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Detailer shares rank order of paint: Pearl White best, Jet Black (standard) worst

Discussion in 'Model S: Interior & Exterior' started by bhzmark, Jan 19, 2017.

  1. bhzmark

    bhzmark Active Member

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    I spoke with a car detailer who has seen many Teslas come through his shop and he commented on the wide variety of paint quality from Tesla depending on the color choice. His main takeaway was that the standard black (called Jet Black) was far and away the worst -- it was very soft, always comes from the factory with lots of defects and they have to spend a lot of time fixing those defects, and they can never fix them all -- it is just really bad paint.

    He said the best paint that he can make look great very easily is the Pearl White, the silvers are next and the red is good too. Obsidian Black is much better than Jet Black.

    He laments whenever someone comes in with Jet Black because it means more work for them and still less than the best results for the customer after all the work.
     
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  2. DKPowers

    DKPowers Member

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    Sounds reasonable. I don't know if the base black has a top coat but black is always hard to keep looking nice as it'll show swirls, holograms and scratches easily. But when a black car is nicely detailed, it'll look especially nice. White is on the other end of the spectrum, really hard to see scratches and swirls on it but usually achieving that "wet look" on a white car is close to impossible short on wetsanding the whole car.

    I ordered a silver one. I've always liked silver and swirls won't show up in it that easily and on the other hand it won't look dirty the second I leave the car wash. :)
     
  3. scottm

    scottm Active Member

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    And mine is grey. So I'm right in the middle of this spectrum.

    Mind you, my car will never see a detailer to help judge it.
     
  4. jbcarioca

    jbcarioca Active Member

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    It is simple. White is hardest, Black is softest. All else is in between. If well detailed and well covered with protective coatings those differences become less important, but they cannot go away.
    I traditionally chose white in hot climates, black in cold ones. I'd never have a black car in a hot climate. I do use protective coatings, and detailing from a first rate shop.
    My Tesla is MCR, proving that aesthetics overwhelm practicality, even though I know better.
     
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  5. scottm

    scottm Active Member

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    I would like to see a natural aluminum oxide colored paint... and if they actually mixed it based on aluminum oxide .. damn!! that'd be hard paint on the Mohs scale. Stop bullets. No clear coat needed.. let it oxidize. Use a Brillo pad and steel wool just to shine 'er up occassionally. Sandblast the tough stains off... and be done with it.
     
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  6. jbcarioca

    jbcarioca Active Member

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    Lots of paint-makers have been doing this work. This patent is from Pechiney Saint Gobain:
    Patente US3386934 - Paints comprising aluminum oxide that contains less than 30% alpha alumina

    There are problems, but we'll see such options soon. Lots better than the stainless steel bodies that have been tried.
     
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  7. skilly

    skilly Member

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    This isn't right....its the pigment in the paint that decides how it reflects the imperfection in the clear coat. All of these finishes are 2 stage - meaning that they have the color paint (1st stage) and they have the clear coat (2nd stage). The imperfections on the clear coat are what we typically see and complain about in paint. So it would be more like, white hides the best, black hides nothing...and everything else is a scale in between those two ends of the spectrum.

    In terms of the paints "hardness" that can be improved by putting a ceramic coat finish on it...all I have is black cars. Swirls in paint come from dust and debris being rubbed on to the surface...doesnt matter what paint color you have. If you want to reduce or eliminate that from happening - when your paint is perfect, pay to have a professional lay on a ceramic finish. No matter your color, it will keep it looking new.

    Disclaimer - the finish is VERY tough to remove, so get your paint healthy BEFORE you apply it - its not wax; its protectant more than anything.
     
  8. ohmman

    ohmman Maximum Plaid Member

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    And this is why (I now say that) I have two Pearl White Teslas.

    In all seriousness, I can't stand swirl marks and I'm still two bucket washing them. I live on a grey dusty gravel road and white hides a lot. Never cared for it before the Teslas but they have the ability to look good in any color.
     

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