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  1. #1

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    Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Hey guys, Iím extremely new to this whole thing so please forgive me for my ignorance. Iíve spent many hours reading through this forum and have done piles of searching but canít quite find the answers Iím looking for, or at least in terms super dumbed down for me. The only time Iíve used my new DA (CG Torx 10FX) and the pads that came with the kit (hexlogic orange, white and black) were with CG products v32, v34, v36,v38. I now understand how many different brands are available and some of the pros and cons but this is my first run at it.
    Iím trying not to ramble but Iím also trying to put as much info as I can here.
    SO, My confusion. As Iíve just read, itís not a good idea to use a single pad for the entire vehicle at one point when using a compound. Does this rule apply when using a light pad (black or white) with a finishing polish? What about DA applied sealants/waxes/glazes?

    Is it necessary to do a full dawn soap wash on your pads after each panel? Or, is the cotton towel/air gun sufficient?

    Is my understanding correct that at least relative to the CG pad grades/colours, the MF pads out there would be even more aggressive than the yellow hexlogic?

    I honestly have piles of stuff written down, and piles of questions that Iím trying to find answers for before I bug everyone.. Iíve used my DA on a hood from a wrecker but am terrified of diving into my car until I know some answers here. Again, sorry if I just suck at searches.

    Kevin


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  2. #2
    Mary B's Avatar
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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    You have arrived at the best place. Welcome aboard

    I do have and use some of the products you talk about.

    I`ve used as little as 3 white pads to apply Glaze, running on & wiping with a towel at each panel
    You can add swirls like that, while you are trying to remove them. 3 would be a min.

    The black pads have little to no cut, so I use 2 for sealant and 1 for wax. Mostly use 1 Red (with Torx 10FX) for wax, softer yet.

    I like the yellow hex logic, for a med. cut. Really nice on glass.
    MF cut pads like Griot`s, Meg`s, LC, and Carpro are heavy cut pads. (gum up so have the towel ready)
    Then you have the wools. LC blue (sheds less) I use before the purple. Compounding heavy cut.

    Rupes wool would be my best cutting, plus if the compound does have enough oils, and not break down quickly will finish some.

    That`s a nice machine you have, lightweight, sleek and modern.
    Please be aware the cooling fan openings aim downward at your work. Mine tended to dry the compound faster than usual,
    so I had to keep an eye on things. Wiping off sooner.

    I hope this helps some, I`m sure others will have their say as well.

    Good Luck and happy detailing
    MB
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  3. #3
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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    That’s very good advice from Mary and the only things I can add is the more pads the better. More for cutting because you are removing more paint and that clogs up your pads. By switching out pads you are working clean and will get better results faster.

    Buy a product that is made to clean pads like Poor Boys pad cleaner. Dawn will work but a dedicated product will save you time and aggravation (trying to get the soap out) and a bottle will last a good while.

    My best advice would be to toss the Chemical Guys polishes and go with more established brands. I started out with the CG polishes when I first started (it seems the CG advertising gets to newbies first) and I found out quickly that the CG V series of polishes are just bad. I still have some and try to use them on glass and headlights and use better polishes on paint. I would suggest Jescar polishes as my favorites right now, others will have their favorites but I will say no one will have anything good to say about CG polishes. For most jobs you can get by with Jescar Compound and a Meguires cutting pad followed up with a Rupes yellow and Jescar Finishing Polish. Detailing is fun once you figure out you don’t need every color of pad (or every polish) to get a showroom shine.

    Don’t worry about the questions, we were all new at one time and you won’t find a friendlier place than Autopia to get your questions answered.
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  4. #4

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Quote Originally Posted by CdnG37x View Post
    ..[I have the].. pads that came with the kit (hexlogic orange, white and black)..
    FWIW, I utterly *HATE* those pads! The recesses are nothing but trouble and diminish the working surface area (with zero upside). Just mentioning that for future reference, sorry to start off with something negative.

    Iím trying not to ramble but Iím also trying to put as much info as I can here...
    No worries about rambling More info is good.


