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  1. #11
    Senior Member Kamakaz1961's Avatar
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    Aug 2013
    Tustin, CA
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    Re: machine polishing fail - ?

    Mike Phillips is the ORACLE for Autogeek PERIOD! But I do believe Megs 205 should be used with a WHITE POLISHING pad. Either way Mike has sound advice! KEEP ON ROCKING and welcome to the forum!

    The Matrix
    2013 Mustang GT w/Track Pack 6-Speed Manual
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  2. #12
    Senior Member
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    Apr 2019
    Houston, Texas
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    Re: machine polishing fail - ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    A cloudy, hazy dull looking finish AFTER machine polishing with a random orbital polisher sounds like micro-marring. M205 is known to micro-mar SOFT paints. This is one of the reasons Meguiar's introduced M210 - a polish for softer paints because M205 has been failing in this area for years.

    And on another note - what happened to all those experts teaching water polishing? I never hear anyone talking about this anymore?

    BUT - most ORANGE pads are foam cutting pads. A foam CUTTING pad can cause micro-marring. This is why I tell people all the time to START with a foam POLISHING pad as an aggressive pad on softer paint will scratches it.

    Micro-marring = scratching

    Read, don't scan this article. Try to find any of this information anywhere else as all the experts on Facebook groups and YouTube tell you to use foam cutting pads. Duh.

    Good rule of thumb when using an AIO - stick with foam polishing pads by Mike Phillips

    Let me break this next section down,

    Sounds good so far.

    What DA Polisher?

    IF this is a Porter Cable, they are one of the weakest DA polishers on the market. They struggle to maintain PAD ROTATION with thick or large pads. About the only pads that work well with this tool for doing correction or polishing work ore THIN pads.

    See my article here,

    How to Monitor Pad Rotation? Mark Your Buffing Pads

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

    Here are the thinnest foam pads on the market today,

    5.5" SUPER THIN FOAM PAD OPTIONS for your Dual Action Polisher

    Lake Country 5.5" Flat Pads and CCS pads are only a tick thicker than the above and they also rotate well - as long as they are dry.

    For sure - there's lots of experts on YouTube and Facebook.

    That works. I make a joke about priming foam pads in all my classes and don't do it myself. Good for microfiber pad but not really that important for foam pads UNLESS you're going to put pea sized drops of products on the pad. That's another joke from experts.

    Because you primed your pads and then put on FIVE pea sized drops, that's like priming your pad and putting on 3 nickel sized drops. Next time just put on 3-4 nickel sized drops and after you buff for about 10 seconds your pad will self-prime and you will have saved yourself the priming time and a messy finger.

    See my article below. While this is about using a cleaner/wax or AIO the same holds true for compounds and polishes.

    How to correctly use an AIO or Cleaner/Wax by Mike Phillips

    That's called "Kissing the Finish" and it's good. Some people call it smooshing but in my book, and in an article dated back to , it's called Kissing the Finish. Check out post #7 from this how-to article in 2010 - 9 years ago. The first and actually only article on damp sanding.

    Damp-Sanding Tools, Tips and Techniques by Mike Phillips

    WAY TO BIG OF AN AREA FOR A SIMPLE TOOL. If you're using the BEAST aka the FLEX 3401 you can easily do a 24" x 24" area. If you're using a Porter Cable, a Harbor Freight, even a Griot's 6" Random Orbital Polisher, then this is too large of an area.

    Lay down a 16" x 16" microfiber towel on the hood of your car and this is how large of a section to tackle with any free spinning 8mm random orbital polisher.

    Also - you need to make MORE section passes. Even though M205 is a SMAT product, in my experience, you still want to work the product for about 8 section passes. Running the tool at speed 5 and working too large an area WITH only 4 passes is also not good technique.

    Here's an article I wrote that discusses the most common mistakes and the remedies.

    >>>>>> Start Article<<<<<

    DA Polisher Trouble Shooting Guide

    When you're first starting out machine polishing and learning to use a DA Polisher it's common to have questions about your results and your results are directly tied to your technique.

    Here's a list of the most common problems,
    1. Trying to work too large of an area at one time.

    2. Moving the polisher too fast over the surface.

    3. Using too low of speed setting for removing swirls.

    4. Using too little downward pressure on the head of the polisher.

    5. Using too much downward pressure on the head of the polisher so the pad quits rotating.

    6. Not holding the polisher in a way to keep the pad flat while working your compound or polish.

    7. Using too much product or using too little product.

    8. Not cleaning the pad often enough.

    Here's a list of the solutions in matching order,

    1. Trying to work too large of an area at one time.
    Shrink the size of your work area down. You can't tackle to large of an area at one time. The average size work area should be around 20" by 20". Most generic recommendations say to work an area 2' by 2' but for the correction step, that's too large. You have to do some experimenting, (called a Test Spot), to find out how easy or how hard the defects are coming out of your car's paint system and then adjust your work area to the results of your Test Spot. The harder the paint the smaller the area you want to work.

    2. Moving the polisher too fast over the surface.
    For removing defects out of the paint you want to use what we call a Slow Arm Speed. It's easy and actually natural for most people new to machine polishing to move the polisher quickly over the paint but that's the wrong technique. One reason I think people move the polisher too quickly over the paint is because they hear the sound of the motor spinning fast and this has psychological effect which causes them to match their arm movement to the perceived fast speed of the polisher's motor.

    Another reason people move the polisher too quickly over the paint is because they think like this,

    "If I move the polisher quickly, I'll get done faster"

    But it doesn't work that way. Anytime you're trying to remove swirls, scratches, water spots or oxidation using a DA Polisher you need to move the polisher s-l-o-w-l-y over the paint.

