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May 17, 2010

31

Initial Impressions: Autoglym High Definition Wax

by Kenneth Tang

This wax costs RM453 here in Malaysia, a freaking expensive wax that lies in the price range of entry level waxes from boutique brands such as Swissvax and Zymol. Thankfully, managed to get it at a cheaper price, thanks to the help of mankarat, a forummer on Autoworld, who recently came back from the states. But seriously, RM450??! My dad would say, “You crazy?? I could eat 3 meals a day for a month!!”. But he doesn’t know that 😛

The wax also does not behave like waxes in the cheaper price range(M16,M26,Pink Wax).

Since giving my mum’s car the full detail, I have to wash the car myself, and at times look very neglected due to my chronic procrastination. Thought this mini-detail would make it up to her for not doing anything for Mother’s day.

The car has collected a fair amount of dust.

Autoglym high definition wax

With water spotting on the bonnet as it is exposed to rain:

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Under all the dust, dirt and grime however, you could see the paint is still pretty much swirl free, except for some light ticks scattered randomly over the paintwork.

Autoglym high definition wax

And that is with washing with a Lake Country Big Blue washing sponge and drying with a synthetic chamois.

The front bonnet is polished with Meguiar’s #205 Ultra Finishing Polish on a Meguiar’s Polishing Pad followed by a Lake Country Black Finishing Pad via rotary.
I was polishing under the hot sun(on black paintwork!), it stayed lubricated but had some areas where the polish baked onto the paint. Dried polish residue was easily removed with Isopropyl Alcohol diluted 1:1.

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Ingrained dirt removed after polishing:

Autoglym high definition wax

Although there was enough cut to remove the waterspots, it wasn’t aggressive enough to remove some deeper scratches. I won’t bother with those because maintaining a daily driver to be in perfect condition is just unpractical and will drive you mad sooner than you think!

Autoglym high definition wax

The paint looks LSP ready from the sun shot above, but from a different angle, you could still see holograms.

Autoglym high definition wax

So I followed up with Lime Prime on a Lake Country White CCS pad via ROB, which was also used on the rest of the car to clean and glaze the paintwork.

Autoglym high definition wax

Now, may I present to you, its highness, its majesty, High Definition Wax!

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

This new pot had some excess oil on top, it will look matte after one use.

Autoglym high definition wax

I didn’t use the supplied applicator as I wanted to see how it feels like when applied with the Meguiar’s foam applicator which I often use to apply paste waxes.

The applicator is put under running tap water(or use distilled water for the true OCD) and squeezed out repeatedly to get the every pores of the foam moist and damp.

Autoglym high definition wax

Scooping out a small amount on to the pad and apply onto paintwork.

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

The two pictures above shows that it looks very oily and greasy but feels quite the opposite during application. Instead, it feels quite sticky and tacky when I’m trying to spread it over the paint. At times, my fingers start to get tired and have to use the palm of my hand. This is especially so when the applicator is less damp. So after waxing half the car, I would dampen my applicator again.

I was breaking the rule of not applying under a shade on a cool surface.

Under direct sunlight:

Autoglym high definition wax

Now this is where my Meguiar’s logic is challenged. Meguiar’s teaches us on using the swipe test to judge whether a wax is ready to be buffed off or not.

If I applied any Meguiar’s wax on a black bonnet under direct sunlight, it would have probably flashed off and dried in under a minute, or even after a few seconds!

The HD Wax however, stays oily for more than ten minutes on very hot paint.

I had to pull out my finger immediately after capturing the photo below:

Autoglym high definition wax

Despite the hot temperature, the HD wax still stayed oily and the directions stated to leave it on for only 10 to 15 minutes. I then contacted my friend Jimmy from Golden Wax – Shine My Car detailing for advice as he is a frequent user of HD Wax. He says that it is oily during the removal of HD Wax and it is common and normal.

So I trusted him and walah! No streaks or patches. Thanks Jimmy!

Autoglym high definition wax

Although I would also say that it could be paintwork dependent as the Lime Prime I used earlier did not produce and streaks or patches. On the times I’ve used it on my own car which is also black, it will tend to streak quite heavily. Will have to try HD wax on my own car to see.

