The DB6 was the grand tourer Aston Martin introduced to replace the famous DB5. Improved aerodynamics and upgraded specifications gave the DB6 a measurable edge over its predecessor. Still instantly recognisable as a close relation to the DB5, the DB6 featured, amongst other things, a longer wheel base and a truncated, K-tail incorporated into the rear end, designed to reduce drag.
Having spent ages searching for an original and mechanically sound DB6 with the desirable ‘Vantage’ high-power upgrade which included triple side-draft Weber carburetors and a higher compression ratio, the owner of this Platinum White example decided it would be beneficial to bring the paintwork and interior up a standard befitting of this timeless classic.
An initial appraisal of the car revealed severe swirling and a myriad of random deep scratches (RDS), the combination of which was spoiling the white paintwork’s original lustre. The interior had been re-trimmed at some stage in the vehicles history, but was in need of a refresh. Subsequently the DB6 was booked into the Brands Hatch UF Detailing Studio for intensive Paintwork Correction and a light leather restoration.
Initially the DB6 was treated with GYEON Q2M Iron to remove bonded ferrous contamination. Then, sticky deposits of tar and tree sap were tackled with GYEON Q2M Tar. After rinsing the bodywork was treated with Meguiar’s All Purpose Cleaner to remove oily residues, particularly around the bonnet, boot and door shuts. Then Ultimate Snow Foam was applied and left to dwell for a few minutes to remove larger particles of dirt and grit.
When the decontamination process was complete, the DB6 was washed using the Two Bucket Method, an Ulti-Mitt Double Sided Merino Wash Mitt and Swissvax Lavish Shampoo. After rinsing the suds away an Aqua Gleam De-ionising water filter was connected to the hose to give the car a final, pure water rinse. The DB6 was then carefully dried and brought inside the studio for paint depth readings and close inspection under high intensity lighting.
The DB6 had clearly been re-painted at some point as the paint depth readings were uniformly thicker than anticipated. The swirls marred every panel, not unusual with a car of this age, and there were a significant number of random deep scratches. It was obvious this was going to take a lot of work to get it looking pristine again. – Derek Ginger, Master Detailer, UF Detailing Studio
The first stage of the correction process was completed using a FLEX PE14 Rotary Machine Polisher with a combination of Koch-Chemie Heavy Cut H8.02 and a RUPES Blue Coarse Cutting Microfibre Pad.
Due to the proliferation of swirls and scratches, combined with the hardness of the paint, I needed a fairly aggressive combination to perform the correction. Even with this combination it took multiple passes over each section of the car to remove the blemishes. – Derek Ginger, Master Detailer, UF Detailing Studio
To refine the paintwork a Flexipads Hex-Logic Red Glazing Pad was used with Koch-Chemie M2 Hochglanz-Antihologram, starting at higher speeds to remove the holograms and then at lower speeds to impart a glossy finish.
To protect the newly restored paintwork two layers of Swissvax ‘Best Of Show’ premium carnauba wax were applied by hand, allowed to cure for a few minutes and then buffed off using a high-pile microfibre.
White paintwork is notoriously difficult to enhance the gloss and depth of shine, so I needed a wax with a high carnauba content as it’s the carnauba that really makes paintwork ‘ping’. Best Of Show contains a very high percentage of T1 carnauba, so it’s an ideal wax to significantly enhance this difficult colour. – Derek Ginger, Master Detailer, UF Detailing Studio
The wire wheels were removed from the car to allow for thorough polishing.
The inner rims showed slight signs of pitting, whereas the outer faces simply required polishing. Swissvax Metal Polish was used to bring both faces of the wheels back up to a brilliant shine. Metal Polish was also used to restore the chrome trim, badges and exhaust tips. The tyres were then dressed with Swissvax Pneu, a tyre dressing which leaves a natural, satin sheen.
The leather seats were scuffed and showing considerable signs of wear and tear.
To tackle these issues the professional leather repair Colourlock system was used. Colourlock is a comprehensive leather treatment which repairs cracks and then uses a dye to recolour faded areas. On the DB6 the piping around the edge of one seat was cracked down to the inner stitching. This crack was filled with a colourless filler and allowed to set for around fifteen minutes whilst the rest of the leather was cleaned with Colourlock Mild Leather Cleaner. Once the filler had set the area was gently sanded using a leather sanding pad. The parts of the upholstery that was to be recoloured was then degreased using Colourlock Leather Cleaning Spirit. Areas that needed to be protected from the dye were masked with detailing tape before the leather was primed using Colourlock Leather Primer. The primer acts to make the surface slightly sticky and ensures the colour will adhere firmly. The dye is mixed to the correct shade to match the rest of the interior and applied using an airbrush. After each layer a heat gun was held for a few seconds over the treated area to speed up the curing process.
With the repairs and recolouring complete the leather was then treated with two layers of Colourlock Top Coat, a transparent sealant which helps prevent signs of wear and tear appearing, protecting against scuffing and scratching. The recoloured areas were protected using Colourlock Leather Shield to inhibit the colour damage by dye transfer and oils from skin. The areas which hadn’t been re-coloured were protected with Colourlock Leather Protectant which contains anti-oxidants and UV filters to help prevent colour fading, drying out and cracking. Once completed the interior was left for a couple of hours to allow time to fully cure. The finished result looked as good as new!
The Colourlock Leather Care system is also available as a DIY kit for enthusiasts looking to refresh and rejuvenate leather with light marks and scuffs. More serious leather correction should be undertaken by a trained professional. Chances are the DIY kits will be available at UF very soon!
More images of the Aston Martin DB6 Vantage can be seen on the UF Car Care & Car Detailing forums here.
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