Spot repair on paint with Meguiar's new Pro Spot Repair Kit
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  1. #1
    Sr. Global Product & Training Spec Michael Stoops's Avatar
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    Spot repair on paint with Meguiar's new Pro Spot Repair Kit

    In another post we talked about using Professional Headlight & Spot Repair Kit to restore a badly oxidized headlight. Here we're going to discuss using the kit for its other intended purpose: spot repair on paint.



    Dirt nibs, isolated scratches, sags, runs and other issues sometimes arise in a painted surface that require repair only in small spots. D/A sanding usually covers far too large an area, meaning you have to then buff out sanding marks from a larger area than needed. Hand sanding can pose the same problem, unless you forgo a sanding pad and just use a small bit of paper literally by hand. That usually opens up a whole new set of issues as control of the sanded area becomes difficult and you can easily remove more material than you should.

    Meguiar's new Professional Headlight & Spot Repair Kit makes the process very easy, even when multiple spots need attention. The process for this spot repair was very straight forward, requiring just two grades of damp finishing discs on the mini D/A buffer followed by two steps with the mini rotary polisher. Once again, it is imperative that you utilize the foam interface pad supplied in the kit when ever you are using an abrasive disc on paint, whether dry sanding or damp finishing.

    For this demonstration we made use of the following items from the kit -

    For initial cutting of the dirt nib and subsequent refining of the initial cutting process, all via pneumatic mini D/A buffer supplied with the kit, the following items were put to use:

    (1) S31500 3" Sanding Disc - damp, 1500 grit
    (1) S3F3000 3" Foam Finishing Disc - damp, 3000 grit

    (1) S3FIS Foam Interface Pad

    Both of the abrasive discs were barely used in this process and they have a lot of life left in them. The mini D/A was probably in contact with the paint for no more than 5 seconds for the initial cut and only slightly longer than that for the refining step with 3000 grit. And again, it is important we emphasize that the S3FIS Foam Interface Pad was used with both discs mentioned above. Do NOT omit use of this interface pad from this process!!

    To pull out the 3000 grit sanding marks we followed up with the pneumatic mini rotary polisher, also supplied with the kit, and the follow items:

    (1) W4003 - 3" "Easy Buff" Knitted Wool Cutting Pad used with M105 Ultra Cut Compound
    (1) W8204 - 4" Soft Buff™ Foam Polishing Pad used with M205 Ultra Finishing Polish


    In all cases above, whether mini D/A or mini rotary, we used the S3BP 3” Backing Plate



    With that out of the way, here's how we went about the process:

    The dirt nib can be seen here as a distortion in the reflection inside the red circle. This is what we need to get rid of, and as you can see it isn't very big.




    Here the 1500 grit damp sanding disc is used to quickly knock down the nib. We chose the 1500 grit damp sanding disc because this was a freshly painted panel, right out of the body shop. For issues on fully cured OEM paint you would choose the 1000 grit damp finishing disc, S3F1000, instead.

    You can see that very little water is being used here as this is a "damp" sanding process, not a true "wet" sanding one. Just a single spritz of water on the face of the sanding disc and again on the surface is all you need. Too much water will cause hydroplaning of the disc and a reduction in cutting ability. Further, only plain water is to be used, no lubrication of any kind, not even a drop of soap. Plain water, that's it. What may not be so readily apparent is that the disc is being applied to the paint at an angle of approximately 15 degrees and with only light to moderate pressure. This quickly takes down the nib, but also keeps contact with the paint to a minimum.



    Here you can clearly see the very minimal footprint left by contacting the paint at that 15 degree angle. Had the disc been flat to the paint the sanded area would be a complete circle, not the half circle you see here.



    We now need to refine the scratches caused by the 1500 grit damp sanding disc, and we do this with the 3000 grit damp foam finishing disc. In this step we place the disc flat against the paint and cover the entire area previously sanded, plus expand out by about a 1/2" or so. Once again, the foam interface pad is used even though the foam finishing disc already has a backer built in to it.



