Ceramic coat seems ineffective, didn't apply it well enough?
By - RuthlessRampage
Dust and dirt on the surface prevent water from beading as nicely. You can really only judge the coating when the dirt is rinsed off.
What brand did you use?
how long did you let the ceramic coating set before exposing to elements (water/sun/heat)? typically you want to apply to an immaculate surface and then let the coating bond fully for 12-24hrs. prep is super important but seems you have that covered. what was your isopropyl/water solution?
with anything practice makes perfect. good luck
It was around 12 hours before it started to rain, however 2 hours after finishing I drove the car to drive home (this was at night so not exposed to the sun). Isopropyl mix to water was around 50/50.
Would it be possible to add another coat to the current coat, or would I need to polish the current coat off and restart?
yes you can add another coat just make sure to prep surface first then let it sit in a clean garage over night
With prepping the surface again, could I just to a wash, decontamination, and wipe with isopropyl. Or do I have to start from scratch again, including the clay bar and polishing?
the clay is for removing surface debris and contaminants so I guess it depends on what your car has been exposed to since the initial claying occurred. your steps ^ is what I would do if the car say, sat in a garage for day before i got to the ceramic application.
to test run a gloved finger very gently over the paint surface in multiple places to see if you can feel grit on the surface. if it feels smooth then do the prep steps you mentioned. if it feels like there are contaminants unfortunately you’ll have to clay it again.
the pita about ceramic is the prep, the double whammy is it all has to happen sequentially. most people don’t have the time it takes to do a full wash, strip down, clay, correction/polish, and then proper ceramic coat in one go. it’s a full day commitment. detailers are suckers for punishment. I’ve only done ceramic twice. Once it came out great but it took a whole day. Once it came out shit bc I cut corners. Can’t cut corners with ceramic. Shortcuts get exposed either in the longevity/durability/hydrophobicity, or you can visually tell the paint wasn’t receptive (contaminants still present, swirling from incorrect application technique). I truly understand why good detailers charge an arm and leg. GL though, if you can do a proper ceramic job it means you have pretty much mastered all the other detailing steps before it.
What polish /compound did you use?
Used Meguiar's Ultimate Compound, applied with a a standard polisher/waxer.
That is acceptable although you should do a final polish for a better finish.
Only 2 things I could think of : is the ipa wipe wasn't sufficient to remove polishing residue. Or the cwuartz didn't like the cold weather when applying and it didn't cure.
How much did you apply to the car? And how long did you wait before you started levelling the coating?
Applied 1 coat as my friend had only applied a single layer to his and it worked perfectly. Waited around 3-5 minutes before I leveled out the coat.
Not sure how Cquartz is packaged, Opti-Coat Pro is in a syringe and even on a small car a single application uses about 70% of a 15 cc syringe. If it's less, you aren't applying it thickly enough. Since it's a professional coating, the leveling time is less, it crosslinks real fast. Their consumer coating, Gloss Coat, crosslinks more slowly so you don't need to level it as quickly.
As long as you applied enough product, it should hold up quite a while.
Did you wash the car since then? Give it a good wash, top up once a month or 2 with reload and its gonna be slick for a while.
Did you park the car under a tree? Try going over it will ironx and tarx and then washing it and see if the beading comes back.
I found that honeydew kills the beading of my coatings and tarx brings it back.
I did, was away on vacation in a pretty woody area. With honeydew do you mean the Chemical Guys Soap? As for the decontaminents, you didn't find they damage the coat at all?
No by honey dew I mean aphid crap
Wash your car, wipe it down with a Detailer or something with 0 wax or anything. And then spray it w water and see if it beads. If it does. You good. If it don't, you aren't good