I've got some stone chips and clearcoat damage on my hood, and want to do a spot repair myself. I'd like to know the proper sandpaper grits to use as I'm not sure.

So far I have used 400 and 800 wet to sand down the damaged area. The damaged clearcoat is now removed, and between the repair and area good clearcoat is feathered in and smooth.

I think my next step will be to apply primer, however I'd like to know if I should key the rest of the panel. I'm going to blend the basecoat and plan to apply clearcoat to the whole panel.

So, which grits are suitable for:

  • Keying existing clearcoat to have new clearcoat applied over it
  • Keying a blend area around the immediate repair area (which has been sanded already)

1 Answer 1


In both the cases in your question, when I have done this I have used either 1200 grit wet and dry to key surrounding areas or used a scotch-brite pad -


If a fine cut is taken, the matte area left can easily be polished out with a paint polishing compound e.g. https://www.3m.co.uk/3M/en_GB/company-uk/3m-products/?N=5002385+8709313+8709338+8710722+8711017+8711413+8724076+8743656+3289965978&preselect=3293786499&rt=rud

You can see an example of a similar repair I have done fairly recently, here -


And here -


Once finished spraying the coats of clear coat, I would leave it a day or two before using 1200 wet and dry on the repainted area to get a perfect blend between the old and new clear coats, which I would then polish.

  • Thanks @HandyHowie, so in your XJS project (looks great btw) you used 1200 in the area around the repair but not the rest of the panel? I only have 1k clear so wasn't sure how well a blend would work, hence my idea of spraying the whole panel with clear
    – james246
    Jun 26, 2020 at 8:51
  • 1
    I only clear coated around the repair. I don’t see why you shouldn’t. be able to blend the 1K. I would initially spray as small an area as possibly and see what results you get. Afterward you could spray more if you think it will look better. 1200 grit will be fine for flatting the whole panel or just the surrounding area. Just don’t get carried away and go too deep a very fine cut will do.
    – HandyHowie
    Jun 26, 2020 at 11:03

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