    At this point you're done sanding, meaning you're also done with the D/A mini tool. Switch over to the mini rotary for final polishing.

    Here we have the W4003 - 3" "Easy Buff" Knitted Wool Cutting Pad mounted on the rotary mini tool and have begun buffing with M105 Ultra Cut Compound to remove our finest 3000 grit marks. A small amount of M105 goes a very long way here; just a single drop about the size of a large pea is all you need.



    Staying with the mini rotary polisher we now move to the W8204 - 4" Soft Buff™ Foam Polishing Pad, this time with a similarly sized drop of M205 Ultra Finishing Polish.




    For purposes of illustration, here's a shot taken earlier in the day as we attacked multiple small issues all at once. Both the sanding and finishing steps have been done, and now pea sized drops of M105 are applied to each area in anticipation of the W4003 3" "Easy Buff" Knitted Wool Cutting Pad being used. When you get to the M205 step, only a similar amount of that polish is used as well.



    Here you can see that the dirt nib is gone, yet the overall texture has remained. Basically that means we removed the dirt nib without creating a spot that has noticeably less orange peel than the rest of the panel. We did not alter the surrounding texture, which would create a visually distracting area on the panel; all we did was remove the offending nib.




    Just as an illustration of the difference between the initial 1500 grit damp sanding disc and the level of scratch refinement offered by the 3000 grit damp finishing disc, look at the image below. The square area that runs into the reflection of the overhead lights is from a 1500 grit damp sanding disc, while the larger area was created by following with the 3000 grit damp finishing disc, overlapping the marks of the 1500 grit. The sanding scratches are so refined that we're already getting gloss and reflection, as you can clearly see by the reflection of the overhead lights being absent in the red only area, but visible in the green over red area. Remember, the area outlined in red was only sanded once, the area outlined in green was sanded twice.



    These smaller discs make removal of tiny, isolated problems a breeze. Meguiar's new 6" sanding and finishing discs are designed for working in large areas, not removal of random, isolated problems. Trying to use something that large often results in excess removal of surrounding material, without removing the offending piece you really want gone! The image below illustrates this problem:




    The process can be summarized as shown below, keeping in mind that we used the 1500 grit damp sanding disc because we were working on a freshly body shop painted panel.



    Michael Stoops
    Senior Global Product & Training Specialist | Meguiar's Inc.

    Remember, this hobby is supposed to be your therapy, not the reason you need therapy.

  2. #2
    Clean4U Detailing Justin Murphy's Avatar
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    Re: Spot repair on paint with Meguiar's new Pro Spot Repair Kit

    Wow. Very interesting kit.

    How will that wool pad work with the G110?
    www.clean4udetailing.com

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    I like shiny xantonin's Avatar
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    Re: Spot repair on paint with Meguiar's new Pro Spot Repair Kit

    Man, I want one of these. But I don't professionally detail, just a weekend warrior for my own car.

    Maybe I should get into doing this as a career...

    Quick question.. what's a dirt nib?

  4. #4
    Sr. Global Product & Training Spec Michael Stoops's Avatar
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    Re: Spot repair on paint with Meguiar's new Pro Spot Repair Kit

    Quote Originally Posted by justin30513 View Post
    Wow. Very interesting kit.

    How will that wool pad work with the G110?
    As with any wool pad, it's use is not recommended on the D/A

    Quote Originally Posted by xantonin View Post
    Quick question.. what's a dirt nib?
    Any little random bit of dirt or debris that gets caught in the paint either as it's sprayed or as it dries. We've seen some body shops that spray in makeshift "booths" outside and dirt nibs are a real issue for them. But from time to time they can happen to just about anyone.
    Michael Stoops
    Senior Global Product & Training Specialist | Meguiar's Inc.

    Remember, this hobby is supposed to be your therapy, not the reason you need therapy.

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