Optimise and achieve efficiency during car repairs. A complete car sanding guide for body shops. Get an excellent surface finish, every time.
Use our helpful guides to get the most out of your 3M sanding products. They feature step-by-step advice for body filler sanding, fine sanding for painting and e-coat sanding.
3M Abrasives, tools and accessories provide the perfect basis for the best painting results.
Our portfolio includes grinding wheels and strips, hand abrasives and wet abrasives. The right abrasive plays a key role in ensuring a perfect result, every time.
Whether in preparation, dry primer or fine sanding, our quality abrasives, and a further range of accessories, are designed to help you safely and efficiently complete your processes.
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In preparation for filler application, clean the repair area and remove all loose paint particles or rust.
Sand down to bare, clean metal using 3M™ Cubitron™ II Net Abrasive Disc 120+ -150+ on a DA sanding machine - to achieve the surface that you want to apply body filler onto.
Using a 3M™ Cubitron™ II Net Abrasive Disc 220+ - 240+, refine previous sanding scratches. This reduces the possibility of solvents from the body filler penetrating into the OEM paint layers. If this happens, it can lead to surface swelling around the repair.
Note: Application and drying of Body Filler as per paint manufacturer recommendation.
Initial shaping of the body filler, using 3M™ Cubitron™ II Net Abrasive Discs 150+ - 240+. Ensure that you use dust extraction.
Identify and highlight sanding scratches through the application of dry guide coat.
Sand edges and borders using 3M™ Grippy Sanding Cloth, P800 - P1000, to avoid breaking through the paint in sensitive areas.
Using 3M™ Cubitron™ II Net Abrasive Disc 320+, refine the edges of the repair area, it's advisable to work with a soft interface pad when sanding curved areas.
Tip: The choice of the fine grit has to be adjusted to the solvent sensitivity of the original paint. The higher the solvent sensitivity of the original paint, the finer the sanding before primer application.
Note: Application and drying of Primer as per paint manufacturer recommendation.
Using a 3M™ Hookit™ Hand Block and 3M Abrasives 320+ - 400+, shape the primer in preparation for basecoat. Highlight the texture and structure of the primer with 3M™ Dry Guide Coat.
For the best results and the most efficient process, always use dust extraction.
Use 3M™ Grippy Sanding Cloth, P800 - P1000 to refine the edges and borders of the primed area. Identify and highlight sanding scratches through the application of 3M™ Dry Guide Coat.
Note: this product is recommended for maximum process safety.
Eccentric sanding with 3M Abrasives 400+ - P500 to further refine the primer surface in preparation for basecoat. For critical colours use a 3M™ Hookit™ Flexible Foam Disc P600 as a last sanding step after 400+. De-dust the surface with Scotch-Brite™ Clean and Finish Disc.
Tip: It's advisable to work with a soft interface pad sanding curved areas.
Use a 3M™ Hookit™ Flexible Foam Disc P800 - P1000 to prepare adjacent areas of the OEM clearcoat..
Note: This product is recommended for maximum process safety.
3M™ Cubitron™ II Products give a more consistent finish in car scratch repair and paint removal. They cut quicker and last longer, enabling a cooler sanding process and helping you be more productive than ever – reducing cycle time and rework.
Thanks to their supporting foam backing, 3M™ Trizact™ Abrasive Discs 443SA or 3M™ Hookit™ Flexible Abrasive Foam Discs are high performing, versatile abrasives and in finer grades excellent for blending, paint rectification or preparation for car polishing.
Here are some valuable insights into specific sanding process challenges, including quick tips on preventing common issues such as applying the primer and the adhesion of the primer. For more in-depth information, click the link below to see each tip.
Particularly when using net abrasive discs, back-up pads seem to wear out faster, losing their ability to firmly hold discs.
You can protect a Festool back-up pad with the Festool Automotive Systems Protection Pad. This will protect the back-up pad hooks from wearing during the sanding operation.
Sometimes, seemingly well prepared areas can show an uneven and poor quality surface finish after paint and clear coat application.
The modern recommendation is to refine sanding scratches around the edge of the repair area (known as feather edging). This should be done with a fine grade abrasive (220+-240+) before applying body filler and with a 320+ grade abrasive before applying primer.
This will stop solvents from the body filler, or primer penetrating deeply into the original paint construction.
(Always follow the paint company recommendations).
Deeper sanding scratches in filler and primer sometimes appear to be fully removed, but when paint and clear coat are applied, they still are visible in the final surface.
By using 3M™ Dry Guide Coat, you can ensure that imperfections and sanding marks from previous steps have been fully refined. This will help to improve the quality and consistency of every repair.
We don't just have solutions for repairing bumpers and plastic panels. See our extensive range of solutions for all your car repair needs!
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