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polisher rookie questions


ragin_cajuns
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So I'm getting ready to buy a polisher - probably going with the Porter Cable since its the most affordable.  I've been watching videos and reading the forum but have a few questions.

 

I will strip wash and clay first then use correcting polish.  It seems like there are 2 pad options for the correcting polish if I am reading things correctly.  The orange foam pad and the microfiber cutting pad.  Do they do the same job or do you need both?

 

Then follow that with the paint finishing polish with the white pad and paint sealant with the grey pad- correct?

 

I should be getting the 6" pads for the porter cable correct?

 

Thanks for the clarification.

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You have the pad colors correct. There's two type pads for the Correcting Polish:  the Microfiber pad has more cut than the foam pad.  The foam will finish down a lot better. 

 

Recommendation:  Start w/ the foam pad. If that doesn't cut it (pun not intended) step up to the microfiber and then step back down to the foam before finishing with the Finishing Polish.

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The PC is a fine starter machine, especially with the 6" pads.  The MF pads allow it do much more correction than the foam pads.  It will be slower than the newer machines, and a 'rougher' running too, but it is very versatile machine. 

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Be mindful of how much correction is needed before deciding which pads to use. If your paint is in pretty good shape (very fine scratches, little or no swirling) there is no need to use PCP w/orange pad. Just go straight to PFP w/white.

 

Of course, if you need correction - the posts above will get you started.

 

Good luck. And post pics!

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Perfect - thanks for the info.  The wife's SUV is dark blue and I can see fine scratches / swirl marks so I'll go with orange foam pad and correcting polish first.

 

What are suggestions for my truck - as you can see below it is light colored and brand new.  Would I get any benefit from a polisher with it?  Does it pay for me to strip wash, clay (again) and apply finishing polish or reapply paint sealant with the polisher?

 

Thanks

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Perfect - thanks for the info.  The wife's SUV is dark blue and I can see fine scratches / swirl marks so I'll go with orange foam pad and correcting polish first.

 

What are suggestions for my truck - as you can see below it is light colored and brand new.  Would I get any benefit from a polisher with it?  Does it pay for me to strip wash, clay (again) and apply finishing polish or reapply paint sealant with the polisher?

 

Thanks

GM clear coat is pretty tough on our trucks so you should be fine with the correcting polish and finish polish on foam pads.  With the PC it may take several passes.  

 

If there is protection on it now, yes to strip wash if you are going to polish.  As for clay, depends on the last time you did it and if it needs to be done again before polishing.

 

but definately a plus to put down paint sealant with a polisher as it will apply it evenly

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Posted this in another thread but it is useful here too:

 

Do a 2 ft. x 2 ft. test area to determine how much correction is needed, and how many passes will be needed.  This is also where you will test the 'least aggressive' method first.  Pick a few places that on the hood, tape them off, and try your first combo - does it meet your expectations?  If yes, then you are set to do the rest of the car.  If not, then go more aggressive,  After using Correcting Polish to remove the defects determine if Finishing Polish is required - go over the test area with that and compare with the unfinished area.  Now you have your process for the rest of the car.

 

Tape off trim, window and sunroof rubber surrounds, and emblems

 

Go slower than you think you should

 

Make sure the pad is flat on the surface while you are working - very important with the Rupes machines, but good form for other machines

 

Take breaks - It is a marathon, not a sprint!

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Posted this in another thread but it is useful here too:

 

Do a 2 ft. x 2 ft. test area to determine how much correction is needed, and how many passes will be needed.  This is also where you will test the 'least aggressive' method first.  Pick a few places that on the hood, tape them off, and try your first combo - does it meet your expectations?  If yes, then you are set to do the rest of the car.  If not, then go more aggressive,  After using Correcting Polish to remove the defects determine if Finishing Polish is required - go over the test area with that and compare with the unfinished area.  Now you have your process for the rest of the car.

 

Tape off trim, window and sunroof rubber surrounds, and emblems

 

Go slower than you think you should

 

Make sure the pad is flat on the surface while you are working - very important with the Rupes machines, but good form for other machines

 

Take breaks - It is a marathon, not a sprint!

 

All great advice. I saw years ago from a former great on this website a side by side comparison of correction polish with and without finish polish on a dark car. It was amazing to me how much better the side with finish polish looked on the dark color. Just another thing to try on your smaller area to determine your plan of attack. 

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Posted this in another thread but it is useful here too:

 

Do a 2 ft. x 2 ft. test area to determine how much correction is needed, and how many passes will be needed.  This is also where you will test the 'least aggressive' method first.  Pick a few places that on the hood, tape them off, and try your first combo - does it meet your expectations?  If yes, then you are set to do the rest of the car.  If not, then go more aggressive,  After using Correcting Polish to remove the defects determine if Finishing Polish is required - go over the test area with that and compare with the unfinished area.  Now you have your process for the rest of the car.

 

Tape off trim, window and sunroof rubber surrounds, and emblems

 

Go slower than you think you should

 

Make sure the pad is flat on the surface while you are working - very important with the Rupes machines, but good form for other machines

 

Take breaks - It is a marathon, not a sprint!

 

this is the first time I see mention of taping off rubber trim.  not good to get a little polish on it?

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this is the first time I see mention of taping off rubber trim.  not good to get a little polish on it?

depends...if it was just coated with VRT, you are fine to get polish on it b/c it will wipe off.  If it isn't coated, it is hard to get polish off.

 

If you do tape, make sure you use a low tack tape like blue painters tape

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this is the first time I see mention of taping off rubber trim.  not good to get a little polish on it?

 

The rubber will make the pads dirty, not so much that you cannot use them, but a little precaution will keep them useful/ceaner longer.

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