Dry Sanding a 1969 GTO by Mike Phillips with 3D Products

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Dry Sanding a 1969 GTO by Mike Phillips with 3D Products

How to machine dry sand, compound and polish to remove orange peel, mottling and surface texture to create a show winning finish!


John's 1969 GTO custom, precision built by MirandaBuilt.com

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This is a 9-year in the making, custom built 1969 GTO. The majority of the restoration and modifications were done at Miranda Built.com - Precision Built Street Machines. The car was shipped to Ohio where it was painted by Mitch and his team at

The custom paint job is approximately 4 years old and over this time the paint has shifted. The word shift in the custom car painting world can mean 2 different things.

1: Color changing or color shifting paints.
These are paints that actually change colors when viewed from different angles or when ambient light changes around the car. Another term to describe color shifting or color changing paints is chameleon paints. You can find more information about these types of paints here.

2: Paint shifting.
This is a physical change that the paint goes through after it is sprayed onto a vehicles and then over time the paint is physically alters to it's final composition and appearance. Changes in fresh paint occur as the paint fully dries and hardens. Changes also take place when body panels expand and contract with surrounding ambient temperatures. When paint is fresh it is a flexible membrane, it will move with the panel until it finally settles and reaches complete drying and hardness. During this time of shifting, the surface appearance and texture can also change. During this shifting process, the surface texture can change even if the car has already been sanded and buffed.



Backstory
The owner John contacted me after I was recommended by Jeremy Miranda at MirandaBuilt.com to prep the paint for the car's first public debut at the 2022 GoogGuys 24th Summit Racing Nationals presented by PPG.

Traditional cut and buff
Originally, John and I talked about doing a normal paint correction including dedicated compounding and polishing steps followed with a traditional wax. Once the car arrived, John and I inspected the paint closely under different lights.

Here's something any seasoned detailer knows, it's easy to take a paint job in horrible condition and take it to a higher level while at the same time showing the dramatic before and after changes via pictures and video.

It's a lot more difficult to take a great paint job with only minor issues to a higher level and in most cases, there won't be dramatic before and after pictures.

Both types of detailing require the right products, pads and tools as well as the necessary experience and skills, but I would say I working on paint that's already really nice and trying to take it to a higher level on a show car is a lot more challenging than correcting neglected paint on a daily driver.

Surface texture and mottling
The paint is PPG Global Refinish System in Sunset Bronze. When inspecting paint visually, the kind of minor imperfections this paint had were very difficult to see. I did my best to capture the surface of the paint but even with crystal clear pictures it's difficult to see the surface texture and mottling.

Here's a closeup shot of the surface of the paint on the driver's side of the roof.

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Here's another picture from the passenger side sail panel.

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Change of plans - Dry Sanding

After inspecting the paint with John here at 3D Garage, I asked John if he knew how much paint was sprayed onto the car. He said he wasn't sure but had the painter's phone number. The painter is Mitch Mumbower owner of RelicRestomods.com. I called Mitch and introduced myself, let him know John was at our shop with the 1969 GTO he painted and asked him about the paint job. Mitch confirmed he sprayed 5 heavy coats of clear over the car. About a month later they hard blocked with acrylic sanding blocks starting at #800 followed by #1000, #1500 and then #2000 and then compounded and polished.

For anyone that is not familiar with the process for sanding paint for a show car finish, the system Mitch and his team used is a text-book example of the right way to do it. I described what John and I were seeing at the surface level and Mitch confirmed what I think the issue is and it's the normal shifting of the paint over time. It's been almost 4 years since the car was painted, the normal shifting of the paint is over. Any solvents that needed to evaporate or outgass have done so.



Good to go
I shared with Mitch the 3D Dry Sanding System and told him I would only be using the #2500 grit sanding disc.

