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Discussion Starter #1
I saw my car in direct sun at sunset tonight, and it has some major swirls. I have 3m swirl mark remover, but no buffer. Should I just take it in and have if buffed professionally? The acura dealer wants 90 bucks to buff and wax. They seemed to do a pretty good job when I got my car. If not, anyone know a good place in western washington?
 

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I wouldn't take it to the Acura dealer, take it to a professional.

3M Finesse-it II will remove the swirls by hand, but it will take alot of arm-work.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What kind of a place do you recommend taking it to? Just a normal detail shop? I have some dings that need removal, which is my other reason for brining it to a shop. Thanks!
 

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I would call around to local detail and body shops, ask them a few questions.

See if they use a rotory buffer, or a random orbital, ask what kind of swirl removal compounds do they use? (you don't wanna go to anyplace that uses a glaze, or other swirl filling compound). Prices obviously, maybe even go early and see some finished cars they have detailed so you can evaluate how good of a job they do.
 

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Take it to a detail shop and you can expect to pay at least $100 bucks. Probably more like $150+. Check out 4 Star and their polisher page and look at some other options. The porter cable polisher is way easy to use and in the long run will be a heck of a lot cheaper for you. You can either pay a detailer $150 to give it one try or you can pay $205 and have the tools and supplies you need to polish your car untill you are satisfied. Not to mention the fee you could charge your friends to do their cars when they see how well your looks. ;) I'd think about that before you take the car to a shop that doesn't really care if all the swirls are gone.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ok, I think i may do it myself after hearing some comments. What about me burning through paint with the buffer? Is this going to be a problem? Also, on places like my bumper, there is alot of indentations, but not chips. Will this help clean is up? I have some 3M Perfect It SMR for dark cars. Is this was I need to do the job? Also, I have some touchup paint on my car, will buffing my car help make the paint more even to the finish?
 

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The Porter Cable is the safest polisher you can use. You would have to be a complete idiot to ruin your paint with one of those. I have never heard of anyone being able to damage their paint with one of those. Just remember to put the pad on and don't try buffing out the car with the backing plate. lol

Polishing your car will not remove door dings. Actually, if anything it will make them stand out more. Polishing the curve of a concave dent will make the reflections stand out more. Go to a body shop that does paintless dent removal to take care of those. It can get pricey so check around before you settle on a shop.

SMR will work taking out swirls just dandy. :) Good choice. If that doesn't work then I don't think much else will. More than likely it is the same thing that the detail shop uses.

Buffing the car won't help paint chips. You need to touch those up and wet sand them to fix em. That is a whole other process.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I know polishing will not remove door dings
. As for the chips, I have touchup paint on a few chips so far, and it looks pretty good. I was just wondering if buffing the car will help the height of the touchup paint and real paint match up a bit better. Thanks!
 

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The buffer will remove some of the touchup paint, you have to watch it very carefully so you don't remove too much. Its easier to use for chips than for scratches, since chips need more than just a very thin layer of paint.

For buffing compounds I would pick up 3M Finesse it-II and Swirl Mark Remover. Use the FI-II first, than follow up with SMR. Its like starting with a heavier grade of sandpaper first, than following up with a light one for a silky smooth finish.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The only places that have touchup paint are deeps scratches, so I should be fine there. I will buy a bottle of Finesse it-II when i buy the buffer. Any accessories you would recommend getting when I get the Porter Cable? Thanks for your help!
 

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The kits at 4 Star seem pretty complete. The thing they neglect to sell you in the hardware stores are the backing pads. The #3 kit is the most complete. www.properautocare.com has some great kits for the porter cable as well. In fact, their pad kit is probably about the best deal on their site.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
At properautocar.com, it says "This polisher is not designed for heavy compounding and will not remove swirls or paint imperfections." When I read the info on the porter cable. Will it actually remove my swirls with the FI-II and SMR? Or are they just talking about super heavy compound for really bad paint? Thanks!
 

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The porter cable is sort of the beginner polisher. There are others that are way more powerful. The PC will be perfect for what you are trying to do though. You will be fine with it.
 
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