OK guys, I need some assistance. I'm a rookie at refinishing boat. I purchased Porter Cable 7424 and have gone with 3M line of products -- boat cleaner, rubbing compound, Finesse-It II, and past wax. I watched video on AutoGeek website to learn how to use tool (still haven't gotten complete hang of it but getting better). I also read a lot of posts on this website about wet sanding...with the goal being to avoid it if not needed.
Boat has moderate amount of oxidization but some pretty good scratches. Silver flake finish with white above and below. I tried using rubbing compound only but wasn't getting results I wanted, especially on scratches. So I did some light wet sanding over entire section with 600, then 1000, then rubbing compound. It looked good on test spot so I moved on, but when I look at certain angles, I am seeing my sanding marks big time, especially on the white sections of the boat. I've done about a quarter of the boat at this point and, while at first glance boat looks new in sections I've done, not pleased with results upon closer inspection.
Looking to some of you experts to help diagnose my problem(s) and help figure out path forward.
-- Do I need to go from 600 to 800 then to 1000? I was going straight from 600 to 1000. Do I need to use 1200 or even 1500 or higher grit...or does the rubbing compound pick up where the 1000 grit leaves off?
-- Am I using too much rubbing compound? I feel like I am using more than what I should. Pad is getting compound caked on it. Just saw something here about a cleaning brush. I ordered one bottle of rubbing compound for 23' boat, but at this rate will need at least two.
-- Do I need to have more patience with process? Will hitting it twice with Finesse-It II and wax hide some of my sanding marks, or do I need to get those completely gone before moving to Finesse-it stage?
-- What is a realistic amount of time that this entire process should take? I don't mind hard, long work, but have a bout 20 hours so far and worried that I am taking far too long without good results.
-- What would it cost to take it to someone else to have it done? : )
Any ideas and suggestions are welcomed! I also plan to call Auto Geek to get their input.