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I asked him if he thought there was enough paint on the car to safely use this approach to remove the surface texture and mottling and get the paint back to flat again and he said yes, there's easily enough paint to re-sand. With Mitch's information and blessing, I discussed the dry sanding process with John and he gave me the green light to go ahead with this process.


Sanding Test Spot
Before sanding down an entire car I always start with a Sanding Test Spot. I have an experience with a sanding project where the painter sprayed a custom paint job onto a Ferrari. Then he sanded down the entire car. When he went to remove the sanding marks he couldn't get them out. He got my name from someone and asked me to take a look and see if I could get them out. This was back in 1989 or 1990, I wish I would have written down his name and taken a picture of the car.

Here's the deal though, the paint was so hard neither of us using the sanding papers, compounds and tools available at that time could remove the sanding marks. Buffing with the most aggressive compounds, wool pads and rotary polishers we simply couldn't remove 100% of the sanding marks. We could get about 70% of them out leaving behind the deeper scratches. Note that machine sanding discs like we have today were not invented yet. The painter asked me,

What am I going to do?

I said,

You're going to repaint the car.

And of course I recommended he contact the Rep for the paint line he was using, explain the situation and then try to troubleshoot what went wrong and avoid this issue moving forward.

The reason I share the story above is this - BEFORE you sand down an entire car - do a Sanding Test Spot first, this means sand a section of paint about the size of a microfiber towel and then using the compounds, pads and tools you THINK will work to remove the sanding marks to buff this sanded section of paint.

If you can remove the sanding marks and the results look great - then you're good to go. Move forward and sand down the car then buff it out.

If you find you cannot remove 100% of the sanding marks, you can a few other things like re-sanding and finishing out at a higher grit. You can try using a more aggressive compound and pad combo. But if you get to the point where you cannot remove 100% of the sanding marks without super heating the paint and risking burning through. The STOP. At this point all you have to do is somehow fix this one spot. The Sanding Test Spot saved your from a horrible mess. Just imagine what a headache you would have if you had sanded down the entire car only to find out the paint was so hard you cannot remove your sanding marks.



Sanding exposes the paint defects

After prepping the paint for sanding, I did my test spot to the driver's side of the roof. After making just a few passes with the #2500 grit sanding disc, BEFORE I completely leveled the surface texture I STOPPED and took these pictures.

Sanding levels the very top surface of the paint first. The result from this is it reveals the surface texture. Sanded portions of paint look dull because they are sanded and anything under the very top surface of the paint remains darker or shiny.

Check it out...

See the weird pattern that shows up after sanding? The darker areas are the low spots the sanded areas are the high spots. Over time the paint had shifted from expansion and contracting and after it finally settled the surface was no longer flat.

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Compounding Test
Next I buffed a section of the sanded area and I was happy to find out the sanding marks buffed out easily. For my compound I used 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound. This compound is formulated to cut HARD clearcoats fast. What I always tell people is this,

If it will cut hard clearcoats fast... it will cut all paints fast

Me? I like to work as fast as I can while keeping my results professional grade, thus anytime I'm compounding I'm using 3D 510.



Go Time
Once I proved to myself via the Sanding Test Spot that my process works, it was time to get busy. I wanted to document and share how long it took me to sand, cut and polish an iconic Detroit Iron Muscle Car so I took a picture of my watch to show the time when I started. Later I have a pictures showing the time when the job was finished.

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Here's the car as she arrived to the 3D Garage.

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Waterless Wash
When the car arrived it was dusty, that's normal when a car is going through a build process. At this time the owner, who is also a custom interior craftsman, was building and installing the custom interior from scratch as well as the trunk interior.

I tried using a normal waterless wash and while it was working I noticed the film on the car was kind of oily. I also found tree sap or something like it on the horizontal panels.


3D Wipe
Instead of using the traditional approach by using a waterless car wash, I tested and ended up using 3D WIPE, which is a panel wipe for prepping paint for the installation of a ceramic coating. 3D Wipe is a paint-safe water-based, solvent wipe and it easily cut through the film on the car to leave and reveal clean, shiny paint.

