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What polishing pads and products are you guys using?

jeffrey5679

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I'm about to do a paint correction and ceramic coating. What pads and polish work best for our trucks using a DA polisher? Trying to figure out how hard or soft the paint is. Any suggestions? I have some light swirls but nothing major.
 

KRField

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I have used ceramic infused AIO polishes (McKees 37) with good results, and would only use polishes if you plan on having the truck long term. I use both microfiber and foam pads. Preference is meguiars microfiber pads, and anything from buff n shine. This paint is scary thin. Also your clear coat has a 5 year half life in its protective ability without any buffing on it. The goal is to enhance the paint while preserving as much clear as you can.


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shaun6453

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As a professional in this field and an owner of a 2020 Rebel the quickest and easiest is a product called 3D One. It can be used as a compound and a polish depending on the pad that you use. I personally used a green hexlogic pad from Chemical Guys to compound and a white or black hexlogic pad depending on the outcome of the compound process. You will get great results with it if you take the time and follow the process of 2x2 work area, consistent passes and time and keeping your pads clear.

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KCViper

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I just picked up my truck and am in the same position as the OP. I will be ceramic coating the truck and will be buying the Griot's G9 (several different kit options on AutoGeek.....I will most likely pick up the package with Meguires M105 and M205). I've heard good things about the 3D One product. As mine is new, I am only going to do all the pre steps then lightly polish the truck with M205 and a white Lake Country pad before coating it. Does this sound good @shaun6453 ?
 

shaun6453

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@KCViper sure! It honestly doesn't matter what pad and compound or polish you use as long as you are comfortable with it and know its quirks. If your car is new, id honestly look at just doing a light light cut to remove the fine lines from hand drying or minimal drive through washes. I've heard great things about the G9 and honestly as long as it is balanced well and doesn't give a ton of vibration at higher speeds its okay to use and a quality product. If you haven't bought it yet go into a autozone or similar and ask if you can plug it in to see how it fits in your hands and if the vibration is too much for you. Because extended use of the machine for hours can cause premature arm fatigue and make the experience not pleasurable. Remember you don't need speed 6 like your gonna dig a hole to China. 2 to 4 for compounding in most cases and 1 to 3 for polishing works in most cases, just go slow and see how your paint responds before doing the whole car

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KCViper

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Thanks @shaun6453 Interested in why you would recommend a "light light cut" instead of a light polish? Truck has 48 miles on it if this helps. I've done enough research on the G9 to know that it's an outstanding machine and have no worries about it!!
 

Neurobit

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I’ve been detailing my vehicles for several years and have used various pads and polishes. I don’t do it for a living. It’s a hobby of mine.

My goto used to be Megs 105/205, but I’ve moved on a couple of years ago. Nothing against it, they just produce too much dust in my opinion. I have moved to Sonax and Jescar. I use Sonax Cutmax for heavier cutting and finish it with Jescar Micro-Finish polish. I know Megs have come out with newer versions, but I haven’t looked back once I used Sonax and Jescar (Menzerna).

For heavy cutting, MF pads or blue (Rupes) foam pads would be fine, and yellow for finishing. Color will vary by Mfg, of course.

What I would do is do a test section and see how the paint reacts. As reference, paint on my truck is about average. Not soft nor hard, and I can remove swirls with a yellow/orange pad and Micro-Finish very quickly.

Since you have light swirls, a product like Sonax Perfect Finish would be ideal. It’s a single step polish that will remove light swirls and finishes really nice.

As far as equipment, I’ve started out with a Griots years ago, and recently upgraded to a Rupes LHR15 Mark III (5”). I also have a 3” and a 1” polisher for intricate places, etc. The G9 seems like a sweet polisher. You can’t go wrong with Griots.

Cheers,

1D3813C4-73BD-488F-9A5C-A9130BA37F4C.jpeg 36383342-5A80-4BE6-A762-AFB126F0E23C.jpeg 177AD2FC-4A76-436C-9B02-8FC7E554BBED.jpeg
 

shaun6453

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@KCViper was it washed by the dealer before delivery? What color is it? Wording can be tricky, so a cut and polish are the same thing, a cut would be considered something that is more aggressive and compared to like 1000 to 2000 grit sandpaper. A polish is used to cut even more to refine those scratches giving the high gloss appearance. If you are going to ceramic coat it, preference by professional detailers are to remove anywhere from 85% to 95% of defects. Then apply the coating as anything that isn't corrected is under the ceramic for the life of the coating unless cut down again and reapplied coating. A good strip wash and dry should reveal any "defects" in the paint even on a brand new car with 1 mile on it. Depending on the dealership some employ very good detailers and this isn't the case but most hire low wage easily replaceable young kids to "detail" vehicles for final delivery. I attached a picture of what your looking for, picture I attached is obviously on an old vehicle and severely worse but you will see what I mean and then an after with a good 90% correction even though the clear coat on this car was starting to fail.
9ae82b11c1924e1d9de85c480dbe5b99.jpg
abf2867871e6af8b7f477fb1752729d4.jpg


