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Discussion Starter #1
SWMBO bought me a cheapie ($30) orbital buffer for Christmas so I finally decided to try it out. Washed my Infiniti J30 and got to work. It was ridiculously easy. Used the foam bonnet, put a little polish on the bonnet, polish car. It's not necessary to put any pressure on the buffer - just move it around. Doesn't sling polish around so you don't have to clean the windshield, etc. afterward. Took me about an hour and it looks fantastic. No swirl marks, etc.

Makes me feel like an idiot for all those hours I spent polishing cars by hand.
 

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what brand of orbital is it? I may want to start doing it myself....

Mel ::
 

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I was thinking of getting one but I understood them to do only waxing, not polishing. What did you use as the 'media'?
 

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If you get something like the PorterCable 7336 (or 7424), dual-action polishers, they can do light compounding, all polishing, and apply waxes/sealers/glazes.

Makes short work of anything that you don't need the power of a rotary buffer for, and there's essentially no danger of burning through the paint (like there is with a rotary).

I've spent $25 on cheap orbitals more times than I care to recall. The $200 I spent on the PC7336 and an assortment of pads is BY FAR the best money I've spent on my cars in a while. www.autopia.org, specifically http://www.autopia.org/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=14421 has tons more info.

The $25 orbitals are better than waxing by hand, but they are useless for removing swirl marks or polishing.

--Jim
 

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Discussion Starter #5
It's some kind of off-brand. Walmart, Pep Boys, O'Reilly, etc. all carry them. I've got a 6" and it's kind of hard to get replacement pads for it. The 6" replacement pads don't fit quite right.

As for media, I used both Meguiar's Deep Crystal Polish, Meguiar's Cleaner/Wax, and Meguiar's Deep Crystal Wax. It did a good job putting the media on but did not buff it off very well. I used some old cotton t-shirts to buff it off.

It doesn't seem to work very well with aggressive polishes - just the mild ones. But the polish did remove the "spider webs" from my black J30. You have to try different media on different cars. The Meguiar's Deep Crystal polish worked great on my dark green Shelby (not clear-coated), but the Cleaner/Wax worked better on my black J30 (modern clear coat).
 
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