K.C. Body Shop Supply

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How to: Sand Your Vehicle

Sanding your car is key to achieving a silky and smooth-looking new paint job. How thoroughly you choose to sand is up to you, but the best results will require priming and applying a new paint and clear coat finish.

Here are the steps to follow when sanding to get the best results:

Step 1: Wash the car with soap and water

Wash your car to remove dust and contaminants. Use a good car soap along with a wax and grease remover such as the Gleam GLM-900 Wax & Grease Remover. You don’t want wax grease, or road tar to fill the etch marks from sanding or gum up your sanding pads.

Step 2: Sand down to bare metal

You will need 80 grit sandpapers to get down to the bare metal. A dual-action power sander can be used for most of this process to make things go quicker. The sander should smooth the surface without gouging the metal. Hand sand areas that cannot be easily reached by the power sander.

Follow up by going over the car again with medium grit sandpaper to remove any scratches you may have left behind.

Step 3: Sand down all body fillers on your vehicle’s surface

Use 120-grit sandpaper to sand down any Gleam GLM-250 Gold Fast Sanding Body Filler used on the car’s surface to repair dings, dents, scratches, or low spots. Place the sandpaper on a sanding block. Keep the block horizontal and lead each stroke with the long edges of the block, not the short ends. You want to avoid creating a ditch in the filler.

Step 4: Sand the primer

Use 220-grit sandpaper to slowly and gently sand just the very top layer of the primer, such as the Gleam GLM-2000 2K Urethane High Build Primer. Applying too much pressure may create a low spot in the car primer.

Step 5: Sand the entire car

Sand the entire car again, using 400-600 grit sandpaper. This final step will make your car smooth and ready for painting.

Step 6: Wet sand the car after painting

After painting your car, wet sand it with 1000-1500 grit sandpaper, to remove any dust or dirt nibs on the surface.

 Step 7: Buff and polish

After wet sanding, you will want to buff your car with a wool or foam buffing pad and rubbing compound. To remove any swirl marks, use a polishing pad with a foam polish.