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Neurobit

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@KCViper was it washed by the dealer before delivery? What color is it? Wording can be tricky, so a cut and polish are the same thing, a cut would be considered something that is more aggressive and compared to like 1000 to 2000 grit sandpaper. A polish is used to cut even more to refine those scratches giving the high gloss appearance. If you are going to ceramic coat it, preference by professional detailers are to remove anywhere from 85% to 95% of defects. Then apply the coating as anything that isn't corrected is under the ceramic for the life of the coating unless cut down again and reapplied coating. A good strip wash and dry should reveal any "defects" in the paint even on a brand new car with 1 mile on it. Depending on the dealership some employ very good detailers and this isn't the case but most hire low wage easily replaceable young kids to "detail" vehicles for final delivery. I attached a picture of what your looking for, picture I attached is obviously on an old vehicle and severely worse but you will see what I mean and then an after with a good 90% correction even though the clear coat on this car was starting to fail.
9ae82b11c1924e1d9de85c480dbe5b99.jpg
abf2867871e6af8b7f477fb1752729d4.jpg


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^^^ Spot on ^^^
 

KCViper

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Thanks @Neurobit and @shaun6453!! Truck is billet silver and I meant compound (not cut) vs polish! Should only need a light polish I'm thinking and will know more when I wash it and take a good look at it (looked carefully when I picked it up and could not see any obvious swirls, etc.....was a cloudy day however). I mostly use Adams detailing products (used to be a huge Zaino guy) but don't use a buffer very much. After doing lots of research and talking to some other forum members, seems like the Griots G9 is a great machine! BTW, @Neurobit, very nice setup you have!!
 

Neurobit

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Thanks @Neurobit and @shaun6453!! Truck is billet silver and I meant compound (not cut) vs polish! Should only need a light polish I'm thinking and will know more when I wash it and take a good look at it (looked carefully when I picked it up and could not see any obvious swirls, etc.....was a cloudy day however). I mostly use Adams detailing products (used to be a huge Zaino guy) but don't use a buffer very much. After doing lots of research and talking to some other forum members, seems like the Griots G9 is a great machine! BTW, @Neurobit, very nice setup you have!!

Thanks man! Holler if you have any questions. Glad to be of help.
 

jeffrey5679

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[mention]Neurobit [/mention] thanks for the help. I’ve used Sonax perfect finish on my black Honda with pretty soft paint and had great results. I think I’ll try it on my Ram and hopefully get similar results. I only have light swirls from the dealer.


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Neurobit

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[mention]Neurobit [/mention] thanks for the help. I’ve used Sonax perfect finish on my black Honda with pretty soft paint and had great results. I think I’ll try it on my Ram and hopefully get similar results. I only have light swirls from the dealer.


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That should do it. It really finishes really nice. Even on softer substrates.

Here are some pillars I corrected a few weeks ago on a Mercedes GL. 3” Griots orange pad and perfect finish:

Before:

57C5E604-AD30-435B-83D5-A89DC1D33A49.jpeg 5CD3E868-721D-4BD8-ACB2-086771ED76DC.jpeg


After:

8D749A36-DD94-4786-81B6-CA598E20045B.jpeg
F24DC7EF-CA71-4DF7-BBA9-950291BEE374.jpeg
 

Neurobit

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Similar combination on a 5” hex pad on this Mercedes S550: Forgot to take better pictures, but you can see the improvement:

Before:
3C3DF621-8DA4-440B-AB48-8BF9A1CD3D5E.jpeg D9354A60-2972-46C0-A605-913AF6624CE0.jpeg


After:

85FE6B02-5B5D-483A-9FDE-8E0916E8950E.jpeg 1294E2E4-9C86-4A94-BBA0-BD88F0E03EF1.jpeg C10F393D-D2FC-4029-B333-B5F238024CF7.jpeg
 

scottmoyer

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The mileage doesn't matter when you're prepping a new car. My Rebel showed up at my house with 25 miles on it. The hood and roof sounded like sandpaper when I clayed it. Obviously being so rough, micro swirls were created when I removed the contaminants. I used Wolfgang Uber Compound and an orange pad over my entire truck to get it looking perfect.

Now I can do the ceramic coating to keep it looking good, but it came to me in pretty rough shape, with almost no miles on it.
 

RebelJC

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I always use Adams Graphene ceramic coating for all my vehicles. I haven't done my rebel yet because I haven't had enough time off. Always start with a strip wash and clay bar, then Adams 2 step compound and polish using chemical guys TORQX random polisher. Takes a few days but the results are fantastic. Here are some pics of my sons 2017 WRX after the coating cured the next day. 20201207_124807.jpg 20201207_124736.jpg 20201207_124830.jpg 20201207_124843.jpg
 
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jeffrey5679

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My only experience polishing is on a black Honda with soft paint. I tried using an orange pad but it marred the paint pretty bad. I ended up using sonax perfect finish with a black pad and it turned out really nice. Do you guys think the black pad with sonax perfect finish is aggressive enough to remove light squirrels? I see some of you guys using an orange pad. I’m worried about removing too much clear.
 

AmericanRebelution

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I use Lake Country pads on a Girot's Garage G9 Random Orbital polisher. I really like Griot's BOSS Correcting Cream and BOSS Finishing Sealant. I use the correcting cream on a Lake Country blue pad and the finishing sealant on a black pad. If your swirls are deeper, you can use a green pad with the correcting cream for more cutting ability.
 

nbase

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I always use Adams Graphene ceramic coating for all my vehicles. I haven't done my rebel yet because I haven't had enough time off. Always start with a strip wash and clay bar, then Adams 2 step compound and polish using chemical guys TORQX random polisher. Takes a few days but the results are fantastic. Here are some pics of my sons 2017 WRX after the coating cured the next day. View attachment 85658 View attachment 85657 View attachment 85659 View attachment 85662
That blue looks amazing. I've been doing a lot of reading lately on graphene coatings, probably too much...I'm leaning towards this Adam's stuff for my new Ram.
 

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