    SO, My confusion. As Iíve just read, itís not a good idea to use a single pad for the entire vehicle at one point when using a compound...
    I hardly ever use one pad for a whole panel.

    Does this rule apply when using a light pad (black or white) with a finishing polish?
    IME, yes. Although how many you`ll need depends on the specific product. As noted, more/fresher pads are always better.

    What about DA applied sealants/waxes/glazes?
    Should *NOT* need more than one pad as long as you don`t:
    -use way too much product, which IMO most people do
    -overwork the product so the pad gets packed with dried-up product
    -get the pad contaminated

    Is it necessary to do a full dawn soap wash on your pads after each panel?
    I find Dawn quite ineffective for this and it lacks both lubricity and encapsulation. Not hating on it, but I don`t use it on my vehicles because there are infinitely better options.

    Or, is the cotton towel/air gun sufficient?
    I wouldn`t use cotton towels. The softest ones I have (KoalaSoft, CBT/DFT) are still much more aggressive (i.e., abrasive) than MF and I predict that if you CD-test them you`ll find they`re not soft enough for use on autopaint.

    The air gun is great for a quick-clean of the pads, but I wouldn`t use it on the vehicle. There shouldn`t be dust anyhow and that`s all it`s good for. All the abrasive products I use these days work best if wiped off while still a bit "wet", before they flash off. All the product gets wiped off and onto the Microfiber buffing towel. And you`ll need plenty of those MFs.

    Is my understanding correct that at least relative to the CG pad grades/colours, the MF pads out there would be even more aggressive than the yellow hexlogic?
    I use different brands of pads, but generally the "more aggressive" MF ones are still much more gentle with regard to scouring up the paint (compared to yellow foam cutting pads, which I *NEVER* use). The MF cuts better, finishes better, cleans better.

    I honestly have piles of stuff written down, and piles of questions that Iím trying to find answers for before I bug everyone..
    Some of us like these discussions and heh heh...if you`re bugging people you`ll know by the lack of responses I wouldn`t worry about that.

    Iíve used my DA on a hood from a wrecker but am terrified of diving into my car until I know some answers here.
    Find a good representative Test Spot area and work on that so you get squared-away before doing big areas (let alone the whole car)

    Again, sorry if I just suck at searches.
    My Search Fu is also weak, so please feel free to ask Qs.

    Oh, and Welcome to Autopia!
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  5. #5

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Quote Originally Posted by Accumulator View Post
    FWIW, I utterly *HATE* those pads! The recesses are nothing but trouble and diminish the working surface area (with zero upside). Just mentioning that for future reference, sorry to start off with something negative.



    No worries about rambling More info is good.




    I hardly ever use one pad for a whole panel.



    IME, yes. Although how many you`ll need depends on the specific product. As noted, more/fresher pads are always better.



    Should *NOT* need more than one pad as long as you don`t:
    -use way too much product, which IMO most people do
    -overwork the product so the pad gets packed with dried-up product
    -get the pad contaminated



    I find Dawn quite ineffective for this and it lacks both lubricity and encapsulation. Not hating on it, but I don`t use it on my vehicles because there are infinitely better options.



    I wouldn`t use cotton towels. The softest ones I have (KoalaSoft, CBT/DFT) are still much more aggressive (i.e., abrasive) than MF and I predict that if you CD-test them you`ll find they`re not soft enough for use on autopaint.

    The air gun is great for a quick-clean of the pads, but I wouldn`t use it on the vehicle. There shouldn`t be dust anyhow and that`s all it`s good for. All the abrasive products I use these days work best if wiped off while still a bit "wet", before they flash off. All the product gets wiped off and onto the Microfiber buffing towel. And you`ll need plenty of those MFs.



    I use different brands of pads, but generally the "more aggressive" MF ones are still much more gentle with regard to scouring up the paint (compared to yellow foam cutting pads, which I *NEVER* use). The MF cuts better, finishes better, cleans better.



