4/0 Steel Wool

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keithbyrd

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Sep 2, 2011
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Mount Wolf, PA
Does anyone use 4/0 steel wool in the finish process? What are the pros and cons?
I tried it a couple pens ago after sanding with 400 going to 4/0 steel wool. I think I am please with the results - I have done 3-4 pens and am pleased with the ease and the result.
 
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jttheclockman

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Feb 22, 2005
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NJ, USA.
Stopped using steel pads many many years ago. The steel fibers would ruin a finish in a heartbeat if not cleaned well. They are good if cleaning metals and you use acetone or other chemicals with it. I do other woodworking other than pens and for finishing needs I use the Non-Woven finishing pads which you can get in various grits and have used them all and they work well, and no debris from them

https://www.mcmaster.com/nonwoven-abrasive-pads/
 

Charlie_W

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Nov 16, 2011
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Sterling, VA USA
I use regular steel wool for general work but use Liberon 0000 steel wool if in the finishing process as it is virtually oil free so no oils to contaminate your surface before a finish is applied.

Of course, steel wool and a spinning pen blank or other turning can be dangerous as it can get wound around your work.... potentially pulling you in as well. ALWAYS use just a small wad which can pull out of your fingers easily. Do not wrap it around your fingers.
Others use pads such as ScotchBrite.
 

JohnU

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Jan 31, 2008
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Ottawa, Illinois
I use it on all acrylic pens. IMHO it seems to help reduce the sanding scratches After 400 grit for a smoother surface to micro mesh. If I apply a ca GluBoost finish I use the 0000 steel wool to knock down any ridges from the application and then micro mesh. Never had a problem but I always wipe the blank off with a clean dry cloth while the lathe is on prior to applying any finish.
 

Curly

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Nov 20, 2010
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Saskatoon SK., Canada.
Why not on bare wood? I like the clean doesn’t look sanded look
It can leave steel wool bits behind like John said and rust or stain the wood if you wet it or use water based finishes. Rub a bit of Oak and wet it and see what happens. Scotch Brite or similar are better because they are plastic and abrasive, behaving more like like the 0000 without the contamination risks. You choice though. ;)
 

Charlie_W

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Nov 16, 2011
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Sterling, VA USA
Another option is bronze wool instead of steel wool or Scotch Brite.
The bronze wool will not rust. You will still need to vacuum or blow off any fibers before finishing

 
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