The random orbital polisher has long been promoted as the safest
type of car buffer to polish a car with. Random orbital car polishers move in two directions as a opposed to the single rotation of the high-speed car polisher which makes it the safer choice in a car polisher.
It is the two moving directions of the polisher as to why random orbital polishers are also known as dual-action car polishers, or simply DA as the appropriate acronym for dual-action.
The random orbital buffer is what is also called a DA, or dual-action car buffer. It is called a DA as it has two types of movement. The easiest way for people to understand this is to think of the sun spinning on its single axis point, while simultaneously rotating around the sun while it is spinning. The reason it is called random is because the spinning is controlled by a free floating spindle that will stop spinning if enough pressure is applied to the head. (the head being the backing plate to which the polishing pad is attached to.)
Since these buffers are made with a free floating spindle, if too much pressure is applied while polishing, the spinning of the polishing pad will cease to spin and only continue to vibrate. While this may first appear as a problem, it is this very reason that makes these random orbital polishers so safe. Unlike a rotary or high-speed polisher that continues to spin regardless of the pressure, the free floating spindle is essentially a safety mechanism that allows true beginners to enjoy the potential results that can only be produced by use of a car polisher.
For most people it is simply a matter of inexperience and safety. Dual-action, random orbital polishers are simply the easier and safer choice. This makes them very appealing to any beginner. But with advances in engineering, the latest versions of these random orbitals have far more power than the first generation DA polishers.
High-speed car polishers represent the greatest range in performance and applications. Due to the speeds and heavy-duty capacity of rotary car polishers, they can be used to not only perform car paint polishing, but perform gel coat/fiberglass polishing, as well as remove sanding marks after colorsanding. These types of jobs require heat and friction that can only be created with the higher speeds of a rotary car polisher. This does not mean these types of polishing cannot be done with an orbital buffer, but the results will not compare to those available with a rotary polisher.
Random orbital buffers represent each end of the polishing spectrum, that is, they are ideally suited for true beginners as well as represent the finishing tool for any truly advanced polisher. With that said, it is important to note that very few professional detailers and car paint finishers possess the skills necessary to raise paint perfection to this level, just as very few people possess a trained eye that can discern the difference of car paint that has been polished to such a high level of perfection. Which again is why most newbies will lean towards one of these random orbital car polishers.
Any of these random orbital polishers will be an excellent choice. Any of the random orbital car polishers I have selected for recommendation on this page will perform with professional level results.
Some things to consider when shopping for a top rated random orbital polisher would be the following:
If you are searching for one of those big, over-sized orbital polishers that rattle your teeth loose; like the one your dad probably has collecting dust in the garage, then you have come to the wrong place.
Random Orbitals (Dual-action car polishers) represent an excellent place to start and would be the only car polisher most of you will ever require; even if you were to enter into the world of professional detailing. Easy to use and completely safe, I recommend random orbitals for most people when starting out.
So if you have been sitting on the fence looking to take your car paint to the next level, then shop any of the top rated random orbital polishers above!
You simply will not go wrong with any of these. It will really be more about your personal budget and the experience you will have behind the handle of each buffer. But that is very much like any area of life...the proverbial cost/benefit analysis!