Car Polishing Machines and the Difference Between Rotary, Dual Action & Orbital

When looking to buy a polishing machine we often get asked if Rotary car polishing machines are suitable for first-time users and what the main differences are between Rotary, Dual Action and Orbital car polishers.

Rotary Polishers

The motor on these machines directly drives the polishing head that fixes directly to the backing plate onto which you fix your cutting, polishing or finishing pad.

This means all the power, and there can be a vast amount of it, is directly driving the rotation of the machine down onto and across your paintwork – too much pressure and you can quickly burn through your paintwork.

However the upside is that if you are seeking to do paint correction the Rotary is more suited to this type of work as it will allow you to take the paint layers down further and quicker than either a Dual Action or Orbital.

Many professional detailers use a rotary car polishing machines for both speed and where required for full paint correction details. However many will be the first to admit they started out with a Dual Action such as the original Porter Cables before moving onto the Rotary car polishing machines.

Dual Action Polishers

Image showing difference in motion of dual action and rotorary car polishing machinesThis unique action prevents the creation of holograms (symmetrical buffing marks), paint burns and other forms of paint damage often associated with rotary polishers.

The Dual Action polishing machine is ideally suited to light scratch and swirl removal and deep shine buffing – it would not be the ideal choice for the removal of deeper scratches where your finger nail “jarrs” when passed over the scratch (the finger nail test).

Orbital Buffers

These tend to have larger heads and dual handles that allow the machine to be pressed onto the paintwork. The also tend to work at lower speeds and have a single “jiggle” movement rather than spin.

They are ideal for applying product deep into the paintwork over a larger area and removing same (using different bonnets). They are however not as versatile as the Dual Action car polishing machines, which will allow the use of different size plates and pads and work at higher speeds, whilst being more user friendly than a Rotary.

The Dual Action as by its name combines two actions, one the rotating of the plate holding your pad and the other is the oscillation of the spindle. An easier way to understand this is comparing it to the action of the earth – which itself spins, whist at the same time orbits, or oscillates around the sun.

The motor on these machines directly drives the polishing head that fixes directly to the backing plate onto which you fix your cutting, polishing or finishing pad.

This means all the power, and there can be a vast amount of it, is directly driving the rotation of the machine down onto and across your paintwork – too much pressure and you can quickly burn through your paintwork.

Which Car Polishing Machine Should I Choose?

Your choice of machine really depends on what you want to achieve and your level of confidence (experience). The beauty of some of the latest car polishing machines is both the introduction of digital speed control and the lighter weight. The speed on some machines can be set in increments from 500 rpm to 3000 rpm, making them more user-friendly than traditional rotary machines. It does however still need to be treated with respect.

The Dual Action Car Polisher (DA) machines whilst not being equal to a rotary when it comes to paint rectification work, will produce excellent, professional-looking results with the added benefit that it is much harder to do any serious damage to your paintwork than it is with a rotary.

And lastly if you are seeking simply to save time and cover large areas the traditional dual handled orbital buffer may be the ideal choice.

