Here on the Detailed Image Ask A Pro Blog, we typically write about the latest vehicle that we put through a major transformation, or do product reviews, or tutorials on how to perform specific detailing techniques and processes. But this article is a little bit different and overall a feel-good story for everybody.
All of the Blog authors regularly get comments and compliments on our work, and each and every one of us gets a tremendous amount of satisfaction out of educating others on the fine art of proper automotive detailing. We can always tell just how thrilled people are when they successfully do a process, use a tool, or try a new product that they may have previously been reluctant to try. Helping others is why we’re here!
I wanted to share some feedback from a client / friend / blog reader from her first big experience at doing any detailing in hopes that it can inspire others who may have been on the fence about trying proper detailing techniques and procedures. We all do our best to present the readers with well laid out plans for detailing procedures and do it in a way that it will benefit both experienced detailers and beginners alike. Based on her experience, I’m pretty confident that we have accomplished our goals.
I met Cindy last year when she first bought her Ferrari 355 Spider, and have spoken with her about detailing several times during different Ferrari events since that time. She was intrigued by the amount of care that needs to go into these cars (any car for that matter), and she was amazed at the art and science involved in doing it all the proper ways. I could tell that she was very hesitant to try any of it herself, and was even worried about washing the car.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago…
I received a phone call from Cindy and she told me that her car had been selected to be shown at the Ault Park Concours d’Elegance down in Cincinnati, Ohio. She was in a bit of a panic type situation, because she didn’t feel that her car belonged with all of the “show cars”, there wasn’t enough time to get the car into me for Concours preparation, and she didn’t know how to do it herself. I tried to assure her that with with a little coaching and some research, she would be fine.
On the morning of the Concours, I was walking the field and looking over the cars and scoping out the detailing work on many of these multi-million dollar vehicles and comparing it to the cars that I had done (actually there was no comparison…but that’s another story). When I finally saw Cindy’s car, I was very impressed with the level of work that she did. I stopped to chat with her and congratulate her on the great work, and she kept telling me that she never could have done it without my articles and the others here on the Detailed Image Blog. She had an ear to ear grin, and about that time the judges came to speak with her. I wished her luck, and went on with my business.
A little later in the day Cindy walked up to my display with an even bigger grin on her face that she had earlier…she won first place in her class! This was her first show (and a major Concours at that), her first time trying proper detailing techniques, and she earns herself a win. I was so happy for her, and she kept saying “it’s all thanks to you Todd!”. Now I felt great about the F40 that I did last year (it won first place), and a 275GTB I detailed that won an Award of Distinction, but to me her victory was the best of them all. The work and effort that I put into writing all of those articles was partially responsible for her victory, and provided a proud moment in her life that she will never forget.
Cindy was kind enough to do a little write-up about her experience, and I wanted to share it with all of the Blog readers:
I purchased a Ferrari Spider 355F1 in June 2010. A week later, I joined the Ohio FCA and quickly realized there was a lot I needed to know to properly caring for my car. Prior to buying the car, I realized a number Ferrari owners expressed the fact that their “car had never be in the rain”. Really? This level of protection was beyond my understanding.
I quickly learned there were a lot of rules involved in proper care of a Ferrari. In 1982, I ruined the red color on my mother’s new Oldsmobile when I waxed the car in the sun. To ensure I did not do any damage to my cars over the past 20 years I used the automatic drive though as my preferred car wash method…that is until I purchased the Ferrari Spider.
To say I had no detailing experience would be an understatement.
I realized Ferrari’s owners carefully maintained their cars. I had better understand what I did not know to not damage or decrease the value of my car.
A few weeks after purchasing the 355F1, I met Todd Cooperider while having the car serviced at NJB. Todd pulled out a light and a jeweler’s type eyeglass and started looking at the paint on the Ferrari. Thank goodness, I had not washed the car yet! Todd shared many tips for washing the car that saved me from damaging a nice finish.
I was hesitant to do more than a simple car wash as I did not want to use the wrong product in the wrong place or scratch the paint. I finally read “How to Properly Wash and Dry a Car” and used the washing tips Todd shared in the later summer of 2010, but not much else. In March 2011, I read “Leatherique Leather Care How-To” and cleaned the leather seats. I never heard of using a clay bar on a car before and was scared to death of the concept. I learned about the value of the clay bar in the fall of 2010 at one of Todd’s presentations, and I planned to have Todd do to it to my car this summer.
About two weeks before the June 2011 Ault Park Concours D’Elegance, I was asked to enter my car into the show. I had never had a car in a car show before…ever! I had never even detailed a car before.
I went to the Ask A Pro Blog and printed every blog and piece of data he shared. I talked to Todd right after I agreed to the show to see if he could get me in to car clay bar and wax. He assured me; I could use the clay bar, but said he could squeeze me in, as I was still nervous about doing damage. Two weeks is not a lot of time and as time ran out, I found myself reading “How to Properly Use a Clay Bar” at 4am the day before the event. I decided to give it a try…I did it! It was easy and Todd’s techniques worked exactly as he said it would.
I put 29 hours into the car 2 weeks before the show following Todd’s guidance (interior, wheels, wheel wells, exhaust tips, engine bay, and hand-polishing the paint!). It was easy following his advice! I was shocked how easy.
Todd freely gives a large body of knowledge to anyone who asks. His advice, proper coaching, and coaxing resulted in my Ferrari 355F1 winning 2 awards at the 2011 Ault Park Concours D’Elegance.
My car won 2 awards at the car show thanks to Todd Cooperider!
Cindy A.Lebanon, Ohio
Here Cindy is shown with Bob Miller, President of the Ferrari Club of America – Ohio Chapter
And her First Place Ribbon!
Congratulations to you Cindy on your hard-earned win on the Concours lawn, and thank you for reading the Ask A Pro Blog!