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Mi-foodie

Oh No ! It Is No Longer Perfect !

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:o I just baught a 2004 ES330 and love it ! Black paint and all. However, after 1300 miles I now have 2 small paint chips on the hood from stones. They show the white primer but no metal. Should I repair these and how? Can the dealer do a better job than me?

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It's up to you how you want to do this. You could pay the dealer to do the job, but many of us will tell you that it would be cheaper and more filling when you do it yourself.

What you could do, since it seems like you don't know how to do this, you should pay the dealer, but watch them, especially the way they do it. This way if you have another chip, you could tackle it.

Also, I would recommend getting the clear-plastic bras for the front of your car. You'll have to talk to some people about where you can get it done. Expect to pay a little, since it's time consuming and a custom job.

PS, I've moved you inquiry to the ES Forum.

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the first few paint chips hurt the most. :(

Look into a new product called the Autosharp Pen. You can order it in your factory paint code. Supposedly they work real well. Kind of like a sharpie with you exact color.

Also, the clear 3M plastic film is available at you dealer. Many cars are displayed in the showroom with them already on. Talk to parts and the body shop about the costs associated with applying it. I'm sure they are already precut for the 2002-2004.

steviej

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You could also check into a Clear Bra. This is either a static cling clear plastic or 3M makes a stick on product that is razer cut, much like vinyl lettering and contours to the front of the hood and is virtually invisible.

There website is www.clearbra.com

The cost for your car is $210.00

:cheers:

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I'd go with a bottle of factory touch up paint with the brush from the dealer & the 3M clear hood treatment type product. It hurts Mi I hear ya! :( However, you will get more as time goes along. The clear film is your best bet.....I think llumar (I think thats the name as they make window tint & clear film products) is a very simular product to the 3M & many people think it's a lot better in terms of being more clear so you don't notice it's even on the car (the 3M product has a bit of a "fog" in it's appearance). Neither are cheap to be sure, but neither is body work. My heart can't take the pain of stone chips on a brand new car anymore so I buy pre-owned pay about half the price & somehow it makes it a little easier to live with & not as painful ;)

Check out www.llumar.com & the product is called "paint protection film"

:cheers:

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The first chips are always the worst like Steve said. To me thats the only problem with driving a new car. As perfect as you keep it and as flawlessly as you maintain it, if you drive it regularly its just not going to stay perfect.

I reccomend the autosharp pen ;)

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I had my dealer put on the 3M clear plastic film on the bumpers before I took delivery. I wouldn't have minded if they did the job correctly, but they only put about an 8" strip of this film which didn't cover the lowest or highest part of the bumper. I complained about this unacceptable job they did and they returned the $500 that I spent to do this job. They left this strip on 'cause it would have been too much bother to take it off. You'll find this strip hard to see on my Millenium Silver paint. BTW: This job can be done properly by specialty shops that have the experience in installing films for a lot less then Lexus charges.

Notice the picture of my car at the bottom of this post....I betcha you don't see the film. heehee

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OK. I just bought an Autosharp pen and will see how that works. My past experience has been with the bottle of touch up paint and I always seem to put on too much and end up with a bubble of paint. That would be OK for some colors but black...I think not. In any case it is leased and I just want to make it less noticeable since I have 3 years and 9 months more to go.

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Believe it or not black is one of the easiest colors to touch up. Silver is the hardest. The pen will lay down a very thin layer of paint into the chip, its very precise so you're not going to get a blob. Its also very thin compared to bottle paint, and its eurathane, same as the paint on the car.

What you want to do is simply layer it in until it looks best to you. I usually do 3 layers on a big chip. 2 color and one clear on top. You dont have to worry about the clear as your black ES doesn't have a clearcoat.

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I know the feeling. My 2004 has almost 14,000 miles and appx 12 rock chips and a broken windshield. Damn rocks on the freeway...... I guess I'm numb to all the rock chips after the third one, now the windshield on the other hand is just annoying.

O-well, it's just a car.

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Yeah I need to get a new windshield in mine too.

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I tried to use an Auto Sharp pen to fix my paint chips and am unhappy with the results. I put on four layers of paint, but it wasn't filling the cavity. I put a gob of paint and it formed a lump. I sanded it down, but I also sanded the area around it. The paint color matched but there were black pigments that settled to the top. My color is a metalic Oyster Pearl.

I recommend that you develop your technique by trying it on a paint chip not on the hood. Better yet, take it to a specialist to get done right.

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My husband does our chips. He uses them little tubes of paint with the brush. It looks real good you can't even tell that he went over it. What's makes it so easy for him is that his first job (as a teenager) was a body man in his brother's garage so it is pretty easy to him.

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I agree 93, thats why I suggested the factory bottle of touch up paint with the brush on it. It's much easier that way by far, especially if the chip is on an awkward angle.

:cheers:

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Good touchup is really an art form. A detail shop by me is soo good at it they charge $150 a chip. BUT you'd never know it was there.

How happy you'll be with the touchup also depends on the color, silver and that oyster pearl are the hardest to touch up, white is the easiest.

You've got to be patient with the pen and just keep putting those layers in there.

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Good touchup is really an art form. A detail shop by me is soo good at it they charge $150 a chip. BUT you'd never know it was there.

$150 per chip?? That's outrageous! :o For that price, you are better off having the affected body part(s) repainted.

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Not actually. Whenever you break the factory paint surface you instantly lower the value of the vehicle by several thousand dollars. For instance a Lexus cannot be a certified pre-owned if more than one panel has been repainted this makes a huge difference in the resale value of the car. Paintless dent repair (which he also charges $150 a ding for, but he's really good) is the same deal, fixes the problem without lowering the value of the car. Plus you dont have to worry about paint matching etc. He does chips, bumper scuffs, all 99% perfect.

Actually most insurance companies will pay for that chip repair and PDR and waive the deductible because its in their best interest.

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Good touchup is really an art form. A detail shop by me is soo good at it they charge $150 a chip. BUT you'd never know it was there.

How happy you'll be with the touchup also depends on the color, silver and that oyster pearl are the hardest to touch up, white is the easiest.

You've got to be patient with the pen and just keep putting those layers in there.

I agree with you it is an art form. I think the hardest part of the whole thing was that we bought white paint figuring that it would match up and it stuck out so then we had to find out what color it was for sure. It is Garnet White. Other then that my husband said it was pretty easy.

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Oh yes, there are literally hundreds of shades of white ;)

And even when you have the right shade, like any other paint every batch is a little bit different. People who are really good mix their own paint so it matches perfectly.

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SW03ES,

Mind telling me the detailing shop name, I might need need to go to that shop if autosharp pen doesn't work for me. Howmany people are successful taking care of the chips fairly on their cars ?

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Its Details Details Details, Inc. on Rockville pike. Their web address is www.detailsdetailsdetails.com.

I have no problem taking care of chips myself, and my color is very hard to touchup.

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