Ferrari 355 F1 Berlinetta Ne Plus Ultra

January 26th, 2010

January is usually a slow and steady month at Polished Bliss, but this was not the case this year due to the exceptional amount of snow that fell early in the month. Not only did the snow disrupt order dispatch for over a week, but several customers were also unable to bring their cars into us for detailing services to be performed. This necessitated some painful reorganisation of our diary, but fortunately we were still able to squeeze in the Ferrari 355 F1 Berlinetta shown in the video below. Just over ten years old with 22k on the clock and mechanically excellent, the only thing letting the car down was the state of the bodywork, which showed all of the classic signs of many years of improper washing and maintenance. Ferrari paint is usually quite soft on pre-2005 cars, so we originally allocated four days to complete a major paint correction detail. However, early on in the detail it became apparent that front and rear end cosmetic resprays had left a rock hard finish that was going to require substantially more work if a near perfect result was going to be achieved. In light of this, the detail was upgraded to full Ne Plus Ultra status and ultimately more than 112 hours were spent restoring the bodywork to near perfect condition.

The detail commenced in the usual way with a comprehensive 4 hour wash process, albeit this time performed in near freezing conditions and steady rainfall – keeping the cameras dry was challenging to say the least! With the exterior, arches, engine bay and panel shuts all properly washed the car was then rolled inside to be clayed in order to remove any remaining bonded surface contaminants. Once clayed and fully dried off, the remaining 2 hours of day one were then spent removing badges, grills and number plates in preparation for machine polishing and photographing the various paint defects that were evident all over the car. The next 80 working hours (over 5 days!) were spent machine polishing the bodywork to remove these defects; as we mentioned above, originally we had hoped that a two stage polishing process was going to suffice, but it soon became clear that three stages were going to be required. In the first stage, aggressive wool cutting pads and polishing compounds were used to remove an average of 4-5 microns of paint and correct all but the deepest defects (some of the worst scratches were too deep to be fully removed given the thickness of paint on the car). In stage two, light cutting foam pads and polishing compounds were used to nip out the defects left by the action of the wool pads in stage one; this resulted in a further 1-2 microns of paint removal over much of the car. In stage three, soft foam pads and ultra-fine finishing polishes were used to refine the finish and maximise sharpness and gloss.

Whilst Clark was busy machine polishing, our new detailer Colin spent 16 hours over two full working days removing all four wheels and thoroughly detailing the arches, brake callipers and inner rims. What looked like ten years worth of grime and tar was fully removed, and all of the surfaces were then treated with appropriate protectants to ensure that they remain looking great well into the future. Tasks like this can be long and tedious, so credit to Colin for showing tenacity and patience throughout the process (although with Clark as his mentor he has no choice!). With the correction work all done and the wheels and arches looking spot on, all that remained was for all of the minor details to be attended too. In summary this involved: dusting down and vacuuming to remove all of the polishing dust; the addition of bespoke premium carnauba wax protection to the bodywork; vacuuming and dressing of the interior; polishing and cleaning of the glass inside and out; dressing of the engine bay; polishing and sealing of the exhaust tips; dressing of the exterior trims; dressing of the tyres; and a final wipe down with a top quality quick detailer to remove oily smears resulting from the curing of the wax layer. After 112 hours of work you would think we were done, but we then spent a further 4 hours photographing and filming the end result, and another four working days producing the video. As the old saying goes, ‘if you are going to do something, you might as well do it right’.

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44 Responses to “Ferrari 355 F1 Berlinetta Ne Plus Ultra”

  1. Jorge says:

    You are one inspiration for all of us, pro or not pro detailers… the video, soundtrack and off course yours work is something “Divine”. Congratulations. Best regards, Jorge (from Portugal).

  2. Top drawer work again guys! Superb results on one of my favourite cars. The owner must’ve been as delighted as you were relieved when it was finished! Great addition to the website too – a job well done by you all. Best wishes.

  3. Miguel Oliveira says:

    One more amazing work and video report! Just loved the last part with the water beading. Cheers from Portugal!

  4. dennis says:

    Like the video the soundtrack is spot on, cracking work as always. Regards, Den.

  5. Bart Klerkx says:

    Once again, amazing work. The 355 looks fantastic. And as said on twitter, great choice of music. Best regards, Bart.

  6. Peter Moncrieff says:

    I have viewed both your Lamborghini and Ferrari video’s and to say you are a perfectionist does not do you justice. Amazing results due to dedication, attention to detail and love for what you are doing. Great music and you have become a legend in your own time and inspired so many people including myself. Best wishes and look forward to your next challenge. Peter (Newcastle).

  7. Many thanks for all of the kind words folks. Although this one was very challenging we enjoyed it a lot, and we are looking forward to our next Ne Plus Ultra detail already; a solid black Bentley Arnage with very badly swirled paint. We will be making another video… so watch this space!

  8. David says:

    That was actually a joy to watch – well done!

  9. Kenneth Tang says:

    Clark must have been bloody freezing when he dipped his hand in the wash bucket lol! I actually like this video better than the first one, probably because of its slower pace and soother soundtrack. The paint defects are also perfectly photographed, it’s like being able to see them in person. If you would allow me to be anal, the poster of the Porsche at 6:24 should be changed, haha! As again, MASSIVELY AWESOME production and work effort. Thanks for sharing your professionalism and passion for perfection. Looking forward to your next video/write-ups.

