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      03-28-2008, 10:33 AM   #1
TagMan
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What's Better? Wax with an Orbital Polisher or Wax by Hand?

Is it any better to use an orbital polishing machine, or is it better to wax by hand?
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      03-28-2008, 10:45 AM   #2
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IMO, if you know how to use an orbital, it's better and easier to use. You should still have to do hand application around places where you can't get by machine.

Once I got used to using the porter cable, I found myself doing more frequent waxing too, since it takes less time to do than hand application. So, that's another positive for the orbital.

I still do my claying by hand though. I don't trust using the oribital for that.
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      03-28-2008, 11:11 AM   #3
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imo, if you do it correctly orbitals are the way to go. only disadvantage is that, all other things being equal, you use up a bit more wax in the machine due to pad absorption.
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      03-28-2008, 11:16 AM   #4
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Orbitals for sure. They lay down a very thin layer, which is all you need. Wax sets up faster and comes off far easier. I have both the Griot's (Makita) 6" and 3" orbitals. Best AC powered on the market. Using the correct pad is important too. Wash, clay, polish, wax. Results are stunning!
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      03-28-2008, 11:42 AM   #5
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I really don't use my Flex to apply wax/sealant. I apply my Zaino by hand. However, I think the biggest benefit of an Orbital polisher is what it can do for your paint prior to applying wax. With the use of some Menzerna Polish, a white polish pad, I can remove ALL swirls from my paint. This is something I could not do with just my hands. This is the real benefit of an orbital polisher.
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      03-28-2008, 12:13 PM   #6
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Machine is better. HOWEVER...you can cause major damage very quickly if you do it incorrectly. I saw a hood that got scratched bad by one little piece of grit getting between the polish pad and the paint. It is the way to go but just make sure you are very careful and get lots of good quality polishing bonnets! I have heard really good things (see BALLS above) about Griot's garage wax kits. They have an orbital poilsh/wax kits with detailed instructions that I have my eye on.
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      03-28-2008, 02:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vanbmw View Post
Machine is better. HOWEVER...you can cause major damage very quickly if you do it incorrectly. I saw a hood that got scratched bad by one little piece of grit getting between the polish pad and the paint. It is the way to go but just make sure you are very careful and get lots of good quality polishing bonnets! I have heard really good things (see BALLS above) about Griot's garage wax kits. They have an orbital poilsh/wax kits with detailed instructions that I have my eye on.
Griots is good stuff. If you ever drop a pad just throw it out and be very careful how you treat used pads (I wrap mine in a clean towel until they can be washed). Perhaps a little paranoid but the alternative is much worse.
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      03-28-2008, 03:37 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mchaskell View Post
Griots is good stuff. If you ever drop a pad just throw it out and be very careful how you treat used pads (I wrap mine in a clean towel until they can be washed). Perhaps a little paranoid but the alternative is much worse.
Sounds like you are smart...not paranoid!
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      03-28-2008, 05:32 PM   #9
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Sounds like the orbital machine is the way to go. I definately can see the potential for damage if something were to get on the pad and then scratch or grind itself into the car's paint.

I know from an unfortunate experience, however, that a small contaminant can also find its way into a manual pad or rag and then scratch the paint from waxing by hand.

You can't be too careful, as I found out.

Do all the orbital machines really totally prevent the paint burn or swirls that the circular polishers can cause?
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      03-28-2008, 05:53 PM   #10
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The other side of the coin...the modern polishes/waxes are very easy to apply and you get good results by hand. I'm sure the opbital is better but if you buy a good wax and use good quality microfibre applicators/buffing cloths you will also be happy. If you take care of the paint from the start it (hopefully) won't end up in bad shape needing lots of buffing/polishing.
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      03-28-2008, 07:20 PM   #11
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Excellent thread !!!
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      03-28-2008, 08:43 PM   #12
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I have taken great care of my car over the last 3.5 years and 90,000 miles but it still needs a good polish/wax job that no amount of hand work will fix. Nate
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      03-28-2008, 09:19 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by natedog_1959 View Post
I have taken great care of my car over the last 3.5 years and 90,000 miles but it still needs a good polish/wax job that no amount of hand work will fix. Nate
So doing a good hand clay/polish/wax job won't cut it? You still need to do a good machine buff to get the paint looking really good? I figured that doing it 2-3 times a year by hand might be fine and the buffer might not be needed. Guess I was wrong! Good to know.
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