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Half-and-half pictures showing the film
In the pictures below, I took a moment to show what I'm talking about. The car was covered with a dusty and oily film.

Here's before on the passenger side

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Here's half and half...

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Here you can see how using 3D WIPE to remove the oily film left the paint crystal clear.

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The Baggie Test and Mechanical Decontamination
(Sorry no pictures)

Once I have the car wiped-down, next it was time to do the Baggie Test to inspect for above surface bonded contaminants. Not to my surprise, the paint and the glass were horribly contaminated. Using a new, sandwich baggie to feel the paint and the glass - these surfaces felt like #80 grit sandpaper. No problem but it does mean I'll need to clay the paint and the class before moving to the next step.

To remove the contamination, I used the 3D WIPE with the 3D Detailing Clay Towel.

I could have sanded the contamination off when sanding the paint but here's the deal, trying to sand off contamination will work but it will waste your sanding disc super fast. It's much more time-efficient and money-efficient to simply use a mechanical method to remove the contamination and save your time and your sanding discs for actual sanding of the paint.


Removing vinyl graphics
The back window had the Miranda Built letting on it and with permission from John I removed these as he can replace them after I'm done with the car. I could have clayed the glass and then polished it and simply worked around the lettering but to be thorough and do the job right, the lettering had to come off.

In the elite custom car building world, owning a Miranda Built car is powerful bragging rights.

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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...

How to protect matte paint and protect yourself


Matte Paint
Besides the beautiful Sunset Bronze basecoat/clearcoat paint on this GTO, the hood is painted matte bronze and the the upper portions of the body panels around the windows are also matte paint. The entire front end of the car is matte as is the door handles, the rear light trim, the GTO emblem on the rear lower sections of the back fenders and wheels.


Rubbing on matte paint turns it glossy
I was asked to be super careful to NOT make any of the matte surfaces glossy. So I was very careful to tape-off and cover-up these matte surfaces before beginning..


Rotary polishers sling compound
EVEN if the the best detailing in the world, and you know you can buff close to matte paint without buffing ON the matte paint, the underlying issue is the matter of wiping off product sling. By this I mean, If I'm super careful and don't put a spinning pad against any of the matte paint, which would turn it glossy in seconds, the problem is splatter. Rotary polishers spin a pad in a single direction and it's all but impossible while buffing out an entire car to avoid having some of the compound sling outward via centrifugal force and land on the matte surfaces.


Rubbing splatter dots is the same thing as polishing
If you think about it, polishing is rubbing a compound or polish over the surface. Wiping off splatter dots is basically the same thing, you take a microfiber towel and wipe or RUB the surface to remove the tiny dots of compound or polish splatter. This simple act is physically the same action as purposefully polishing a matte surface and the results will be the same - glossy paint.


Covering the wheels and tires
To avoid getting any splatter that I would then have to wipe off, before staring on the car I first tackled the wheels. The wheel are custom made and finished to match the paint and overall color scheme of the car. While clean compared to the wheels on a daily driver, these wheels had a light layer of brake dust and dirt on them. Part of the job for preparing any car for display at a car show, especially a high-end build like this GTO is cleaning and polishing the wheels so they look as good as the body panels.

For this I used 3D Bead It Up like a spray detailer. Along with a clean microfiber towels and some hand-wiping, I was able to remove the dust and some water marks while restoring a brand new look to the wheels. The other benefits to this was 3D Bead It Up is a polymer coating that seals surfaces. So I not only clean the wheels but I sealed them with a polymer coating and at the same time made the surface super slick - something that was not apparent when I first started working on them.

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Water marks on the spokes

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Brake dust and airborne dust on the Wilwood brake system

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Spraying the wheels with 3D Bead It Up

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Hand wiping and basically massaging all the various surfaces in front and behind the wheel.

