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Thread: Tips & Techniques for using the G110, G100, G220 and the PC Dual Action Polisher

          
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    Registered Member Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Tips & Techniques for using the G110, G100, G220 and the PC Dual Action Polisher

    Tips & Techniques for using the G110, G100, G220 and the PC Dual Action Polisher
    (These are all similar tools)

    After teaching hundreds of classes here at Meguiar's, there are some common mistakes most people make when trying to remove swirls and scratches with a dual action polisher. Most of them have to do with technique.




    Here's a list of the most common problems
    1. Trying to work too large of an area at one time.
    2. Move the polisher too fast over the surface.
    3. Too low of speed setting for removing swirls.
    4. Too little pressure on the head of the unit.
    5. Too much pressure on the head of the unit so the pad quits rotating.
    6. Not keeping the pad flat while working your product.
    7. Too much product, too little product.
    8. Not cleaning the pad often enough.
    Here's a list of the solutions in matching order,
    1. Shrink your work area down, the harder the paint the smaller the area you can work. The average area should be and average of about 16" by 16" up to 20" by 20" or so. 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.
    2. For removing defects out of the paint you want to use what we call a Slow Arm Speed. It's really easy to move the polisher too quickly because the sound of the motor spinning fast has a psychological effect to for some reason want to make people move the polisher fast. Also the way most people think is that, "If I move the polisher quickly, I'll get done faster", but it doesn't work that way.
    3. 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, again... 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 rotating over the paint as well as the combination of time, (slow arm speed), together with the diminishing abrasives, the foam type, and the pressure to remove small particles of paint which is how your remove below surface defects like swirls or scratches. It's a leveling process that's somewhat difficult because the tool is safe/gentle while in most cases, modern clear coat paints are harder than traditional single stage paints and this makes them hard to work on. This is also why people get frustrated, they don't understand paint technology, all they know is their paint swirls easy and getting the swirls out is difficult and thus frustrating.
    4. For the same reason as stated in #3, people are scared, or perhaps a better word is apprehensive, to apply too much pressure and the result of too little pressure is no paint is removed thus no swirls are removed.
    5. Just the opposite of item #4, people think that by pushing harder on the polisher they can work faster and be more aggressive, but the truth is the clutch in the tool is a safety mechanism to prevent burning and will cause the pad to stop rotating, thus less cleaning or abrading action and once in a while this will lead a person to then post on the forum something like this, "Hey my pad doesn't rotate". There needs to be a balance of enough pressure to remove defects and keep the pad rotating but yet not too much pressure as to stop the rotating action. This balance is affected by a lot of things, things like type of chemical, some chemicals provide more lubrication and the pad will spin easier, curved surfaces or any raise in body lines will tend to stop the pad from rotating. This is where experience on how to address these areas comes into play or you do the best you can and move on. It's not a perfect tool, nor a perfect system, but it's almost always better than working/cleaning by hand.
    6. Applying pressure in such a way as to put too much pressure to one side of the pad will cause it to stop rotating and thus decrease cleaning ability.
    7. Too much product over lubricates the surface and this won't allow the diminishing abrasives to do their job plus it will increase the potential for messy splatter as well as cause pad saturation. Too little product will keep the pad from rotating due to no lubrication and there won't be enough diminishing abrasives to do any work. Again it's a balance that comes with experience, or another way of saying this would be it's a balance that comes with hours of buffing out a car to learn what to do and what not to do. Information like what you're reading here is just an edge to decrease your learning curve. Hope this is helping.
    8. Most people don't clean their pad often enough and most of the time the reason for this is because they don't know they're supposed to clean their pad often and they don't know how to clean their pad. Again, that's why this forum is here to help you with both of these things. You should clean your pad after every application of product or every other application of product, your choice, most of the time cleaning your pad after every other application of product works pretty well. It enables you to work clean and enables the foam pad, the polisher and the next application of fresh product too all work effectively. How to clean your pad will be addressed below sooner versus later, but not at the time of this posting. (Sorry, I'm behind a keyboard, not a video camera
    The first 4 are the most common. Can't tell you how many times we hear a comment like this from someone in the garage after demonstrating the correct technique

    "That's what I'm doing wrong"


    The dual action polisher is a gentle tool, that's why people like it. People are afraid of machines because they're worried they're going to either instill swirls or burn through the paint. When they learn that this is pretty hard to do with this machine, so after enough research or after watching a demonstration they learn to trust it and try it.

