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Discussion Starter #1




That is what rotory induced swirl marks look like. These were post by a member at Autopia. They were taken at a car show. I for one would never enter my car in a car show if it looked like that.

Those pictures effectivly demonstrate why you need to really know what you are doing if you attempt to use a rotory buffer. The Porter Cable random orbital polisher is NOT a rotory. It is perfectly safe for an amature and could never cause swirling like that. That is exactly the kind of damage I have to repair every week from nut jobs who go buy the cheap 30 dollar polisher at WalMart and think they know what they are doing. By the time they pay me to fix it, they could have purchased a PC to begin with and could have done it right the first time.

Lesson for today: PC=Good Rotary=Good if you know what you are doing.
 

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damn that really sucks. thanks for letting us know jngrbrdman. you and style really keep us on our toes about this stuff.
 

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damn... that's scary. I'm doing it all by hand from now on. Yikes!

Heh heh, I'll look like that one dude on that eagle one comercial where he keeps moving his hands in circles when waving at people and drinking coffee and stuff. Ha ha.

EDIT: Oh yea... lastly. StyleTeg and you other wax/polish nuts:
Not that I think I need it, I have no visible swirl marks besides little ones on the hood at the right light... BUT what do you think of the Meguiars 3 Step system. I've always used a Mothers Clay in the past comboed with Meguiars Gold Class and it's worked beautifully. I was considering going all out and reviving (again, just curious to see if it makes a difference)... by doing the cleaner, polish and carnuba (sp?) wax. What do you think of it, or is there another you recommend that I can pick up locally. i.e. AutoZone, Walmart, etc.
 

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i use an orbital buffer is somewhat generic but not el cheapo, my key is i bought a spoung pad for it and the trick is to soak the pad lightly with wax before use and make sure you keep the buffer movin at a fast pace so you dont burn the piss outta your car and cause swirl marks
 

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NeoSilverTeg on Sep/16/02 said:
EDIT: Oh yea... lastly. StyleTeg and you other wax/polish nuts:
Not that I think I need it, I have no visible swirl marks besides little ones on the hood at the right light... BUT what do you think of the Meguiars 3 Step system.
not that im trying to be style but I asked him this same question before. the second step "polish" is actually just a glaze. He suggested 3m swirl remover instead.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The problem with swirl removal is that it will wear your arm right off. You'd have to have arms the size of your legs to get it done right. Meguiar's #9 is a good swirl remover that could possibly be used by hand. If you have a polisher then I would suggest 3M's Perfect It II or Meguiar's Swirl Mark Remover. #9 should help if you are tackling it by hand though.
 

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tony4311 on Sep/16/02 said:
not that im trying to be style but I asked him this same question before. the second step "polish" is actually just a glaze. He suggested 3m swirl remover instead.
Yeah, I am not to fond of the meguiars 3 step system. The only product I would use out of the three steps, is the first. The "polish" (which is actually a glaze) and the cleaner wax are more effort than results.

I have seen and gotten good results with SMR by hand, but it is very long and tiring if you do the whole car. If you are determined to use it, count on doing maybe a few panels a day until you do the whole car.
 

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Pardon me foor ressurecting a dead thread...

I was going to purchase a PC, but a friend from work loaned me a high-end rotary polisher (~$300). Is it worth messing with the rotary (at low speed, obviously ;) ), or is it just plain safer to buy a PC? I have zero experience with polishing, but decent experinece with hand tools, if that matters.
 

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Rotary has a steep learning curve. It's easy to **** your paint up. Takes a lot of practice to do it right.

Porter Cable has no learning curve. Even a novice can grab one and get great results. Nearly impossible to screw up the paint.


BTW buffer burn sucks, everytime I've gotten paintwork I've spent a few hours removing their swirl marks.
 

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Thanks for the input, GSR - that's kinda where I was leaning. I'd rather spend $100 then risk screwing up my clear coat.

Same advice for swirl removing products still apply? General concensus seems to be Meguiar's SMR or #M's Perfect It II???
 