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Beautiful results quick and easy and keeping these wheels clean will be easier and faster in the future.

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Taping-off and covering over Matte Paint

When it comes to taping off any other person's custom toy, I get a little nervous. This comes from experience, Like any seasoned detailer, I have pulled paint off cars when pulling tape off cars. It's a nightmare in real-time. So from experience, (bad experience), yes... I get a little nervous putting tape oto other guy's streetrods and muscle cars and get even MORE nervous taking it off. That said, I trust Mitch the painter to have done his job right and correctly prep the steel body panels for paint and this means good adhesion. I also took the extra step to visit the house painting department at Lowe's and pick up a couple of roles of Delicate Surface masking tape. This is a low-tack tape for use on interior house paints but will also be low tack on car paint. I'm sharing this to help you guys that read this article in the future.

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Everywhere you see this light lavender colored masking tap is MATTE PAINT. As you look at the locations of these matte surfaces next to places I must and and then buff twice, and when you understand wiping splatter off these surfaces can also make them glossy, you can then understand why I took the time to meticulously tape these matte surfaces to protect them - and protect me.


Windshield trim is painted matte
Remember too that I'm going to machine polish all the glass to remove whatever film and contamination is on the glass. If I didn't cover and protect the trim and accidentally hit it with a spinning buffing pad or had to wipe splatter off the trim, either of these things would make the matte appearance turn glossy.

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Rear view mirrors are painted matte
So I wouldn't have to put tape all over the mirror I used a normal clean/new sandwich baggie over the mirror and then taped off to the body panels.

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Door handles are painted matte
When sanding, running a rotary polisher and later an orbital polisher next to door handles it would be almost impossible to not accidentally bump into it. There were fingernail scratches behind the handles that I did buff out with the rotary and the orbital. I was only able to stick the spinning pads in this tight area because I taped-off the handle.

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Rear window trim

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Rear tail light housing and trim

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GTO emblems are painted matte

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Ready to sand
Here's the car after taping off and covering over all the matte surfaces as well as covering the wheels and tires with some larger (new/clean), garbage bags with a slit down the backside.

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Fuzzy Orange Blanket
My wife Stacy donated this incredibly soft, fuzzy blanket to the shop. The blanket is fuzz on both sides and very, very soft. I find myself using this blanket all the time to cover and protect areas from splatter. Recently I dry sanded a 1965 Corvette convertible with the top off and I used the blanket to cover and protect the seats and dash from any splatter while buffing the read deck. It's not a huge blanket so to cover and protect the front portion of the car I simply used some generic waffle weave drying towels.


Function over Form
I'm a real function over form guy. I prioritize the function of a product over the form. This means I care less about how something looks and more about how it works. The fuzzy blanket in my opinion would work better to not change or alter the appearance of this HUGE MATTE SURFACE as compared to any other option including visqueen or a plastic drop cloth.



:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Fast - The 3D Dry Sanding System is FAST
Once I did all the basic steps, cleaning, prepping, taping-off and covering up, the actual sanding down of the different body panels goes pretty quick. I would estimate I have less than 3 hours total into sanding the paint using the 3D Dry Sanding System.


In the pictures below you can see the sanding dust and the pattern left by the way I moved the sander over each panel. in most cases I'm actually making a crosshatch pattern but what you see is a single directional pattern for the finished sanding results.

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Maximize D.O.I.
In the pictures below I have wiped off all the sanding dust to get the body panels ready for compounding. The results are paint that actual looks matte but what this actually is are uniform, shallow sanding marks over each body panel.

The goal when sanding is to sand until the surface is totally flat. This means sanding until all the orange peel, surface texture and mottling is removed and the surface if completely flat. The flatter you make the surface the greater the D.O.I. or Distinction of Image. A mirror is 100% D.O.I. and this is the goal for doing show car quality work.