So I proceeded and applied HD Wax over the whole car and buffed off after 10 minutes.

Removal wasn’t the easiest. It was easy to break the wax film as it doesn’t completely dry, but for the same reason, it is hard to pick up all of the wax residue. Even when you think you have picked it all up, look at it again under a light source and you’ll probably see it requires more buffing.

Enjoy the pictures!

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

Before:

Autoglym high definition wax

After M205 and HD Wax:

Autoglym high definition wax

Autoglym high definition wax

My final thoughts:
Every time you use something new or expensive(or something hyped), there is always this placebo effect that tells your eyes the results are actually better than it really is. I always try to keep this placebo effect in mind when doing a review, and it applies to this review as well, which isn’t easy with a price tag of RM453(USD141).

Having said that, the paint looks dripping wet and reflections are deep and sharp. This could be attributable to M205 or Lime Prime, I do not know, what I do know is, it doesn’t look bad! If you live in the U.S and have a Walmart near you selling this for USD35, grab it!

It rained 4 hours after application and this would kill any tight beading as waxes have not fully cured. The HD wax beads did appear less round on some areas but managed to stay tight throughout the whole panel that has been exposed.

Will give you guys a durability update when the time comes.

Thanks for looking! Any comments will be appreciated, both good and bad.

I probably won’t be posting until July as I have one last final paper to prepare for and also gathering all the required resources to do a coating test(G’Z*x,G|T***niq,Aq**rtz,Pompo***zi,Op*i-Coat).

p.s. Again, HUGE thanks to mankarat for helping a few of us acquire the HD Wax at a bargain price. *bow*

Till then, cheerios! ^^V

Kenneth Tang a.k.a Fishbonezken
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31 Comments Post a comment
  1. May 17 2010

    good bro \
    keep them coming

    Reply
  2. jackson
    May 17 2010

    Sweet!

    What can be used in place of Lime Prime? I was thinking of using DG501 then HD Wax or Meg205,then HD Wax or Menz85RD then HD Wax or Meg205,DG501,Menz 85RD then HD Wax.

    This is for well maintained car (mine) and for a not so well maintained car, similar to the state of your mum's City.

    Awesome job dude!

    Reply
    • lsufl
      Aug 26 2012

      Good Review Kenneth.

      Hi Jackson.

      Autoglym do a HD Cleanse product they advise to use before the HD Wax. The price Kenneth stated is absolutely ridiculous, Price here in the UK is £30-£45 for the wax (say about $50-$70). The HD Cleanse is £20. I am looking to get this wax for my red vauxhall astra (power red solid paint) once I can afford to as I have to get other stuff in the meantime.

      For reviews of the wax here in the UK where we get a lot of road salt, acid rain etc, check out the link below, also has images of beading etc to help out. Just need to scroll down. I hope that helps you guys,

      http://www.cleanyourcar.co.uk/wax/autoglym-high-definition-wax/prod_738.html

      Kind Regards and Peace

      Suf

      Reply
      • Aug 26 2012

        Hi Suf,

        Thanks for your input here.
        Here in Malaysia, all imported products are overpriced. Meguiar’s stuff here cost almost twice as much as it does if purchased in Singapore. Autoglym is also super expensive, since the price is being controlled by the distributor.

  3. @KC,
    Thanks unker!

    @jackson,
    Thanks! Wow M205,DG501,85rd would be over-overkill, lol. I think any combo would work? Although I'm not too sure how the sealant in DG501 would affect the bonding of the HD Wax. If good condition, DG501 via ROB then HD wax. If need some cut, then M205 via RB followed by(optional, if you see holograms like mine) 85rd via RB/ROB, then HD wax.

    Either combo should be fine to use. Even if DG501 may cause the HD Wax not to bond or cure properly, it's not like it will slip off the paint and drop on to the ground during application(read this from Meg's Online). Give it a try.

    Reply
  4. jackson
    May 17 2010

    thanks for the tip. but i guess if doing DG501 then next day HD wax, then it should have enough time for the 501 to 'cure' or not be affected by HD?