    Summary: People like the dual action polisher because it's oscillating action is safe and gentle to the surface.

    Now follow me on this...
    For the same reason people love the dual action polisher, (it's safe and gentle), a segment of people get frustrated with it because it won't remove all defects all the time. It won't tackle serious or deep defects quickly and easily. It won't always work on really hard paints. So for the same reason people love this tool, they also hate it, they just don't know why. Maybe after reading this post they will understand.


    This is the reason this thread is so widely read and you can learn a lot from it if you'll only take the time to read through it.

    PC + 83 not "Cutting" it! - The Limits of the Dual Action Polisher


    Even the pictures of the paint on the white truck on the first page and the story behind it are powerful and REAL (This writer took them and did the testing with both the G100/PC and the RB).

    When the G100/PC with a strong cleaner/polish like M83 and our W-8006 polishing pad doesn't remove the defects to your satisfaction or within an acceptable time limit the answer is not to get more aggressive with a more aggressive pad or chemical or both, the answer is to switch to a more powerful machine like the rotary buffer and or take the car to a Pro who knows how to use a rotary buffer, or learn to live with the defects.

    Hope this helps...
    Mike Phillips
    Office: 800-869-3011 x206
    Mike.Phillips@Autogeek.net
    "Find something you like and use it often"

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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    That was very helpful thanks Mike! I just got the G100 and was learning the techniques of it through trial and error. I did start of slower, but didn't notice a difference, went to speed 5 and moved slower and started seeing the paint shine! (painted side scoops and they look factory now thanks to the G100 and #83!)
    www.ShowStang.com

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    Registered Member prnsr82's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    Mike, on the pressure issue, i was watching the DVD and it looks like one could maybe judge pressure by the black mark you put on the pad. I could see about 1 - 1.5 rotations a second is what you were applying. Just seeing if you have ever noticed that way of showing pressure or if its even accurate. Anyway just a thought.
    'In Veritate Victoria'
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    Registered Member Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    Quote Originally Posted by prnsr82 View Post
    it looks like one could maybe judge pressure by the black mark you put on the pad.
    You can show rotation with a black mark but not pressure.

    When it comes to pressure and rotation, these aspects are really only important during what Meguiar's calls the "cleaning" step, this is the step where you are removing small amounts of paint in an effort to level the surface and in effect remove the defects. (In reality you never really remove defects, you just remove the paint surrounding them).

    Big picture is this, in most cases, when you're doing the cleaning step, the step in which you're using a paint cleaner or a cleaner/polish, (and even a cleaner/wax), to remove below surface defects like swirls, scratches, or etchings, then you want and need to remove some paint. It is the leveling process that restores a smooth, flat surface.

    Now here's where pad rotation comes into play, when you're trying to remove paint, the pad is going to be more effective at removing small particles of paint when the surface of the pad is moving over the surface of the paint versus just vibrating against it.

    It's the combination of pad material and product together with the oscillating and rotating action of the face of the pad against the finish that abrades the paint. The rotating portion of the oscillating action of the dual action polisher is probably the most key component of all these things that determines the effectiveness of the process. Take away the rotating portion and only have the oscillating action, (which can be better thought of as simply vibrating and not really making small circles in an eccentric pattern), and the cleaning or abrading effectiveness is greatly reduced.


    So regardless of what chemical and pad you're using, when you're cleaning the paint on a car you need to temper your downward pressure in such a way as to apply 'usually' as much pressure as you can while maintaining a rotating pad.

