Polish to PerfectionThis is where the low-speed polishing pad comes in to gently level out the 2,000-grit scratches into a highly reflective surface. Raoul starts with a wool pad using 3M Rubbing Compound to attack the scratches. With the big scratches gone, he goes back over the same surface with a less-abrasive rubbing compound and a foam pad. Keep the polisher at low speeds using the variable-speed control on the machine. Low speed avoids putting heat into the paint. Never attempt to polish paint that has been in direct sunlight. Raoul did all the work on this '68 Camaro hood, stopping only for quick photos. The effort for half the hood took a solid two hours, which means it would take three to four hours to cut and polish the entire hood. This is not a job that can be rushed, so plan on spending several days to cut and polish a new paint job. It's all in how you even out the scratches. Place a small amount of compound on the paint and spin the pad very slowly to apply the material. Otherwise, you'll end up wearing the compound on your shirt. Also note how Raoul holds the polisher at an angle. The machine spins clockwise, so he holds the polisher up and at an angle to the right to prevent the pad from digging into the paint. Place a small amount of compound on the paint and spin the pad very slowly to apply the ma When polishing edges, position the polisher to run from the inside out past the edge. Do not polish into edges as this will burn the paint. Note here how the hood is raised slightly above the fender line to prevent digging into the fender. When polishing edges, position the polisher to run from the inside out past the edge. Do n If you hold the polisher carefully, you can turn it 90 degrees to polish vertical surfaces. Be sure not to apply undue pressure to the horizontal work surface. If you hold the polisher carefully, you can turn it 90 degrees to polish vertical surfaces This is a simple point, but note how Raoul places the cord over his shoulder to prevent it from banging against the fender. This is a simple point, but note how Raoul places the cord over his shoulder to prevent it Work slowly, cleaning and drying the surface often to inspect your progress. You may have to go over one area several times to remov all the visible scratches, using a black foam pad with polishing compound. Foam pads are more porous than wool, allowing more heat to escape. Work slowly, cleaning and drying the surface often to inspect your progress. You may have When you think you've arrived at a smooth surface, you can then hand polish the surface with a glaze like Meguiar's Show Car Glaze Number 7 and a microfiber towel. It's difficult to see in these pictures, but the difference to the passenger side of the hood will bring a smile to your face when the work is complete. When you think you've arrived at a smooth surface, you can then hand polish the surface wi When to SandSantini has been painting since he was about 10 years old and as a professional since 1977, so he knows a few things about paint. He says some clears cut and polish easier than others. Some paints catalyze very quickly while others take more time. There are also windows during the curing process when it is very easy to cut and polish. Later, the paint will become very hard and difficult to work. The key is to know when to cut and when to lay off. He also mentions that it's possible to do a great cut and polish job only to have the clearcoat shrink after it has cured. This will require an additional light sand and polish to bring back that ultimate finish. All these critical time factors are determined specifically by the paint manufacturer, which can supply a schedule of when the paint can safely be sanded and polished. SOURCES3MMeguiar'sSt. Paul, MNIrvine, CA877/ 666-2277949/752-80003m.com/automotivemeguiars.com  Auto Body StoreMothers Polish CoSouthampton, NJHuntington Beach, CA888/485-5008714/891-3364autobodystore.commothers.com  Classic Motoring AccessoriesSantini's Paint & Body WerkesTampa, FLWestminster, CA800/628-7596714/891-8895properautocare.comsantiniusa.com  Max ToolsSystem One ProductsSan Dimas, CA714/533-0802800/629-3325systemoneproducts.commaxtools.com  « | 1 | 2 | 3 | View Full Article Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!