Difficulty final finishing with OP and Cyclo


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I have a black 2007 Tahoe that had your standard horizontal scratch marks from dealer prep, car washing, etc...


So I've got a Cyclo and I'm trying to get a test spot perfect before using that procedure on the whole truck. There are a couple before pics and after pics. The paint was extremely glossy and mirror like afterwards, but there is definitely some micro marring (or buffer induced mini scratches) that can be seen under a focused Brinkman light.


The after shots from the camera make it look pretty minor... and maybe it is as I'm not sure how perfect you can expect to get the finish. Unfortunately I couldn't get the picture to show what I'm actually seeing in the after shot with the Brinkman. The heavy scratches, etc. are gone but there are definitely marks there...it's not perfect. It almost looks like broken bits of light swirlmark scratches.


Anyway, I used orange pads (LC) cyclo with OP for two separate rounds and then the green pad (cyclo) with OP for one round (this last round didn't do much improvement).


Any further assistance would be appreciated. I know I can fill everything at this point and move on to waxing...but I'd rather figure out how to get it correct prior to doing that.


I'm frustrated at this point. I have OHC, OC and OP and the cyclo with yellow, orange(LC) green, white pads. Also, as an earlier poster on this forum noted, I am getting a raised bubble appearance on the pad where the product was applied.


I've got some 106FF coming tomorrow with some new double precision edge pads and we'll see if that helps. At this point I am not pleased with the finishing of OP.











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Hi Outrag,


Based on your pictures, it is a definite possibility that the scratch marks are just deeper defects, which remain on the surface after polishing it with OP. As they are very irregular, they are not showing the typical defects caused by a machine.


Rotary wheel marks are continuous arcs, and orbital produce little regular hooks when they catch grit. Your scratches are straight, short and random and that makes me think of simply heavier defects already present on the surface before polishing.


These can hide very well in the bunch of minor scratches and you'll only see them after the lighter defects are gone.


In this case, when the damage can be located and identified easily, you have to do further correction with a more aggressive polish or a more aggressive pad. As a first step, I'd recommend to upgrade to OHC on the same orange pads to see how the scratches react. If this step is still dissatisfying, try a wool pad, first with OP, then go up the aggressiveness scale as you wish.


OP finishes out with excellent clarity, so the product itself can not be blamed alone.


One other factor can be the product dosage. When you use too much product, the abrasives will lose their effectivity as they are unable to strike through the buffing film and the product will end up skating over its own lube film. The abrasives can not break down properly, and they can cause minor swirling/marring.


The pad bubbling issue is strange because I was among the users who noticed this phenomenon. However, the pads always returned to their normal state when I washed them thoroughly. After 3-4 uses they don't swell up any more. Why? Dunno.

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Your after shots look major to me.

I think you should use the compound with the orange pads. Not the Hyper this will be too aggressive. It should finish down good and then hit it one more time with the polish and orange pads again. Im not a big fan or the green pads and have had then in the past induce marring into the paint. Remember only use a little polish. I prim the cyclo pads with one stripe and then after that just a pea size drop on each pad for each section.

Please let us know the out come.

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Thank you both for the reply and ideas on what to do.


What I've tried today as a first step prior to going back to orange/OC and orange/OP is to try a quick area with the new 106FF I received. I tried one swipe on the Cyclo green pads and the test area came out perfect. All the mini scratches shown in my after photo are gone! I'm not aware that the 106FF has any fillers but just in case I did a quick swipe with a Dupont paint cleaner (to remove oils, wax, dust, etc.) and the test area still looked great afterwards.


I'm not sure what to make of all this, but I've been struggling with it for over a week on some test spots. I've tried all the Optimum products I have OHC/OC/OP with all the cyclo pads I have and could never get it perfect. When I used OC on an orange pad the other day...I was left with obvious uniform buffer induced swirl marks on the entire test area. When I went after this with OP on all the different pads (orange/green/white) it helped a little but required several passes and never finished out perfectly.


I'll try the Optimum combo again as recommended because I'd like to see how to get this to work instead of having all this product in my closet I cannot use.


I remember years ago doing bodywork and painting/wetsanding/buffing cars was more enjoyable...and that's probably because you just did it until you got the gloss back, and never worried about all these fine scratches only seen under a light that the average person cannot see :beerchug[1]:

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Yep, the Menz is great.


Outrag, uniform buffer trails are typical signs of using too much product (too much lubrication = ineffective abrasive breakdown). Use half the amounts...


It can be dry buffing too, but I doubt it is actually.

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