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3D 5mm Orbital Sander
This is the 3D 5mm brushless electric sander. 5mm is optimum for this type of refining sanding and this sander is lightweight, quiet and super easy to use.

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ACA Flex P2500 6" Orange Sandpaper Disc - Box of 50
This is the #2500 grit 3D sanding disc. The disk itself is as thin as a piece of paper and this is part of the overall 3D dry sanding system. The system is not a single component but the synergistic collection of three things and each item is just as important as the next.

  1. Sander
  2. Sanding disc
  3. Interface pad

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If you're familiar with the high cost of other sanding disc you're going to love the 3D discs. Each box has 50 count sanding discs. The suggested retail price for a box of 50 discs is $89.99

I'll round this price to $90.00 even and divide by 50 equals $1.80 a disc. Do the math for any other quality pro-grade disc on the market and then after reading this entire article, consider testing out the 3D Dry Sanding System yourself.




:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


Your own unique style
Everyone in the body shop world and the detailing world has their own unique style for sanding. As long as we're all getting to a beautiful shiny finish that's what's most important. I'm not sure how other guys sand down car but here's how I do it.


Edging a panel
When tackling a body panel, the first thing I like do is called edging. This is where I use a peanut polisher or peanut sander to sand all the paint next to edges or body lines.


Why edge?
The reason I edge a panel with a small sanding disc is because with a small sander, you have MUCH GREATER CONTROL over the tool so you can CAREFULLY sand close to the edge without sanding ON the edge. Small tools are easier to control precisely. Larger tools or larger DA Sanders are more difficult to control PRECISELY when sanding next to edges and/or raised body lines.


Avoiding a really bad mistake
Here's the deal, if you sand over an edge even lightly, you have to remember these rules of sanding.
  1. Sanding removes paint.
  2. Compounding removes paint.
  3. Polishing removers a little paint.

If you're not careful, you can easily and or buff through the clearcoat and expose the basecoat. AT this point it's game over.

When it comes to an edge, the paint tends to be thinner due to gravity. So even if you only lightly graze over an edge with your sanding disc BUT you don't sand through the clearcoat, there's still a LOT of risk that when you bring a spinning wool pad and a compound down on this edge to remove the sanding marks you will buff through the clearcoat.

This is why I like to do what I call,

Edging a panel

I use the super safe approach of using a tool that is very easy to control precisely and sand all the paint near the edges or raised body lines and then afterwards, knock out the major easy-to-sand areas with the larger sanding tool.


Here's what it looks like to edge the trunk lid of this 1969 GTO - While I was at it, I also used the small 3" 3D sanding disc so machine dry sand the top of the rear fender and the section of paint just behind the rear window.

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FLEX PXE-80
The FLEX Pixie as I like to call it, is ALMOST the perfect peanut sander. Because it's cordless, it super easy to maneuver when sanding on a car. Because it's lightweight and very compact in size, it makes sanding super safe and easy. The reason I say it's ALMOST the perfect sander is because currently it comes with 3 drive units.
  1. Rotary.
  2. 12mm free spinning random orbital.
  3. 3mm free spinning random orbital.

You cannot sand with a rotary drive unit as this is no longer sanding but grinding. The 12mm is too large or an orbit stroke length and this makes sanding near any edges or raised body lines dangerous. Plus it's simply too large of a stroke. The 3mm is on the opposite side of the orbit stroke spectrum in that it's too small to be effective as it relates to maintaining pad sanding disc rotation, at least for larger 3" sanding discs. If FLEX will introduce a new drive unit in one of these orbit stroke lengths, my prediction is ever body shop on planet Earth will be purchasing the FLEX Pixie as a Peanut Sander. I know I would.


The FLEX PXE-80 as a cordless mini sander with a 3D 3" Interface Pad

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The 3D 3" #2500 ACA Sanding Disc on the FLEX PXE-80

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Major on the minors and then major on the majors
Kind of word salad but this is how I approach detailing cars, I first major on the minors, this means focus on all the hard to do jobs or intricate areas to tackle. Then I major on the majors, that is I tackle the rest of the car, which will usually be the easy parts to tackle.



