Professional Tool Reviews for Pros

Makita 18V Cordless 6-inch Polisher XOP02T

Makita 18V Brushless 6-inch Polisher XOP02T

If a good auto or marine detailer is the artist, then the polisher is his or her brush. The Makita 18V Cordless 6-inch polisher (XOP02T) uses a brushless motor and includes a dual-action random orbit and Finish mode. It can provide either random orbit with forced rotation or free rotation. Coupled with a 5-speed design, this 18V brushless polisher lets Pros set the speed and action to the application.

Makita 18V Cordless 6-inch Polisher Features & Modes

Cordless polishers started gaining attention (and adoption) once Pros started handling them and realizing they eliminated a longstanding inconvenience: the power cord. Makita is no stranger to the polisher market, and we got our hands on the corded Makita BO6050J orbital polisher in late 2016. We’re intrigued to see if Makita can pull off the same performance (or better) with no cord.

Makita 18V Brushless 6-inch Polisher XOP02T beauty

One of the advantages we see with the brushless motor includes the use of an electronic controller. It automatically applies additional power to maintain a constant speed, even when the tool has to work hard. For polishing, this delivers a more consistent performance. It also delivers a soft start for smoother start-ups and longer gear life. These seem like great features for polishing.

Makita Cordless 6-inch Polisher dual action

The dual power mode allows for high power for when you need to bear down and do corrective work. Low power extends the cordless run-time of the tool—great for lower-force general polishing work. It can be a little confusing to understand all of the available modes, speeds, etc, so here’s a breakdown:

Random Orbit with Forced Rotation

This mode gives you orbital action that “forces” the rotation of the pad. It’s designed for rough polishing such as surface treatment. In this mode, the 5-position speed settings will yield the following speeds and RPM:

  1. 1,600 OPM, 180 RPM
  2. 2,500 OPM, 290 OPM
  3. 4,000 OPM, 460 OPM
  4. 5,600 OPM, 650 OPM
  5. 6,800 OPM, 780 OPM

Random Orbit

In this mode, you get orbital action with free rotation of the pad. Use this for fine polishing. In this mode, the 5-position speed settings will yield the following speeds and RPM (same as with forced rotation):

  1. 1,600 OPM, 180 RPM
  2. 2,500 OPM, 290 OPM
  3. 4,000 OPM, 460 OPM
  4. 5,600 OPM, 650 OPM
  5. 6,800 OPM, 780 OPM

Makita 18V Brushless 6-inch Polisher finish mode

Finishing Mode

In the finishing mode, you can operate the Makita XOP02T cordless polisher without applying excessive load. This mode is designed specifically for finishing duties. To place the tool into finishing mode, pull the trigger and release it to turn on the tool, and then press the mode switching button. The lamp will light up green. To return to the normal mode, just press the mode switching button while the tool is turned on. In this mode, the 5-position speed settings will yield the following speeds and RPM:

  1. 1,600 OPM, 180 RPM
  2. 2,200 OPM, 250 OPM
  3. 3,300 OPM, 380 OPM
  4. 4,400 OPM, 500 OPM
  5. 5,200 OPM, 600 OPM

The Rest of the Story

Makita provided rubberized tool rest positions over the gear housing and battery. This should help protect delicate surfaces from damage when the tool rests on or brushes up against them. A front knob handle lets you add a second hand for precision work.

Makita 18V Brushless 6-inch Polisher XOP02T screen

A power lock-on switch means you don’t have to mash in the trigger non-stop to get a continuous use of the cordless polisher during longer jobs. For safety, Makita ensured that the tool won’t start back up when the lock-on is activated and a new battery is inserted.

Makita 18V Brushless Polisher Conclusion

We like that the Makita XOP02 polisher doesn’t simply cut the cord. It really packs some incredibly useful features into a cordless polishing solution. With multiple modes, variable speed, and the Finish mode, this tool should hit the market strong.

Makita XOP02T Cordless 6-inch Polisher kit

Makita XOP02T 18V Brushless 6-inch Polisher Specs

  • Pad Size (round): 5 in. and 6 in. (included)
  • Battery: 18V LXT Lithium-ion
  • Speed (variable speed) : 0 – 780 RPM (no load)
  • Orbits per minute (variable speed): 0 or 1,600 – 6,800 OPM
  • Orbit diameter: 7/32 in.
  • Variable speed control dial
  • Vibration (m/s²): 3
  • Length: 20-1/4 in.
  • Weight: 7.9 lbs.
  • Kit includes: 2 x 18V LXT 18V batteries, charger, 5- and 6-in. hook & loop pad backing plates, hex wrench, and tool bag
  • Warranty: 3-year limited on tool, battery, and charger
  • Price: TBA

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What is the Run Time on a Battery? I know it differs on Capacity. Just wondering if I could use it on my 16 Tucson without having to blow through batteries. Is this a Hook and Loop pad? Or can I use Bonnets?

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