07-23-2010, 04:28 PM
Trying to assemble a definitive list of relative paint hardness based on make/model/year would be an exercise in frustration (and probably confusion) as well.
Will a noob to machine polishing consider a particular paint to be "hard" while an experienced pro will see it differently? What about the fact that auto manufactures often change paint systems mid year, or don't use the same paints in all factories?
You end up with questions like this:
Originally Posted by 95formulalt1
would this work on a 05 benz?!?
But which 05 Benz? What factory is it from? Built in Germany or the US?
Of course, assembling such a list would blow apart a lot of misconceptions regarding specific vehicles. I can't count how many times I've read a comment like "BMW has clear coat that is so hard that you have to use _______ to correct it." In some cases, yep, that BMW paint can be crazy hard - but I've also worked on factory BMW paint that was a breeze to correct.
But the biggest problem lies in the fact that there is no definitive empirical measurement for "paint hardness" as it relates to polishing or leveling of the coating (at least none I've ever found). Yes, there are a variety of methods to measure specific hardness of any material, including coatings (Brinell, Vickers, Rockwell, Knoop, etc) but they all make use of indentation measurements. And applying perpendicular force to a material in a fine point is quite different from trying to level that same material through an abrasive process.
But no matter how you would rank different paints, you've still got that one enormous variable - skill. Not everyone can play a piano like Beethoven or Thelonius Monk..... play guitar like Jimi Hendrix or Eric Clapton.... Or play a buffer like Kevin Brown or Todd Helme.