Mike Phillips BIG 3-day detailing classes

Pictures & Comments - 2022 April 3-Day Detailing Class with 3D and Mike Phillips

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Pictures & Comments - 2022 April 3-Day Detailing Class with 3D and Mike Phillips


No chairs - 100% hands-on!

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Another amazing class with stellar people and incredible cars and boats!

At the end of the class on Sunday we held the Certificate Awards Ceremony for everyone that attended this 3-day class. Here's the class of April 2022!


Vicky DeRosa
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Shawn DeRosa
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Ashley Rule
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Dan Beadle
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Kyle Stocker
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Jose Valencia Arias
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Steel Robles
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DeQuan Wilson
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Corey Richland
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Manny Nuno
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Royce Brooker
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Zachary Benezra
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Josh Underwood
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Russell Stendor
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:)
 
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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Friday - Day 1

First thing in the morning we went over EXTREME Prep Wash Techniques. I use the word extreme because at these classes we cover a LOT of different techniques and tools for getting neglected cars surgically clean and ready for paint correction. We also go over these topics,

  1. How to do TOPICAL Glass Polishing
  2. How to carefully wash a canvas cloth top
  3. How to carefully wash a vinyl top.
  4. How to do a Wet Wash Engine Detail
  5. How to remove brake dust using 3D BDX
  6. How to machine scrub tires using 3D Yellow Degreaser and Orange Degreaser
  7. How to use the 3D Foam Blaster with a Pressure Washer
  8. How to use the 3D Clay Towel to mechanically decontaminate paint and glass
  9. How to use the Metro-vac Blaster Sidekick as a crucial part of a wet wash engine detail



Sharing information about the different degreasers in the 3D line.

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Here's Russell blowing out all the debris before we start with the Wet Wash Engine Detail.

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Always clean the underneath of the hood first.

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Nano Pail Super Duty Degreaser
This is the Nano Pail Super Duty Degreaser diluted at 1 pump of concentrate to a 32 ounce bottle and then filled with water.

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After rinsing the underneath of the hood we tackle the engine and engine compartment.

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Russel blowing out rinse water starting at the top and working down...

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Topical Glass Polishing

After the engine compartment we went over topical glass polishing - for this we're using the 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound with foam cutting pads on FLEX gear-driven orbital polishers.

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Mechanical Decontamination during the Washing Step

After addressing the canvas and vinyl tops we foamed the cars, washed and thoroughly rinsed. After rinsing we re-foamed and used the Nano Clay Towels to mechanically decontaminate the paint.

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Here's Jose using the 3D Detailing Clay Towel

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Corey gives the BMW a final rinse...

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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....

After washing the 2001 BMW M3 and the 1967 Ford Fairlane Convertible, we moved inside to start the class session on paint correction and ceramic coatings.


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Multiple Step Paint Correction & Ceramic Coating
The first two cars this class trained on were a 1968 Camaro SS 396 4-speed Convertible and a high-end build 1933 Ford 3-Window Coupe. Both of these cars had horrendous swirls, scratches and holograms before the class used 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound and 520 Finishing Polish to correct the defects. After the paint correction steps, both cars were carefully prepped for a ceramic coating using 3D WIPE and then the class installed the 3D Ceramic Coating.



The Baggie Test
After using 3D Waterless Wash to clean the 1968 Camaro and the 1933 Ford Coupe, next we went over the Baggie Test and how it tells us the level of contamination on the cars. I also share how to use the Baggie Test to market your detailing business with new and potential customers.

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Contaminated Paint
My own personal rule for professional quality detailing is if I have to mechanically decontaminated the paint this means I've already factored in to the detail job that I'm going to do at least ONE machine paint correction step. The reason why is because mechanical decontamination will tend to mar the paint. Thus a machine polishing step will remove the marring caused by the mechanical decontamination step. Of course, these two cars are here for MAJOR paint correction so we're already planning on 2 machine paint correction step.

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3D Detailing Clay Towel

Next up I demonstrate the correct technique to use the 3D Detailing Clay Towel and turn the class loose on the first two training cars for Friday.


Here's Vicky (in the front), and Ashley (in the back), mechanically decontaminating the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe.

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Here's Manny and Zachary also working on the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe

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Zachary is working on the front engine panel.

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That's Kyle in the background mechanically decontaminating the 1968 Camaro

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Here's Steel mechanically decontaminating the driver's side rear quarter panel of the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe.