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Discussion Starter #13
3M SMR is mostly filler and not really very effective at removing swirls. I would go for something a little higher up on the scale if you are serious about removing defects in your paint and not just covering them up. I know the Meguiar's line better than 3M. Here is the Meguiar's scale for abrasive levels in their product:

#85 Diamond Cut = 10
#84 Compound Power Cleaner = 9
#4 Heavy-cut Cleaner = 8
#1 Medium-cut Cleaner = 7
#83 DACP = 6
#2 Fine-cut Cleaner = 5
#80 Speed Glaze = 4
#82 Swirl Free Polish = 3
#9 Swirl Remover 2.0 = 3
#3 Machine Glaze = 1
They don't list anything at the 2 rating that I know of. Maybe NXT Tech Wax, but I don't know for sure. I know it has super minimal abrasives and mostly filler. I would definitely rate it below #9.

Here are a couple other fine examples of work performed by an idiot armed with a buffer and no understanding of how to use it right.







A PC is definitely a much better choice in car care tool. There is little to no risk of this kind of damage no matter what experience level you are at. An experienced user can get results faster and more consistently, but anybody can use a PC and get good results. Considering that your paint is the most expensive part of your car, I think a couple hundred dollars for a tool to maintain it is worth it.
 

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I have both a rotary, a Dewalt 849, and a random orbital polisher, the PC7336.

The Dewalt is a far superior machine. It will remove major paint defects that a PC can't touch. It will also do swirl removal in less time than a PC would.

However, it does take some time to learn to do it right. If you do decide on getting a rotary then begin with speeds of 1000-1200RPM. With the feather trigger it is quite safe. one drawback is the sling. Polish flies everywhere on higher speeds where the PC doesn't have this problem as badly.

If you wanted to do just swirl removal and paint revival type stuff, go with the PC. I have both and if I'm looking to do just swirl removal or a light polishing, I'll use the PC. You can also apply LSPs with it.
 

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Dark color cars are alwase harder to buff out.... you could probly get away with it if the color was white....
 

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As a professional detailer also for a high end car dealership (Porsche, Ferrari, Bentley, Benz, etc.) I agree with Anthony completly. When learning the ins and outs of a high speed rotary I made many mistakes which took me quite some time to fix....But I wouldnt trade the knowledge for anything. I can prep a car for shows very well....The PC is a great tool for beginners. I still even use it when I know I am not fully there to give my job the 100% attention i need (Recovering from nights b4 ;) )
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Actually, light colors are harder to deal with. Its tougher to see the swirls on white. Since most people don't notice the swirls and oxidation on light colors until they are severe, removing them becomes major work. Just because you don't notice them doesn't mean they aren't there. Light colors are just as tough if not tougher to keep swirl free. The fact they are harder to see isn't relevant. The problem is there whether you see it or not. I had scratches on my white car that I couldn't hide, but at shows my car was swirl free even under the harshest light. It doesn't stay that way for long, but it is possible to do.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Its not really that they can do more, its just that they do it faster. I am comfortable with the speed that a PC lets me do my work, so I haven't ever felt the need to move up to a rotary. I know for a fact that there are some situations that a rotary would probably be a better choice, but that is rarely the case with the vehicles I detail. Usually people with cars that look so bad that a rotary is the best choice don't really care about removing them all anyway. Its hard work to get your car in that bad of shape.

Case in point... This damage was resolved with just a PC and a few minutes worth of elbow grease. I don't know how a rotary could have improved on this.





That's a 500 watt lamp in the middle of that hood. Its almost impossible to hide defects under that kind of light. I'd say the PC does a fairly respectable job when you use it right. I didn't use anything harsher than DACP and a red Meguiar's cutting pad on that hood.
 

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hahaha...i messed up my old jetta with one of those high powered buffers. I didn't know what the hell I was doing. I needed to buff my roof up (just finished re-painting it) so I went to town on the rest of my car.

Oh well..its gone now.
 
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