C. Charles Hahn > Gallery > Cars > 1999 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet

1999 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet

Full Correction Interior/Exterior Detail with Opti-Coat **ENHANCED WRITE-UP INSIDE!**


When I first encountered this 1999 (996) Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet, it was in storage at a climate controlled facility where I was working on a 7-series BMW (E38) with a friend. This car’s owner came by to pick it up and due to a dead battery he was unable to get it started. While we were helping him get the car running, he mentioned wanting to get some detail work done on the car. I was later contacted about setting up an appointment for what turned into about 30 hours of work over the course of 4 days.

This 12 year old Porsche hadn’t been detailed in a few years and the neglect was really starting to show, despite the car only having traveled 22,400 miles in its lifetime. First up was the interior:



Not so bad at first glance, just general soiling consistent with a convertible that has been driven and not deep-cleaned in a while. A closer inspection reveals a bigger problem however:



The stain was attacked with Turtle Wax’s PowerOUT! Oxy spot cleaner and scrubbed with a Libman kitchen brush, followed by a treatment with the steamer and Shop Vac extraction. Before the stain had a chance to dry or set, a second round of this process was performed, this time substituting Folex for the TW. Here was the result:


Not a bad result, but in person the stain still looked much more noticeable than the pictures let on. I determined that the only way to get a better result would be to dye the affected area. The surrounding trim was masked off prior to dye application:

Dye was then applied to the area. In this pic the color looks a bit “off” from the rest of the carpet, but the carpet had yet to be re-steamed (to promote better penetration of the color and a more effective blend) and brushed to even out the texture of the fibers. Again, in person the result looked a bit different than the picture:

With the stain removal efforts complete, I turned my attention to the leather seats, which had quite a bit of ground in dirt:

Cleaning was performed using Optimum Power Clean at 3:1. Here’s a 50/50 shot:

Next, I raised the convertible top about 90% of the way and released the retaining cables for the rear portion of it. This enabled me to access the area where the top is stored while in the downward position:

While the area was not particularly bad (a vacuum and a lint roller took care of it nicely), I did grab a 50/50 shot here as well to show the type of debris that can make its way in with the top:

Finally, the floor mats were cleaned with Folex and the steamer:

After all was said and done, the interior was restored to its like-new glory:


Now that the interior was squared away, it was time to move on. First up was the engine bay. Being at the rear of the car the engine bay wasn’t too dirty:

After being cleaned with OPC and dried, dressing came compliments of CD2 Engine Detailer:

OK, on to the elephant in the room. How does the paintwork look? Here goes:


Drag slicks….


The car was washed, IronX’d, and clayed. Here’s what I was left with:

Pretty scoured. I chose the passenger door to perform a test spot, and after going through a number of different combinations that didn’t give me impressive results (Uno, M105, Optimum Hyper Compound all missed the mark, as did the DA MF system) I landed on Menzerna SIP on a Meguiar’s W-8207 polishing pad with my Dynabrade DA.

To start with, I had lots of swirls:

After two rounds of SIP, here’s where we got:

The line above the fluorescent light isn’t a scratch, it’s a reflection of electrical conduit on my ceiling.

There were lots of RIDS all around the car as well. Here’s one example from the convertible top lid, close to the edge of the panel:

For removal, I used 4000 grit MicroMesh on the recommendation of David Fermani, who I called to consult prior to performing the repairs. The sanding scratches were removed with SIP on a 4″ polishing pad on the rotary, followed by a pass with PO85RD on DA:

I needed to get the car done on schedule, so I didn’t have time to continue with thorough photo documentation. The numerous other RIDS and etching areas were mostly dealt with the same way (4000 or 6000 grit MicroMesh) but the hood was sanded down with 3000 grit Unigrit because of the massive number of RIDS and bird excrement etchings, some of which were still too deep to safely remove. You can see examples of these at the far left and right of this picture:

In spite of these issues, the surface was left with restored clarity and no swirls to be found:

Sadly there was no sun to be found by the time I was finished, but here were the results after final prep and Opti-Coat:




The front and rear bumpers need to be repainted, at which point I will coat them as well.

Thanks for looking!