Knocking out the large, flat easy to sand areas
After edging the trunk lid I then sanded the rest of the panel. Because I invested the time and focused attention doing the hard, intricate part, doing the rest of the panel was fast and easy.

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Pictures - The 3D Dry Sanding System
I took these pictures to show you what before and after sanding looks like with the 3D Dry Sanding System.


Turning the sander on and when I do this I start moving the sander at the same time.

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Here you can see the sanding mark pattern. The paint looks dull because the sanding marks are uniform in size, pattern and depth.

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And here's what the entire trunk lid and adjacent body panels look like after sanding.

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Wiping off the excess paint dust particles..

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BOOM - Sanded flat for maximum D.O.I.

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Cleaning a sanding disc on the fly
As soon as you turn on the sander, the sanding disc will immediately start sanding the paint flat. When this happens, you get a build-up of paint dust particles on the face of the sanding disc and also on the panel. In the same way you wipe the panel to remove the dust you want to wipe the face of the sanding disc to remove the built-up sanding dust.

Here you can easily see clearcoat paint dust on the face of the sanding disc. The 3D sanding disc use an Anit-Clogging Technology which prevents paint particles from binding to the face of the disc. You will still have sanding dust ON the disc but this dust is easily removed by either hold the face of the disk against a microfiber towel in your hand and then blipping the speed paddle controller or like you see in the picture, place the face of the disc against a microfiber towel and drag it off the towel.

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I much prefer to hold the disc against a towel in my hand but both methods work. Here's how I would normally do it from my other article on dry sanding

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Either way, the important thing is to clean your discus OFTEN.


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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....

Compounding to remove sanding marks
After all of the sanding has been completed it's time to remove the sanding marks starting at the highest point of the car and working down and around to the lowest parts of the car.


Rotary Polisher - Best tool for the job
I know there's a handful of people out there that preach you can use an orbital polisher to remove sanding marks. This is accurate, correct and true. But it's slower and less effective. Here's the deal... YES any brand of orbital polisher - if it can remove swirls and scratches it can also remove sanding marks. But the thing is - jobs like this already take a lot of time... why would I want to do it in any other way that takes even MORE TIME? The answer is I wouldn't and I don't.

The fact is, the fastest way to remove sanding marks is with a quality compound, quality wool pad and a rotary polisher and my polisher of choice is the cordless FLEX PE15. It has more than enough power and when it comes to cordless tools you're going to punish, (removing sanding marks from an entire car qualifies as punishing), then FLEX has the best rechargeable battery technology over all the other options.

As far as using an orbital polisher, either free spinning or gear-driven, sure you can remove the sanding marks in the easy to buff areas away from edges - but as soon as you need to remove sanding marks away from edges and body lines orbital polishers are simply not effective. Free spinning orbitals the pad will stall out so now you're wasting time. And even with gear-driven orbitals, due to the length of the orbit stroke - it's simply more difficult to do precision sanding mark removal by these areas.

I don't waste time doing this type of work so I don't use any brand of orbital for removing sanding marks. But hey... that's just me. Feel free to do this type of work however you like.



3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound
This is the latest compound to be introduced to the 3D professional line of compounds and polishes for the body shop industry. 3D 510 Premium Rubbing Compound is formulated to cut hard clearcoats fast. The way my brain thinks is like this,

If it will cut hard paints fast - it will cut soft and medium paints fast. Why not use it on all the cars I detail?

And that's what I do for the most part. There are some projects where I want to bring attention to our other compounds, 500 and 501 for various reasons and these compound do cut fast and work great - but the leader of the pack is 510.


Lambswool Cutting Pad
For my cutting pad, I'm using the 3D 8" Yellow X-Cut Lambswool Pad. This is a very refined but fast cutting knitted 100% lambswool pad that cuts fast but finishes nice with low or shallow holograms.



