What is the proper way to compound with Buff Magic and a Dual Action Polisher?


One of the questions I get asked the most is what is the proper procedure for compounding using Buff Magic on the boat.

So lets take a look at what we need and how to do this.  Before we begin make sure you have:

  • Buff Magic
  • Dual Action Polisher w/ Wool Compound Pads
  • Pad Fluffing Brush
  • Chip Brush
  • Microfiber Towels

Start by setting up your polisher with a clean wool Buff Magic Pad.  These wool pads are more aggressive and work in connection with our Buff Magic compound very well.  Regardless if the pad is brand new or used and cleaned we want to fluff it and knock out any extra fuzz with our pad fluffing brush.

We will work in a small 2 foot square are at a time and move on as we finish each area.

Using your chip brush we want to apply a series of X’s to the surface.  Do not apply the product to the pad as this will cause premature overloading and clumping of the pad.  Once the product is on the surface place the pad face on the surface and turn on the machine on.  We want to start at about a speed 2.

The reason we start with the pad on the surface before turning it on or off, this help reduce slinging and mess of the product.

As soon as the machine is on, we want to keep it moving using the following overlapping pattern.  You do not want to apply a lot of pressure.  On a horizontal surface the weight of the machine is enough.  On a vertical surface you want to apply light pressure.  Once we have done that pattern, we will do it again in the opposite direction.  You should slowly move through this pattern set a couple of time over 2-3 minutes.  As I go into the last pass of the pattern I like to speed up the tool to a 4 or 5.  Remember to turn the tool off before picking it up.

Now use a microfiber towel to remove all the haze and excess material.  If the surface has that showroom shine you are looking for then you are all set to go on to your next area.  If not , you have a deeper level of oxidation and you may have to repeat these steps a couple of more times.

When I go to my next area I like to overlap the last area by about 6 inches to make sure I do not miss any spots.  Also, I make it a habit of fluffing the pad between each area.  This will help keep the pad for getting to matted down and stop working.

Here are a couple of more tips and pitfalls to look out for:

  • Do not use to much product, less is more;
  • Never apply product to the pad; and
  • Always work a small section at a time.

Removing oxidation and bringing out a showroom shine will enhance the beauty and value of your boat.  Don’t forget once you are done you sill still need to put a protective coating on the surface to prevent premature oxidation in the future.  With a little time and patience you can detail like the pros.

Until next time keep your boat CLEAN-N-SIMPLE!

17 Comments on “What is the proper way to compound with Buff Magic and a Dual Action Polisher?”

  1. Brian Walker says:

    Can I use buff majic without an eletric polisher? I really want to bring my hull back to the great shine I am sure it once had I just can’t afford an electric polisher.
    Thank You


  2. Barry says:

    Yes it may be done by hand.

  3. Peter Thompson says:

    Can I apply Buff magic in the sun or does it have to be applied in the shade?

  4. Barry says:

    Buff Magic can be used in pretty mush any weather other than snow and rain.

  5. Jason says:

    Can I use Buff Magic on the nonskid surface of my boat ?

  6. Barry says:

    Yes, Buff Magic is a great deoxidizer for all fiberglass areas.

  7. Rob says:

    Can it be used at 40-45 degrees in a heated indoor storage building out of the sun?

  8. tom says:

    Used buff magic for the first time today on Sea Ray Sundancer.
    I wanted to know if I should run the buffer over the surface until all traces of the compound are used.
    It seemed after every section I ended up with compound still on the surface.
    I also used two pads for a 29′ boat is this normal?


  9. Barry says:

    What is left is the oxidation that you are polishing off. It is normal to have to use a towel to take off this excess. 2 pads also sounds about right.

  10. Rich says:

    I have an older, orbital buffer /polisher, that is single speed, 3100rpm, 2400ocillations per minute. Will this work with either the Buff Magic and/or Pro Polish? Any Tips?


  11. Alex says:

    How much Buff magic should I buy for a wellcraft 2950? 4 Lb enough? and how much pro polish for the boat.


  12. Barry says:

    The smallest size of each should be plenty. They go a long way.

  13. Barry says:

    It will be fine for ProPolish but not good enough for the Buff Magic.

  14. Bill Wolfington says:

    On the hull below, the rubrail I have a summer season worth of water stains. They don’t come off with simple hand waxing.
    Should I use the Shurhold DA with pro polish or is the buff magic the better choice? I have a 370 Sundancer.
    (The water stains are not etched in, just surface but will not come off with washing or hand waxing).

    Thank you

  15. Mark Pyle says:

    I notice you say that Buff Magic will restore Plexiglass. Will it work on Lexan (Polycarbonate?)

  16. Barry says:

    Yes, but work slow and carefully.

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