Wet Sanding Accident

Hi Everyone, Made a bit of an accident when trying to fix a previous touch up from an old owner i wanted to wet sand the touch up to smoothen the chip so i wet sanded with 1000 grit sand paper (i now realise this was way too rough shouldve done 2000+). Now this did smoothen it out as i wanted and i cleaned it off and was happy with it so i polished it with a da polisher and meguiars ultimate compound, now when i turned off all the lights and put a focus light on the area i noticed all these deep scratches that look almost under the clear coat the area feels smooth and i cant feel the scratches at all so im not sure if the scratches are actually under the clear coat or not , i did give it a light cut with the da polish and meguiars cutting compound however this had no effect as the scratches are very deep, Am i best to attempt to wet sand with a higher grit such as 2000 or 3000? I am a bit nervous now about sanding as im not sure how much clear coat im working with. Would be extremely grateful if someone could give me some advice on what to do, i took my car to a painters and they said they wouldnt be able to touch up that one area and would have to repaint the entire bumper which would cost around 700 dollars (which i dont want to have to resort to) Thanks for your help.

You are seeing scratches because you jumped from 1000 to polish. There needs to be intermediate steps of 2000 grit to maybe 3000 to rubbing compound to heavy cut polish to fine. Compound will leave scratches that can be seen.

Those middle steps make the scratches finer and finer until they go away. You won’t be able to feel any scratches from about 1000 and up.


Great advice. I learned that years ago…the hard way.

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Can’t buffing compound be used too If that’s the right word? Is that the same as rubbing compound MikeInNH? It’s the paste with fine abrasive in it.

Yeah, I’ll just add the the scratches are in the clear coat not the color coat. Getting them out means either more sanding or polishing and you risk blowing through the clear. On a bumper I think I would leave it alone. Depending on the size of the spot, I have added clear to fill in and then started over. A touch up clear in brush or the spray, then 2000 plus. I had limited success though especially on a long scratch from being keyed. Looked ok except on close inspection.

The photos suggest you have more than a 1000 vs 2000 grit problem. But once you get everything to that level of surface imperfections, for the final part of the job, Google “optical grade diamond slurry (or paste)”. I know it sounds expensive, but for the amount you’ll need, shouldn’t cost much.

Yes…but it’ll take a lot longer. Best to do the wet sanding first. Then after the 3000 grit sanding you use rubbing or polishing compound.

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Thanks for the help everyone fixed it now woth your advice of resanding with different grits looks great again :blush: