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Thread: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

  1. #1
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget



    Anytime I get questions via e-mail, a PM or a FB message I prefer to invest my typing time where

    A: It's easier for me to share links, pictures and videos.

    B: More people can read and thus benefit from the information. (no just one set of eyeballs


    So I get an e-mail asking,




    From: Juan
    Sent: Saturday, June 10, 2017 8:00 PM
    To: Mike Phillips <mike.phillips@Autogeek.net>
    Subject: Good afternoon master!

    Hi my name is juan barrientos

    i like cars and i wold like to detail my two cars ,i have a grand am 2004 red, and a 2010 infiniti silver and i guess i should start with the grand am hahaha ,

    i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    is it better to do the three steps of paint correction or al three in one ,

    and what pad use for the 3 in 1 ,

    hope you answer my questions, knowing you are busy ,but i watch you videos and looks like you are the master..




    Since I'm being asked about a polisher we don't sell, that is the Harbor Freight knock-off of the Porter Cable, I figure I'll do the right thing and answer this guys question and also point out some real simple information.


    First we, as in Autogeek and me specifically, have been answering questions for people on our discussion forum all my life about products not sold on the Autogeek Store. It's simply a professional courtesy as I know most people have know idea that my time and the resources that are required, (resources means money), to make this forum exist today and into the future requires money. The money it costs the company to pay my salary plus everyone's paycheck here at Autogeek comes from sales at the Autogeek store, ---> Autogeek.com


    So when I answer questions on how to use Adams products, or Zaino products or the Harbor Freight dual action polisher it's a professional courtesy because I understand the people that are asking these questions simply want to detail their car, they don't put any thought into what it costs to get good helpful and accurate information.


    That's what this forum does.... it is a resources for good, helpful and accurate information. Most of the time when I answer a question it's

    • In detail
    • Includes pictures that expound on the words I've written
    • Sometimes includes videos that really complete the information by showing how-to do something with action that is better than just pictures




    Now Juan, the guy that sent me this e-mail also posted this to our Detailing 101 Facebook Group, below is the link and if you look at all the answers he received in the Facebook interface you'll see

    One-liners that is a single sentence from some nice person trying to help but there's only so much people will invest in typing with their thumb and their phone.
    A few recommendations but nothing I would call substantial information


    Yet Facebook is popular because, well everyone has a thumb and a phone and an opinion and that makes everyone an expert.

    Click here to read Juan's post and the answers on the Autogeek Detailing 101 Facebook Group





    There is not a Harbor Freight Car Detailing Discussion forum just like there's not an eBay Car Detailing Discussion Forum or an Amazon Car Detailing Discussion Forum yet when people make their purchases there - here on this forum as a professional courtesy we will do our best to provide customer support for these 3 business as both a professional courtesy, (because I know most people don't "think" about what they are doing as they simply want to buff out their car), and also in the hope that if we provide this educational service, that perhaps we will sometime in the future earn the person's business.

    Even if these companies did have car detailing discussion forums they would have to hire "someone" to be the answer-man and that person will have had to obtained their "info" or head knowledge from some where and if this ever happens and they need a resource for information then check out this forum.



    So to answer your questions Juan about the polisher you purchased at Harbor Freight,


    Quote Originally Posted by Juan

    i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recommend for low budget,

    is it better to do the three steps of paint correction or al three in one ,
    Great question. I hate to assume but since you didn't state that these were "Show Cars" I'll assume they are "Daily Drivers" and as such you might as will use a great one-step cleaner/wax or as you describe it a three in one.

    A great cleaner/wax will,


    1: Clean - in this context it means to either chemically clean or mechanically abrade and in most cases a quality cleaner/wax will do both.

    2: Polish - maximize gloss and clarity.

    3: Seal the surface - usually with some form of carnauba wax or synthetic polymers.



    My favorite one-step cleaner/wax right now is made by 3D and it's called HD Speed. I recently shared a car that was detailed by my students at my last Competition Ready 3-Day Detailing Class and the results were MIND-BLOWING and these results were accomplished IN ONE STEP.



