Sure Finish or Presta
Which or both? I have the Makita buffer and I intend to use these/this for detail on OEM paints but also plan on using as I finish up the paint cycle of restos.
Info and advice muchly appreciated.
Obviously, I think Sure Finish is the best because it fits my style of detailing. I try to get the paint as perfect as I can then wax. My colorsanding technique has gotten "better" because I have had to respond to the way the Sure Finish cuts.
Sure Finish doesn't fill, so, what you see is pretty much what you have. So, after the wax washes off the finish still looks good. Some people prefer to use a lot of filler so they don't have to cut the paint. There's something to be said for that since cutting does reduce the thickness of the paint and will eventually lead to failure. That said, if you keep the car waxed after the initial cut with Sure Finish, you should never have to really cut the car again. (Dual action with Sure Finish almost always gets it done.) I know this because I've been doing several cars since they were new and I guess the oldest is a 92 Lexus that lives out in Palm Springs and still looks great.
Other people get great results with Presta, so, it's going to come down to how you want to work.
All the best,
Thanks Robert. I expected you to recommend Sure Finish as I've read and printed your helpful documents from the archives. However, when I went to the shop for detailing, Presta came up also and I've read others here recommend it so I thought a variety of responses would help me.
I think the Sure Finish will work great for most of the things I need to do. At the same time, I've got a BMW that wasn't given a great paint job before I got it and the guy painted white over black. Some areas are already coming through so I think Sure Finish will expose even more black with it's cutting action. I would like to avoid repainting the beast right now as it's a kid car that's going to be torn up in the next two years til graduation.
I've used Sure Finish and two different Presta products one of which I liked somewhat (Ultra Cutting Creme) and the second (Chroma 1500) that I absolutely hated. Of these three the Sure Finish is slower than the Ultra Cutting Creme but faster than the Chroma 1500 which I hate as it dries way too fast. What I like best about the Sure Finish is that it doesn't decieve you as the Presta products do as these in fact do have scratch fillers in them and look great right after polishing but bad after washing when the glaze comes off.
The best setup I've ever used combines Menzera's Powergloss on the rotary buffer with wool pads (an agressive polish) and Sure Finish on a dual action gear driven sander/polisher using the orange foam. I have this catagory of machine from both Bosch and Makita.
My only complaint with Sure-Finish is that it's not a super aggressive compound with which to start a compounding job but it is a great compound and the best I've used with which to finess or finish one.
Another thought. If you are compounding with a wool pad and you DON'T see swirl marks then something is wrong. You're SUPPOSE to see swirl marks when compounding with a wool pad. If you don't then there's fillers in the compound to fill the scratches. I've seen people rave about compounds that "don't leave swirl marks." If the compound is aggressive enough to cut it's aggressive enough to leave swirl marks which you then remove with a finer cutting compound/polish. This is reality.
I use the presta products including their buffing wool pads to produce excellent results, that would be "Mirror like results"
The products are:
ultra cutting cream light
Yellow, green, blue wool pads:
On a clolor sanded paint finish the green wool pad works very well with both
the cutting cream light and also the 1500 polish. I use the blue wool pad for a final buff using the Best wax or if not using the wax just to buff the 1500 polish for a final go around but after using the green wool pad first !
The presta wool pads last along time and are designed so that both sides of the pad can be used.
I did not notice any dulling of the surface as Dennis had mentioned in
a earlier post. A typical color sanded finish for me would be 3000 grit
or finer as the base to begin with.
I still find myself using presta cutting cream THEN Sure Finish.I might eventually ween myself from Presta once i can get my scratches fine enough to where SF eliminates them easily.For ME,buffing is the hardest,most tegious,detailed part of the job,and i get impatient with it,so i used faster cutting compounds.
Chris I found that the finer you can colorsand prior to buffing the easier it will be. Using the green wool presta pad and the ultra cutting cream light I can
fly through buffing. Its pretty much painless.
After using the light cutting cream, the 1500 polish is a dream to use. I mean
you can just knock the job out with minimal effort.
To do this though I think the real key is to have the paint surface finely colorsanded first. When you get up to 3000 grit you can about see yourself in the paint. With such fine scratches in the paint it makes the buffing a whole lot easier to contend with. I prefer to use wool pads as I have found the foam pads just seem to jump around too much on the surface. The wool
pads are somewhat more aggressive, but they feel like they flow alot better over the paint than the foam based pads.
Last edited by X711; 08-08-2006 at 11:55 PM.
I was/am a newbie and when it came time for cutting and buffing my paint job (black Glasurit base/clear) I chose Sure Finish. I used the kit of pads sold here to go with Sure Finish (two wool pads - I only used one, the orange foam and the black foam). I wet-sanded to 2500 and was subsequently thrilled with the Sure Finish product. That it is not super-aggressive is probably good for neophytes like myself. This is my hood after the black foam pad (Dewalt rotary buffer):
I had to do a little more on some areas once I viewed the car under sunlight to get "perfection" (by my standards anyhow), but it was very easy. A super-good product IMO.
Congrats . Not only did you do a really nice job but your honest also.
Again really nice and black is the hardest in my opinion. That's why I love white.
Wow AMJ, thats excellent work. The depth of image on that paint is
I might just have to pick up some sure finish from len to try.
Thanks for the info
I appreciate all of your responses. I may give my wife's Sebring Convert a try, it's navy blue and could use a good buffing.
The hood looks great! Excellent work.
Thanks for the nice comments!
It really is all due the product though. I had tried another brand at first and did not have the same result (I will refrain from mentioning the brand, as its lack of performance may have been due to my lower skill level). When I tried Sure Finish I was amazed at how easy it went. I have to admit that I was a little skeptical about how you can use the same product for every stage, but it really worked. The other neat thing I found was that once the pad was seasoned, very little additional product was needed. Most of the time I just added water with a spray bottle.