    Some of us like these discussions and heh heh...if you`re bugging people you`ll know by the lack of responses I wouldn`t worry about that.



    Find a good representative Test Spot area and work on that so you get squared-away before doing big areas (let alone the whole car)



    My Search Fu is also weak, so please feel free to ask Qs.

    Oh, and Welcome to Autopia!
    Wicked, thanks! Now for round two of expanding on those questions and answers.

    So, if I were to get other pads, is there a difference in design or construction of pads between use for a rotary vs a DA? Iíve read and seen the lake country pads for example specify thereís a FLAT series(?) or I guess a standard version of the same pad. Could I make the assumption that the flat and seemingly thinner pads out there would be for flatter panels where thicker would be to help hug curves and body lines?

    The reason I asked about how many pads per panel is because both at my detail garage (CG) hosted course as well as their videos (could provide link and time stamp if necessary) say that with the hex logic pads they do an entire vehicle per pad. I just found it very strange that the addition of the small channels would take you from half a dozen or more, to one pad.

    Just for clarification, my cotton towel/air gun question was directed specifically at the pads, not the paint. Donít worry! I promise I wonít take a haggard, abrasive towels to my paint job! Lol.

    I spent the night looking through both the Autopia store as well as eshine (doesnít seem to be a huge variety of options for Canadians) and read descriptions and compared between brands and styles/textures, but I notice a pile of people recommend the LC pads. I only have one of each colour so maybe Iíll listen to you fellas and start collecting some more of those.

    Also.. at what point do you look at your pad and say ďeh, time to change Ďer upĒ
    Without having the experience of feel yet, what would you recommend, and why? Is it based off dry dusty presence on the pad? Hot to the touch? Or cleaning with say, air or a pad brush while itís on just doesnít make a noticeable difference anymore?

    I love learning by experience.. itís how it really sinks in for me. But like I say I just want to make sure Iím not butchering everything when I get into it. My wifeís grand Cherokee will be the test dummy.. once I figure out pictures (canít upload to my gallery) Iíll show the olí girl (jeep, not the wife.) lol. Itís for another discussion but itís an off white with absolutely heinous paint. Little rusty iron spots everywhere.. Blegh.

    Anyway, thanks again.


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  6. #6

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mary B View Post
    You have arrived at the best place. Welcome aboard

    I do have and use some of the products you talk about.

    I`ve used as little as 3 white pads to apply Glaze, running on & wiping with a towel at each panel
    You can add swirls like that, while you are trying to remove them. 3 would be a min.

    The black pads have little to no cut, so I use 2 for sealant and 1 for wax. Mostly use 1 Red (with Torx 10FX) for wax, softer yet.

    I like the yellow hex logic, for a med. cut. Really nice on glass.
    MF cut pads like Griot`s, Meg`s, LC, and Carpro are heavy cut pads. (gum up so have the towel ready)
    Then you have the wools. LC blue (sheds less) I use before the purple. Compounding heavy cut.

    Rupes wool would be my best cutting, plus if the compound does have enough oils, and not break down quickly will finish some.

    That`s a nice machine you have, lightweight, sleek and modern.
    Please be aware the cooling fan openings aim downward at your work. Mine tended to dry the compound faster than usual,
    so I had to keep an eye on things. Wiping off sooner.

    I hope this helps some, I`m sure others will have their say as well.

    Good Luck and happy detailing
    MB
    Good call with the fan holes! I wouldnít have thought of that. I appreciate the breakdown of the pads, Iím not quite up to speed on the technicalities of this stuff yet so quite a lot of threads still go over my head trying to decipher.

    While this in my head, Iíve watched some GG, rules, and CG videos and also through the course Iíve gotten some conflicting answers on priming pads. In the course I was told not to use a pad after cleaning until it was 100% dry, then pad conditioner/product prime, then go to town. However, in the GG video I think it was, they instructed for priming to submerge pad in water, wring it out but, still has some moisture throughout, then product and go.