    Here's the link to and article I wrote to share this one small part of the 3-day class here on the forum.

    Making money doing production detailing by Mike Phillips


    Here's the link to the post I made on my FB page to share this one small part of the 3-day class with the Facebook world.


    My 3D HD Speed post on my Facebook page



    And here's the link to the product in both 16 ounce and 32 ounces and I'd recommend going ahead and purchasing the 32 once bottle because

    A: It's that good.
    B: If you own and drive a car and take care of it yourself you'll end up needing and wanting the 32 ounce bottle.






    Get you some here

    3D HD Speed 32 oz

    There's a 16 ounce bottle available too but don't waste your time, just get the big bottle, you're going to use it.



    If you want to go crazy and do three steps, that is ,

    Step 1: Use a dedicated compound - Meguiar's Ultimate Compound

    Step 2: Use a dedicated polish - Meguiar's Ultimate Polish

    Step 3: Use a dedicated finishing wax or finishing sealant (the OPPOSITE of a cleaner/wax) - Meguiar's Ultimate Wax


    Then the Meguiar's Ultimate Compound, Ultimate Polish and Ultimate Wax is about as simple as you can get and works well. Plus the names on the labels of the products are easy for even an absolute newbie to figure out with no confusion as to the order to use them.





    Quote Originally Posted by Juan

    and what pad use for the 3 in 1 ,

    Great question. In fact it's such a good questions I've turned this question into a dedicated class that I have taught at Mobile Tech Expo - here's one example, see class #5


    Mobile Tech Expo Class Schedule for 2016


    And here's my article on this topic,


    How to choose and use a one-step cleaner/wax by Mike Phillips



    From that article, and what the people that attended any of my cleaner/wax classes learn is this,


    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips


    Your goal
    When doing a one-step, your goal is to use the least aggressive cleaner/wax possible to get the job done because even when using high quality products, pads, tools and techniques, there’s always the risk of leaving micro-marring in the paint.


    The secret to successfully doing one-steps
    The secret to using a one-step cleaner/ wax without micro-marring the paint is to use the softest foam pad you can get away with. When I say,

    Use the softest foam pad you can get away with….


    This means you need to do some testing with both your cleaner/wax and some soft foam polishing or waxing pads and test to see if your softest pad will leave behind a clear, shiny finish without micro-marring or hazing the paint. This means you need to have a selection of soft pads in your pad collection.


    Examples of soft foam pads include,

    Lake Country Hybrid Pads = White & Gray
    Lake Country Flat Pads = White & Gray
    Lake Country CCS Pads = Pink, White, Green, Gray, Blue, Red and Gold.


    Cleaner/Wax Options
    There is no industry standard for categorizing cleaner/waxes by how light or how strong they are as it relates to cleaning ability. Below I’ve included a selection of reputable brands and placed them into one of three different categories.

    I have purposely left out a category for aggressive cleaner/waxes as there aren’t any such products that are safe to use on clearcoat finishes. There are aggressive cleaner/waxes in the marine world for gel-coat finishes but that’s another book another day.


    So what you want Juan is foam polishing pads. The word polishing is not meant to be generic like is I'm going to polish my car but it is meant to be a SPECIFIC type of foam pad. Generally speaking you have,

    Foam cutting pads
    Foam polishing pads <--
    Foam finishing pads
    Foam waxing pads


    You want to try to use foam POLIHSHING pads as they will work well with a cleaner/wax in in most cases not mar the paint. You can use a foam cutting pad but often times the aggressiveness of the foam cutting pad will remove more swirls and scratches but on black and dark colored cars you can see BUFFER TRAILS or patterns of MICRO-MARRING that mimic or copay where you removed the buffer over the paint. This is why I an article (that thousands of people will read or in a class I try to keep people SAFE by recommending a polishing pad and not a cutting pad when doing one-step production detailing even with great cleaner/waxes like the 3D HD Speed.