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Not only do you learn a lot but you also have a lot of fun meeting other people passionate about the art and craft of detailing and make new lifetime friends.

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Test Spot
Next up, the class will learn all about the how and why of doing a Test Spot. I'm the guy that coined the term Test Spot for the detailing industry. The unwashed masses don't know this and probably think the term just appeared out of nowhere but that's not the case. The oldest instance of where the words TEST SPOT are recorded and documented is in my first how to book published in 1988.

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Large, flat horizontal panel
The larger, horizontal panels always work best for your initial Test Spot and for these two cars we're going to use the trunk lid on the Camaro and the back of the 1933 Ford.

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Video Recording
I always encourage everyone to use their phone to take notes with the video option of their phone's camera. This way they can re-watch what they learned when they return home. From what I've seen, other classes simply say NO VIDEO.


Me demonstrating a proper Test Spot on the 1933 Ford.

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Step 1 Compounding
Time to get busy! After dialing in the multiple-step paint correction process on both cars I turn the students loose. As they students are doing this first heavy paint correction step I walk around and monitor everyone and if needed make adjustments to technique.


Here's Q, (in the background), and Shawn, (in the front), compounding the Camaro with the 3D 510 and FLEX 8mm gear-driven BEASTS!

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Vicky is using the original BEAST with a 3D dark purple foam cutting pad and the 510 Premium Rubbing Compound

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Manny using the BEAST on the 1933 Ford

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Here's Corey using the original FLEX BEAST on the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe being very careful to NOT buff on the custom hand-lettered pin stripping.

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Here's Dan aka The Detail Doctor using the original FLEX BEAST to carefully work the molded-in radiused body line.

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Here's Jose working the BEAST on the very cool Camaro!

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Here's Kyle working the BEAST!

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Here's Corey compounding the 1933 Ford...

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Using the FLEX PXE-80 aka the PiXiE to do the paint correction around the custom pin stripping on the front of the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe.

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Here's Zachary working the BEAST on the hood of the Camaro.

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Here's Vicky showing the BEAST who's the BOSS!

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Teamwork!

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Step-2 Polishing
After the compounding process the class switches to the softer, light purple 3D foam polishing Spyder Pads with 3D 520 Finishing Polish

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Plastic Window Polishing
I cover a LOT of topics in my classes, more than any other class you can find. Here's an example of showing the class how to remove SCRATCHES in flexible plastic windows like on this 1968 Camaro Convertible.

Here's a few before shots to show all the swirls and scratches in the plastic window

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Kyle starts out using the 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound with a dark purple 3D Spyder Cut Foam Cutting Pad on the FLEX BEAST to remove the deep swirls and scratches.

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Zachary joins in the fun....

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Everyone takes a turn...

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3D SPEED for flexible plastic
After the heavy correction step we switch over to foam polishing pads and 3D SPEED.

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The inside needed polishing too - Corey took the challenge to contort himself into a pretzel to get the job done!

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That's Yancy's arm wiping the inside of the plastic window.

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Thanks for doing the hard part Yancy!

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Check out the plastic window now!

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How to install a Ceramic Coating
After the polishing step the class then chemically stripped the paint and all hard, smooth surfaces using 3D WIPE followed by installing the 3D Ceramic Coating.

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BOOM!

Check out these results!

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Shawn's pretty happy[y about the results and he should be - both cars look freaking amazing!

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The class also cleaned and conditioned the vinyl top using 3D LVP Conditioner

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A few more pictures of the back window - it was pretty hacked-up before the class.

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Here's the back of the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe - simply stunning work by this class and NO HARM came to the custom pin stripping!

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And here's the team that made the magic happen!

Shout out to Chris Metcalf pictured below at the left. Thank you Chris for being a part of Detailing History!

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:)
 
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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


One-Step Paint Correction & Ceramic Coatings

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After going over Multiple Step Paint Correction & Ceramic Coatings with the above 1968 Camaro and the 1933 Ford 3-window Coupe, next up was learning One-Step Paint Correction & Ceramic Coatings. For learning One-Step Paint Correction I brought in two Corvettes, a 2020 C8 Corvette and a 2003 50th Anniversary ZO6 Corvette.


Paint Condition

2020 C8 Corvette
No before shots, nothing really a camera can capture. This is a low mileage, garage-kept car and it's in excellent shape. That said, it has RIDS here and there and it FAILED the Baggie Test.

