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First Boat Detail
Old 08-23-2015, 12:43 PM   #1
route66mobiledetail
 
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Default First Boat Detail

Hello friends. Thanks for reading this.
So... We hooked up with our first boat detailing gig the other day. 2001 Wellcraft Dual Console. Very happy about getting the job and overall happy with our performance. Well... mostly. I'm not the type to gloat about things so with that you could guess I had some issues that kicked my a*s.
We got the call, and with our customer interview (we use a customer interview form to make sure we get info we need to do the gig and for future prospecting etc...) we were told the boat had "some oxidation" here and there throughout the hull. We figured our rate for light to no oxidation would be applicable.
We got to the job and the boat looked like it was covered with dry wall on the hull. LOL!
Well... we had only 10 hours to get everything done so the customer could SHOW HIS BOAT TO A PROSPECTIVE BUYER so we pressed on.
I was NOT going to be able to do a 3 step on the boat. (We would have charged him accordingly of course)

Here are my issues... Please help.........
1. When we got to the stern of the boat (scrubbing non skid), there were 2 fish boxes in
the deck filled with ALL the accumulated water from cleaning the front of the boat, previous rainfall etc.... Is this a common thing to have to do? I had to remove the water with a bucket that the customer had in the compartments. I could have used my wet/dry vac but I didn't. There were drain holes in the compartments but they must have been clogged. I don't know! It took valuable time away from us actually cleaning the boat. Do these things usually stay clogged up or should I have been able to find some sort of drain valve and released the water. I've never had a boat so I legitimately don't know. Yet... Sorry if this sounds like a dumb question but.... I just need input.

2. DWP849X... I used this polisher with a 1 step 3M cleaner wax due to my time constraint with my customers 6:15 PM boat sale prospect. With my inexperience, I may have used a compound then followed by a 1 step cleaner wax OR even polish then wax if I had the time.
Is the 3M Cleaner wax usually so hard to remove? My technique is needing some serious experience and training. I kept the polisher at about 1500. Too high? Too low? And... should I polish until the product turns to a light haze or...
Additionally the polisher was taking me for a ride (I'm not too proud so Ill admit that). I'm a 41 year old guy in good physical shape and it was running away at times like a novice motorcyclist handling the clutch for the first time.


I'm not expecting anyone to answer all my questions. Any nugget of advice will help. Overall the boat came out ok considering the original condition and time I had to do the job.
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Old 08-24-2015, 10:30 AM   #2
Mike Phillips
 
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Default Re: First Boat Detail

Quote:
Originally Posted by route66mobiledetail View Post


Here are my issues... Please help.........

1. When we got to the stern of the boat (scrubbing non skid), there were 2 fish boxes in the deck filled with ALL the accumulated water from cleaning the front of the boat, previous rainfall etc....

Is this a common thing to have to do?

I had to remove the water with a bucket that the customer had in the compartments.

I could have used my wet/dry vac but I didn't. There were drain holes in the compartments but they must have been clogged. I don't know! It took valuable time away from us actually cleaning the boat.

Do these things usually stay clogged up or should I have been able to find some sort of drain valve and released the water.

I've never had a boat so I legitimately don't know. Yet... Sorry if this sounds like a dumb question but.... I just need input.
It's one of three possibilities,

1. There would be a drain plug and you would have to reach your hand into the water, locate it and remove it.

2. No drain plug and remove using a container so some sort.

3. Bilge pump that pumps the water out for you.

Sounds like it was option 2 for you.



Quote:
Originally Posted by route66mobiledetail View Post

2. DWP849X... I used this polisher with a 1 step 3M cleaner wax due to my time constraint with my customers 6:15 PM boat sale prospect. With my inexperience, I may have used a compound then followed by a 1 step cleaner wax OR even polish then wax if I had the time.

Is the 3M Cleaner wax usually so hard to remove? My technique is needing some serious experience and training. I kept the polisher at about 1500. Too high? Too low? And... should I polish until the product turns to a light haze or...
All kinds of factors can make a cleaner/wax wipe off hard.

If the boat is severely oxidized then the cleaner/wax is mixing with the dead, oxidized gel-coat and it is this NEW SUBSTANCE you're trying to wipe off not just the cleaner/wax.

My guess is after you removed the oxidation and had a shiny surface, IF you then applied the cleaner/wax it would wipe off easy because the dead, oxidized gel-coat would have been already removed.

Sounds like a true compound would have been the optimum choice and it too probably would have wiped off somewhat hard with the oxidation level on the boat but that's the nature of the beast. Here's a tip, get a collection of terry cloth hand towels for wiping off compounds. They work better than soft, plus microfiber towels which work better for wiping off polish and wax.

Also, buffing till the product is almost dry or just a haze means it's dry and "yes" it will be harder to wipe off.

The way you use a one-step cleaner/wax on anything and especially a surface in bad condition is to use the product, heavy or wet. This means use a LOT of product not a skimpy amount.

I cover all of this and so much more in my new boat detailing book that is weeks out from being ready for sale.


Also, I cannot stress enough how important it is to

CLEAN YOUR PADS OFTEN!


When you chopping hard on oxidized gel-coat you're going to have 2 things building up on your pad,
  • Spent product
  • Dead, oxidized gel-coat
If you don't clean your pad you're going to dilute the fresh product you use next because it will mix with the above two substance and it will create an even stickier or gummier residue to wipe off.

