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Repairing key scratches

I have a bright red 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee. My ex wife (ain’t love grand?) took a key to the paint job, leaving a dozen or so scratches on all four doors and the liftgate, ranging from six inches to two feet long. Most of them are confined to the clearcoat, although some of the deeper ones have reached the color coat, but don’t appear to have hit the primer or bare metal. What is the best way to go about fixing this so as to get decent results? I will be happy as long as it looks better than it does now.

You can buy scratch removal / reduction products at an auto parts store. You might try some Meguiar’s Scratch-X and see if that makes a difference. I used this on my jeep and it worked well. Auto parts stores also sell “touch-up pens.” If you can find the proper color, this might also be a solution.

Scratch’s like that I would use a airbrush. Go to auto paint store and get a pint of Acrylic Lacquer to match the color of your jeep and a pint of clear. Also get a qt of wax & grease remover, its a cleaner that you will use before you paint. You will also need some rubbing compound. You can probably find a U tube video that shows how this is done. Its some work, just not hard. If you do it right it will be almost invisible. If you like to know step by step I can post it. I too have a ex!!

If you’re not familiar with body work (and if you were, you wouldn’t be asking), and if you want to keep this for a while, I would go to a body shop and pony up the bucks to have it done right.

A proper repair by a body shop should be covered under your comprehensive policy.
They may want criminal charges filed so they can go after her to recover the cost. Which, in this situation, is appropriate.

Ain’t love grand?

Love is grand! the question is how many!

Many of the less severe scratches came out of the clearcoat with wet sanding with 1200 grit paper, but the clearcoat around where the scratches were has now lost its luster. I was thinking of trying some rubbing compound and/or a 3000 grit pad on a DA or electric drill to get the shine back. For the deeper scratches, I was thinking of filling in the valley with touch up paint, wet sanding (probably with something finer than the 1200 grit as it seems a little aggressive for this job so far), applying some clear, then wet sanding and buffing. Does any of this sound right?

Criminal charges sound nice about now, but are out of the question. The damage was done a long time ago, when we were still married and before I learned some of the life lessons I took away from this experience (to put it nicely and vaguely). I am at a point now where I wish to sell the vehicle and am trying to make it presentable enough to sell.

Waterboy: I believe the saying goes: love is grand, divorce can be several hundred grand. At least that is what I am seeing.

Mark, step away from the sandpaper. If this is a car you don’t mind experimenting on, fine, but you may be creating problems with the clear coat. Buffing with a drill can be particularly dangerous to the finish. But if you feel comfortable doing it, have at it!

I can see a paint job in this guy future.

Sorry I asked.

Mark, you’re asking about one of the most difficult things to do, we don’t know your skills, the value of the car involved, nothing. Can you do it? Sure. Will it look great? Who knows? It takes lots of experience to have this turn out ok, I’ve seen pros not do a good job, and I’m responsible for a bad one.