2003 Corvette
This too is a low mileage Corvette for its age and while the paint was in good shape overall, the paint was cloudy looking. Out of the 7 cars this class detailed on Friday and Saturday, this 2003 Corvette had the most extreme change in before and after.

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In full overhead sun, it's easy to see while there's not much for actual swirls and scratches - the paint is mottled looking? I'm confident machine paint correction will restore this back to a better-than-new condition finish.

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PROCESS

  1. Clean both cars with 3D Waterless Wash
  2. Mechanically decontaminate paint using 3D Waterless Wash and 3D Nano Towel
  3. One-Step Paint Correction using 3D ONE with 3D foam polishing pads on FLEX BEAST tools
  4. Prep paint using 3D WIPE
  5. Install one layer of 3D Ceramic Coating


Now watch the transformation....

Using 3D Waterless Wash with a 3D Nano Towel to mechanically decontaminate paint

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Machine paint correction using 3D ONE with FLEX BEAST tools and 3D foam polishing pads

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Question: What's missing in these pictures compared to all other classes?

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ANSWER: No chairs.


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Topical Glass Polishing

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More Topical Glass Polishing

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Using 3D WIPE to prep the paint for the 3D Ceramic Coating

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Installing 3D Ceramic Touch

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The final wipe...

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BOOM!

LOOK AT THE TRANSFORMATION FOR THIS 2003 CORVETTE COMPARED TO THE BEFORE PICTURE POSTED ABOVE!

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And here's the team that made the magic happen!

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Awesome results and amazing work everyone!


:)
 
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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


High Quality Production Detailing

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I don't know what other people call they kind of detailing where you keep it simple and use a one-step cleaner/wax also called an AIO but I've always called, it, High Quality Production Detailing. I only turn out high quality work and that's what I teach in my classes. Because we're not doing multiple-step paint correction and because this is kind of geared towards high volume production shops, I call it Production Detailing. But the way I do it and the way I teach it you get the same type of results as I teach in multiple-step or Show Car Detailing - you just don't spend as much time on the detailing project.

For this class session on production detailing I brought in two convertibles, one with a canvas cloth top and the other with a vinyl top. This way I can teach the correct and proper way to deal with cloth and vinyl tops plus teach production detailing.

Training Cars

2001 BMW M3 Convertible
Overall this car is in great shape for it's age. It was heavily contaminated but we took care of the mechanical decontamination during the washing step shared above. For this car, using 3D SPEED will bring the paint back to life in ONE STEP.


1967 Ford Fairlane
This car has DA Sanding Marks throughout the finish plus holograms from the crappy sanding and buffing job. It also was contaminated and had the normal swirls and scratches. To do this car right we're going to need to use the FLEX Rotary Polishers with heavy cutting wool pads and 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound. We followed the rotary work and did the rest of the entire car with 3D 505 Correction Glaze as the condition of the paint is going to need some extra cut to finish out proper.

In this first shot I'm simply explaining to everyone what I wrote above about the two cars.

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3D LVP Conditioner
We used the 3D LVP Cleaner to clean the vinyl top - now the class is using 3D LVP Conditioner to condition and protect the vinyl top.


Here's Royce working the LVP Conditioner into the vinyl below the back window - a place that is often neglected.

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On the passenger side you see Zachary and Kyle also applying the LVP Conditioner to the top.

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Here's Josh helping out with the vinyl top.

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The way of the rotary polisher

I always tell people,

If you're going to take a class on how to use a rotary polisher it's a good idea to take the class from someone that's actually used one

Yeah... that guy is me. I still own my original Makita Rotary Polisher purchased in 1987. It's completely worn out from buffing out thousands of cars. The 1967 Ford Fairlaine had LOTS of D.A. Sanding Marks through the finish. While they could be removed with an orbital - it was going to be faster and more effective to cut with a rotary polisher. The class learns how to use a rotary when we cover over the 3D Dry Sanding System and also when we buff out our sanding marks after machine sanding boats. This was a bonus.


This is Jose... he actually has body shop experience but told me personally - I loved the class! Here's Jose using the CORDLESS FLEX PE14 for the first time. Like everyone else - he loved this tool.

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I took responsibility for removing the sanding marks that were right next to the raised body line edge at the front of the hood. This way is something goes wrong - it's all me. If something goes right though... it's all me.

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Here's a quote of mine,

If you spend enough time behind any tool you can make it dance on paint -Mike Phillips

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Yancy is such a great photographer....

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Here's Russel working the BEAST!

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Here's Q working the CBEAST!

