Porsche 928 First Wash in 15 Years

This week at the AMMO Studio, a Porsche 928 is getting a detail after 15 years of sitting outside! It all started in late February 2021 when a buddy found a forgotten 928 buried in the snow on the side of a house. After 6 months of knocking on the door and negotiating on the phone, the owner agreed to let the car go. So with the snow melted away, the 928 was transported to the AMMO Studio thanks to the gentlemen at NAMC.

Barn Find Porsche 928 on way to AMMO NYC Studio

Underneath the AMMO Studio Lights, the 928 was a complete mess of mold, moss, leaves, dirt, and black stuff covering every paint panel. My first step was to turn on the hot water for the pressure washer before going to town on the paint (tip: make sure seals are intact). The wash was visually stunning as the years of accumulated dirt blew off revealing beautiful white paint underneath. Prior to the power wash, you would never have guessed this was a white Porsche!

Porsche 928 first wash in 15 years

Next I opened the hood and blew out the vermin nests, acorns, and junk from the engine bay so our good friend/master mechanic Ted could start the repairs in a few weeks. Ted can fix anything so it was my goal to give him a safe place to work as the mice had clearly lived on top of the intake manifold. With the engine bay cleared up we got the Porsche on the lift to take a look at the underbody.

Mouse infested engine bay in Porsche 928 barn find

First I unlocked the wheel locks and loosed the bolts in preparation to remove the wheels. I mixed Boost, Brute, and Titan 12 in the foam gun and soaked the body with suds allowing the cleaners to dwell. With the car up in the air, I inspected the under-tray and saw rodent urine dripping from the undertray…gross! I solved the pee issue with a healthy dose of Titan 12 Degreaser followed by Brute in the foam gun. I also foamed the suspension components and wheel wells agitating the foam with the wheel brush. After the big scrub down, I gave the under-tray and wheel wells a cleansing rinse unfortunately soiling my floor in the process (thanks to Dr. Goop, I installed a new floor shortly after!).

Larry detailing bottom of nasty Porsche 928

I completed the exterior wash with Brute Soap focusing on the seals and tight spots with my seam and stitch brush. It felt like there was a never ending buildup of dirt especially in the panel gaps. The engine bay and removed under-tray parts were cleaned with Titan 12 and another rinse. The chrome wheels were in bad shape but I cleaned up the faces with Brute to restore some of the original shine. 

Barn find porsche 928 on lift at AMMO NYC Studio

With the paint clean, I noticed some deeply embedded contaminants which couldn’t be removed with normal techniques. I called detail guru Kevin Brown (buffdaddy.com) and he described this phenomenon as “pinching” in which the contaminants sink deeper into the paint as the surface  heats and cools. This repeated process over the last 15 years caused the paint to expand and contract, thus allowing the mold to sink further into the finish. The solution was to carefully heat the paint to open up the pores for effective cleaning. I used the AMMO US Steamer with the “sniper” nozzle which allowed me to carefully focus the steam output on the mold blemishes. 

embedded mold and dirt in old Porsche 928 paint

After the exterior clean, I switched gears and worked on the simple 928 interior. I couldn’t help but notice how perfect the drivers position was with the gear lever set perfectly in reach. I began with an intensive vacuum session which cleared out a ton of cobwebs! Similar to the paint, I heated the leather surfaces first to open the pores for Lather Interior Cleanser. I agitated Lather with my Dual Density Brush and the microfiber towel lifted the dislodged dirt off the hide. I followed up with compressed air to accelerate the drying process and removed one of the rear seats for additional cleaning.

Mildew removal on Porsche 928 seats and interior 

The dirty trunk presented a challenge as I couldn’t blast it with water so I opted for Frothe Anti-Salt in the Aerator which enabled better control. I blasted the dirty panels with the Aerator and Frothe’s slick lubrication allowed me to scoop up the dirt safely with a microfiber towel. As I was finishing up, a knock on the door from the mailman announced a special delivery. My very own AMMO Steam Vacuum had arrived just in time for the floor-mats. Since the mats were in decent shape, the combined capabilities of an extractor and steamer in this vacuum machine made the job simple. The carpets didn’t get soaked in the process and I was able to move on to reinstalling the wheels.

AMMO NYC Steam vacuum extractor  

Since my floor was getting redone by the experts at Dr. Goop, we pushed the 928 outside temporarily. The following week with my amazing brand new floor installed, the 928 rolled back inside for paint correction. The white single stage paint required me to manage tons of residue, so I opted for a Meguiar’s red foam pad and an exorbitant amount of polish. The pad combined with the excess liquid was able to effectively “hold” all the dead paint. However, I had to blow out the pad several times and switch to a new one halfway through the paint correction.

Larry polishing white Porsche paint on barn find 928 

After the paint correction, the 928 was covered in polish residue so I washed again quickly before touching up the paint chips. I returned the clean mats then finished the interior with Mousse Conditioner to restore the suppleness of the leather. On the paint, I added Reflex Pro which added protection and gloss to the freshly polished panels. After cleaning the glass with Obey, the final touch was to add Mud dressing to the tires and trim for pickup the next day. The Porsche 928 looked brand new after the detail and I started speccing out upgrades in my head. The design is super cool and I think these grand touring Porsche’s will become more popular. I kind of want one now… Thanks for supporting AMMONYC and stay tuned for a new addition to the fleet next week! 

 freshly detailed Porsche 928 barn find at AMMO NYC Studio


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