Caring for Your Foam Pads
As a result of improved foam manufacturing technologies, foam pads have made great advances in performance and durability. Like their wool counterparts, foam pads must be properly cared for to insure consistent performance. Follow these general rules for better results from your foam pads:
Rotary Buffing and Polishing
- If the pad is new or dry, dampen the pad surface by misting it with water. This will aid in compound/polish dispersion. Continue periodic misting throughout the task. Remember that different foams will load up with compound/polish at different rates.
- Wash as necessary to prevent the compound or polish from drying out or becoming caked on the pad. Wash in our buffer powered System 2000™ pad washer or machine wash in warm water with mild detergent. Always clean the pad prior to storing for future use. It only takes 30 seconds in our pad washer!
- Do not place in dryer, as this will shorten the life of the pad. Air-drying is best.
- If the pad becomes dry or caked with compound/polish, spur the pad with a proper tool. Certain brushes with plastic bristles may melt leaving traces of bristle on the pad, which may result in scratching. We recommend our Duospur™ tool, which features nylon spur wheels that safely clean the foam without leaving any foreign particles on the pad surface.
- Occasionally foam pads will become torn or out of balance. This not only shortens the useful life of the pad, but also produces uneven surface patterns requiring additional work. Foam pads can be easily rebalanced with our Duospur™ tool. The sides of the tool have an abrasive callus plate designed for simple grinding. Let the pad surface dry, then reshape/repair the surface with the Duospur™ while spinning the pad on the buffer.
DA Orbital Buffing and Polishing
Due to the mechanics of DA machines, the ability to clean pads while attached to the machine depends on the type of tool being used. In the case of a Pneumatic DA with a dual-action offset cam, set the cam to circular mode and proceed to spur and/or clean the pad according the above instructions for Rotary Buffing and Polishing. With electric or cam-less DA tools, it is difficult to effectively clean the pad while on the machine. If a pad becomes caked with compound or polish, you can spur the pad surface while on the tool. Spurring may remove dried compound residue, but will not thoroughly clean the pad. To properly clean a pad, remove the pad from the tool and hand wash in warm water using a mild detergent, then air dry. Another option ... if the pad is loop backed, attach pad to a hook backing plate on a circular machine and follow the instructions for Rotary Buffing and Polishing. You may also spur and rebalance the pad using this method.
See also: Caring for Your Wool Pads