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  #111  
Old 07-13-2018, 06:50 AM
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DanH DanH is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopercod View Post
It looks great in the hangar, but what about in the sun? That's where my swirl marks really show up. Maybe I should just fly in the dark? So did you use a DA with the #1 compound, or a rotary buffer? I found a small patch on my fuselage where I can still see scratches and am thinking about trying to remove them with the #1 and a foam pad in my rotary buffer. Yes, I'm a glutton for punishment...
Ok then...

As stated in the very first post, 4th paragraph, light colors are less of a swirl problem, while dark colors may require a few extra steps. You're cutting a white airplane.

The photo you posted....



...appears to show the result of dirt/grit under the pad, not buffer swirl. Lots of ways for it to happen. Running a fan to stay cool while working in a hangar would be a good example, or just working with the doors open on a breezy day. In the early posts, note I'm working inside a paint booth set up in my shop...no dirt, filtered air.

There's no reason to cut a whole project with a dirty pad. Paint damage is easy to catch in a few square feet if the operator is paying attention. How to see what you're doing is also in the first post, 6th paragraph. Best bet is to look at the reflection of an overhead fluorescent tube fixture; moving your vantage point sweeps the tube across the surface. See the photo below. The average hangar doesn't have appropriate lighting, so you need to set up lights for the work. The same is true for painting.



If you can see damage of any kind in bright sun, it's bad. Buffer swirls, scratches, and even hail damage are all least obvious in noontime sun. Low sun angles show more. Swirls are most visible after sunset, when viewed under typical metal halide lot lighting. On the lot at night is where detailer skill is rated.

You seem fixated on my use of a cut down 3M pad on a DA sander. It's described in post 27, which is pretty clear. The DA is a handy way of buffing small parts when working by yourself, as you can hold them in one hand and cut with the other, something you can't do with a big buffer. For what it's worth, I mostly allow the pad to rotate. I've never cut a big panel that way, because it would be a waste of time, and I have no idea what happens with foam pads from Harbor Freight.

Bottom line is that with care, it's not anywhere near as hard as you're making it appear. And you can excoriate "the experts" as you please, but brother, it's a crappy way to garner additional help.
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Last edited by DanH : 07-13-2018 at 06:54 AM.
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  #112  
Old 07-13-2018, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by DanH View Post
The photo you posted.......appears to show the result of dirt/grit under the pad, not buffer swirl.
The pad that made those swirl marks was brand new, sorry. Anyway I got them out as I described. Today I zeroed in on a small patch with a couple of scratches. I used the #1 compound on a black foam (soft) pad and my rotary buffer. That combination didn't take out the scratches so I fell back on the 1500/3000 grit with a foam hand pad. That removed the scratches so I buffed over that area with #1 and #2 (using a different pad, of course). It's all shiny now in the sunlight with no visible scratches or swirl marks. I think I'm done cutting and buffing now and am moving on to the colored vinyl trim. Thanks for all the suggestions.
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  #113  
Old 09-14-2018, 01:32 PM
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I waxed the top of the wings today with Mother's California Gold carnuba wax. I think it looks pretty good. You can't even see the spots that I had to touch up and blend in.

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  #114  
Old 09-14-2018, 06:16 PM
Canadian_JOY Canadian_JOY is offline
 
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I continue to watch this saga unfold. Have been too busy flying to polish. Soon... I keep telling myself!

Dumb question for those who have done this before. I have different paint colours abutting each other. Am wondering if I can just cut and buff right over the joint or whether I'm best to mask the dividing line and cut and buff each colour separately?
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  #115  
Old 09-14-2018, 06:57 PM
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I have different paint colours abutting each other.
Is one color on top of the other, or are they butted up against each other? Hopefully one of the pros will answer but if it's the former, I would mask and do each color separately.
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  #116  
Old 09-24-2018, 06:01 AM
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My plane is pretty shiny now. It will never, ever, be perfect, but I'm happy: Video Evidence
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  #117  
Old 09-24-2018, 06:13 AM
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RWoodard RWoodard is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadian_JOY View Post
I continue to watch this saga unfold. Have been too busy flying to polish. Soon... I keep telling myself!

Dumb question for those who have done this before. I have different paint colours abutting each other. Am wondering if I can just cut and buff right over the joint or whether I'm best to mask the dividing line and cut and buff each colour separately?
If you’re working with single stage paint, I.e. no clear coat on top, then I’d do the two colors separately. If both colors have clear coat over the top, then it won’t matter because you’re actually working with the clear coat, not the underlying color.

If you’re working with the actual color, it’s a good idea to mask and do the colors separately because one color could “stain” (for lack of a better word) the adjoining color.
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  #118  
Old 09-24-2018, 06:15 AM
Scott Hersha Scott Hersha is offline
 
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Of the several bids I got for painting our new plane, two of them were for base/clear, 3 colors with cut & buff. The cut & buff added $8,000 to the cost of the paint job.
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  #119  
Old 09-24-2018, 09:16 PM
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RWoodard RWoodard is offline
 
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Originally Posted by Scott Hersha View Post
Of the several bids I got for painting our new plane, two of them were for base/clear, 3 colors with cut & buff. The cut & buff added $8,000 to the cost of the paint job.
$8,000 seems like enough!

It’s a bunch of work, and not for everyone, but I really like the finished product. My Midget Mustang has painted graphics under a bunch of clear coat. I wet sanded the fuselage under the supervision of the paint shop. The painter ended up doing most of the buffing. 10 years later it still looks fantastic.

I’ll definitely do it on the F1 Rocket I’m hoping to complete within the next 15 years and 2 days.
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