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Old 01-11-2017, 04:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Is there a step I'm missing?

This is a pen turned for a TCU fan. The deep purple makes a nice look. The finish was buffed and also polished with plastic polish. Still I would like to get a little better gloss to it.
Is there a step I'm missing?
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Old 01-11-2017, 04:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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The first step is to remove the fine scratches. The scratches refract the light at different angles, rather than reflecting the light.
Sanding lengthwise will help eliminate the scratches.
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Old 01-11-2017, 05:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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What are your steps between final turning and buffing?
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Old 01-11-2017, 05:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
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What are your steps between final turning and buffing?
I sand with micro mesh 1500 to about 4000 and go to my buffing station with blue and white compound. Back to the lathe for plastic polish.
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Old 01-11-2017, 06:00 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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What are your steps between final turning and buffing?
I sand with micro mesh 1500 to about 4000 and go to my buffing station with blue and white compound. Back to the lathe for plastic polish.
Start with a lower grit and wet sand at low speed. Clean the blank off after each grit. I just use a small bit of blue paper towel dipped in water to clean the blank, dispose of the bit after EACH use. Use the light reflection to gauge your progress. If you don't have a light you can use, get one. Small clip-on flex arm LED lights are cheap.
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Old 01-11-2017, 06:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Should be buffing with the white diamond compound AFTER the plastic polish ...

And the micro mesh sanding step should go all the way up to 12,000 grit.


Plast-X will take a polish from around 1000 grit quality and improve it greatly, but it breaks down fairly fast to over 30,000 grit... It starts at around 4,000 grit, but the higher you go in micromesh, the less the polish actually has to accomplish in removing the larger scratches, and the better the surface appearance will be.


Don't forget to sand laterally (in line with the spindle) to break the radial sanding lines that you can still see on the pen barrel pictured ... this will assist you greatly in refining your polishing techniques and results.
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Old 01-11-2017, 07:38 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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That's a real nice pen but, yes, it appears you are not sanding to a higher enough grit before you start final polishing. A rough rule of thumb is that the grit for subsequent passes should be no more than double the number of the current grit. So, for example, if I'm currently at 150, the next grit should be 300 or less (I choose 220). Then from 220 go to 400, 800, 1500, etc. I like to wet sand but in any case I think it's important to not contaminate subsequent steps with previous step swarf (wipe it down thoroughly after each step). Final polishing options are all over the place - Novus, McGuires, the Beall buffing system, etc.

Develop your own procedures. It's worth the effort.
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Old 01-11-2017, 10:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Originally Posted by LOIBLB View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyL View Post
What are your steps between final turning and buffing?
I sand with micro mesh 1500 to about 4000 and go to my buffing station with blue and white compound. Back to the lathe for plastic polish.
Considering you are starting at 1500 that is not a bad finish (IMO and from what the photos reveal). I couldn't get away with that no matter how good my skew-work was.

Everyone is more or less advising the same - start with a lower (more aggressive) grit. Maybe, you are one of the really skilled turners and can start at 800 (worth a try) - I can't. If 800 isi not aggressive enough, start at 600. Dark colors/shades can be the most revealing and unforgiving.

My turning skills seldom allow me to start above 320.

The purple and silver look great together!

Much success!
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Old 01-11-2017, 10:47 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Take a look at the surface at 10x magnification.

Amazing how much you can learn about the surface at higher magnification.

When it looks good at 10x you are getting where the big dogs run.
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Old 01-20-2017, 07:43 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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I'm having the same issue for the first time with a pen I turned today. I didn't notice it before I put the whole thing together. Is it possible to get the desired shine without putting it back on the lathe? In other words, can this be fixed while the pen is assembled providing I'm careful not to scratch the pen parts?
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