Starting out
Common sense and the flow of the process dictate to start at the top and work your way down.

Here you can see I've applied a strip of product a little longer than your average pencil.

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When first starting out with a DRY wool cutting pad this is a good amount to start with. The dry fibers are naturally going to absorb some of the product. After you break your pad in, (it becomes wet with product), you can then cut down on the amount you use.

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4:35pm
I started timing myself when I started doing the prep work by doing a waterless wash, cleaning the engine compartment, cleaning the wheels and tires, claying the paint and glass, etc., and this was at 9:00am. It's now 4:35pm - up to this point I'm 7 and a half hours into this project.


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Do it right the first time around
Methodically I compound every inch of paint. The better I do with this first step the faster I can get the job done. When compounding to remove sanding marks, if you don't get them removed 100% you'll have to come back and do more compounding. For me it's best to invest my time thoroughly removing the sanding marks on each body panel and simply be done with it.

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Edging a panel - compounding
Kind of like I edged the panel when I sanded it, I'm also going to tackle it the same way when I compound it. That is I'm going to carefully compound the sanding marks next to all the edges first and then tackle the larger, easier areas in the middle of the panel.


If you look closely you can see I've buffed out all the sanding marks around the edges of the trunk lid and also the tops of the fenders and the section of paint just behind the bottom of the rear glass.

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Now I'll compound out the scratches from the larger, easier to buff middle section of the trunk lid.

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Done - 100% of the sanding marks are removed.

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Compounding the vertical sides
After the roof and the trunk lid, next I tackle the vertical panels including the fenders and door.

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:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued....


11:16pm and done!

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It's taken me 14 hours from start to finish to dry sand this car including,

  1. Prep Wash using 3D WIPE
  2. Hand waterless wash the matte hood
  3. Mechanically decontaminate the paint using 3D Detailing Clay Towel and 3D Spray Detailer
  4. Hand clean, polish and protect the wheels with Bead It Up
  5. Hand clean, polish and protect the engine and engine compartment with Bead It Up
  6. Tape-off and cover-up all matte surfaces
  7. Machine dry sand all glossy paint.
  8. Compound to remove 100% of the sanding marks
  9. Machine polish to maximize gloss and clarity using the FLEX BEAST and 3D SPEED
  10. Carefully remove tape off matte surfaces
  11. Hand polish the matte hood and accent paint with 3D Bead It UP
  12. Final wipe of paint by topping with Bead It Up




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All glossy paint and glass was topped with Bead It Up

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:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...



Engine compartment
The engine and the engine compartment are a work of art. This area was also very dusty like the outside of the car but no oily film. To clean the engine and the engine compartment, I dampened a 3D Black Wheel and Tire Towel, (new), with 3D Bead It Up and then wiped every square inch I could reach or shove the towel into to remove the dust and restore a crisp look.

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Matte hood and accent panels
When the car first arrived I found a few areas on the hood with small droplets of something clear and sticky, kind of like tree sap. I don't know if it was tree sap or something else but I knew I could NOT rub hard on the matte hood to remove these spots. Instead, I dampened a clean microfiber towel with 3D Waterless Wash and simply wiped the hood clean. After removing the dust the spot stood out like a sore thumb. Next I simply placed my wet microfiber towel on top of these spots or drops and allowed for a few minutes to pass. This dwell time allowed water to do what water does and that's SOFTEN.

After a few minutes I gently wiped the affected areas and the sticky drops of whatever it was wiped off completely clean without any marks left behind.


Oh so careful!
After I finished with all the glossy paint I carefully wiped the entire hood and all the other matte painted surfaces with 3D Bead It Up. The way I did this was to spray a clean, folded microfiber towel with enough Bead It Up to dampen one side. Then I would wipe the paint gently or softly and with my other hand re-wipe with a dry microfiber towel.