    Is this depending on manufacturer/pad construction? I thought they were all relatively generic design, just different material quality.. so how is there conflict like this?


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  7. #7

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Quote Originally Posted by rlmccarty2000 View Post
    Thatís very good advice from Mary and the only things I can add is the more pads the better. More for cutting because you are removing more paint and that clogs up your pads. By switching out pads you are working clean and will get better results faster.

    Buy a product that is made to clean pads like Poor Boys pad cleaner. Dawn will work but a dedicated product will save you time and aggravation (trying to get the soap out) and a bottle will last a good while.

    My best advice would be to toss the Chemical Guys polishes and go with more established brands. I started out with the CG polishes when I first started (it seems the CG advertising gets to newbies first) and I found out quickly that the CG V series of polishes are just bad. I still have some and try to use them on glass and headlights and use better polishes on paint. I would suggest Jescar polishes as my favorites right now, others will have their favorites but I will say no one will have anything good to say about CG polishes. For most jobs you can get by with Jescar Compound and a Meguires cutting pad followed up with a Rupes yellow and Jescar Finishing Polish. Detailing is fun once you figure out you donít need every color of pad (or every polish) to get a showroom shine.

    Donít worry about the questions, we were all new at one time and you wonít find a friendlier place than Autopia to get your questions answered.
    Haha oh no! Buzzkill! Iíve had my eye on a proper cleaner. Even just doing the dishes with dawn and a sponge it takes forever to wring it all out so Iím totally on board with that suggestion. I was just more surprised than anything that you could even use dawn in a pinch.

    Youíre right about the CG sales to newbies. All the fancy brands of compounds and polishes out there I find fairly intimidating. The self diminishing properties just made me feel warm and cozy about not excessively working my paint, but now that I think about it.. I canít imagine the compound magically knowing when to diminish, so I could still over compound before it stops itself. Hmm..


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  8. #8

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    When I was using the Porter Cable, which is similar to the CG Torx, I needed to rely on microfiber pads to perform heavy defect removal. There were wool options, but I stayed away from those due to marring. My question is in asking if there is a foam pad that`s aggressive enough to compete with the microfiber pads?
    To the OP, if there isn`t you may want to consider using microfiber pads for cutting, and foam pads for follow-up polishing and polishing jobs if you`re considering other`s cars.
    Some of the things to think about is what cars you may be doing, and what pads you`ll likely need. MF pads are great for defects on hard and soft paint, but a cutting foam pad may not work so well even on medium-hardness type paint.
    It would be best to have MF cutting, MF polishing, foam cutting, & foam polishing, however, MF cutting & foam polishing should be enough to start with, IMO.

  9. #9

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Quote Originally Posted by EXPDetailing View Post
    When I was using the Porter Cable, which is similar to the CG Torx, I needed to rely on microfiber pads to perform heavy defect removal. There were wool options, but I stayed away from those due to marring. My question is in asking if there is a foam pad that`s aggressive enough to compete with the microfiber pads?
    To the OP, if there isn`t you may want to consider using microfiber pads for cutting, and foam pads for follow-up polishing and polishing jobs if you`re considering other`s cars.
    Some of the things to think about is what cars you may be doing, and what pads you`ll likely need. MF pads are great for defects on hard and soft paint, but a cutting foam pad may not work so well even on medium-hardness type paint.
    It would be best to have MF cutting, MF polishing, foam cutting, & foam polishing, however, MF cutting & foam polishing should be enough to start with, IMO.
    When you say that you were using the porter cable, do you mean you were using DA but you are now using rotary? I understand that DA isnít as fast acting as rotary, so I figure your pad/compound combo changes between rotary and DA even if youíre using the same panel/vehicle? Less aggressive at a faster work rate if that makes sense? I plan to stick with my da until I know what Iím doing but am still curious.

    It was my understanding that MF pads were more aggressive than any foam available, but I see I was wrong. I appreciate the feedback and clarity from everyone

    Iíll do some searching on distinguishing hard vs soft paint and probably end up asking questions afterward. I think I remember reading that import brand vehicles are a harder paint due to cure time and overseas shipment.. maybe Iím misremembering or dead wrong here. If I was to guess, would it be fair to say the softer the paint, the faster itís removal?