    Reply
  5. Jackson, doing that would be ideal and I guess should be enough time to cure, although its hard to say because of our high humidity. Sometimes when I apply wax at night, in the morning also can still see smears coz too humid. Aiya can wan lah, hehehe…

    Reply
  6. Izso
    May 17 2010

    Sigh… I've loaded this page 4 times and not all of the pictures have loaded or could load. :\

    Reply
  7. seech
    May 17 2010

    Most informative as usual. I'm still not convinced these boutique waxes 'add' anyhing to the finish. I would think that the surface prep is much more critical to the look of the paint and the wax is there for protection.

    Got any Zymol Royale to test?

    Reply
  8. @Izso – try using a different browser?

    @Seech – Thanks! Yes I have the exact same opinion as you too but it changed after this thread:

    http://www.autopia.org/forum/car-detailing-product-discussion/128896-9-wax-unbiased-review.html

    The thread opener posted results of his gloss meter measurements for different waxes on the same panel. On the second page, I compiled his data and calculated averages and plotted a chart. You could see that most waxes reduce the gloss after surface prep, but after an overnight curing, it increases the gloss level to higher than pre-wax level! Although I reckon our eyes cannot really see the difference of 1 'unit of gloss', but there is a difference nonetheless. Still, not sure if the high price of boutique waxes is justifiable.

    Reply
  9. jackson
    May 17 2010

    I looked at the thread you gave, neat writeup and awesome graphics you posted!

    i suppose from the tests done, enough to justify getting a DJ SN 😀 but then, there's more to waxes than gloss isnt there? like depth,warmth, smell…

    Reply
  10. Thanks jackson. Yes there's more to waxes than gloss alone, like you mentioned, depth and warmth which I honestly don't know how to judge.

    Reply
  11. May 18 2010

    Very nice final job…

    Looks great…

    How did tou remove the wax?

    Only by towel or did you use something like water or quick detail in the “wax remove process”?

    Reply
  12. Thanks Swimmer,
    Only removed with a dry microfiber cloth. No water or quick detailer used. But have to keep wiping and wiping and wiping….

    Reply
  13. jackson
    May 20 2010

    is there any difference with looks of this AG HD wax compared to other waxes you have tried? What other waxes you have tried anyway?

    Reply
  14. Only waxes I have tried is M16,M26,Pink Wax, FK1000P, NXT 2.0, Gold Class Carnauba Plus, Colli 476s.

    As I've written in the blog post, there's the placebo effect. The good looks may have come from the prep work of M205 or Lime Prime.

    Compared to other paste waxes, I seriously do not know how to tell the difference. Things like depth, wetness, gloss, they all look the same to me on a machine polished finish! My eyes are untrained to judge differences between waxes…

    Reply
  15. May 21 2010

    My line of thought is always that the surface prep is the most important step, and that's not even open for debate! But to those who think a good finishing product have very little effect on the finish, I'll say you have not tried the good stuff. Sold 7 tubs of SV Crystal Rock and 15 tubs of SV Concorso over the past 3 months alone and trust me my clients are not blind or have too much cash spilling out of their pockets!

    Not tried HD Wax tho but then again I've long given up on all things Autoglym *ahem!*

    Reply
  16. May 21 2010

    very nice posting, gimme the itch to get one …$$$ is so steep ….

    Reply
  17. @AbsoluteGloss,
    Yes I have not tried those uber expensive waxes, such as SV Crystal Rock. As you mentioned, surface prep being the most important step, will waxes like SV Crystal Rock improve the looks even after going through one of your impeccable surface prep?

    @Verm,
    Thanks man, get one from the UK? hehehe. In all honesty, I don't know if I will purchase one for the full price of RM450 in Malaysia.

    Reply
  18. Izso
    May 26 2010

    O_O”

    I complain when a tyre costs that much.

    But a WAX?

    I'm sorry.. but my car is not expensive enough to want to make it look that good. Unless it's a supercar or a classic, conventional waxes from Meguairs is more than enough and even that is a bit expensive me thinks.

