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Avtomat Kalashnikov
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Discussion Starter #1
This question has been asked in this section several times. Here's something I got off the net. I hope this helps. Can the mod make this a sticky?

How-To Detail Your Engine

ENGINE & UNDERCARRIAGE

Engine detailing is nothing more than cleaning the exterior of the engine and applying dressing.

Did you know a detailed engine increases the resale value of your car? It's a well-known fact that people who take the time and effort to detail their engines also take better care of their cars. Mechanics, too, realize that a clean engine belongs to someone who cares for his or her car, and they will take the time to do the repair or service work correctly.

Engine detailing is nothing more than cleaning the exterior of the engine and the engine compartment, and applying dressing to protect and beautify the engine. It's very easy to do, and requires no more than 45 minutes to an hour every couple of months.


ENGINE DETAILING

The first step in cleaning your engine is to remove the excess debris that gets trapped in your hood, grille and vent openings. This is particularly true if you live in an area with four seasons. If you have compressed air available, this is the best way to remove old leaves, dead cats and such. If you don't, a simple hand brush will suffice

The next very important step is to prepare your engine for getting wet. You must cover all sensors, the distributor, spark plug openings and any electrical devices that have the potential for water accumulation (which could cause a short). Use plastic baggies to cover these items. Be sure to use tape or rubber bands to hold the plastic bags in place. You're only trying to prevent the majority of the water from getting in; it does not need to be watertight. The engine environment should already be waterproof. The baggies are just a precaution.

To loosen the grease accumulated on your engine and the engine compartment, start your engine and allow it to warm for a few minutes. The best temperature for cleaning your engine is warm to the touch, but not hot. If you're able to hold your hand to the engine without saying "Ouch," then the temperature is just about right.


Applying Degreaser

After warming the engine and protecting sensitive areas, you're ready to apply your engine degreaser. Although they are quick and easy, I warn people against the use of harsh petroleum-based cleaners in the engine compartment. They quickly cut through grease and grime, but they also deteriorate your rubber and vinyl components (not to mention what they do to our environment!). As an alternative, use a citrus- or water-based cleaner

When applying your engine degreaser, it's best to start from the lower areas and work your way up. This prevents the degreaser from dripping on you as you clean the underside areas. One important thing to remember: the engine degreaser will remove the wax from the painted surfaces of your car. If you get degreaser overspray on your fenders, plan on rewaxing these areas.

When you have applied your engine degreaser, be sure to wash any excess cleaner from the exterior painted surfaces of the fenders, hood and grille. I like to spray these areas with water first.

Depending on the amount of accumulated grease, allow the degreaser to soak on the engine for 3 to 5 minutes. Do not allow the degreaser to dry on your engine. For light to mild levels of grease, you will not need to use a brush on the engine and other surfaces. For heavy soil, you can use a long-handled brush (parts brush) and car wash solution to provide additional cleaning action prior to hosing off the degreaser.
 

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Avtomat Kalashnikov
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Discussion Starter #2
Hosing Off

When you are ready to remove the degreaser, hose down the entire engine compartment and surrounding surfaces with plenty of water. If you're using a high-pressure nozzle, be careful that you don't get the nozzle too close to the covered electrical connectors. Allow your engine to air dry for several minutes before using a towel to wipe down all accessible parts. Remove the plastic bags. The heat from the engine will assist in the drying process; however, do not allow the engine to air dry, as this will result in water spots. When dry, start your engine and allow it to run for a few minutes.


Protect & Beautify

When everything is dry, and your engine has cooled, you should apply a coating of engine protectant. If you don't have an engine protectant, use your rubber and vinyl protectant to coat your hoses, wires, and plastic shields. To add a quick shine and protection to the painted surfaces in the engine compartment, use a high-quality detailing spray. Just spray it on all surfaces, and wipe off the excess with a clean terry cloth towel.


UNDERCARRIAGE DETAILING

In the process of preparing a car for show, most competitors detail every square inch of their car, including the undercarriage. I'm not talking about the multi-million-dollar concours cars, which are built from the ground up to be show cars. I'm talking about everyday-guy kind of cars, cars that regularly see the light of day.

