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From digest.v7.n451 Thu Oct 16 11:31:57 1997
From: Bob Stommel <>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 11:05:07 -0400
Subject: RE: Help!!!My M3 Got Keyed

>You try to park it right and out of other people's way and some assh*le
>still find it necessary to key it. Well it happened so no use crying about
>it. I now this has been brought up before but here goes. Any advice on
>what to use to 'hide' the scratch marks better. I rather not go thru the
>process of getting it repainted. The scratch is about 8 inches long on the
>trunk next to the M badge. Its 'fairly' can see the white thru
>the original paint. Any advice will be appreciated...

Welcome to the club, Steve. The good news is that based on the laws of M3 probability, your car isn't likely to get keyed again. Stolen maybe, but not keyed.

When this happened to my E36 M3 (Boston green metallic), it took a good five hours of paint work to get it looking half decent. But it beats paying wads of cash to have some guy to repaint the entire panel who probably wouldn't get the paint to match properly anyway.

First, clean the area with 3M Wax and Grease Remover. If the primer is showing, use a very fine hobby brush and carefully paint another layer of primer in the scratch. Then build up success layers of paint in the scratch using a fine-point hobby brush instead of that stupid fat brush thing that comes with the touchup paint.

After there is enough paint filled in to raise the level above the surrounding paint job, the real fun begins. Start with a polishing compound (one approved for clear coats) and carefully polish the paint repair down the the level of the surrounding paint. The will take LOTS of time. Be careful not to cut through too much of the surrounding paint. You will be left with a surface that looks a little dull.

Next, use something like Meguiars Fine Cut cleaner to polish the dullness to a gloss. Follow this with Meguiars Swirl Remover until the repaired area is as shiny as the surrounding paint. Finish up with a good wax. The whole idea after painting is to use successively finer polishes until the last one, like Swirl Remover (or Zymol HD Cleanse), has very little abrasive in it.

The really bad news is that even after all this work, if your paint is metallic, you will still be able to see the scratch line up close. Just depends on how much of a concours nut you are. Of course, if you drive fast enough, nobody will ever notice.

Bob Stommel
Hoosier Chapter

P.S. A disclaimer in the vain hope of warding off evil messages from the Harley, Sterling, etc. guys: There are lots of products on the market that will do the same job as the ones I listed. I just happened to have used Meguiars. (Whew.....dodged that bullet.)

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