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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
First the somewhat good news:
I have a conditional deposit on a 2006 at my local dealership and I am keeping my heartbeat down to 120/80 until I see:
1) The ECU dump
2) Maintenance records
3) Little maintenance items like door rattle, crank windows etc...

Most importantly, there are quite a few rock chips above the wheel wells and there are also a few little sporadic scratches.
Dealer insists on a two hour shop job if he wants to touch them up well, partially with no guarentees on the results and and wiling to charge me for just one hour...
Pablo Piccasso I am not and I know how to take a brush tip to a dot - But that''s about it.
Up close, they look like salt spray and from 12 feet away, the chips are a lot less visible....

I have these very vague questions and I will still go ahead and ask them nonetheless:
1) Considering I could feel the chips as I run my fingers over them and they are all about 0.5 sq mm each except I could spot some 35 per side, how bad would it look if I touched it up myself?
2)Is it even worth paying the dealer $109 extra for labour?
3) Lastly, between the rock chips and paint scratches, is it a deal breaker for a one owner vehicle with 4500 miles bought originally and traded in again at the same dealership I am buying from?

:confused::huh:I am paying top $$$$$ and I am mildly disappointed by the chips. Vehicle was never purchased with starshield to begin with - It is red with cloth, no options whatsoever!!!:huh::confused:
However, once I get in the cockpit and roll, nothing else seems to matter!
Help, please!
Cheers,
--njexpress
 

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For $100.00 bucks I would let him take care of the chips. Then go out and put starshield on her for longevity. Or if you are paying top dollar tell them to fix the chips and you will buy the car.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
He was very clear he wasn't going to fix the chips and I took a walk - then actually ended up going back...
My questions leave a lot for interpretation and I will only find out how good or bad the touch ups look on the delivery date...
 

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3Xtothe0[]
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I know you already had a thread on this but will say again - depends on how comfortable you are with the deal, nothing is a deal breaker unless you want it to be. I would be more concerned about getting starshield than having the dealer cover the chips, you'll only go out and get more chips. A car with 4500 miles and how many very small chips? It just goes to show you that Starshield should not have been an option. I would get a bottle of Ardent red touch up paint and do it myself or the black protectors (which I actually have for front and back but don't have on since my Starshield is relatively new).
 

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Gamera The Atomic Turtle
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get new starshield installed once it's in your possesion. Mine has earned its keep. And if it's not rattling, it's not an Elige.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Good points all!
I am taking the leap of faith that the dealer is going to do a decent job because, well, I want the elise!
To GLB's point, I am big on Zaino stuff and I am not very concerned about the hand detailing goinf forward.
@Spartacus, I never had the chance to take them
@xoxoxx, yes, I want one! What are black protectors?
@Komi, Is your starshield new?
On teh starshield notw, is it recommended to go with teh dealer? He is quoting $1300 BEFORE INSTALL. Any good aftermarket subs that anyone could recommend?
Cheers!
--njexpress
 

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using touch up paint (the brush in the bottle) should be ok from 5 or so ft away, but you get close it will look like crap... I am going to have my star shield replaced so I went to Mulholland Motorsports (one of the best body shops for lotus in socal) to have quote. Julio said he wouldn't charge me if I want him to do some touch ups on a few rock chips (I have a black car so they stand out :mad: ) because he said it doesn't matter if someone who has been working on car paint their whole life or someone who has never touched it before, the result will look the same. A respray is the only way to properly "fix" it but that can be quite expensive. I guess it comes down to what is acceptable for you. either way, as others have said, get some sort of clear bra on it

good luck with the purchase, these cars are a blast to drive.

AJ
 

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So here is a technique I have used quite successfully, but it will be scary to many.

ONLY ATTEMPT THIS IF YOU HAVE A RANDOM ORBITAL BUFFER!!!

First wash the car VERY well and get as many contaminents off as you can.
Then using your touch up paint, dab the areas that need to be touched up, the smoother you can get it to the original surface the less work you will have in the steps coming up.

Then let it dry, and make sure it drys well, if not, you will remove almost all of the touch up paint you just put on.

Then using 3k sand paper or better, ONLY USE 3K sandpaper or SMOOTHER!!! You gently wet sand the area that you just touched up, and make your "raised" touch up equal to that of the original paint level.

After this wet sanding procedure, using a Medium cut pad and a Meguiar's 205 equivalent start to buff the area out. Don't spend A LOT of time using the orange pad as it could take the touch up paint right off. Then go to a Black finishing pad with the Meguiar's 205 as well, and polish it up.

Then wax the car and walk away.

I have used this technique A LOT of times on cars, and the first few times I had to learn to LET THE PAINT DRY. It takes longer than just 10 minutes for it to dry depending on the outside air/humidity, but the technique works QUITE well. Just be gentle in what you do with the sandpaper.