I met a Porsche Boxster owner a few years ago who had just won best in class at a national show. I asked him how he managed to get the undercarriage of his car so clean, and he just smiled. After a little more cajoling, he admitted that he'd put his Boxster on jack stands, taped a toothbrush to a stick, and scrubbed the underside with kerosene while lying on his back. Now that's dedication to detail!

While it might seem to be going a bit overboard, undercarriage detailing has its purpose. You don't have to enter your car in a show to find benefit in putting your car on jack stands, pulling off the wheels and detailing the easily accessible, exposed areas. I like to detail the undercarriage because it allows me to inspect some pretty critical components that I rely on for my safety.

Here are some of the undercarriage areas I recommend detailing and the inspections they allow. I make this routine an annual ritual on all of my cars.

1. Detail the entire wheel (front and back). If you have expensive wheels with exposed inner rims, the wheels will look great after a full detail. Inspect for undetected tire wear problems.

2. Detail the wheel wells, brake calipers and suspension components, and coat the plastic liner with a protectant. This will add a crisp, clean look to your car. Inspect for brake wear and suspension or drive train problems.

3. Detail under the side, front and rear aerodynamic components. Inspect for broken parts or loose components.
 

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Avtomat Kalashnikov
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Discussion Starter #3
Gaining Access

To gain ready access to the underside of your car, you will need a lift, ramps, or a jack and stands. Ramps work fine for detailing under the front, rear and sides of the car, but they do not provide access to the wheel wells, brakes and suspension components. A lift or a good jack and jack stands are the best all-around solution. It is not necessary to lift a car more than a foot to gain good access.

Jacking Safety: Never jack a car without the use of jack stands. The jack alone cannot be trusted. Always use prescribed jack points to lift your car. Read your car owner's manual for instructions.

The following procedures assume the use of a hydraulic floor jack and jack stands to lift a car for wheel removal:

-Park your car on a flat surface.

-Place blocks behind the wheels not being lifted to prevent movement of the car.

-Use the proper size lug wrench to loosen wheel lug nuts on the wheels to be removed. Do not remove the lug nuts, just loosen them.

-Jack the car high enough to insert a jack stand under the end of the car holding the engine. The jack stand must contact a prescribed jack point or the suspension A-arm mount point.

Warning: Never place a jack stand under your engine, drive shaft or transmission, as serious damage could occur.

-Continue jacking the car until you have enough clearance to insert a second jack stand at the opposite end of the car. Again, align the jack stand under a prescribed jack point or suspension mount point.

-When two jack stands are properly placed, slowly release pressure on your hydraulic jack, allowing your car to rest on the jack stands. Failure to release pressure slowly may result in your car being dropped onto the stands, which will damage the underside of your car.

-Before lowering the jack to move it out from under the car, inspect the jack stands again for proper placement. If not properly aligned, jack the car just high enough to make a correction.

-Remove the loosened lug nuts and remove your wheels. Be sure to set the lug nuts aside where they will not be lost or damaged.

If you followed the procedure above, your car is now safely jacked for undercarriage detailing.


Undercarriage Degreasing

Unlike in the engine compartment, there are no sensitive components that require safeguarding under your car. However, just as in engine compartment detailing, use of petroleum-based cleaners will reduce the life of critical components like rubber bushings, hoses and seals. The best alternative to petroleum cleaners are detergents and citrus-based cleaners.

As most undercarriages are generally pretty filthy, complete detailing may require several applications of cleaner combined with a lot of brush agitation. I have several different brushes I use, including an old tire brush, a 1" round brush, and a soft-bristle, fox-tail-style brush that easily reaches into odd places. Make sure you have an assortment of brushes before starting.

recommend starting low and progressing upward. If you start at the top, you'll have cleaner dripping all over you, which will irritate your skin. Speaking of skin irritation, I highly recommend wearing disposable rubber gloves and eye protection. The gloves will keep your hands from drying out and chapping from the strong cleaners, and the eye protection will prevent splashback from getting in your eyes. You will find both of these safety items at your local auto parts store. I use the Permatex brand latex gloves, because they are heavy duty, fit tight and have textured fingertips for better grip when wet or oily.

After applying your degreaser, give it enough time to soak in and work. In most cases, 3 to 5 minutes soak time will do the trick. Before spraying all of your degreaser away with water, turn it to your benefit by using your brushes and soapy water to loosen as much dirt and grime as possible. Dish-washing liquid, such as Dawn, makes a good, soapy cleaning solution for scrubbing the undercarriage.