    And of course, if micro-marring is happening to black and dark colored cars it's happening to all cars it's just your eyes cannot see it on light colored cars. I point this out because I often times run into an EXPERT that will tell me they used a foam cutting pad and didn't see any micro-marring on their white Toyota Prius therefore I'm wrong.


    Also, when buffing out your cars you'll want LOTS of pads not just one pad. As a rule of thumb, you want one pad per panel to work the most effective and the fastest around a car. Of course you can use less pads but as pads become saturated with product they soggy and don't work as well. What works BEST is a clean dry pad. So more pads is better.


    Here's some related articles....


    Video: Mark your backing plate to make it easy to see pad rotation


    DA Polisher Trouble Shooting Guide



    Here's what you want for your Harbor Frieght buffer



    5" Backing Plate
    Lake Country 5" DA Backing Plate <-- Get this one as the Velcro will match Lake Country Pads


    The 5" Lake Country Backing Plates fits all popular dual action polishers including Porter Cable, Griot's Garage and Meguiar's.




    Lake Country

    5.5" Flat Pads

    In order from the most to the least aggressive

    Yellow = Cutting pad (most aggressive)
    Orange = Light Cutting Pad
    White = Polishing Pad
    Black = Finishing Pad
    Blue = Waxing Pad (softest)





    The ThinPro pads are also very good...


    Lake Country ThinPro Foam Buffing Pads exclusively at Autogeek

    Lake Country 5.5" foam flat pads on the left and Lake Country ThinPro foam pads on the right.









    The 6" Buff and Shine Uro-Tech Foam pads are also very good for the polisher you bought...


    NEW! - Buff and Shine Uro-Tec Foam Pad System for all long throw orbital polishers!









    DON'T LOOSE THE COMPRESSION WASHER!

    The Compression Washer









    Quote Originally Posted by Juan

    hope you answer my questions,

    I have answered your questions and if you're reading this that means you read the reply I sent you via e-mail and included the link to this thread as I prefer not to answer question via e-mail because,


    1: Only one set of eyeballs see the information and it takes time (that's money), for me to type out in-depth helpful answers.

    2: It's impossible to know if I include a picture or a link that the e-mail software that you use and the interface will display it properly or at all. While here on the forum I KNOW when I include a picture, a link or a video it WILL display properly.

    3: Other people can read the information long into the future and this will leverage the time I invest into typing out an in-depth answer to your questions.

    4: Unlike e-mail or Facebook, or Instagram or Twitter, with a forum like this, (vBulletin), I can 100% control the formatting to make it easier for you to read. For example using a bulleted list or using bold text to create a headline that draws your eyes and your attention to the copy below the headline because the headline told you what would be in the copy and chances are good it was information you are interested in.



    Make sense?


    If you take the time to read what I've shared then you'll be able to detail your cars with your harbor freight buffer.



    Mike Phillips
    Host - Competition Ready on Velocity Channel
    Director of Training Autogeek & Marine 31
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  2. #2
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    I would also recommend you watch this video....






    Just about any other video like it is a copy from the original sources...



    Mike Phillips
    Host - Competition Ready on Velocity Channel
    Director of Training Autogeek & Marine 31
    IDA Board Member
    CD-SV, RT
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    Click on a book to get your own copy.



  3. #3
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    Here's another article....

    How many pads do I need to buff out my car?


    Some guys try to buff out entire cars with a single pad per product. That's usually due to inexperience. Thus when they make their initial purchase they don't know to get more pads versus less pads.

    Once a person gets into the middle of the correction step and their one or two foam pads are wet with product, (pad saturation), and if they're paying attention they notice it's taking longer to get the same work done than when they first started with a clean, dry pad, then it starts to sink in that more pads are better.

    The correction step is the most pad intensive step so get more correction pads, these would be cutting pads.

    Polishing goes faster as you're only cleaning up what the correction step left behind and maximizing gloss and clarity.