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  10. #10

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Update!
    Iíve done some more reading. Iíve discovered a fella by the name of mike Phillips and have read a couple of his tutorials and explanations, as well as read more threads on Autopia.

    I think I found an answer to some of my own questions, or at least a couple of them.

    Accumulator - regarding flat series. If Iím correct, the flat series are for DA machines as they donít resist unforced spin, seemingly by the extra pad material and therefore more product to soak into it, making it heavier and harder to spin. Do you agree with this? Or is it something I should discover by using?

    As per 99% of people, one pad per vehicle for a cut/polish process is ridiculous. Not sure why CG says to go that route.

    Iíve also read about frequency of on the fly pad cleaning, and how often to change pads. Looks like the more the merrier and clean after every couple passes. Just seems like youíd go through a massive amount of product priming a huge stack of pads.. no? Or is that just part of the game?

    As for hard vs soft paint.. looks like the short answer is it makes no difference, or at least doesnít matter. The process is the same regardless, test spot, adjust as necessary starting with least aggressive combo.

    If you guys could just let me know if my findings are correct, it would be much appreciated! Currently working at a nuclear power plant (any UA guys here?) and have ample time to read. Crazy slow process here.

    Thanks again


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  11. #11

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    Re: Massive pad/application confusion (rookie)

    Eh, this is kinda a jumbled-up mess of a response; I`ve cut/pasted stuff to death, but here goes anyhow..

    Quote Originally Posted by CdnG37x View Post
    Accumulator - regarding flat series. If Iím correct, the flat series are for DA machines as they donít resist unforced spin, seemingly by the extra pad material and therefore more product to soak into it, making it heavier and harder to spin. Do you agree with this? Or is it something I should discover by using?
    I gotta admit I`m behind the times when it comes to pads (I basically don`t need to do correction any more and don`t touch my polishers for years on end), so I`m the wrong guy to ask

    BUT you`re on the right track as there are flat/curved, thin/thick, etc. varieties of pads and using the right ones will make things go better (and easier). A few sorta-random thoughts follow, maybe something will be helpful:

    - DO NOT BELIEVE STUFF WITHOUT A GOOD REASON FOR DOING SO, NO MATTER WHO SAYS IT (me included)
    - Be especially leery of "info" from people who have skin in the Sell Stuff Game (no matter who they are)
    - Figure out how stuff works so you`re making informed decisions (looks like you`re doing that already )

    OK, those are the generalized biggies IMO Now, more to the point:

    -I do not think it`s a matter of "thick pad full of product = harder to spin = that`s the diff"
    -Thinner pads will generally be more aggressive as they don`t "flex" as much in use
    -The dimples in some pads will collect cut-off paint and used-up product, neither of which is good, period
    -No matter what anybody says, I do not believe you can correct any vehicle with one pad unless you clean it all the time
    -Yeah, you can go through a lot of pads and, *depending on the product*, a lot of product too
    -Some compounds/polishes work best in small quantities (e.g., HD Cut and Polish) while others work best with a *lot* (e.g., the Kevin Brown Method)
    -Hard/soft is difficult to generalize, but there are some rules-of-thumb...what`re we talking about here?

    Well, I see that one we`re discussing is...
    My wifeís grand Cherokee... itís an off white with absolutely heinous paint. Little rusty iron spots everywhere.. Blegh.
    Get some *GOOD* Inspection Lighting so you can see what`s going on with that light colored paint. Sounds like a prime candidate for a Chemical Decontamination, specifically stuff that`ll remove Ferrous Contamination. Might want to use Clay or a "Clay substitute" too. That [stuff]might clean off a lot easier than you`d expect.

    Not sure why CG says [what they do]...
    I suspect they want to make their products look more appealing so they can sell more. Heh heh, much as I despise cynicism, you might could use a little dose of it when it comes to what those vendors are sayin` No, I`m not flaming CG, the only product I`ve tried of theirs was OK.

