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Old 11-17-2005, 12:38 PM
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Color sanding

I am a beginner to color sanding with 3M finishing film so I had a few questions:

I have some 800 grit, 1200 grit and 1500 grit 3M finishing film disks. I was planning to start with the 800 and then proceed to use the 1200 and then the 1500. I am wondering if there is any benefit in the quality of finish if one proceeds with the small increments in film grit sizes? Is it worthwhile for me to purchase some 1000 grit and go from 800-1000-1200-1500 or is that a waste? Maybe just going from 800 to 1500 will suffice?

Another question I have is I already have/use an orbital palm sander that has a 3/16 orbit....is this sufficient to use with the 3M finishing film or would it be worthwhile to purchase a new orbital sander with a 3/32 oribit? THanks.

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Old 11-17-2005, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esahlin
I am a beginner to color sanding with 3M finishing film so I had a few questions:

I have some 800 grit, 1200 grit and 1500 grit 3M finishing film disks. I was planning to start with the 800 and then proceed to use the 1200 and then the 1500. I am wondering if there is any benefit in the quality of finish if one proceeds with the small increments in film grit sizes? Is it worthwhile for me to purchase some 1000 grit and go from 800-1000-1200-1500 or is that a waste? Maybe just going from 800 to 1500 will suffice?

Another question I have is I already have/use an orbital palm sander that has a 3/16 orbit....is this sufficient to use with the 3M finishing film or would it be worthwhile to purchase a new orbital sander with a 3/32 oribit? THanks.
IMO, 800 is too coarse for color sanding. And, I can't tell much difference color sanding with with 1000 or 1200.
But, to me, the issue here is doing it by hand or by orbital sander.
I always do color sanding with 1000 or 1200 then 1500 by hand with a sanding block. You can then use a DA with 3000 to remove the 1500 scratches.
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Old 11-17-2005, 04:37 PM
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I use an Airvantage sander with the 3M finishing system. If you use a standard random orbital sander make sure you use a very soft pad or you will sand through on edges etc. With the Airvantage you can completely color sand a full car in about an hour. By hand it would take you all day and then some.
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Old 11-17-2005, 05:13 PM
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ES the lower grits help you to get the clear flatter and remove the urethane peel as it is called...Since you are new at this, use 1000 grit to do your intial cut then move on to 2000... You can do it by hand or DA, but if the paint has allot of dirt and specs in it, I would suggest you remove that stuff by hand with 1000 first... You dont want to start chasing pigtails that are very easy to come by if the paint is not super clean etc...

Read this thread on the pigtails a DA and unclean surface can make.. It is about me Allot of guys chimed in and gave great advice about it.. I think it will help you

Helpful hints for DA colorsanding

BK
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Old 11-18-2005, 02:04 AM
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THanks for the info...

I should have added that I'll be doing 3 buffing stages after the 1500...I plan to use the SPI products and attempt to follow SPIs "perfect paint" format hence the buffing steps with the Presta compounds.

After reading Bondokings listed thread...I have also heard about the need for the soft interface pads on the DAs....Also read about the 3/32 Airvantage sander on Len's autobodystore board.....just wondered if 3/16 was sufficient as most of the orbitals out there are 3/16 orbit.
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Old 11-18-2005, 03:10 AM
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I would definately do the first step by hand. Make sure that you have all of the trash out first. Make sure that you rinse good with clean water. Then try the sanding with the orbital. It is so easy to scratch when wet sanding, even by hand. Atleast by hand, if you pay real good attention, you can usually feel the problem before it gets to far.

Aaron
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Old 11-19-2005, 04:21 PM
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your going to get alot of conflicting answers to this topic between the old school guy and the new. most of the stuff i do are bikes. they are all done by hand and i work wet from 1200 to 2000. on cars i do it differently because they are so flat and large. i use the 3m system all time and it works great. your sander will work fine. since your a beginner just keep it simple, put the 3m soft interface pad on it and sand the car with the 1200 and buff it out. this will only work with the 3m system. i recently bought a pack of the 1200 indasa dry discs and somehow after sanding it was way too coarse for me to buff it out. i switch to the 3m 1200 and it buffs just as easy as if i wetsanded it with 2000. why?? who knows. you would think 1200 would be 1200 right, but it aint. use the perfect II compound or the presta ultra cutting cream works good to, both with a wool pad. watch the edges as you will burn through easier than by hand. if your nervous or dont quite have the feel for the sander then cut in by hand then use the orbital. this will give you a nice sanded and buffed finish. there are other methods to get the whole thing flatter but this will make it nice and easy for your first time.

Last edited by mrcleanr6; 11-19-2005 at 04:27 PM.
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