Aircraft Polishing Equipment

I’m just getting started, so don’t take this as recommended. This is just what I was able to pick up locally when I suddenly got the bug to try some polishing:

Griots 6″ random orbit polishing buffer & red foam pad. Since I’m cheap, I put microfiber cloths over the foam pad and used that to help keep the red foam pad from getting filled with polish and super dirty. I washed the first 24 or so cloths that I used in the washing machine. Bob on VAF says I should try TCP mixed with water in a 5 gallon bucket to soak prior to washing. I’m itching to try that, but haven’t found the TCP yet.

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White diamond metal polish. I don’t know if I’m doing a bad thing here using this since it has a “sealant”.

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Zwipes microfiber 16″x24″ cloths. These are pretty thin and not very plush, but what I was able to have on hand to start with. Bob on VAF told me the ones on perfect polish are “a MILLION” times better. I’m going to try picking some of those up.

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On order from amazon to try out:Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 7.12.51 PM

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Griot’s Garage 11115 Micro Fiber Polish Removal Cloth – Set of 3:

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(5-Pack) **SPECIAL SALE** THE RAG COMPANY 16″ x 16″ Eagle Edgeless Orange Professional Korean 70/30 Super Plush 480gsm Microfiber Detailing Towels:

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Here is a quick before and after surface condition shot. This is about 3 minutes of work by hand, using the zwipe cloths and the white diamond polish. I apply a small amount of liquid polish to the metal and rub with the microfiber till the paste turns black. Then wipe off with two successive passes with clean microfiber cloths:

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Not close to mirror finish and not all scratches gone, but pretty good for 3 minutes by hand. It also took off the sharpie which I couldn’t even do with MEK:

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Other items on order that I want to try out:

(10-Pack) **SPECIAL SALE** THE RAG COMPANY 16″ x 16″ Professional Edgeless 365 GSM Premium 70/30 Blend Microfiber Polishing and Auto Detailing Towels (Royal Blue)

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3″ random orbit buffer:

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3″ Pads. These I probably won’t cover with microfiber:

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Aircraft Polishing

Well, I certainly don’t know what I am doing, but I decided to polish the plane for a bit prior to committing to paint. I started with the right wing top surface:

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Since I don’t have the good stuff yet (Nuvite), I just did a quick pass with stuff available at autozone. I bought a 6″ random orbit buffer, some foam pads, and used microfiber cloths under the foam pads to apply the cleaning polish. My first goal was just to git rid of the surface oxidation and remove the discolored lines left from the removal of the blue plastic along each side of each rivet line.

Although this still looks like crap, it is 100% better than before where it was milky/blotchy with obvious marks on each side of the rivet lines:IMG_0588

Getting better:IMG_0594

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You sure go through microfiber towels quickly. I took these home to wash and it took two cycles in the washing machine.

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Today (1/3/16), I did the left wing, with help from Rachel and Zack:

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