    Reply
  19. Izso,

    I feel you bro, Meguiar's is good enough, but as humans, we always want more and want something better.

    If you think Autoglym's High Definition wax is expensive, have a look at this link:

    http://www.zymol.co.uk/zymolsolaris.aspx

    Zymol Solaris, £40,000.00

    Yes, that figure is in British Pounds, £ !!! Effin' nuts if you ask me…

    Reply
  20. TimG
    May 29 2010

    Interesting writeup Ken. Two thumbsup. Thanks for the good read.

    ps: I love my SV CR. I talk to it. I pet the lil bugger and even kiss it goodnight. My girl stares cynically at me whenever I do those things like I'm some sort of dumba$$ LOL. And yeah it makes my old waja look like a veyron. (00)

    Reply
  21. Thanks Tim!

    LOL at the SV CR, your gf(wife?) must be really jealous of it, hehehe. Wonder what you'll do if you get hold of Zymol Vintage/Royale…

    Reply
  22. Jul 18 2010

    hi Ken,

    great posting as usual. the wet look is really deep.

    the advice you gave on how to detail my white car was invaluable and it worked out great.

    now i'm seeking again advice on how to detail a black 2nd hand Mercedes.

    can i use the same steps as you have on this Honda for the Mercedes?

    since its been agreed that the prep is most important,then will an extra step of Autoglym SRP(after 205) help before the HDW?
    its a 20yr old SL and i'd really like to give it the “WOW” factor before i deliver it to my dad as his birthday gift

    thanks Ken

    roland

    Reply
  23. Jul 28 2010

    that was quite a difference there. thanks for the post!

    Reply
  24. Anonymous
    Sep 27 2010

    As to as those ultra high cost waxes like crystal rock P.T. Barnum said it best. “There is a sucker born every minute.”

    Nice write up by the way. If you decide you like the wax we get it here in the states for $35.00 US

    Like your blog and bookmarked it.

    Thank you.

    Reply
  25. Oct 3 2010

    And how long does one container of this wax last? I guess expensive is okay if it doesn't run out quickly and you're not required to get another one too soon.

    Reply
  26. Oct 7 2010

    can we make friend? i wanted to learn everything from you =)

    Reply
  27. Anonymous
    Dec 5 2010

    Dude, good write up with simple grammers and straight explanation.
    The strong point from this HD Wax are the durability under the sun prior to buffing…
    the result for a daily driven car….agreed with you…its awesome.
    The minor set back, hence, prep such as claying and compounding, that can take plave in the next DIT session…ha ha
    Spirit36

    Reply
  28. Jan 5 2011

    Awsome blog!

    Im about to do my next video on the AG HD Wax.

    I have only used it once so far and was really impressed!

    Im sure the more i use it the more and more it will grow on me. even if it is really greasy!

    Regards,
    Martin.

    Reply
  29. Jan 17 2011

    Regarding AutoGlym HD……….

    I have used the product over the past several years and (of course doing everything right before as a perfectly prepped finish is beyond essential…….) I must critically and objectively admit that I am always beyond satisfied with AutoGlym HD, as well, a number of their other products.
    BTW, I live in two locations that are both true four season environments, each with heavy snow. One is at an average elevation of 300m, the other a good 2,500m+++, so summer rain is no stranger at one, the other renowned for searing radiation when the snow is not flying. In other words, both are severe environments.
    The folks at AutoGlym have created a very solid product that I appreciate from beginning of application, moreover to the highly durable, long-lasting finish. The shine is deep, rich and thankfully not overly shiny if you know what I mean. It allows a well polished finish – especially non metallic finishes – to exhibit a richness that is soft and luxurious. Resulting shine that is too shiny is, to my taste, “plastic”.
    While not the “end all to end all” waxes (none are), it's a great product and again, its durability really needs to be praised.

    Throughout the entire year it stands up and then some and on the everyday vehicles we have which are all non metallic paint, I randomly get unsolicited compliments on “how beautiful…….” any of our cars are. Small wonder.

    Reply

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