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So I stopped in a Harbor Freight today and they happened to have that Dual Action polisher in stock. I grabbed it and also three pads, polishing/waxing/sealing. When I went to check out I was lucky and the guy ahead of me had a 20% off coupon he couldn't use so he gave it to me. So now I've got the hardware, but what about software?

Yes I know Adam's is great, but for this first time doing all of this I wanted to just grab something at the local parts store. Christine only has some light swirling, but there's a some small scuffs that I might need a little more agressive spot treatment. I won't know 'til I get into it. I have a 1/2 day next friday so my plan is to get home, give her a wash and then clay her down. Then start in the morning with the polishing to get the swirls out, hopefully start waxing by the afternoon. Sunday would be wrap up if I need it.

Mothers has a clay kit at Walmart for like $17 so I was going to use that knowing I'll probly use all of it 'cause she hasn't been clayed in the couple years I've had her. From there, what would you recommend? I've seen mention of Meguir's 102 or 201 or something... How important is it to tape off edges?

I've watched the Adam's videos several times so I think I'll be okay from a machine standpoint, but I'm open to pointers too.
 

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:eek:ldfogey:Adam's user here speaking from many years experience with Meguiar's. If you're looking for readily available products (ie; WalMart, Target, etc.) then grab Meguiar's Ultimate Compound and Ultimate Polish. They are derived from M105/M205 respectively. Mother's clay bar bugs me because it sticks to my fingers so in a pinch I use Meguiar's. Be sure to tape off trim pieces otherwise be prepared to spend time cleaning polish and compound off of it.

Don't forget to post up pics when done.
 

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If you want to buy in store I recommend megs. I've used their clay numerous times as well as the polish and enjoy the results. The compound however I have not been so lucky with.

I would say taping off certain parts is very important but personally I only do it sometimes (If I were to work on someone else's car I would tape). I'm just very careful near edges.

Another thing I always try and do is cover the windshield and wipers/trim up there. It is mess if you don't.

If the swirls aren't terrible you may just want to do a polish and see how you like it.

If you are following the Adams videos you will be fine...Good luck and don't t forget to post pictures

Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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Adam's user here as well, but if you insist on buying over the counter stuff, go Meguiar's.

If you've never polished before it definitely helps to tape off a 2'x2' square on one of the most beat up sections of your paint. Each time I start polishing, I begin with a section that size on the hood. Go through each polish step until you acheive the end result you want. This will save you the frustration of doing each step around the whole car, only to finish and realize you still have swirls. The 2'x2' section ensures you get the correct technique needed for your application down. Then just proceed around the rest of the car.

Also, tape off any emblems and seams. Prevents you from potentially tearing up the pads you use and also keeps you from caking the crevices with polish.

Also I suggest using something similar to Adam's VRT (vinyl, rubber, tire) dressing for all of your plastic trim before polishing. If you accidentally polish over the trim area, it will wipe right off with some detail spray and a microfiber. Trying to get machine polish out of untreated trim that you accidentally hit is a nightmare haha (<---sad laughter).

Finally, take your time. If you think you are moving the polisher too slowly, go a little bit slower:) Honestly, you will get the best results by working the polish to it's full potential and moving the machine very slowly over the surface. I usually do side to side followed by up and down, like a checkerboard, and do 5-6 passes like that (1 pass being one side to side and one up and down).

And finally, the most important piece of advice: enjoy yourself! There is nothing more rewarding then seeing your shining paint after a few hours of hard work! Oh, and also don't forget to post up some before/after pictures for us detail-heads:)

Ryan
 

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Got the mother's kit two weeks ago and did mine. Works fine. Mine was 20 ,even at Walmart in my area. McGuires is good. They have different types but just look for one that says light scratches and swirls. Wash the car well before you clay bar and also because you don't want to wax dirt ,it causes swirling. So hit those edges and comers well. After your wash and clay bar your ready to buff. You don't always need to use a buffer on the whole car. It is possible to achieve a good shine by hand. I've taken out light scratches and swirls by hand. I don't use a buffer unless I have a serious scratch and sometimes its just to deep and your s.o.l. watch if your buffing in the sun. Its gonna heat your paint when you use the buffer and if your paints already hot ,you can risk burning the paint. Watch your edges and corners, the paint is softer in these areas and hense more prone to being burned. Don't need to push down on orbital and you wanna maintain control. I never watched the Adams videos but you don't need to go higher then 1400 rpms tops. I keep mine around 1100 or so. The faster she's spinning,the faster it will heat your paint. Do small areas. Don't apply product to a whole panal and then buff. Do like an eight by eight inch area. Something small . Clean your pad periodically while you buff. I apply my compound or polish to a applicator and spread it on my 8x8 or 10x10 area and buff it. Some just squirt product on area and buff. That shoots crap everywhere and you'll be spending a lot of time cleaning out crap around your wipers and so on. Do not start close to an edge when applying product. Start in a spot that's flat and not to close to the edge and spread. If you start at the corner you will be brushing out a lot of compound in the cracks and trim. There is probably more but that's enough for now
 

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Watch Junkman's vids for some good techniques. He uses Meguires on most of his older vids.
 
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