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How to Color-Sand a New Paint Job

Getting That Super-Shiny Look

Photography by John Kiewicz

After countless hours of meticulous body-panel preparation, the next step in refinishing your musclecar is to apply a new paint job. After the paint dries, the appearance usually looks good, but not great. Why? The vehicle might need to be color-sanded to deliver the proper, final, flat, super-shiny look. But most car crafters shriek at the thought of sanding a new paint job. Color sanding is simple, however, if you have the proper sanding know-how.

Color sanding is done for several reasons, and if done correctly, it can yield outstanding final results. The color-sanding process smooths out the minute waviness in the paint (known as orange peel) and removes minor imperfections in the paint and the clearcoat (such as tiny particles of dust stuck in the clearcoat). But the amount of sanding needed for color sanding is far less than for sanding body filler or primer. Color sanding requires the use of special, very fine, high-grit sandpaper that removes very small amounts of the surface material. Traditional body-sanding paper is in the 40- to 80-grit range, whereas color-sanding paper is in the 1,200- to 2,000-grit range.

For professional guidance on how to wet-sand, Car Craft turned to the automotive-finish experts at Meguiar's. In addition to top-quality sanding and buffing materials, Meguiar's offers free color-sanding tech seminars to teach car crafters the proper way to perform the work themselves.

SOURCES
Meguiar’s
17991 Mitchell S.
Irvine
CA  92614
800-752-8000
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