Surbuf Pad How-To with Reviewby DJ Mayo
The last week of May 2010, I went up to Columbus, Ohio to work on several vehicles with Todd Cooperider. While in the mist of things, we decided to use the Surbuf R Series pads on a few areas and went ahead and got the proper documentation to provide you with a thorough process and review.
When using the Surbuf pads, it all starts with the prep. Proper priming of the pad matched with the appropriate pressure will yield the best results. Using your Meg’s 105, start on the outside of the pad and work your way in using a spiral effect. In most cases, this will prime the pad enough.
Using your finger to move the product around the pad to assure the pores of the pad are primed with Meg’s 105.
Once the pad is properly primed, it will look like this.
Depending on the size of the vehicle you are working on and the amount of correction you are aiming for can dictate the size of the area you work on. For instance, In the following photo, I am working on the trunk lid of a Rolls Royce Phantom. This panel was divided into four areas. From start to finish on one section of the trunk lid, it took roughly 1 minute and 30seconds where the machine was on. Using roughly 10lbs of pressure on speed 6. While it left a good finish, it had to be followed up with a medium polish, then finishing polish to pull out the maximum gloss with the truest finish.
After using Meg’s 105 with the Surbuf pads, it leaves a great finish for how aggressive the combination is. Notice the hazing around the lights that required additional polishing steps with finer polishes and pads to remove.
The Surbuf pads paired with Meguiar’s M105 has brought a new look to paint correction for Porter Cable 7424 owners, and it is amazing at the level of correction that can be achieved with this powerful combination. If you’ve been using the standard method of using M105 with an orange pad on a PC, and you still require more cut, then step up to the Surbuf Pad for an even more aggressive approach. Although depending on the car and the amount of work involved, there will still be times when a high speed polisher is necessary.
Thanks for taking time to read the article, and if you have any additional questions, please submit them in the comment box below.
Great review thanks for the information I will be picking some of these up. I have been waiting for this review, Todd told me it would be coming out soon. For my 04 black mustang GT that has never been polished how many Surbuf pads do you suggest I purchase. I already have 3 orange, 3 gray, 2 white, 1 blue, and 2 red pads all 5.5″ for my PC 7424XP. I also have M105 & M205 as well as PO85RD to finish it and to seal it I have Blackfire Wet Diamond, as for wax I have PB’s Nattys Blue.
Some other information The wash mitts are top quality as are the products I have purchased from Detail Image. I wash the car and almost every week to keep it clean, dry it by blowing off the water and finish with micro fiber big towels always cleaned in my washing machine and drier in my garage. I also use a detail spray in between waxing. The car does not need cloying because of the care I give my 1992 300-E sedan Mercedes-Benz the paint is not exposed to trees and weathering . except when I have to drive it or park it some were. I am very careful! and carry a bottle of detail spray in case of any emergency from bird dropping to other contamination with some clean 16×16 microfiber plush towels.
I have some good German products and I am using the Poor boys Enzyme wax top of the line. but I know the car could still look better. I have both a rotary Mikita and the new Porta Cable Dual action polisher also the German dual action polisher which I have not used. I hear it is more powerful then the Porta Cable.
I am hoping to buy one of those car tents to put in my backyard to house the car during the winter and summer months this would help eliminate the car cover and keep the car protected.
I hope to hear from you soon.
Keeping your pad clean is VERY important with these pads. So depending on how often you are using and how often you feel like cleaning will determine the amount of pads needed. For you GT, I would personally use 6 pads simply so I could do the entire car without stopping to clean the pad, also remember, I do this as a job. For a weekend guy, you could get 4 and just clean the pads more frequently. Either way, you can’t go wrong. Let me know how it comes out.
Do I run the pads under warm watter to rinse out the M105 Meguiars on these special pads. O have a black Mercedes-Benz Panzer Wagon LOL. the hood and trunk if you look close have some micro scratching . I need to use a more aggressive polish this is single stage paint and I do not want to take too much off the top hood and roof. the sides are fine . I think this is due to the car cover I use but I do wash it carefully and use a grit guard and rinse the mitt or blue sponge many times.
What would you recommend following up with after M105 and which pad White or finishing black. I have some of the better German Polishes in my arsenal.
Looking forward to your reply!
Long Beach, CA
Good choice for Port cable..
DJ thanks for sharing..
You said you worked on the trunk lid for 1 minute and 30 secs with M105… I only get maximum 30 seconds tops with M105 before it dries…Does this mean the surbuf extends M105 working time ?
Actually, it’s right under a minute. I was including the time to prep the pad.
when you say clean the pads? how do you clean them while still using them to buff? If you dunk them in snap clean you will have to wait for it to air dry, please clarify when you get a moment. I also run a small detail business and would like to pick your brain a bit.
The way I choose to clean the Surbuf pads is by lying them down on a piece of plywood and using the pressure washer to push all the polish out. THEN if I need them right away, I spin them on the Makita @ 3000RPM for a minute and they are good to go. If I am just cleaning them after a paint correction, then I flip them upside down and let them air dry on an open shelve. Hope this help.
I will pick up a set of these pads and give them a whirl with The Flex polisher. It isn’t a random orbital though it is very close.
I use a Flex 3401. It is a random orbital, just with forced rotation, even better. I’ve used M105 and Optimum Spray compound with my Flex 3401 and surbuf pads and the correction ability is amazing!
hey dj, that was quite helpful, I thought maybe there was some special step to cleaning, but it is just as it sounds. thanks a lot.
I just did a little more testing with the Surbuf pads today and wanted to report my findings. I did a little wetsanding on a Mustang California Edition. On the first spot I used Megs 105 with a Cyan pad on my rotary. After working it for the normal amount of time, I checked the surface and found that it still showed signs of sanding (3000 grit is what I used).