    If you machine apply your waxes and sealants then you really only need one pad for this step.


    For a 1965 Mustang or for a 2015 Honda Accord and the paint is trashed, that is filled with swirls, scratches, water spots and oxidation, then here's a good rule of thumb for the optimum number of pads to have on hand assuming you're using a Porter Cable type dual action polisher.


    NOTE the below recommendations are MINIMUMS - Let your budget be your guide.


    Porter Cable 7424XP
    Correction = Orange LC Flat Pad
    Polishing = White or Black LC Flat Pad
    Sealing = Blue LC Flat Pad

    Correction step = 6 pads
    1 for the hood
    1 for the roof and trunk lid
    2 for driver's side
    2 for passenger side


    Polishing step = 4 pads (You could probably get away with 3 if you use 1 for hood, roof and trunk lid)

    1 for the hood
    1 for the roof and trunk lid
    1 for driver's side
    1 for passenger side

    Sealing the paint step = 1 waxing pad
    Use over entire vehicle






    Too hard to post articles to Facebook, the tiny message box just doesn't work for real or substantial how-to information...



    Mike Phillips
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  4. #4
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    Here's another if you're new to machine polishing....


    How to divide larger body panels into smaller sections for machine buffing


    How I would section any body panel would be easier to figure out if I were standing right in front of the vehicle, that said, here's how I would probably divide the hood of a 2007 Tahoe into smaller sections to polish with a Porter Cable type dual action polisher.

    If using a more powerful tool, rotary , Flex 3401 or Rupes, you could take the small section I've outlined and tackle more of them at one time. I'd still divide the center large mass of the hood into at least two section and possibly 4 sections depending how much correction is needed.






    These, longer, THINNER sections of a body panel are the norm for a lot of cars, trucks and suvs and this is why I like 5.5" pads on tools like the PC and even 4" Spot Repair Pads and that's because smaller diameter pads fit modern cars better than large pads.









    Mike Phillips
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  5. #5
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    Before you start buffing, you want to wash your car and then inspect for contaminantion by doing the Baggie Test

    Here's how to do the baggie test


    The Baggie Test as seen on Competition Ready TV with AJ and Mike Phillips









    The Baggie Test

    The Baggie Test is a simple test anyone can do at home in their garage to check and inspect if their car has contamination that needs to be removed.

    You should alwasy do the baggie test to a clean, dry car. So wash and dry your car before you do the Baggie Test. And keep in mind that if you discover little bumps on the paint when you feel the paint through the sandwich baggie AND you just washed and dried the car - this means these contaminants have a strong enough bond to the paint that they DIDN'T WASH OFF and this means you need to use detailing clay to remove these contaminants.


    How to use the Baggie Test to inspect your car's paint


    Step 1: Wash and dry car.

    Step 2: Feel the paint first with your clean, dry hand.

    Step 3: Now feel the paint with your hand inside a clean plastic sandwich baggie.


    NOTE: Use a light touch so you don't accidental scratch the paint anytime you're doing the baggie test.




    Results from the Baggie Test?

    If you feel little bumps on the surface this is a sign that your car's paint is contaminated and needs to be clayed.




    On Autogeek.com


    Mothers California Gold Clay Bar Paint saving System


    The Mothers California Gold Clay Bar Paint Saving System includes everything you need to clay your car.
    Including 2 bars of clay, Mothers Instant Detailer, one Mothers microfiber towel and a sample bottle of Mothers Synthetic Wax.










    How to clay your car


    For Kyle Tucker's 1970 Chevelle "The Villain" - we used Mothers California Gold Clay Bar Paint Saving System.



    Step 1: Kneed the Mothers clay bar into a patty about the size of a pancake.

    Step 2: Spray some Mothers Instant Detailer onto a section of paint.

    Step 3: Rub the clay patty back and forth using straight line motions over the section of paint.

    Step 4: After you feel the clay patty begin to glide effortlessly over the paint stop claying and use a clean microfiber towel to wipe off the residue.