SaleBestseller No. 1
VEVOR Polishing Buffing Machine 200W Jewelry Buffing Machine 110V Jewelry Polishing Tool Dust Collector with Light Table Top Jewelry Buffer Polisher
45 Reviews
VEVOR Polishing Buffing Machine 200W Jewelry Buffing Machine 110V Jewelry Polishing Tool Dust Collector with Light Table Top Jewelry Buffer Polisher
  • High Quality Material: This jewelry buffer is made of high-quality metal, rust-proof and corrosion-resistant. Provide users with high-quality polishers.
  • Powerful Motor & Low Noise: Jewelry polisher machine adopts high-power motor, rotating speed regulation, low noise, comfortable working environment.
  • Light & Dust Collector: Bench buffing machine equipped with energy-saving lamps, convenient for polishing operations, and adopts dust collector design, convenient for cleaning and collection.
  • Complete Accessories: Comes with the tapered spindles for holding buffs and brushes up to 4" in diameter. Manufactured in compliance with health and security rules required, complete with two spindles.
  • Widely Used: Jewelry polisher buffer mainly applied to polish jewelry, aluminum, chrome, acrylic dental materials, metal parts or plastic parts for a refined appearance.
SaleBestseller No. 2
ENEACRO Polisher, Rotary Car Buffer Polisher Waxer, 1200W 7-inch/6-inch Variable Speed 1500-3500RPM, Detachable Handle Perfect for Boat,Car Polishing and Waxing
1,223 Reviews
ENEACRO Polisher, Rotary Car Buffer Polisher Waxer, 1200W 7-inch/6-inch Variable Speed 1500-3500RPM, Detachable Handle Perfect for Boat,Car Polishing and Waxing
  • ➤【HIGH-PERFORMANCE ROTARY POLISHER】Powerful 1200W motor produces up to 3500RPM with low noise– powerful enough for a professional. Heat resistant copper wire motor allows long working time without burning the machine. The high-performance electric car polisher helps to increase your efficiency.
  • ➤【LIGHT WEIGHT & VARIABLE SPEED CONTROL】Only 5.5 pounds light weight, compact and portable design make it easy for carrying and storage. 6-level variable speed dial allows users to control speed from 1500 to 3500RPM according to various tasks or materials and improve work efficiency.
  • ➤【WIDE APPLICATION】Comes with sandpapers, fine and rough sponge wheels for waxing, wool polishing disc. You can use different sponge wheel to finish different application. This rotary polisher is ideal for polishing and removing swirls, scratches, and defects from all painted vehicles. You can also use it on furniture, ceramic, wood and metal.
  • ➤【HUMANIZED DESIGH】ENEACRO Polisher comes with two detachable handles (D-handle and side handle), you can choose the way that you feel comfortable. Meanwhile with the safe-switch lock design, you can maintain a speed by press the button safely and conveniently.
  • ➤【WHAT YOU WILL GET】1* Rotary Polisher, 1* 6-Inch Loop Backing Plate, 1* 7-Inch Loop Backing Plate, 3* 6-inch Sponge Wheel, 1* 7-inch Wool Polishing Disc, 8* 6-inch Sandpapers, 1* D-Handle, 1* Side Handle, 1* Hex Wrench, 2* Carbon Brushes, 1* User Manual. Defect Free Warranty and 6 working hours Quick Response Customer Support.
Bestseller No. 3
OPAVIOC Jewelry Polisher - Adjustable Variable Speed Bench Grinder Polishing & Buffing Machine, Dental Buffer & Lathe - Includes 2 Cotton Buffs, 2 Abrasive Fiber Wheels, Safety Glass, Polish Compound
  • ✅Compact, Portable, Powerful - Don't be fooled by the size of this bench polisher grinder machine. Despite its size, it boasts a low-noise 200W motor that churns out speeds of 1750RPM up to 8500RPM.
  • ✅More Than A Jewelry Polishing Machine - By adjusting the speeds, you can polish anything from chains and jewelry to gems and machine components. This buffer polisher can even be a dental lathe!
  • ✅Minus The Hazard - Intuitive controls are safe for hands. The speed dial is separate from the bench grinder switch. Mounting holes and corner brackets to stabilize the jewelry buffing motor's base.
  • ✅Lightweight Table Grinder Polisher - Whether you're a professional in a busy workshop or a hobbyist making DIY projects, this polisher buffer can be used anywhere without taking up too much space.
  • ✅With Buffing Wheel Polisher & More - This bench buffer comes bundled with two 4" cotton buffs for post-polishing jewelry, two fiber wheels for rust removal, and one polishing compound.
Bestseller No. 4
BLWX - Shoe Machine - Hand-held Multi-Function Household Electric Shoe Polisher/Leather Cleaner Electric Shoe polishing Machine (Color : A, Size : 1#)
10 Reviews
BLWX - Shoe Machine - Hand-held Multi-Function Household Electric Shoe Polisher/Leather Cleaner Electric Shoe polishing Machine (Color : A, Size : 1#)
  • Save time and effort without getting dirty. Lightweight body for easy carrying.
  • Shock and drop resistant. Feel comfortable. Polish the artifact. Powerful, lightweight and convenient.
  • Replace the two speeds, the first lubrication and the second polishing (0-500 rpm for the first gear and 0-1500 rpm for the second gear)
  • Gear torque adjustment to 18 + 3 adjust the torque gear to the appropriate force as needed to avoid excessive force and scratches on shoes, safer shoes
  • With the electronic emergency brake function, you can stop the rotation immediately to avoid idle time after the machine is stopped, and waste valuable time.If you have any questions, you can email us and we will get back to you within 24 hours.

2 Comments

  • Man and Van Cambridge
    Posted January 3, 2012 3:11 pm 0Likes

    Dodo Juice Machine takes my vote. One of the positive point is that it is the lightest weight in its category and speed can be adjusted easily. It gribs well in hand and less chance of slipping.

    I have one, and it is very reliable and long lasting. It consume less power and gribs very easily. The size of the pad is also very reasonable…remember. bigger pad tends to slip and are not good while doing the corners.

    • Fax
      Posted July 23, 2012 6:24 pm 0Likes

      Hey mate, thinking of getting one dodo juice, how has it been treating you in the last six months. Thanks faz

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