For the next spot, I put a 4″ Surbuf pad on my Porter Cable 7424 (standard model, not the XP), primed the pad, and worked on the spot at speed 6. When I wiped off the residue, not only did it remove ALL traces of sanding, but it also left the finish pretty darn close to LSP-ready.
So in this particular test, the Surbuf pad on the Porter Cable gave better correction than a Cyan pad on the rotary!!!
I hope this helps.
Do you use the 6.5″ Surbuf on a Flex 3401 and M501 and at what speed”
Todd & DJ,
Thanks for the information I am currently working on my mustang at the moment; finally got around to it. I already got done with M105 and M205 stages, I am now working with P085RD and I have to say the results are amazing cant wait to top to off with my Blackfire Wet Diamond. I could only imagine what it would have looked like if I would have used these pads instead since I wasn’t able to pick them up yet, but I will for the next time around.
With these pads there aren’t any difference styles like for compounding, polishing, jeweling the paint? It’s pretty much just a great pad for compounding with the PC?
sounds good, were always here to help.
Just make sure to properly prep the pad like in the pictures, and the appropriate pressure and your set.
So should I finish off by jeweling the paint with a finishing pad, or does the surbuf pad do this as well?
that’s what i’d like to know as well – will these work as a finishing pad? does varying the speed on the DA then reduce the amount of cut? (for those of us who have minimal swirls and want to one step correct)
Ryan & Sam-
You will need to follow up with a finer polish / pad combination. Any sort of mild to finishing polish should do the trick paired with a white pad on the PC.
Will you use Surbuf for the final finish with PO85RD?
No, if using 85rd I’m using blue.
THANK YOU DJ
With a Flex Dual Action what speed will you recommend on 85RD/Blue?
M105 with Surbuf pads are much more aggressive than M105 with LC Orange pads???
Yes, they are more aggressive than the orange pads. Most of the time the orange will give you a better finish so always try that first, then if you need more correction, step up to the Surbuf pad.
I do all of my cars by hand. Is this a good pad for hand use? What color pads do you recomend for hand use?
Been trying to get in touch with you by phone for awhile now,left several messages,would like to bring my black chevy down to you,but your are not responding.Is there another way to touch base with you,live in the Maryland area.
To my knowledge, I have not received a message where I haven’t called back. If so, my apologies. Please contact me through email. Reflectionsemail@example.com
I just used a pad today and by the end of doing a really oxidized hood, the pad was caked with M105 and oxidation, did I do something wrong? Also now all the micro fingers are matted down and not standing up like they did at first, is that normal?
Use compressed air or a soft brush to clean the pad. Keep the pad clean for best results.
but is it normal for the fingers to get all gummed up and matted down?
After enough use, yes. The compressed air and cleaning will lift them back up and have it ready to use again.
I’m using the surbuf pad and UNO 3d with great results but I’m having a heck of a time removing the micro marring(half moons) from the paint with my orange pad and 3D UNO on pc. Any suggestions?
I am not familiar with the Uno but I would think using the 105 instead with the Surbuf, or the D300 with the Micro fiber Pads would be much easier to finish on the next step. Let me know. Trying using a finishing pad too.
Presently, I use a lot of Sonus and Lake Country pads with a couple of 3M pads also in the mix.
I have been thinking of getting some surbuf pads… this convinces me!
You will love the Surbuf pads, a tremendous amount of cut from using a DA. Let me know if you have any questions.
I know you all refer to pads by color, but color seems to mean different things to different brands of pad. Is there a default brand you’re all referring to?
If you don’t prime the pad before buffing would that make the M105 very, very hard to remove from the paint by chance? I used one of these pads for the first time today and had that issue.
Great info on teh Surbuf pads and usage – thank you!!
Tell me, if you were to find that using it with a D/A just didn’t offer enough power, and a rotary was unavailable, would you consider popping the packing plate onto a standard drill (with an adapter, of course)?
With the continuing advancements of the DA with pads such as the Surbuf and MF Pads and better compounds and polishes, you should be able to do a correction job just using the DA machine. The only time I have used my rotary over the last 18months, will be when doing final polishing on certain paints to achieve a more crisp finish.
I appreciate the reply. Thank you very much.
Btw, I am using a PC 7424XP.
Did you do a follow up article detailing (pun completely intended) what you did to finish this?
If I recall correctly, Menzerna 106 was used on a black pad via the rotary for finishing.
In an effort to “step up”the cutting power of my compound, I purchased a yellow pad from lake county. Do these pads have more cutting ability? I’m a DA guy starting to really get into this process. I have been “practicing”on a lot of my friends older, more oxidized daily drivers. If this pad is just “comparable”to the yellow pad, I’ll keep buying them on sale. I really need to keep my budget tight.I want the best pads for durability and efficient time use on any given job. Thank you for sharing so much valuable info to newbs like me.
Since I upgraded from a PC to Flex I have completely changed my buffing pads… Went from LC CCS to Orange Hybrid and HT. The one thing I wanted to change is replacing Megs MF Cutting Disc because not only did I read online bout it but noticed they are grabby on the Flex vs the PC. So my attention has been turned to Surbuf. First question: what is difference in cutting ability between R series and RS series? I deal with a lot of severely crappy/scratched cars and need a really aggressive pad (almost comparable to wool) for “spot buffing” the severe spots vs whole car. Second question: what is proper technique for Surbuf pads? Everything I’ve read says use larger pad and polisher pressure, really just want validation on this. Thanks!
i have a very clean truck.what do you recommend for etching in paint from water.thank you