  10. Mutz says:

    Just an incredible video from beginning to end! I’ve watched it countless times and I DO feel inspired by it. Polished Bliss’ dedication to do a flawless detail was palpable throughout. Watching Clark manipulate the Makita with such concentration was like watching the brush strokes of an artist at work. May I ask what the opening soundtrack is? It could not have been more appropriate! Well done guys, from every possible perspective! I CANNOT WAIT for your next video!

  11. Thanks again to everyone for the wonderful feedback – it inspires us to push ourselves further in the future. The first track on this video is ‘Cloud Shadows’ by Alex Plowright, which we found on Music Loops. We start filming again tomorrow…

  12. Mo says:

    Very good job. How do you guys manage to do it?

  13. Johan says:

    Respect from Holland!

  14. Pedro Cruz says:

    Great job, thanks for sharing. I learned from him. Phenomenal presentation!

  15. VooDoo says:

    Superb as always guys. That is amazing, truly inspiration in the world of detailing.

  16. Wahyu W says:

    Hi, I’m from DW, (Piratez_ica)… I’m fan of your work… very good result as always!

  17. Stunning work lads, truly inspirational. It’s great to see the masters at work.

  18. Christian says:

    That was a truly inspirational video, makes me want to go and clean my car right now! The car looks stunning guys, as always truly magnificent work.

  19. Ethan Kai says:

    Exceptional work, loved the water filming in the end. Quality.

  20. jman says:

    A W E S O M E work! And yes, water at the end was great to see.

  21. Viv says:

    Hi, I have just started doing up an old car of mine and searching for information found your video. This is complete inspiration as well as being very instructive. Please keep making films of your work. Awesome and great car! Thanks a million! Viv.

  22. Thanks Viv. There is another HD video short in the pipeline (a Ne Plus Ultra detail on a Bentley Arnage) but finding the time to edit it at the moment is proving to be nigh on impossible! Bear with us, once the spring rush is over we will make some time for it.

  23. arlo richmond says:

    What type of wax was used on the Ferrari 355 F1 Berlinetta Ne Plus Ultra in the video?

  24. In this instance we used a bespoke premium carnauba wax blend containing over 61% Brazilian No. 1 white carnauba by volume fortified with evergreen, honeydew, coconut, cantaloupe and sunflower oils, making it one of the world’s finest and most exclusive automotive waxes. It was a perfect choice for this amazing car!

  25. Joe says:

    As a fellow car detailing enthusiast/business owner, I just want to say excellent attention to detail and video to display your level of workmanship.

  26. Thanks for the kind feedback Joe, it’s much appreciated.

  27. Ben Jackson says:

    Hats off you you sir and your team.

  28. Keith says:

    Love it love it! The soundtrack is great I want it perfect for a long distance drive please give me details for the sound track?

  29. The main track is ‘Cloud Shadows’ by Alex Plowright. It’s a royalty free track available on Music Loops. The rest of the sound effects were mashed together from various royalty free sources on the web.

  30. Aivaras says:

    Fantastic job!

  31. Clark as a fellow colleague and professional detailer myself you are an inspiration to me because of your very high standards in detailing workmanship which are second to none. Thanks once again for a fantastic video of this Ferrari and your dedication to your craft you have inspired me to excel even more! Regards, Mario.

  32. colin says:

    Hi guys, fantastic job, what’s the name of the wheel brush you used? Looks just the job but can’t find one anywhere?

  33. Sorry for the delayed reply; our spam filter captured your comment in error. The brush used to clean the wheels during this detail was the EZ Detail Wheel Brush. This and all of our other wheel cleaning brushes we use can be found in the relevant section of our online store.

  34. Roy says:

    Fantastic video, I wish I could afford a Ferrari F355 F1 in that condition!

  35. Vlad says:

    Man, that video makes me cry… outstanding work!

  36. Alan says:

    I’m just gobsmacked! You’re obviously the dogs, nice…

  37. Young says:

    P.R.O.P.E.R. Thank you from Atlanta GA!

  38. Jon Clemett says:

    Superb! Any owner needing confirmation that car detailing is worth every penny just needs to watch that video. The results are stunning – truly inspirational!

  39. Bill says:

    Hi, it’s an unbelievable job you’ve done, but what do you use when detailing the engine bay?

  40. On this occasion we used R222 Total Auto Wash to clean the engine bay at the wash stage, and then 303 Aerospace Protectant to dress it afterwards. Our usual process is described in detail in our guide entitled “Caring for modern engines”.

  41. rob waugh says:

    Great video. What is the piece of music? Why was detailing of the paintwork chosen rather than a respray of the entire car? Then you would have no defects whatsoever. I presume the cost for 112 hours work worked out to be cheaper than a respray by a large margin.

  42. The music track is Cloud Shadows by Alex Plowright. Repainting a car like this to a high standard would cost 5-10 times as much as a Ne Plus Ultra detail. Plus, a lot of owners like to preserve the original paint wherever possible.

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