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Thread: T-Cut. Is It Really That Bad??

  
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    Dave KG's Avatar
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    T-Cut. Is It Really That Bad??

    ... No. Well, thats my conclusion from this testing anyway.

    On with the show...

    Kicked off on one of my favourite test panels, this dark red metallic bonnet. Not sure what car its from but its a nice colour. Popped some swirls in with some wire wool...



    Being a metallic paint colour, I decided to go for the T-Cut Metallic:



    Now this is fairly runny stuff so care had to be taken with the bottle to ensure it doesn't go spilling all over the paint. I started out by using a soft Meguiars foam applicator...



    The polish was worked as I would work any other more popular polish - medium to firm pressure and work for a good couple of minutes per section. Alas, the results were, at this stage, not too impressive with a lot of the marring still left in the paint:



    So - not aggressive enough (contrary to popular belief of T-Cut!)... So, lets up the ante a little and get one of the old super coarse Sonus German pads:



    This was then worked in as before, firm pressure and straight lines to maintain the pressure and worked for a good three or four minutes to try and get the best from the abrasives.



    The results...



    The defects removed, but the aggression of the pad and polish combo here as marred the paint itself and this is the complaint often levelled at T-Cut. But we certainly cannot deny its ability to remove the defects here!

    So, back out with the soft Meguiars pads and worked as above to try and remove the marring by hand and we get the following resutls:



    Better. But still not great, I'm sure you'll agree. It would seem that depsite working for a long time, I was having trouble breaking the abrasives down suitably to generate a decent finish.

    So... out with the rotary polisher, and a LakeCountry white polishing pad. This time, I went for the T-Cut Wax, a two in one polish and wax product which if we were to line it up alongside products more familiar to the land of detailing, its lining up against the likes of Dodo Need For Speed, Meguiars #66. Two well recommended products, but you know, the humble T-Cut has something to offer.

    Worked on the rotary polisher, at speeds of up to 1800rpm, it stayed nice and wet and had a pleasent working time and nice smooth motion of the rotary - not dry and nasty, but very nice to work with in the same way Meguiars #80 is! Worked using the Zenith point technique, the results were actually really rather good:





    The finish perhaps lacks the sheer clarity of the likes of Menzerna PO85RD Final Finish, but its still a very nice looking finish here and if I had removed the names from the bottle, I'm sure many would agree that the results here are worthy of note!!

    Some more swirls for fun:



    And forgetting working by hand, straight in with the rotary and T-Cut Metallic. Worked using the Zenith point technique, it was nice and wet and had a good working time and was pleasant to use - yes, T-Cut was nice to use. The results it achieved were also certainly nothing to be sniffed at:







    Perhaps lacking the sheer clarity of Menz Final Finish here, but lets not forget this is a taboo product generating these finishes and they are really rather good, especially given the harsh cut of the product - this removed a notable amount of paint here (circa 10um of paint) and highlights its capabilities as a product capable of serious correction yet also finishing down very well...

    For comparison, the above finish was then finished using Menzerna PO85RD Final Finish on a Meguiars finishing pad, one of the best finsihing combos out there... the results:





    Definitely a small improvement made to the overall gloss and clarity here, but this is what you would expect for following any aggressive cutting polish.



    So - in summary, is T-Cut really as bad as we say?? Well, when working by hand it can certainly be argues so as it is very difficult to break down the abrasives suitably and while it can certainly correct, arguably better than just about any other hand polish, it cannot finish down very well. However, it would make a great option by hand for severe defect removal so long as you were willing to follow with a lighter finishing polish such as ScratchX.

    On machine though and we see that T-Cut is well up there in terms of performance, lining up favourably against cutting polishes for correction ability and its finishing ability. It can cut as well as #83, worked long enough it will approach #84 yet retain #83's ability to finish down to an LSP ready finish. It really isn't as bad as its reputation suggests when you really work the product on a machine polisher.

    Food for thought

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    Interesting read that. I have used T-cut before on the GF's car to remove some car park scratches, and although I didn't work it anywhere near as hard as you have, followed up with SRP it improved the paint work no end. And completely got rid of some marks from where people had been brushing up against the paintwork with jeans, handbags etc.

    Its a handy product to have if you don't have access to a machine.

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    T-Cut gets a lot of bad press, but used in moderation it can produce acceptable results in relation to what is required.

    I normally use it when i have bought a different car which has invariably been left to go dull over a period of years, my last 2 cars especially as they were white and the T-Cut brought the finish back to an acceptable depth of colour, ready for me to then carry on with proper polishes and waxes.

    This thread was an interesting read, well done mate

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    Interesting read that Dave. Might have to do some experimenting myself, despite how much I hate T-C*t
    Gaz

    No longer owns an Astra


    Bye bye VXR Castle Combe Edition - because it's done more laps of Castle Combe than most Bergs have of the Ring

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    Thank you Dave : mrgreen: I feel vindicated

    You'll find it works better with a good old cotton rag, rather than a open cell foam applicator pad

    T-cut gets a bad press, but that's usually IMO from people who don't use it correctly, as it's less forgiving when used willy nilly than more modern (popular/fad) products.

    I'd like to see a test using Colgate toothpaste, as that is one of the best fine scratch removers on the planet - you should see my friends fire brass fire surround which was polished using only colgate

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    Quote Originally Posted by gazTD View Post
    Interesting read that Dave. Might have to do some experimenting myself, despite how much I hate T-C*t
    Let me know when you do, I'm coming down there with a camera

    Interesting idea with the Colgate, Geoff. Which one are we talking, just the boggo standard white stuff with no bells or whistles?
    Actively proving that post counts mean jack sh*t since 1971

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    Yup, normal boggo white colgate - try it on a copper coin first and you'll see what I mean

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    Hmm...

    Tube of <insert brand name> scratch remover = around a fiver
    Tube of Colgate = £1.50 tops.

    Logged for future reference me thinks. Plus you'll have a minty fresh motor
    Actively proving that post counts mean jack sh*t since 1971

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    It'll protect against cavities too

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    T-Cut is ok. The problem comes with people like my mate who bought a brand new focus a few months back and started talking about how he was going to wash and T-cut the car at the weekend.

    Lots of people just don't know what it's for.
    Previous Astras: 1994 Cesaro 1.8 16v | 2002 SXi 1.6 16v | 2001 Coupé 2.0 Turbo | 1999 LS 1.6 16v
    Other Vauxhalls: 2001 Vectra 1.8 16v| 2003 Vectra GSi 3.2 V6 | 2005 Signum CDTi 150

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