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7 comments on How Much Pressure To Use With A Random Orbital Polisher

  1. Thanks for the article very useful
    Ivan thanks for sharing this info was spot on.

  2. Jan says:

    Many greeting from Slovakia!:)
    Thank you for useful information.
    What is your experience with forced rotation polishing machines (Flex 3401) on soft paint (Toyota, Mazda …). What a pressure and pads are recommended to remove swirls and RIDS?
    Thank you!

  3. Al G. says:

    You say “25-35lbs is good” pressure? Is that right?

  4. Iceberg says:

    What are your thoughts on using shank mounted polishing pads? I would like to use my electric drill.

  5. Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

    Thanks for the kind words all.

    Jan, I mainly work with the Flex 3401 polisher and the article above completely relates to that machine as well as a random orbital like the Porter Cable. I have no trouble working with soft and sensitive paint with the 3401 so I’d follow the guidelines above as far as pressure goes.

    Al, that pressure is a non-scientific measurement I got from a basic bathroom scale. When I tried to replicate the pressure I use during polishing I normally came up between 25 and 35lbs for correction/compounding and less when finishing.

    Iceberg, I’ve only tried it a couple times on a headlight polishing kit and didn’t like at all how it felt. It’s much harder to control and you don’t have the necessary weight behind it to use with pressure when correcting paint. From my brief experience, I’m sure it can do a decent job on paint, but it will probably take a lot longer and results will be worse than if done by a proper polisher.

  6. Daryan says:

    Does the number stated in pounds that you measured on the bathroom scale include the underlying weight of the polisher? This makes a dramatic difference in overall poundage I would believe. Thanks, very helpful!

    • Ivan Rajic Ivan Rajic says:

      Daryan, yes and no. Reason I say that is the weight of the polisher really doesn’t come into play much or at all, actually it’s negative in some instances, when working on side/underside of the car’s panels. If you try to check the rough pressure/weight on the scale, make sure you do it normally as if you’re working on the hood (polisher on top of scale and push down) but also place the scale (if possible) against the wall perpendicular to the floor and try to match the same pressure. I noticed many people, some assistants and some students I’ve trained, can correct the upper surfaces well by utilizing pressure (gravity and polisher weight), but get sub par results on the side panels due to the lack of pressure. Hope that helps!

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