Not only did this add the finishing touch to the matte paint and the entire car, it left a rich sheen without adding any gloss or altering the matte appearance.

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Super slick surface
Just one of the things people, (myself included), love about Bead It Up is how it turns the surface it's applied to super slick and slippery. It did this for the matte paint on the hood without altering the appearance. And the good news about this is it will make cleaning the matte paint faster and easier in the future. Before the owner left our garage, I set him up with a bottle of 3D Bead It Up so he would have some at the big car show for any final prep wiping after set-up.

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Wheels look right and tight....
Here's a final shot for the end results for the rims...

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Custom fabricated and upholstered interior by the owner
Here's a shot of the interior, like the rest of the mods on this car it's a work of art.

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:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Here's a short video I made to show how to use the 3D Dry Sanding System including how to use a rotary polisher to remove sanding marks.



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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Here's a short video where I go through all the products used from start to finish.




Products used


3D 5mm Brushless Electric Sander

3D ACA Flex P2500 6" Orange Sandpaper Disc - Box of 50

3D Flat Micro Hook Interface Pad - 6" - 2 Pack

ACA Flex P1500 3" Orange Sandpaper Disc - Box of 50

ACA Flex P2500 3" Orange Sandpaper Disc - Box of 50

3D ACA 510 Premium Rubbing Compound

3D SPEED

3D 8" Yellow X-Cut Lambswool Pad

3D 6.5" Light Purple Spider-Cut Foam Polishing Pad

3D Bead It Up

FLEX Cordless PE14 Rotary Polisher

FLEX XC 3401 VRG 120/US Forced Action Orbital Polisher

FLEX PXE 80 12.0-EC Multi-Set Polisher

3D EZ-SWITCH Adapter

3D EZ-SWITCH Backing Plates

3D Pad Cleaning Spur

3D Foam Pad Conditioning Brush


The below pictures showcase all the products used from left to right and from start to finish

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While the 3D Dry Sanding System was vital to build the foundation for the end-results, it was these three product that are the heroes for the final results.

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For more information visit 3Dproducts.com



Learn the art and craft of detailing cars!
And if you would like to take all your detailing skills to a higher level including learning how to dry sand with the 3D Dry Sanding System, attend one of my intense, no chairs, 100% hands-on detailing classes.

Mike Phillips Detailing Classes at 3D in Stuart, Florida



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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Continued...


Great news! John's 1969 was awarded Top 10 Builder's Choice at the 2022 GoogGuys 24th Summit Racing Nationals presented by PPG.

Top 10 Builder's Choice at the 2022 GoogGuys 24th Summit Racing Nationals Show in Columbus, Ohio

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While we're waiting to get a picture of the trophy, here's a couple of pictures John sent me while the car was on display at the show.

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Congratulations everyone!

Congratulations to John the owner, Mitch and his team for the paint work at RelicRestomods.com and Jeremy Miranda and his team at MirandaBuilt.com.

Awesome work everyone!

John,

With this first win under your belt I'm sure you'll being winning even more awards in the future. But at least for a little while, take a break and enjoy all the hard work. Take this bad boy to a few cars and coffees and local cruise-ins and show her off!


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Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
***Update***

My good friend John and his custom MirandaBuilt.com 1969 GTO have won another First Place Trophy!

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Congratulations to John the owner, who also created from scratch the entire custom interior.

Jeremy Miranda and the the team at MirandaBuilt.com for the flawless attention to detail for this custom one-off build.

Mitch Mumbower, the painter and owner of RelicRestomods.com who did all the custom paint work.



:)
 

Mike Phillips

Global Director of Training
Staff member
Man, that looks awesome! Great work! Thank you for taking time to share your process, tools, and knowledge with us!

I have a 1955 Chevy coming in tomorrow. It's black and totally screwed up. If I can figure out how to live stream from a MAC computer, I'll do so this Saturday.

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