Hope that helps, I will be using the same technique on my car this week on a few spots I have and the light scratches I put into it when I was doing my S/C install. Should be picture perfect smooth after all is said and done. :D
 

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Gamera The Atomic Turtle
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Good points all!
I am taking the leap of faith that the dealer is going to do a decent job because, well, I want the elise!
To GLB's point, I am big on Zaino stuff and I am not very concerned about the hand detailing goinf forward.
@Spartacus, I never had the chance to take them
@xoxoxx, yes, I want one! What are black protectors?
@Komi, Is your starshield new?
On teh starshield notw, is it recommended to go with teh dealer? He is quoting $1300 BEFORE INSTALL. Any good aftermarket subs that anyone could recommend?
Cheers!
--njexpress
if you are going with the Starshield brand bra, get a starshield installer, it's a really tough job to get right. My Starshield is getting a bit frayed, but I drive in exceptionally challenging roadways.
It's normal to spend a litttle cash on the car after purchase to get things right. Remember to let your car's water temps to get into the 180's before vvt, the oil needs to be well warmed up before pushing the little hi-tech motor.
 

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Good points all!

To GLB's point, I am big on Zaino stuff and I am not very concerned about the hand detailing goinf forward.
using touch up paint (the brush in the bottle) should be ok from 5 or so ft away, but you get close it will look like crap... I am going to have my star shield replaced so I went to Mulholland Motorsports (one of the best body shops for lotus in socal) to have quote. Julio said he wouldn't charge me if I want him to do some touch ups on a few rock chips (I have a black car so they stand out :mad: ) because he said it doesn't matter if someone who has been working on car paint their whole life or someone who has never touched it before, the result will look the same. A respray is the only way to properly "fix" it but that can be quite expensive. I guess it comes down to what is acceptable for you. either way, as others have said, get some sort of clear bra on it

good luck with the purchase, these cars are a blast to drive.

AJ
NJ, I think you misunderstood. The link provided tells you how to deal with chips. The result, for me anyway, was that I could no longer see where the chips had been on my TT Supra.

Larry patrons own high-end cars and I've learned to trust his advice. He tests these products and techniques.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
oops, Thanks, GLB - I did not read the link carefully - I am hearing some push back from the dealer on touch ups (They are out of stock etc...) Looks like I will end up doing it myself. Thanks for the info!
Cheers!
--njexpress
 

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Discussion Starter #14
@Spartacus: Please see ECU dump below.
I also specifically have the following questions that I have raised in another thread:
1) Why is the VIN as entered field blank? Does this mean ECU was reflashed?
2) MaxEngineSpeed5 thru 1 Engine run timer shows different hours than [email protected] values: Is this correct?
3) Also, the fastest standing start times shhow 25:6 seconds which sounds too good to be true; Please help understand.

**Begin Report**

16/07/2012:11:12:06
VIN as Entered- Blank????
VIN as Read - Actual VIN from Carfax
System - EMS (Engine Management)
Hardware Number - Blank
Caliberation Number - D121E0010H

Group Category Data Unit
Time @ TPS1 0-1:5% 17:2:8 H:M:S
Time @ TPS2 1:5-15% 88:24:38 H:M:S
Time @ TPS3 15-25% 7:5:13 H:M:S
Time @ TPS4 25-35% 0:45:28 H:M:S
Time @ TPS5 35-50% 0:23:51 H:M:S
Time @ TPS6 50-65% 0:6:50 H:M:S
Time @ TPS7 65-80% 0:2:45 H:M:S
Time @ TPS8 80-100% 0:3:58 H:M:S

Time @ RPM1 500-1500 RPM 38:11:31 H:M:S
Time @ RPM2 1500-2500 RPM 12:58:25 H:M:S
Time @ RPM3 2500-3500 RPM 31:34:4 H:M:S
Time @ RPM4 3500-4500 RPM 27:47:19 H:M:S
Time @ RPM5 4500-5500 RPM 3:22:20 H:M:S
Time @ RPM6 5500-6500 RPM 0:24:0 H:M:S
Time @ RPM7 6500-7000 RPM 0:2:16 H:M:S
Time @ RPM8 7000+ RPM 0:0:43 H:M:S


Time @ KMH1 0-30 KMH 45:26:18 H:M:S
Time @ KMH2 30-60 KMH 29:55:39 H:M:S
Time @ KMH3 60-90 KMH 26:36:3 H:M:S
Time @ KMH4 90-120 KMH 9:2:57 H:M:S
Time @ KMH5 120-150 KMH 3:22:41 H:M:S
Time @ KMH6 150-180 KMH 0:1:8 H:M:S
Time @ KMH7 180-210 KMH 0:0:1 H:M:S
Time @ KMH8 210+ KMH 0:0:2 H:M:S

