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Steps to clay, use rubbing compound, polishing compound & waxing


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There is confusion for me what to do after using rubbing compound. In the past I'd wash, clay, wash & wax. I have a 2011 Liberty Renegade I want to practice on before I do it on the nicer vehicle. So I will be washing, claying (not drying), rewashing, drying then using a rubbing compound on the driver door panel that's pretty scratched. After that is where I get confused, would it be noticeable that I did just that part & do I use a polishing compound before waxing or just wax. Some stuff I've read said if not done right the polishing before waxing has done some damage? I may be working on other cars in the future so I want to make it look better & not worse.                                                                                                                                                                                              Thank you in advance for any advice.

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It is going to depend on how the compound finishes out and the hardness of the paint.  A polish will refine the finish after compounding and impart gloss prior to whatever form of protection you choose to use.  

 

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On 9/14/2020 at 8:18 AM, MicheleD said:

There is confusion for me what to do after using rubbing compound. In the past I'd wash, clay, wash & wax. I have a 2011 Liberty Renegade I want to practice on before I do it on the nicer vehicle. So I will be washing, claying (not drying), rewashing, drying then using a rubbing compound on the driver door panel that's pretty scratched. After that is where I get confused, would it be noticeable that I did just that part & do I use a polishing compound before waxing or just wax. Some stuff I've read said if not done right the polishing before waxing has done some damage? I may be working on other cars in the future so I want to make it look better & not worse.                                                                                                                                                                                              Thank you in advance for any advice.

First off, Welcome!

 

You don't say if you are using a machine for the polishing, so I will respond as if you are working by hand.  The rubbing compound should be fairly aggressive, so using a finishing polish to refine the paint more is always a good plan.  Think of it like sandpaper in woodworking - start with a low number grit to remove the 'big' stuff, then finish with a higher number grit to smooth out the surface. 

 

If you will do more cars in the future, you should look into polishing with a machine - it is much faster and produces better results.  A random orbital, dual action machine (Porter Cable, Adam's Swirl Killers, etc.) is fairly simple to learn to use, and if you are mindful with the operation of them the only way they will damage the paint is if you drop them on the car!

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