I have to tell you Dewey, for a "virgin" like yourself, I would hand wet sand the clear it is WAY safer. The ORBITAL sander (Not a "DA") is the way to go to get it done fast, but good old hand sanding is pretty hard to beat.
Now, the brand of paper can make a BIG difference. I use Meguiars paper "Unigrit" (it is made by someone else, the name escapes me now) and is the BEST, hands down, NO comparison. It makes 3M look stupid, lasts MUCH longer and cuts more even, MUCH better than every brand I have ever used and I have used just about everyone you can find out there. It is EXPENSIVE, about twice what 3M costs, but it is well worth it.
Click here for Meguiars
Get yourself a little 3m "squeegee" #05518.
This will allow you quickly squeegee off a small area and see where you are at in the sanding process throughout the sanding process so you DON'T sand thru. You are in complete control.
Sand a little, squeegee off the water and see what you have, then sand a little more. It is real user friendly.
I have to say, color sanding and buffing is one of my most favorite steps, because of this total control you have. You can make a finish near flawless, you are in complete control of the finished product.