8 weeks, and twice a year polished the finish to keep it sparkling. I knew that I couldn’t expect to keep the paint perfect being a daily driver, but I knew I could keep it pretty sharp.

After moving to Chandler, it became more difficult to keep up the washing, but except for a slight slip in the schedule, I kept up the handwashing regime.

The move to California was not kind to Stewie. The first 10 months, we lived in an apartment, without the facilities to wash myself. Furthermore, it was uncovered parking, and there were enough trees and the like that dropped sap and leaves that made it difficult to keep clean.

Ultimately, I succumbed to taking Stewie to a carwash. Shudder.

Then we bought a house, but the water restrictions meant that I couldn’t in good conscience hand wash Stewie, so I had to keep taking it to the local car washes. Clearly, a suboptimal situation.

In the interim, prior to my buying Stewie, it had been in a minor accident, and the dealer in Tucson did a pretty lousy job repairing the bumpers, notably a really crappy clear coat was applied. This was OK, as long as I was gingerly caring for the finish, but the heavy rain in the fall and winter of 2014/2015 lead to the clear coat refinish peeling.


I did get the bumpers fixed properly, a local body shop removed them, sand blasted, sanded, and properly painted and finished them. A worthy expense.

All this is a long introduction to the efforts of the past couple of days that felt great. I did a full on detail of Stewie, starting with a full wash, claybar cleaning of the paint, a fine cut abrasive, followed by a finishing polish (and swirl remover), and lastly, a strong polymer coat was applied.

As I have gone far longer than I intended with this post, I will stop here, and in my next couple of posts discuss the process. For now, Stewie is beautiful, and ready for action!

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By geoffand


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