After scrubbing through the first layer of grime, hose off and allow the area to drip dry so you can inspect. With the heavy grunge gone, you will see areas that require more degreasing and brushwork. Spot-spray these areas one by one, and use your brushes and soapy water to finish removing the dirt. When you're finished, be sure to flush thoroughly with water.
 

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Avtomat Kalashnikov
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Discussion Starter #4
Undercarriage Protection

After cleaning your undercarriage, you must also protect it. It's common knowledge that all car manufacturers spray the underside of their cars with a heavy protective wax coating. The coating, usually a product like Cosmoline, helps to prevent corrosion and premature deterioration of plastic and rubber components that are exposed to the elements. The problem with Cosmoline, from a detailer's point of view, is that it attracts dirt and makes an ugly mess.

Traditional detailing dressings made for rubber, vinyl and plastic are not durable enough to provide lasting undercarriage protection. The best solution is a coating product specifically made for engines and undercarriages, such as Wurth Protective Wax or Meguiar's Engine Kote. Both are spray on, walk away products that dry hard and leave a nice satin finish. While nowhere near as durable as Cosmoline, they solve the unsightly ugliness found under most cars and restore basic protection.



Here's the site where this info came from:
http://www.autopia-carcare.com/inf-engine.html

Check it for additional detailed information regarding engine detailing specifics and photos of the step-by-step process
 

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So it says to warm the engine up but do you leave it running? I have read and been told to have the engine running and probably have another person to keep it running. I told my wife this and she's afraid I'm going to jack up the car. Running or No?
 

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Whoa...
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ive done it both ways... you want the engine warm, to help break up the grease, and if it's hot, theoretically, the heat could help dissipate some of the water before it gets into anything really bad, but dont use that as an excuse... id take it around the block a few times before i cleaned it, and shut it off for good measure... just make sure you cover your vitals... and remember, make sure the hood is cool before you wax the car!
 

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and if you have a WAI and have the car running then spray it with a hose!!!!!1 :waving: bad!!!
 

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Soggy GloryHoler
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I actually used some of the hints in this and it helped out quite a bit. I used a pressure washer(and yes i covered the necessary parts and it came out great w/ no problems) Anywho, thanks for the writeup, and simple green is pretty good stuff too. That and toothbrushes
Heres a pic, it was pretty filthy before
[/IMG]
I am going to be replacing all the rusty bolts and screws pretty soon since that kinda stuff bugs the crap out of me since im a nitpicky perfectionist. :thumbup:
 

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Whoa...
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did you dress up your black rubber and plastic peices with anything?? gets the finalized look, you can use a vinyl dressing(like vinylex) or armorall or something like that..
 

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BlankgazeX said:
did you dress up your black rubber and plastic peices with anything?? gets the finalized look, you can use a vinyl dressing(like vinylex) or armorall or something like that..
now come on blank! you know you shouldnt use armeral :thumbup: looking good tho, and it looks like he did dress the hoses, look at the rad. hose :cheers:
 

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91sentra said:
actually i havent done that, but since i have the whole day off ill probably get around to doing that but I have to go pick up my new car today!! A 94 3000gt, Ill post pics after i go pick it up. Im hella excited!!
whoa! those are nice.....but heavy as crap.
 

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Soggy GloryHoler
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1.6pete said:
whoa! those are nice.....but heavy as crap.
true, over 3K but im taking over payment from my friend and he just paid like 800 for new tires and brakes yesterday so its all good, besides its faster than my current car for now and he told me that a carbon fiber Pit Fighter hood is on the way soon, should take off about 200 lbs. :rolleyes: But for today im just gonna go clean my engine and pretty much detail the car now.
 

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those things have an extremly loyal folowing though, do some searching before you join any old forum...........i bet there is a forum= to this one for the 3000 :thumbup:
 

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Soggy GloryHoler
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1.6pete said:
those things have an extremly loyal folowing though, do some searching before you join any old forum...........i bet there is a forum= to this one for the 3000 :thumbup:
yep, my friend was a member of www.3si.org/ which is a pretty good site IMO.
 
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