Time at Coolant Temp 105-110 deg c 0:0:0 H:M:S
Time at Coolant Temp 110-115 deg c 0:0:0 H:M:S
Time at Coolant Temp 115-119 deg c 0:0:0 H:M:S
Time at Coolant Temp 119+ deg c 0:0:0 H:M:S

Max Engine Speed5 7882 RPM
Max Engine Speed4 7761
Max Engine Speed3 7664
Max Engine Speed2 7660
Max Engine Speed1 7602
Max Engine Speed5 Coolant Temp 89:79 DegC
Max Engine Speed5 Coolant Temp 89:79 DegC
Max Engine Speed4 Coolant Temp 92:91 DegC
Max Engine Speed5 Coolant Temp 91:04 DegC
Max Engine Speed5 Coolant Temp 89:79 DegC
Max Engine Speed5 ENGINE RUN TIMER 112:4:40 H:M:S ??????
Max Engine Speed4 ENGINE RUN TIMER 1:22:28 H:M:S ??????
Max Engine Speed3 ENGINE RUN TIMER 113:37:35 H:M:S ??????
Max Engine Speed2 ENGINE RUN TIMER 61:16:14 H:M:S ??????
Max Engine Speed1 ENGINE RUN TIMER 108:58:14 H:M:S ??????
Max Vehicle Speed5 blank 160 KMPH
Max Vehicle Speed4 blank 158 KMPH
Max Vehicle Speed3 blank 165 KMPH
Max Vehicle Speed2 blank 153 KMPH
Max Vehicle Speed1 blank 150 KMPH
Fastest Standing Start 0-100 KMH 25:5 seconds???
Fastest Standing Start 0-160 KMH 25:5 seconds???
Last Standing Start 0-100 KMH 0 seconds???
Last Standing Start 0-100 KMH 0 seconds???
Emgine Run Timer Total 114:24:53 H:M:S
Number of standing starts No data

** End Report **
Cheers!
--njexpress
 

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3Xtothe0[]
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489 Posts
@xoxoxx, yes, I want one! What are black protectors?

--njexpress

#4... They have them for the front wheel wells too, sort of a poor mans answer to Starshield but only cover the wheel section. If you have chips in these areas then you can cover them up and protect the area.

 

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Rock chips are a reality if you dont have starshield. DONT let them try to fix the paint, they can only cause more damage like rubbing off all the clear coat, and putting on seriously not-matching paint. then waxing it, and calling it a day. A year later everywhere their orbital buffer touched the paint it will be peeling/cracking/fading.
 

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bumping this for future reference!
So here is a technique I have used quite successfully, but it will be scary to many.

ONLY ATTEMPT THIS IF YOU HAVE A RANDOM ORBITAL BUFFER!!!

First wash the car VERY well and get as many contaminents off as you can.
Then using your touch up paint, dab the areas that need to be touched up, the smoother you can get it to the original surface the less work you will have in the steps coming up.

Then let it dry, and make sure it drys well, if not, you will remove almost all of the touch up paint you just put on.

Then using 3k sand paper or better, ONLY USE 3K sandpaper or SMOOTHER!!! You gently wet sand the area that you just touched up, and make your "raised" touch up equal to that of the original paint level.

After this wet sanding procedure, using a Medium cut pad and a Meguiar's 205 equivalent start to buff the area out. Don't spend A LOT of time using the orange pad as it could take the touch up paint right off. Then go to a Black finishing pad with the Meguiar's 205 as well, and polish it up.

Then wax the car and walk away.

I have used this technique A LOT of times on cars, and the first few times I had to learn to LET THE PAINT DRY. It takes longer than just 10 minutes for it to dry depending on the outside air/humidity, but the technique works QUITE well. Just be gentle in what you do with the sandpaper.

Hope that helps, I will be using the same technique on my car this week on a few spots I have and the light scratches I put into it when I was doing my S/C install. Should be picture perfect smooth after all is said and done. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #20
ok, dealer did compound in / touch up all visible scratches except the rear wheel arches. It looks great.
For the wheel arch part, he just gave me a tube of paint - in any case, the scratchs although myriad, were / are sooo small that you have to be less than 4 feet away to see the touched up stuff. It is however, proving to be tedious, touching up the 973 chips / spots per square inch, on each side.
I also happened to find other threads on lotustalk related to Dr.Colorchip, with about 70% success rate imo for an ardent red like shade with rock chips.
I have ordered Dr.Colorchip and keeping my fingers crossed while it is in the mail - I expect to take a first shot this weekend once it arrives and I will post my results.
It may take a few layers of colorchip before things get nearly blended in - I also intend getting the color bra installed after the final layer of colorchip and before I start on Zaino in earnest.
Cheers.
--njexpress
 
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