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Here's Vicky showing the guys how it's done with the original BEAST!

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The FLEX BEAST - All brawl and ZERO STALL!

Just ONE of the reasons I like the 8mm gear-driven FLEX BEAST polishers is because there is simply ZERO PAD STALLING - which means ZERO WASTED TIME.


Here's Ashley also showing all the guys how it's done with the original BEAST!
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Edge Work with the FLEX BEAST
Because the BEAST is gear-driven you do things like Ashley is doing - that is - put this tool up on edge and NEVER lose pad rotation. She has basically turned a 6.5" pad into a 2" pad to do Edge Work next to the edge.

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Here's Corey using the CBEAST for some surgical paint correction.

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Loving the new shop! LOTS of POWER! LOTS of ROOM!

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Teamwork wins every time!

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Here's James showing the BEAST who's the BOSS!

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Here's Zachary working with the Supa BEAST!

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Here's Manny learning how to use the 10 at 10 Technique to pick up a strip of compound without slinging it all over the car, himself or the walls!

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Now work it Manny!

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I think you got em all Manny!

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Jose and the original FLEX BEAST!

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If you look to the right side of the below picture you can see we've marked an area with DA Sanding Marks in the paint.

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Edging with a 6.5" foam cutting pad and ZERO PAD STALLING!

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Here's Zachary edging with the Supa BEAST!

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Dressing the engine
The engine and engine compartment was cleaned during the Extreme Prep Wash session early Friday morning. To add the finishing touches we applied 3D LVP Conditioner to all the plastic, vinyl and rubber surfaces.

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Looking great for a car that is 21 years old and my guess this is the first time the engine and engine compartment have been cleaned and detailed since this car rolled off the assembly line.

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3D Bead it Up as a Topper
After all the machine paint correction was performed to the Ford Fairlane and the BMW M3 using 3D SPEED and 3D 505 Correction Glaze, both cars were topped using 3D Bead it Up. The paint was protected and slick after using the 3D SPEED and 505 but 3D Bead it Up is a great topper for both products and also a great way for the owners to take care of the results moving forward.

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BOOM!
Here's the final results!

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And here's the team that made the magic happen!

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Top notch work everyone!


:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...

Sub-Surface Glass Polishing

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There are two types of glass polishing,

Topical Glass Polishing
You saw pictures of the class doing this during the Extreme Prep Wash session on Friday morning and also during the class on Friday. Topical glass polishing removes road film, water spots, drizzle stains and other contamination off the SURFACE of the glass.

Sub-Surface Glass Polishing
This type of glass polishing removes shallow wiper marks, swirls and scratches that are IN the glass. For this the glass will be using a brand new product in the 3D line-up, 3D Glass Polish.


Glass Polishing Training Car - Classic 1973 MGB GT

It's common for older cars like this classic MGB to have wiper marks, swirls and scratches in the glass.

You can't see them in the below picture but allow me to move in for a closer view.

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See them? These are wiper marks or wiper scratches.

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Driver's Side
There's actually as deeper wiper mark where it looks like the wipe blade came off the wiper arm and the METAL attachment for the blade dragged across the glass. The below picture is for context.

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In the below picture I've zoomed in a little and now you can see the deeper, wiper scratch.

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Here's a close-up shot.

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NEW! - 3D Glass Polish
Here's our new cerium oxide based glass polish. This glass polish works faster and better than other options on the market. Glass polishing is a slow process because glass is HARD and thus abrades and levels slowly during the polishing process

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Note how we've covered the entire car except the windshield with a 1mil plastic drop cloth. Glass polishing is mess so I teach (and practice), covering up the rest of the car so after the glass polishing, (when you're tired), you don't have to come back and detail the car.

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High Speed Rotary Polisher
You can use any rotary or any orbital but defects are removed best at higher speeds using a rotary polisher.

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Chemical/Mechanical Process
Polishing glass to remove defect that are IN the glass using Cerium Oxide is a chemical/mechanical process. Scientist don't understand exactly how Cerium Oxide, (which is creamy to the feel, not gritty), works to abrade glass but they do know that a part of the process is the addition of water to the process working with a spinning Rayon Glass Polishing pad. Somehow the water interacts with the glass at the MOLECULAR LEVEL enabling and assisting the Cerium Oxide to move the glass.

Here you can see Josh misting some plain, ordinary tap water onto the glass as I run the rotary over the glass.