    This is something you gage in real time as you're working on a car by your muscles continually altering pressure, angle, speed and direction. Having some type of hypothetical equation like this,

    Step 3: Move polisher with 15 pounds of pressure over the head of the unit at 1/2" per second


    Doesn't really help in the real world because there's just too many factors that will effect how well the pad will rotate such as type of chemical and curved surfaces as listed in #5 under Solutions at the top of this page in the article that started this thread.



    Quote Originally Posted by prnsr82 View Post
    Just seeing if you have ever noticed that way of showing pressure or if its even accurate. Anyway just a thought.
    It was a good thought, but just doesn't work that way out in the garage.

    Mike Phillips
    Office: 800-869-3011 x206
    Mike.Phillips@Autogeek.net
    "Find something you like and use it often"

  5. #5
    I want this car. Boss_429's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    That is a fantastic write up!
    Boss_429

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    Registered Member prnsr82's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    Thought I was oh so close to cracking the age old question on pressure too... Well thanks for the great write up anyway.
    'In Veritate Victoria'
    2007 F-150 - Texas Blue
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    aka Jeff Long Jossy92's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    So, if pressure were to be applied which only allowed the pad to rotate (not just vibrate) at the same speed as rubbing by hand with "passion"....

    .....would that go beyond the limit of properly using the machine for cleaning.

    I recall the word "passion" being used with SratchX. I am trying apply the same concept to the PC.

    I hesitate to post this as I am sure that actually seeing the process at its extreme is necessary.

    (Pleased delete this, if the question is too far out there.)
    Last edited by Jossy92; Dec 29th, 2007 at 06:51 AM. Reason: cleaning up punctuation

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    Registered Member Mike Phillips's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    Quote Originally Posted by Jossy92 View Post
    So, if pressure were to be applied which only allowed the pad to rotate (not just vibrate) at the same speed as rubbing by hand with "passion"....

    .....would that go beyond the limit of properly using the machine for cleaning.
    No.

    But let's clear one thing up, if the pad is not rotating then it is only jiggling or vibrating on the surface. If the pad is rotating the it is also oscillating at the same time.

    See the difference? It's one action versus two actions taking place as determined by pressure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jossy92 View Post

    I recall the word "passion" being used with ScratchX. I am trying apply the same concept to the PC.

    I hesitate to post this as I am sure that actually seeing the process at its extreme is necessary.

    (Pleased delete this, if the question is too far out there.)
    Seeing and hands on training is always best.

    Most important thing to keep in mind when "removing defects", that's when you want to be removing paint, is to keep your work area to a small size, 12" to 18" inches or so and temper this with how easy or how hard the defects are coming out.

    Most people learning the way of the DA polisher will tend to try to tackle to large of an area at one time and this will reduce the effectiveness of the process, that is after you wipe off the residue you'll still see the defects in the paint. Most people try tackling too large an area thinking this will speed up the process but in fact it will render it in-effective and if you have to re-do your work then it won't have sped up the process it will have lengthened it.

    Mike Phillips
    Office: 800-869-3011 x206
    Mike.Phillips@Autogeek.net
    "Find something you like and use it often"

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    aka Jeff Long Jossy92's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G100/PC Dual Action Polisher

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Phillips View Post
    No.

    But let's clear one thing up, if the pad is not rotating then it is only jiggling or vibrating ....
    It's one action versus two actions taking place as determined by pressure.

    I think I understand conceptually. So, I will do small areas with a pure polish so as not to mess up if it goes dry while I am practicing? Then When I get the hang of the machine, I will try a cleaner and focus on the paint and learn the products.

    Thank you

    Jeff

    (Not too much to offer in terms of knowlege, sure appreciate yours.)

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    Registered Member miahjohn's Avatar
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    Re: Tips & Techniques for using the G110, G100, G220 and the PC Dual Action Polisher

    Mike
    while using the DA with swirl remover 2.0 when do you stop and wipe? do i buff until all polish is gone or when there is still polish on paint? I cant find the best time to stop and wipe.

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