Polishing Abrasives
#11
  
Hi all.  I'm working on a box/humidor that I am going to spray with lacquer and rub up to a high gloss finish.  I've never rubbed/polished a finish before.  Always stuck with wipe-on satin poly.  I have both a rotex 150 and an ETS 125.  Looking at their platin line of pads....I really really don't want to spend multiple hundreds of dollars just to give this a try.  Anyone have a viable recommendation or idea on what some options would be?  I know that I could always just fall back on some pumice/rottenstone...but would prefer to use mechanical advantage to prove out if this is the kind of finish I wouldn't mind trying/using again.

Thanks for any input!
Kevin
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#12
  Re: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Hi all.  I'm working...)
Charles Neil has put a few of his videos demonstrating his process for rubbing out a finish to various gloss levels on YouTube. A search on his name should find his landing page.
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#13
  Re: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Hi all.  I'm working...)
http://www.gnhw.org is the website for the Guild of New Hampshire Woodworkers.  Terri Masaschi has several finishing videos but this one is about polishing out finishes:  https://www.gnhw.org/videolibrary/polish...t-finishes.  She is one of the best and recommends using automotive finishing supplies.  Says it's much faster and easier than pumice or rottenstone.  Lots of good videos on the website.

Lonnie
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#14
  Re: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Hi all.  I'm working...)
Check Eastwood Tools.  Their primary audience is autobody refinishers, but they have all the polishing equipment and supplies that you could ever use.  They seem competitively priced too.

https://www.eastwood.com/autobody/buffing.html#
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#15
  Re: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Hi all.  I'm working...)
Thanks for the good input guys....this is exactly what I was looking for!
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#16
  Re: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Hi all.  I'm working...)
Some things to know about achieving high gloss.

1. The finish needs to be very clear. We call it "water clear". Some clear finishes can only get so shiny. The harder the finish, the better chance of getting a high polish. It's hard to get a high gloss on a a soft finish. Think of chrome wheel vs. a rubber tire. You can polish both but the rubber tire will never get shiny.

2. The color beneath the clear matters too. White and silver cars "seemingly" shine up easier than black because you can see all the imperfections in a clear finish over black easier than if that same finish was over a light background. Swirl marks are scratches, so are sanding marks. Those scratches you see is the sun light hitting the edge of the scratch. Light surfaces don't provide the contrast so those scratches are less noticeable.

3. As far as sanding and buffing and polishing. Sanding removes the imperfections in the finish. It also flattens the finish, gets rid of any orange peel. Buffing gets rid of those scratches left from sanding. Polishing gets rid of the swirl marks (scratches) left by the buffing wheel and or buffing compound. A high gloss is a three stem process, sanding, buffing and polishing.

If you were to buff before sanding, you would only be buffing the high spots in the orange peel. So You would have orange peel that is a little more shiny than before.

Knock that orange peel down flat, you can buff and polish the entire surface. Mercedes 7 series vs. a Chevy Cobalt. They both shine but put the two side by side, there's no comparison. Sand it down to a fine grit, you'll spend less time buffing to get the high gloss.

When I sand and buff automotive clear-coat I wet sand, buff and polish. Typically I do as little work as possible to get the result my customer expects. Time is money. Sanding is faster than buffing and it doesn't create heat. Friction heat from a buffer will kill a good shine.
I usually start with 1500g, wet. Always use some sort of a sanding block. Fingers are not flat and cannot sand evenly flat. From 1500g wet, I move to 2000g. If it's a light color, I'll go ahead and buff it with 3M A
Don't fall for any claim that a compound will take out 1500 grit sanding marks and leave a high gloss. It won't.

If It's dark car, I'll start with 1500g wet, then 2000g, then sand out the 2000g scratches with 2500g. Then buff with the 3M A and polish out the buffing marks with 3m-2 Machine Polish

Some topcoats are very hard (Mercedes, Harley Davidson) and compounds don't cut them well so I'll need to take my sanding down to 3000g (1500, 2000, 2500, 3000) with Trizact 3000g before buffing.  Then buff out the 3000g scratches and and polish with the Machine Polish.

The reality is that wood finishes aren't nearly as hard as automotive finishes. I'd think you could sand with 1500 and maybe 2000 and use the 3M-A compound and be done with it.

A couple things to remember buffers heat the finish. Heat is your enemy so run the buffer slow or sand down further and use a microfiber rag and hand buff it. I will do that on occasion but not without sanding down to about 3000 first or I' be at it for a long time. Sand paper sands faster tan buffing compound. It's very rare that I'll run my buffer over about 800 rpm. Always sand with some sort of a block. This block is amazing. Flat, yet flexible.
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#17
  Re: RE: Polishing Abrasives by Snipe Hunter (Some things to know ...)
(01-18-2019, 12:06 PM)Snipe Hunter Wrote: Some things to know about achieving high gloss.

1. The finish needs to be very clear. We call it "water clear". Some clear finishes can only get so shiny. The harder the finish, the better chance of getting a high polish. It's hard to get a high gloss on a a soft finish. Think of chrome wheel vs. a rubber tire. You can polish both but the rubber tire will never get shiny.