    3. Using too low of speed setting for removing swirls.
    When first starting out many people are scared of burning or swirling their paint, so they take the safe route of running the polisher at too low of a speed setting but this won't work. The action of the polisher is already g-e-n-t-l-e, you need the speed and specifically the pad oscillating and rotating over the paint as well as the combination of time, (slow arm speed), together with the abrasives, the pad aggressiveness, and the downward pressure to remove small particles of paint which is how your remove below surface defects like swirls or scratches.

    Removing below surface defects is a leveling process where you need the abrasives to take little bites out of the paint and to get the abrasives to take these little bites with a tool that uses a Free Floating Spindle Bearing Assembly you need all of the above factors working for you including a high speed setting.

    4. Using too little downward pressure on the head of the polisher.
    For the same reason as stated in #3, people are scared, or perhaps a better word is apprehensive, to apply too much downward pressure to the polisher and the result of too little pressure is no paint is removed thus no swirls are removed.

    5. Using too much downward pressure on the head of the polisher so the pad quits rotating.
    If you push too hard you will slow down the rotating movement of the pad and the abrasives won't be effectively worked against the paint. You need to apply firm pressure to engage the abrasives against the paint but no so much that the pad is barely rotating. This is where it's a good idea to use a permanent black marker to make a mark on the back of your backing plate so your eyes can easily see if the pad is rotating or not and this will help you to adjust your downward pressure accordingly.

    Correct technique means finding a balance of applying enough downward pressure to remove defects but not too much downward pressure as to stop the rotating movement of the pad.

    This balance is affected by a lot of factors like the lubricity of the product you're using, some compounds and polishes provide more lubrication than others and this makes it easier to maintain pad rotation under pressure.

    Another factor that can affect pad rotation are raised body lines, edges and curved surfaces as anytime you have uneven pressure on just a portion of the face of the pad it can slow or stop pad rotation. This is where experience comes into play and experience comes from time spent behind the polisher.

    6. Not holding the polisher in a way to keep the pad flat while working your compound or polish.
    Applying pressure in such a way as to put too much pressure to one edge of the pad will cause it to stop rotating and thus decrease abrading ability.

    7. Using too much product or using too little product.
    Too much product hyper-lubricates the surface and the result is that abrasives won't effectively bite into the paint but instead will tend to skim over the surface. Overusing product will also accelerate pad saturation as well increase the potential for slinging splatter onto adjacent panels.

    Too little product will means too little lubrication and this can interfere with pad rotation.

    Again there needs to be a balance between too much product and too little product and finding this balance comes from reading articles like this one, watching videos an most important, going out into the garage and putting in time behind the polisher and as you're buffing with specific product and pad combinations, pay attention to pad rotation.

    8. Not cleaning the pad often enough.
    Most people simply don't clean their pad often enough to maximize the effectiveness of their DA Polisher. Anytime you're abrading the paint you have two things building up on the face of your buffing pad,

    • Removed paint

    • Spent product

    As these to things build up on the face of the pad they become gummy and this has a negative affect on pad rotating plus makes wiping the leftover residue on the paint more difficult. To maintain good pad rotation you want to clean your pad often and always wipe-off any leftover product residue off the paint after working a section. Never add fresh product to your pad and work a section that still has leftover product residue on it.

    >>>>>> END of Article<<<<<

    That's correct. No need to let a compound or a polish dry. Benefits to wiping them off while they are still wet.

    Which products need to dry – The Car Wax Mentality

    The above is a lot to digest. If you ever see one of my Roadshow Classes coming to a town near you - sign-up. You'll learn all of the above and so much more.

    There should be a "sticky" section on AGO...I think this would be one of the first post! Great reference post for future use!

  3. #13
    Director of Training Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
    Stuart, Florida
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    Re: machine polishing fail - ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Breckenridge View Post

    The end result was paint that was dulled and hazy, not at all glossy. Not swirled or scratched, just dull and hazy.

    For reference - below are pictures I took recently of micro-marring caused by two different AIOs. Polishes will do the same thing. Micro-marring is typically a scratch-pattern inflicted into paint by the abrasives. It can be cause by pads too, and of course a combination of abrasives and pads.

    Pictures of Micro-Marring - DA Haze - Tick Marks - Compounds - Polishes - AIOs - Clearcoat Paints

    Some pictures I took today showing what micro-marring looks like on black paint. You will also see people refer to this as,

    DA Haze
    Tick Marks
    Shadow Effect

    The first picture is using a SCANGRIP light and the second picture is using the flash on my Canon T6i

    Medium micro-marring

    This is a close-up cropped out of the original.

    Same area lit up with the camera flash

    Light micro-marring

    This is a close-up cropped out of the original.

    Same area lit up with the camera flash

    For the above, I chose to use the words medium and light to judge the level of micro-marring. I've seen worse so I didn't want to use the term heavy or deep, or ?

    Mike Phillips
    Director of Training Autogeek & Marine 31
    IDA Board Member - Certified Detailer - Skills Validated Detailer - IDA Recognized Trainer
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  4. #14
    Senior Member Belo's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
    Rochester, NY
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    Re: machine polishing fail - ?

    sorry i didn't read the whole thread, but I think most go with a white or green foam pad for AIO's. Orange seems maybe a little too aggressive for a car that is in good shape as you stated. If anything i'd only use the orange with a compound for trouble areas.

    Not saying it's wrong, but maybe a better option with white or green ccs pads.
    2009 Pontiac G8GT
    2015 Ford Explorer Limited
    2019 Chevy Silverado RST Z71

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