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Discussion Starter #1
Buffing and polishing - what does it do? Smooth out the paint?

Short and simple.

Thanks,

Gary
 

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Makes a garage paint job look better than 90% of the "professional" jobs. The process smooths out the paint and leaves a flat surface for max shine.
 

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Buffing is making the paint shiny, whereas polishing involves leveling the surface of paint for a clearer and mirror like reflection.

Rule of thumb - if your reflection is crystal clear in the paint (like a mirror) without any blurring, then it has most likely been polished.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What do you need to buff the paint - some sort of polishing wheel attachment for a grinder?

Me thinks ill try and learn some of this stuff for a home-done paint patch up.

Thanks,

Gary
 

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Careful - the grinder turns too fast - you'll burn the paint.

For buffing, you'll need a rendom orbit buffer which turns in random patterns so you do get swirl marks.

For polishing, you can use a drill attachment but it ends up being awkward holding it upright. Home polishers are sold fo around $50-$100 which is your best bet.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks!

Sorry to keep asking more questions, but is there generally any period of time you should wait before buffering? Or any types of paint it doesnt work well with?

I'll be practicing first anyway, no way i'll try the car first!

Thanks,

Gary
 

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Usually when buffing you are applying wax. You don't want to seal the paint before it cures. 60 days sounds right to me before then. Buffing won't help the shine that much if it is new paint.

There are different opinions about polishing - some say you have to wait until curing, others say if you wait too long the paint becomes too hard.

Maybe someone else has some thoughts?

BTW, why do you need to polish/buff?
 

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The work is easier when done right after painting.
Start by wet sanding the car with 1000-1200 grit. Stay away from edges. Keep the paper wet. Use a rubber block if you have one.
Cut the paint with a commercial buffing compond. See your paint supply store for this. You will need a buffer with cloth pads. Then you polish with polish compond and foam pads. Again, stay away from edges and always buff away and not into things.
 

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R100RT is exactly right. I did a rattle can (temporary) job on Lolita's new hood and sanded, polished, and buffed it out two weeks later. It's perfect and shines like that $4000 custom job. NO ONE guesses it's a spray can job !

My point is that's the difference between pro results and not - and YOU can do it ! I used a Hitachi sander/polisher - $135 at Home Depot... The materials I got at FinishMaster here in town. All 3M products -
 
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