2. The color beneath the clear matters too. White and silver cars "seemingly" shine up easier than black because you can see all the imperfections in a clear finish over black easier than if that same finish was over a light background. Swirl marks are scratches, so are sanding marks. Those scratches you see is the sun light hitting the edge of the scratch. Light surfaces don't provide the contrast so those scratches are less noticeable.

3. As far as sanding and buffing and polishing. Sanding removes the imperfections in the finish. It also flattens the finish, gets rid of any orange peel. Buffing gets rid of those scratches left from sanding. Polishing gets rid of the swirl marks (scratches) left by the buffing wheel and or buffing compound. A high gloss is a three stem process, sanding, buffing and polishing.

If you were to buff before sanding, you would only be buffing the high spots in the orange peel. So You would have orange peel that is a little more shiny than before.

Knock that orange peel down flat, you can buff and polish the entire surface. Mercedes 7 series vs. a Chevy Cobalt. They both shine but put the two side by side, there's no comparison. Sand it down to a fine grit, you'll spend less time buffing to get the high gloss.

When I sand and buff automotive clear-coat I wet sand, buff and polish. Typically I do as little work as possible to get the result my customer expects. Time is money. Sanding is faster than buffing and it doesn't create heat. Friction heat from a buffer will kill a good shine.
I usually start with 1500g, wet. Always use some sort of a sanding block. Fingers are not flat and cannot sand evenly flat. From 1500g wet, I move to 2000g. If it's a light color, I'll go ahead and buff it with 3M A
Don't fall for any claim that a compound will take out 1500 grit sanding marks and leave a high gloss. It won't.

If It's dark car, I'll start with 1500g wet, then 2000g, then sand out the 2000g scratches with 2500g. Then buff with the 3M A and polish out the buffing marks with 3m-2 Machine Polish

Some topcoats are very hard (Mercedes, Harley Davidson) and compounds don't cut them well so I'll need to take my sanding down to 3000g (1500, 2000, 2500, 3000) with Trizact 3000g before buffing.  Then buff out the 3000g scratches and and polish with the Machine Polish.

The reality is that wood finishes aren't nearly as hard as automotive finishes. I'd think you could sand with 1500 and maybe 2000 and use the 3M-A compound and be done with it.

A couple things to remember buffers heat the finish. Heat is your enemy so run the buffer slow or sand down further and use a microfiber rag and hand buff it. I will do that on occasion but not without sanding down to about 3000 first or I' be at it for a long time. Sand paper sands faster tan buffing compound. It's very rare that I'll run my buffer over about 800 rpm. Always sand with some sort of a block. This block is amazing. Flat, yet flexible.

I just checked a few items and R & S is less expensive than Eastwood.  I will have to try them for future orders.
No animals were injured or killed in the production of this post.
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#18
  Re: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Hi all.  I'm working...)
I'd look around. Eastwoods is famously expensive. I've dealt with R&E about 10 years because shipping was free over $200. They're just a small independent car paint supplier in a small town who sell on the web too. They don't screw up orders and they actually called me when they thought I might be buying the wrong thing once. He was right, I messed up. Good service and dependable. But I do more and more with Amazon now that they are dealing with these products although many of them don't actually ship from Amazon but it's free shipping w prime.

I'd think you could buy smaller quantities if you shopped around.

I'm certainly not saying you need all this stuff, I need this stuff. But you do need the basics, A good block like the MotorGuard, some good compound and a good top-coat product. I'd guess you'll have to try different topcoat finishes to see what sands and buffs best. Not everything does. I'm thinking you'll need something that sets hard, maybe even something with a catalyst.
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#19
  Re: RE: Polishing Abrasives by Snipe Hunter (Some things to know ...)
(01-18-2019, 12:06 PM)Snipe Hunter Wrote: If It's dark car, I'll start with 1500g wet, then 2000g, then sand out the 2000g scratches with 2500g. Then buff with the 3M A and polish out the buffing marks with 3m-2 Machine Polish
Thanks...would this same suggestion work on a walnut box finished with multiple layers of lacquer (see below?)  Seems to be inline with some of the other suggested videos as well. (and I already have the block due to a previous thread of yours Smile  )
For the lacquer, I am going to spray on 10 coats over the next few days.  Then let it cure for a week.  Next weekend I'll flatten it with some 600g wet paper and a piece of wood as a flat block.  If I can get it flat without burning thru to the wood...I'll stop there and let it cure for another 3 weeks (month total) before moving on to the 1500 and up with the sanding block.
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#20
  Re: RE: Polishing Abrasives by brnhornt (Thanks for the good ...)
(01-18-2019, 10:55 AM)brnhornt Wrote: Thanks for the good input guys....this is exactly what I was looking for!

......................
For the highest gloss, I use Optical grade Cerium Oxide...You can get it in various forms from amazon and HD..Mix with a few drops of mineral oil and rub out..

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