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Hands-on Training - Sub-Surface Glass Polishing
After demonstrating the correct technique to use a FLEX Rotary Polisher to work the 3D Glass Polish over the glass, the class takes turns cycling through to get real-world, hands-on time polishing glass.


Here's where I left off, I didn't remove much of the wiper marks because it takes TIME and this is something the class needs to experience. My job is to show the technique and explain what's happening and why it's happening at the surface level of the glass.

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See? My few minutes of polishing had little effect. Glass polishing takes time.

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James is first to try his hand at machine polishing glass....

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And after about 20 minutes of solid machine polishing - you can see he's getting somewhere! Our polish is the best I've ever used and also the easiest to wipe off with no staining. The key to remember is glass polishing takes time and it's messy.

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Next up Manny and Kyle take turns. Look at the splatter on the glass and also on the plastic drop cloth covering up the car. Without the drop cloth we would have a huge mess to clean up.

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Technique Tip
To cover and protect the wiper blades and wiper arms, (so you don't have to go over them with a toothbrush later to remove all the splatter dots), I simply cover them with socks.


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See the splatter all over not just the glass but on the plastic on the hood. If the plastic wasn't in place you would have to wipe down or wash the entire car.

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BOOM!
Dang near 99.9% of the wiper marks, swirls and scratches have been removed.

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Safety Concern
Wiper marks, swirls and scratches in the windshield create haze while driving when the sun is low in the sky, (early morning late afternoon). so machine polishing to remove these defects makes for safe driving.


What about replacing the glass?

Great question. On a modern car this is simple and cost effective. On classics, the problem with removing the glass is you'll tend to uncover rust in the surrounding metal. This turns a simple windshield replacement into a 3-year, body-off-frame, rotisserie restoration project that some people would simply prefer not to get into. So glass polishing is a great option for classic cars or cars where replacement glass is not available.


Nice work everyone I know the owner will love seeing CLEARLY through the windshield.


:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....

The 3D Dry Sanding System

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Going over the 3D Brushless 5mm DA Sander and how to operate it while sanding.

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The secret to the 3D Sanding System starts with the 3D Interface pad.
Note in my classes you are not only allowed to take video notes you are ENCOURAGED to take video notes. Most other classes will NOT let you do this with the reason the information is proprietary. Me? I cover TOO MUCH INFO for a person to remember and I know having video notes to look back to will help the people in our classes to be SUCCESSFUL. Choose which class you pay for $$$$ carefully. I also show the cars and boats you'll be training on BEFORE you pay for the class and then show pictures of what you actually get to do AFTER the class. No one else in our industry does this. Again - do your own research before you $$$ pay for any class. And if you are the type of person that learns better by doing versus sitting in a chair watching a Power Point Presentation then by all means, take my class. You will love it! That is if you prefer to learn while sitting in a chair. LOL.

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Demonstrating machine sanding technique...

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NO DEMO HOODS in my classes. You train on the REAL DEAL!

Enough with the demonstration - it's time to learn how to machine dry sand on some other guy's Streetrod -

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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


The way of the rotary polisher....

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I've been using rotary polishers since the 1970s and what I tell people is if you're going to take a class to learn how to use a rotary polisher - try to take a class from someone that has actually used one. Pictures above is my first rotary buffer. I still have this today, it's on display in my office. This is a Makita 9207 SPC Variable Speed Rotary Polisher. I purchased this in 1988 brand new in the box. This was the first variable speed rotary polisher on the market. I used this polisher until the gears were completely worn out. The head of the polisher was made using the Sand Casting technique for aluminum manufacturing. There are places on the head of this polisher where I wore the sand textured aluminum smooth like chrome. There were RIBS on the handle and I wore these down until they disappeared. There's a saying that goes like this,

It ain't bragging if you can back it up

I know how to use a rotary polisher and I can teach you how to use one too. As you see the pictures of my class using the FLEX PE14 and the FLEX cordless PE14 - pay attention to how they hold and use the tool like it's a scalpel in the hands of a surgeon. And for most of these people - this is the first time they've used a rotary polisher.



Using the FLEX Rotary Polishers to remove sanding marks

Here's Zachary - this is the first time he's used a rotary and he already looks like a pro and he's a cool as a cucumber as he removes sanding marks with the pad on edge on some other guy's freshly painted streetrod!

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Here's Julio - he has a long background working as a painter and a bodyman in the collision industry and I take it as a genuine compliment that he took this class. He's a pro for sure.

