That’s what we call ‘bush pinstripes’ here in Australia! And if you love your pristine paint, you want to avoid these at all costs.
So what are they exactly?
If you’re lucky enough to never have heard the screech of a stick run along the side of your 4WD, then I’m glad I’ve caught you early! Quite often, the track you are exploring will start off nice and wide. Then you watch it slowly close in as you go further into something you would no longer consider walking down. Vegetation doesn’t respect the boundaries of a four wheel drive track!
The leaves won’t do too much harm, it’s the dead branches and twigs that leave the lasting damage. Most of them damage the clear coat, the nastier ones cut right down to the paint.
Can they be fixed?
The good news is…yes! The bad news is…only if you get a paint respray. If you only copped a few light scratches, do the fingernail test to see how bad it is. Run your fingernail over the scratch in question. If you can feel the difference in texture, that scratch is unfortunately a feature in your paint forever. A professional detailer will be able to reduce the appearance of many lighter scratches, but this involves stripping layers off your clear coat. Do that too many times, and you’ll wish you had the pinstripes back!
Two foolproof methods to prevent bush pinstripes
Prevention is always better than a cure! The first way to prevent the damage is just to stick with city driving. All you have to worry about there is trolley dings! If you still want to go bush, you can try saying “I just won’t go down those tracks”. But trust me, somehow the adventure always ends up there.
What you really need is your own Rhinohide set! Just clip the moulded panels down the sides of your vehicle – and worry no more. These will defend against objects that would otherwise cut right through your paint.
At the end of the day, your 4WD will look good as new on the streets – just pop the Rhinohide back in their bag.
Remember; try and have a little sympathy for any mates not sporting Rhinohide. They have one more thing to remember the weekend by!