How To Repair a Scratch on your Corvette
Someone keyed your Corvette and you don’t know how to repair the scratch yourself and don’t want to pay a couple hundred dollars for a body shop to repair it. Well, never fear, there are a number of products on the market today from rubbing and polishing compounds to scratch repair kits from vendors such as Turtle Wax.
Tools and Materials
Car wash kit-Bucket, mitt, high quality car cleaner (Meguiar’s Gold Class Car Wash is recommended) and chamois for drying.
Rubbing compound-TR7 Glaze and Compound is recommended, however not the only good one out there. Only use rubbing compound when a fingernail isn’t caught when dragged across the scratch.
Turtle Wax Scratch Repair Kit-This is a relatively new product from Turtle Wax.
Cheesecloth/Terry or microfiber towels
First Step: Wash and Dry Thoroughly
Use a high quality car wash product. Also make sure you use a chamois when drying and not a towel, or you will be fixing more scratches in the clearcoat. No matter what method you use to repair the scratch in your Corvette, this is step number one.
Rubbing Compound Repair
Step 1: Apply Rubbing Compound
You will need to have your car in the shade and it should be between 65 and 90 degrees for this. Apply the rubbing compound to the area with the scratch and use some decent pressure with small circular motions to apply. Rubbing compound is slightly abrasive. The abrasives are moving the paint and clearcoat back into the scratched area to help cover it over. Allow to dry to a hazy sheen.
Step 2: Remove Compound
Using a clean and dry towel (terry/microfiber/cheesecloth) and small circular motions, remove the compound using fairly heavy pressure. When the towel begins to drag, use a clean portion of it.
Turtle Wax Scratch Repair Kit
Step 1: Apply Clearcoat Repair
This is a pen-type product. Shake well and press the tip against the box it came in to prime it. Carefully trace the scratch with it. Allow to dry for a minimum of fifteen minutes.
Step 2: Tape and Sand
The Turtle Wax kit comes with tape to help guide you in the repair process. Tape approximately one inch to either side of the scratch and about three to four inches long. There are four numbered sanding pads in the kit, spray the lubricant on them and rub lightly along the scratch approximately twenty times with the sanding pads, in numerical order. Remove the tape after using pad number four.
Step 3: Apply and Remove Polish
Using a clean towel (see above) apply the polish to the repair area and the surrounding area with circular motions and moderate pressure. When the polish just begins to haze over, remove it using a clean and dry portion of the towel. Do this at least twice to restore the sheen to the repaired area.
Final Step: Both Methods-Wax
The final step in the scratch repair process is to add a protective coat of wax. If you haven’t waxed your car in a couple of months, you should do the whole car; otherwise just the repair area is fine. Use a clean and dry towel to apply a quality wax (Meguiar’s, Mother’s or Turtle Wax) using small circular motions again, with light to very moderate pressure. Apply the wax to two foot by tow foot sections at a time. When the wax dries to a haze, remove it with a clean towel. When the towel begins to drag, use a clean section of it. Use a clean towel to buff the car once you have applied and removed the wax from all of it.
With the right tools and materials, you can repair just about any scratch in your Corvette with little to no training or experience. The exception here is when the scratch is completely through the clearcoat and paint. In this case, you will need to apply touch up paint after washing, lightly sand it to remove any imperfections and unevenness, then the Turtle Wax kit to apply a new coat of clearcoat.