I started working at a high-end car dealership when I was 15. I had every kids dream. I got to learn how to drive stick on Porsches and BMWs driving them around the lot. I wasn’t allowed to drive customer service cars, but I was able to drive the new and used cars around the lot. One time I got a Porsche 930 Turbo slant nose up to 2nd gear in the parking lot. It was insane, I must have been doing 70. Good thing for 4 wheel disc brakes. When I hit 16 I got my license and was able to drive it all on the street. Needless to say I had a lot of experience with luxury cars. I started in 1988 and by the time I was 21 I had a wealth of knowledge about cars and automotive paint. The biggest killer of paint was acid rain and oxidation. Customers spending upwards of $70k for a used black 911 want the paint to be flawless. Milwaukee is not the first to the game with this tool, ACDelco had one a few years back.
To remove acid rain I had to cut the paint then polish back to a showroom shine. It really is not that hard once you get used to it and realize that foam pads are your friend and wool pads can be your worst enemy if not careful. I won’t go in to detail about the process, but we used big heavy buffers. To get into tight areas we used the edge of the buffer which was fine until you catch an antenna or piece of trim molding. That can ruin your day. The Milwaukee mini polisher allows you to get into tight areas and even gives you a portable solution to take out and do scratch repair. The unit comes with 2 different foam pads and a wool pad. The polisher has a variable speed up to 2300 rpm. In our tests the unit worked good and overall had a good level of control even without the side handle installed.
You can swap the 3″ polishing pad for a 2″ sanding pad and you have a sander. Flip the switch to give you up to 8300 rpm. For this test we used automotive surface prep discs and prepped a gasket for a new one. The tool worked great at removing the old material. The included backing pad also has a 1/4″ Roloc that allows the discs the easily be installed on the tool. The tool comes with one standard and one 3.0 XC battery which allows the tool to stand up. Most mechanics will prefer the latter option I am sure. For buffing, the smaller battery will get you into tight areas and keep the weight down reducing fatigue.
Overall the tool is handy to have around, It won't replace your standard buffer but it will help you out in a pinch. Especially for those small applications like a scratch in a quarter panel. For the mechanic it is another tool that detracts from pneumatic powered tools. It also adds a new level of mobility for sanding/scouring applications. Milwaukee covers this tool with a 5 year warranty. Check it out via Amazon.