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Here's Josh, he is already a successful detailer but at the same time he knows there's always new information, techniques, tools and products to learn to stay at the top of his game and the top in this industry.

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Here's Manny - he too is a seasoned detailer and he's showing the FLEX Cordless PE14 who's the BOSS!

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Here's Kyle - making it look like child's play to run the rotary and remove 100% of the sanding marks - no problems....

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Here's Steel making quick work of removing the DA sanding marks on the side of the 1955 Chevy Panel Truck Streetrod!

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Here's Manny working around the panel...

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Here's Royce removing sanding marks as a part of the sanding process to maximize the D.O.I.

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3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound is a FAST cutting compound for hard clearcoats but it works FAST on any paint - hard or soft.

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Here's Corey - Corey is new to detailing and I'm genuinely honored he chose this class to attend to start his new career!

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Working that rotary like a BOSS Corey!

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Here's Shawn using the FLEX PE14 on fresh car paint like a Surgeon uses a scalpel to do surgery. Nice work Shawn!

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:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


The Polishing Step

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After cutting out all the sanding marks the class switches over to their choice of BEAST tools and their choice of 3D SPEED or 3D 505 Correction Glaze to remove the holograms left by the wool pad, polish the paint to a super high gloss and leave the paint protected with body shop safe and fresh paint safe 3D Montan Wax.

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Looking great Zachary! Look at the gloss he's creating!

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Josh and Corey tackling the back of the panel truck.

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Here's Ashley polishing the drivers side panel....

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One of the most rewarding things about our classes are the friendships you forge working together as a team to reach the goal.

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Kyle creating a deep wet shine!

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Here's DeQuan or as his friends call him - "Q". After working with Q for 3 days one thing that stands out about him is his passion to learn via working hard and working hands-on.

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Julio and Vidky working on the passenger side fender...

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3D 505 Correction Glaze
The 2 most popular, effective and top performing AIOs on the market today are the 3D 505 and the 3D SPEED - if you're reading this and you've never used either of these product before you're 100% missing out on pro-quality abrasive technology.

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Here's Vicky doing some final wiping as we finish out this incredible dry sanding project in a single day.

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Talk about a go-getter! This gal can out-work most guys I know!

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BOOM!

Here's the final results! Show car perfection!

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And here's the team that made the magic happen!

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Freaking Amazing Work Everyone!

For those reading this into the future, the majority of the people in this class had NEVER sanded paint before nor used a rotary polisher with a wool pad and a compound before. A few had never used any type of polisher before this class. When you consider this after looking at all the steps they performed from start to finish and ZERO MISTAKES - this is impressive.

Nice work everyone. I know the owner will flip out when he sees the results.



:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


Sunday - Day 3


Extreme Boat Detailing - Gelcoat Correction and Ceramic Coating

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This class has being going hard for 2-full days and while I know they're tired - they show up early excited and ready to learn Extreme Boat Detailing!



Beautiful BIG BOATS!
Now this is the size of boat you want to work on when you take a boat detailing class. The sides of the hull TALL and WIDE! You'll be able to do all the gelcoat correction and coating without having to hunch over or stress your back, legs and shoulders. There's a reason for the last 11 years I always bring in great training boats. It's for your benefit. We want you to learn a lot but also have a great experience and this includes a great physical experience. You don't get this with small, tiny boats.

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Our Training Academy is 100' deep and fully air-conditioned and more important - Fully POWERED for power tools.

We can get 2 more boats this size in here if we want.

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BEFORE CONDITION

First - here's how this 26' Regulator looked BEFORE the class.

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This boat has medium oxidation and holograms throughout the gelcoat.

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Dock Rash or dock scratches from the boat moving up and down against a dock.

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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


Removing old vinyl graphics
For all my boat classes, the first thing I do is discuss removing old boat registration lettering and branding or personalized graphics

Boat Registration Letters
Most boat owners are completely good with removing old registration letters because they are inexpensive to replace and the owners are smart enough to know it will be better for them and the boat if we don't have to try to sand and buff around the lettering.

Branding and personalized graphics
When it comes to removing large graphic usually on the sides of the hull, some owners are good with removing the old graphics and some owners want to leave them intact. I fully explain how leaving old, dried-out and brittle graphics will be difficult to sand and buff around but at the end of the day - it's the owners call.