    This section is now clayed and you can now move onto a new section of paint. Divide body panels of your car into smaller sections, about 2 feet by 2 feet or smaller and after claying a section and wiping it dry, move onto a new section until you have clayed all the horizontal surfaces. If you feel contaminants on the vertical panels using the baggie test you can clay these surfaces too.

    After claying your car you should apply a fresh coat of wax. The Mothers Clay Bar Kit includes a sample of Mothers Synthetic Wax which contains enough wax to cover an average size passenger car.


    Here's AJ about to inspect the paint using the Baggie Test




    Use a light touch - that's all that's needed to inspect your car's paint for contamination.






    You can also inspect glass and other hard surfaces and if you discover little bumps it's okay to clay these surfaces also.





    Mike explains where contamination comes from, which are any type of air-borne contaminants like,


    • Overspray paint
    • Industrial fallout
    • Traffic pollution
    • Tree Sap Mist







    Mother's clay bars come in a protective plastic wrap to keep them clean until ready to use. Before using the clay bar remove it from the plastic wrapper.





    Next using your thumbs and fingers, knead the clay bar into a patty about the size of a pancake.





    Spray a section of paint using the Mothers Instant Detailer. Use enough product to make the surface wet so the clay patty will glide over the paint.





    Then placing your had flat against the patty of clay, rub the clay patty in a back and forth motion over a section of paint.






    Normally you'll feel the clay patty drag a little as it is removing contamination. As the contaminants are removed the clay will begin to glide effortlessly. This is a sign the contaminants on this section of paint have been successfully removed.






    Next step...

    After claying a section, use the Mothers microfiber towel to remove the residues and then move onto a new section. Repeat this till all the contaminated panels are clean and smooth.


    For more tips visit Autogeek.com








    Mike Phillips
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  6. #6
    Senior Member BSoares's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    Wow, Mike is on a roll today. This is a very detailed post and should get anyone going without having to read much more elsewhere. Thanks for helping everyone, Mike!

  7. #7
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    Quote Originally Posted by BSoares View Post

    Wow, Mike is on a roll today.

    This is a very detailed post and should get anyone going without having to read much more elsewhere.

    Thanks for helping everyone,

    Mike!


    Thank you.... while it is my "job" it's also my passion to help others....


    Most people that send me an e-mail with their questions simply don't understand I can invest the time it would take to compile all of the above information and then send it ONLY to them for their eyes.

    Plus, I have know idea what a person has for a device? Computer? Phone? Tablet?

    I have know idea what they have for an e-mail software? Will it display a picture the right way?

    Will it cut-off a hyperlink? Making it useless?


    Note I've been doing this for 15+ years. I get e-mails from people saying the link doesn't work. The links I share work - but people's devices screw them up.

    When I post something to the forum it's STABLE and works across the majority of device platforms.



    adamgayton81 and Harpolith like this.
    Mike Phillips
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  8. #8
    Senior Member dlc95's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    I used to work with customers for hours, finding the perfect drum set, cymbals, hardware, and upgraded heads & accessories - only to find that they bought the entire set from Guitar Center - and usually paid more for it...

    That was a really hard pill to swallow because these people were customers that would come in to buy sticks and heads.

    When they come in to the store, take up hours of my time where I could be cleaning, rearranging, ordering, helping other LOYAL customers, and buy at the chain store.... It's a real slap in the face. Not only to the store as a whole, but to my commission as well. That was one of the reasons I focused on lessons more than sales.

  9. #9
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    To be fair Amazon sells palm Beach motoring group product's

  10. #10
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: i found this polisher at the store ,what products you recomend for low budget,

    Quote Originally Posted by fightnews View Post
    To be fair Amazon sells palm Beach motoring group product's

    That's true.

    And one more reason why for the last 15 years, be it on the MeguiarsOnline forum or this forum, when someone asks for help I do my best to help as it could be a customer and if not... it could turn into a potential customer.



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