If buffing with a wool pad on a rotary buffer this means taking a steel pad cleaning spur to the face of the pad and doing this after every section you buff or ever other section you buff.


Lake Country Wool Pad Spur

Like this,









Quote:
Originally Posted by route66mobiledetail View Post


Additionally the polisher was taking me for a ride (I'm not too proud so Ill admit that). I'm a 41 year old guy in good physical shape and it was running away at times like a novice motorcyclist handling the clutch for the first time.
  • A clean pad helps a lot with controlling a wool pad on a rotary buffer.
  • A stance where you have your feet planted shoulder's width with one just a little in front of the other.
  • Holding the rotary buffer close to you chest instead of extended away from your body.
  • Buffing with only the edge of the pad instead of buffing flat.
  • A dry pad versus a wet pad is also easier to control, this comes back to cleaning the pad often.
Again, I cover all of the above in my new how-to book.


Quote:
Originally Posted by route66mobiledetail View Post

I'm not expecting anyone to answer all my questions. Any nugget of advice will help.
Hope you found more answers here in this thread on this forum than anywhere else you may have searched for help.

I have nothing against Facebook but it's really difficult to type out and share the above type of in-depth answers in a tiny little message box and other boat detailing forums usually just get you one-liner replies.


Quote:
Originally Posted by route66mobiledetail View Post

Overall the boat came out ok considering the original condition and time I had to do the job.
I'm confident of that!

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Old 08-27-2015, 08:53 PM   #3
Jdbillin
 
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Default Re: First Boat Detail

The first one is always the hardest, you'll get a little quicker with each one.

And you'll learn the customers always think it's in a lot better shape than what it really is in.

As far as the buffer getting away from you

What angle were you holding it at? i've had mine bounce and hop before if its to flat.

I would slow you're speed down to, I've always ran mine at the slowest speed i think 1000rpm and had better luck compared to faster speeds.

Theres been many time I've been buffing with only one hand on the buffer while on a ladder
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Old 08-30-2015, 05:47 PM   #4
route66detail
 
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Default Re: First Boat Detail

Thank you for your help! The biggest problem I had was not cleaning the pad often and using a cleaner wax. Next time in this situation, I'll shoot straight for the compound. I may have also been at times running the polisher on the edge of the pad. It should be flat when possible right?
Anyway.. we are using all the info you all have helped with. We have a full page ad getting ready to come out here September 1st. It's being distributed to all vacationers at a local RV resort, the local zoo, sports complexes (we have an NFL team here) and others. We hit the Harley dealerships and are researching that as well. It will also help as a vein to get boat and RV business. As well as bikes obviously. Pretty nervous actually. But in a good way. I have to thank you all again for your help and I seriously take all your advice with me throughout our prospecting and jobs.

Have a great week!!!

Rob- Route 66 Mobile Detail
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Old 08-31-2015, 04:23 PM   #5
Mike Phillips
 
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Default Re: First Boat Detail

Quote:
Originally Posted by route66detail View Post

Thank you for your help! The biggest problem I had was not cleaning the pad often and using a cleaner wax. Next time in this situation, I'll shoot straight for the compound. I may have also been at times running the polisher on the edge of the pad. It should be flat when possible right?
When possible. Sometimes it's flat out easier to control and buff on edge.

Also, if the pad is dirty, has caked on residue it's going to want to walk all over the place and even feel like it wants to hop around when buffing.

Clean the pad and then be sure to use an ample amount of product as a quality compound, polish or even cleaner/wax provides some type of lubrication in the formula to help the pad abrade smoothly over the surface, not get all grabby.

Dry pads buff better than wet pads too. So have a few extra pads as it's faster to buff out a boat by switching to a clean dry pad and it's a lot less tiresome on you.

Another technique you want to use I show in all my classes and in my new upcoming boat detailing book is how to hold a rotary buffer.

Hold it close to your chest and rock your body back and forth to buff a section as you can tighten up all your upper body muscle to gain leverage over the tool.

Don't extend your arms away from your body and buff as the tool will then have leverage over you.

(There are pictures in the book showing the above)



Quote:
Originally Posted by route66detail View Post

Anyway.. we are using all the info you all have helped with. We have a full page ad getting ready to come out here September 1st. It's being distributed to all vacationers at a local RV resort, the local zoo, sports complexes (we have an NFL team here) and others.

We hit the Harley dealerships and are researching that as well. It will also help as a vein to get boat and RV business. As well as bikes obviously.

Pretty nervous actually. But in a good way.

I have to thank you all again for your help and I seriously take all your advice with me throughout our prospecting and jobs.

Have a great week!!!

Rob- Route 66 Mobile Detail

You're already doing great and I see great success for you moving into the future.


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Old 09-10-2015, 11:37 AM   #6
route66detail
 
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Default Re: First Boat Detail

Mike,

Thank you so much for your help. I will use your advice to help me progress. I look forward to getting your new book. Out in book stores, amazon?

Thank you sincerely what you said. Coming from you, that gave me goosebumps and more confidence. Im pretty stoked. We secured permission to do the detailing of a local aircraft maintenance company here where there are over 900 employees, We will most
likely choose a day to be there weekly. That'll be more of a production detail. Make the vehicles look good, smell good... no polishing. Also got a few Harleys lined up.

Thanks for all your help. From you and everyone that gives input, My success so far is greatly as a result of my being on this and AGO.

Have a great weekend!

Rob
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