Ghosting
When you remove graphics that have been on the side of a boat hull for any length of time, there's always ghosting left behind. Ghosting is the outline or impression left in the gelcoat that mimics the shape and size of the graphic.s

I've NEVER seen ghosting removed 100% and it's important to educate the boat owner of this reality if they choose to let us remove the graphics. You can lessen their appearance via sanding and buffing but I've personally never seen ghosting removed 100%.

For this boat, the owner has given us permission to remove the boat registration lettering and the graphics.

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Heat Gun
To remove the lettering and the graphics we use a heat gun to heat the graphics and the adhesive until hot and the pull and remove the graphics as best as possible. When graphics are really old they tend to break so then we heat up the graphics and use plastic razor blades and plastic scrapers to remove them. For any residual adhesive left over we use the 3D Gum & Tar Remover.

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Sanding Options
Before we get going on the sanding, I go over all the various ways a person can sand down deep oxidation on gelcoat including hand sanding and machine sanding.

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Test Spot
It's VITALLY IMPORTANT to always do a Test Spot and dial-in the process for removing the deep oxidation, dock rash, swirls and scratches before attempting to work on the entire boat. For this 26' Regulator, I did the Test Spot and in doing this also demonstrated all the techniques for all the steps the class would do to the rest of the boat. A boat Test Spot is much like a test spot we do on our cars.

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Waterless Wash
After the Test Spot, I have the class wipe down the boat using 3D Waterless Wash to ensure there isn't any loose contamination on the surface before taping off and sanding.

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Taping-Off
We're not removing the Boot Stripe so the class tapes this off to protect it from damage during the sanding process. We also tape-off any polished metal britework components to protect them too.

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Machine Sanding with FLEX 8mm Gear-Driven Orbital Polishers
Before turning the class loose, I demonstrate the difference between using any brand of FREE SPINNING random orbital polisher as a sander and then demonstrate using the FLEX gear-driven orbital polishers as sanders.

It's easy for everyone to see that gear-driven tools are the ONLY way to go. Free spinning tools for sanding are great for car paint but increase the amount of time to do the job due to pad stalling and wear you out via BRAIN DRAIN - as you must constantly watch the sanding disc to see if it is in fact rotating or wasting your time.

After demonstrating the difference I turn the class loose and let them choose out of the three FLEX BEAST tools which tool they want to use or if they like - use all three different tools. These include,

  1. The FLEX BEAST
  2. The FLEX Supa BEAST
  3. The FLEX CBEAST

Then the class gets busy sanding down the gelcoat to remove deep oxidation, dock rash, swrils, scratches and holograms from the last time this boat was buffed.

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Thanks Josh for getting the transom...

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:)
 
Last edited:

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....



Machine Compounding to remove Sanding Marks
After thoroughly sanding down the gelcoat, next up we switch over to the FLEX CORDLESS PE14 rotary polishers and also the corded PE14 rotary polishers using 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound and a 8" 4-ply twisted 100% wool pad I had Lake Country make to our specifications for our marine line and body shop line.

3D Marine Compound
3D is introducing a fast cutting marine compound but at the time of this class this new compound has not gone into production. No worries - our 510 Premium Rubbing Compound is formulated to cut hard clearcoats FAST and it works just as great on hard gelcoats. After the compounding step will use the 3D 520 Finishing Polish to polish the gelcoat to a mirror shine.

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Correct Rotary Technique for angled vertical hulls
I see a lot of experts telling people how to use a rotary buffer and we always need more experts. I usually don't agree with the experts so I show my classes the correct way to use a rotary buffer to get the job done FAST without wearing yourself out needlessly. How's that saying go? Work smarter - not harder.

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Time to get busy!

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I politely corrected Josh's technique

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In my classes - the exceptions are 100% sanding mark removal.

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I politely corrected Jose's technique.

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Looking good Manny!

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Here at 3D we use the SCANGRIP brand for inspection.

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The Camera Man!
Below you can see Yancy doing what he does best and that's photography and video capture.

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The Finger Painting Technique
In the picture below, Vicky is using the Finger Painting Technique to put compound up under the rub rail so she can buff out her sanding marks in this area.

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Nice....

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Perfect technique Vicky!

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It's always rewarding to see the passion the people that attend these classes have for doing pro-grade work.

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Royce has years of experience buffing out boat and is a master with the rotary polisher. Below he shares some tips with Zachary.

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Then Royce shows how it's done.

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Like a BOSS!