    As for hard vs soft paint.. looks like the short answer is it makes no difference, or at least doesnít matter. The process is the same regardless, test spot, adjust as necessary starting with least aggressive combo...would it be fair to say the softer the paint, the faster itís removal?
    Right, and learn to err on the side of caution, i.e., "much better" vs. "perfect". And yeah, softer paint cuts off a lot faster/easier along with being trickier to do the Finish Polishing (i.e., eliminating any hazing or "micromarring" caused by the aggressive steps).

    Just for clarification, my cotton towel/air gun question was directed specifically at the pads, not the paint. Donít worry! I promise I wonít take a haggard, abrasive towels to my paint job! Lol.
    Heh heh, OK, good I too like cotton towels for wiping off my pads and using compressed air on `em (but watch where that product dust goes).

    Also.. at what point do you look at your pad and say ďeh, time to change Ďer upĒ
    Without having the experience of feel yet, what would you recommend, and why? Is it based off dry dusty presence on the pad? Hot to the touch? Or cleaning with say, air or a pad brush while itís on just doesnít make a noticeable difference anymore?
    IMO you shouldn`t even get close to the point of "dry dusty presence". Or "hot to the touch". Or let it go so long that your cleaning appears ineffective. Heh heh, see...I keep getting back to "just get out another one" every time we discuss this! But I`ll admit I`m kinda fanatical about it and it`s easy for me to spend your money on a lot of pads. The stuff that builds up on pads is, in the general/functional sense...BAD all the way around.

    Iíve had my eye on a proper [pad] cleaner. Even just doing the dishes with dawn and a sponge it takes forever to wring it all out so Iím totally on board with that suggestion. I was just more surprised than anything that you could even use dawn in a pinch.
    I still just use an All Purpose Cleaner ("APC") or the old Dawn Power Dissolver...but people sure do like the dedicated Pad Cleaners and the one I`ve tried (BlackFire, perhaps?) did indeed work better. Stokdgs loves Snappy Clean and he`s a reliable source of info even though he and I don`t always see eye-to-eye (gee, who does?!?).

    Youíre right about the CG sales to newbies. All the fancy brands of compounds and polishes out there I find fairly intimidating...


    Yeah, confused consumers spend more $ once they get over the analysis-paralysis

    The self diminishing properties just made me feel warm and cozy about not excessively working my paint, but now that I think about it.. I canít imagine the compound magically knowing when to diminish, so I could still over compound before it stops itself. Hmm..
    [/QUOTE]

    I myself generally prefer NON-diminishing abrasives because they cut the way they cut all the time (generally speaking...) and you don`t have to keep working them until they break down; you can stop any time without it being an issue. But hey, that`s just me and I do use diminishing ones now and then. But yeah...by the time you work a product long enough for it to break down you might be working it too long for the paint`s health.

    ..If you guys could just let me know if my findings are correct, it would be much appreciated! Currently working at a nuclear power plant ..
    Ah, sounds like you`ll grasp how little things can be important, good. And you *do* sound like you`re on the right track and doing well figuring it out. Just beware of claims designed to separate you from your money. Not saying anybody`s *lying* to you, but, well...be skeptical in the scientific sense.

    Oh, and BTW...FWIW I don`t like those soft black Finishing Pads. Not even for applying wax. They`re generally too soft and have too-small pores for my taste. The idea behind Finishing Pads is basically just that the pad itself doesn`t have any cut so all the cut comes from the product.

    Another BTW/FWIW, I generally try to match my pads/products (aggressive pad + aggressive product/mild pad + mild product), but will sometimes use an aggressive product with a milder pad just to tone it down a bit. I myself don`t like to go the other way and use a mild product with a harsh pad, even though some people do that. Truth is...back in the day there were very few varieties of pads and/but we still did just fine without today`s huge assortment of choices. It`s all about *functional* diffs and personal preferences.

 

 

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