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Perfect technique Q

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:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


The Polishing Step

After all the sanding marks have been removed it's time to switch back over to the FLEX family of BEAST tools. At this stage I let the students pick any gear-driven FLEX polisher they want to re-visit or spend more time with or heck, use all three. The important thing now is to remove all the holograms left by the wool pad and the rotary polisher and maximize gloss, clarity and most important - get the gelcoat as smooth as possible.


3D Dark Purple Foam Spyder Cutting Pad
Our test spot showed us THIS gelcoat like a sharp foam cutting pad for polishing versus a softer foam polishing pad. The class used the 3D 520 Finishing Polish to finish out the buffing process.

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Vicky showing all the big strong guys how to get the job done using the original FLEX BEAST!

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Zachary making gelcoat look beautiful again!

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Nice mirror reflection there Manny!

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Teamwork!

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Nice work Steel!

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Josh and Royce doing the hard part - the transom. Thanks guys!

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The FLEX FS 140 Set - Flexible Shaft for the PXE-80 - aka the FLEX Shafty
I'd like to say thank you to Chris Metcalf and FLEX Power Tools for providing us with this little gem. One of the most difficult things to do is remove oxidation from gelcoat that surrounds the boat manufacturers lettering. This is especially true for these three dimensional rubber letters. If you buff on them you'll mar and dull them. With the Flexy Shaft you can easily buff in-between the letters to complete the work and the final results.

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After demonstrating technique - it's time for Jose to take over.

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Now to the other side...

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Just about done...

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Dan aka the Detail Doctor and Shawn, an alumni student of mine, tackle the engines with 3D 505 Correction Glaze.

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Beautiful guys!

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:)
 
Last edited:

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


Installing the 3D Ceramic Coating

After all the polishing work was completed, next up the class prepped the gelcoat using 3D WIPE and then applied 3 layers of the 3D Ceramic Coating waiting 30 minutes in-between each layer.


Here's Vicky applying the coating to a coating saver applicator pad.

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Looks like a brand new boat!

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I'll guarantee you this transom never looked this good from the factory. Looks like a blue mirror.

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1933 Ford 3-window Coupe - Training Car
The 33 Ford makes a nice backdrop to the boat detailing class. This was one of the cars used for multiple step paint correction and ceramic coating and it too looks like a MILLION BUCKS!

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Finishing the 3 layer...

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Looking great!

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:)
 
Last edited:

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Here's the final results!

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See the ghosting? Everyone thought the darker ghosting looks better than the graphics.

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Oh so nice...

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Engines look right and tight...

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Let's bring the 33 Ford around to the side for a reflection shot....

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Check out these freaking incredible results!

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Incredible results!

And this was the first time for most of the people in this class to take on this kind of extreme boat detailing and she came out perfect!


Nice work everyone!


:)
 
Last edited:

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...

Just to note...

No other class and no other company shares MORE pictures showing what their class is actually like. No one.

Before you plunk down your hard-earned cash only to find out you're going to sit in a chair for hours - do your research and then get signed-up for our next class.

Mike Phillips 3 Day Detailing Class - September 30 - October 2, 2022


If you learn best by doing - not sitting in a chair staring at the wall, (looking at a power point presentation), while some person drones-on-and-on-and-on... you're going to love our approach to teaching and training.



:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Here's some reviews from people that have taken these classes....



Verified Reviews from people that have taken these classes.


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:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
More...

I just did a count of how many pictures are shared from this class and it's 501 pictures!


If you look around on the Internet for ANY other class.

1: First -
No one else ever shows you what you'll be working on BEFORE the class. (I always do)

2: Second - Try to find pictures of an actual class? About all you can find is one or two (maybe), and it's usually the students standing around the instructor watching the instructor working on a demo hood.


Do your research before you sign-up for a class. If you want to sit in a chair and stare at the wall go for it. But if you learn best by working with your hands and you love to detail actual cars and boats... then sign-up for our class. There's not other class on planet Earth that offers so much bang for your hard earned money. The PROOF - is in the pictures. (and the reviews).


Here's link to course outline for next and last BIG 3-day class here in sunny, Stuart Florida!

September BIG 3-day Detailing Class with 3D and Mike Phillips Paint Correction Ceramic Coatings Dry Sanding Rotary Polishers Boat Detailing


No Chairs - 100% Hands-On Detailing Classes
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Do you see any chairs?


If you learn best by sitting in a chair looking at a power point presentation while someone drones on and on and on.... then please sign-up for any other class.

If you learn best by DOING - then clear your schedule and get signed up for this next and last class for 2022!





:)
 
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