Polishing

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Amihai

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Oct 8, 2021
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54
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Israel
Hi,
After I'm finished turning the blanks, I sand, then clean the blank with little bit of alcohol, apply 8 layers of CA finish, micro mesh it, and apply little bit of Renaissance wax.

I understood from some people that one may also polish the blank after the CA is applied.
I've never done that before. Can someone introduce me to this topic?

I understood that there are different types of oils and friction polishes you can use, as well as buffing wheels and many more stuff... It's like Chinese for me at this point.

Anyone can recommend some type of finish or the other? I work solely with wood. Thanks!
 
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keithbyrd

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Sep 2, 2011
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Mount Wolf, PA
My process is similar to yours - sand with 400, 00 steel wool sometimes alcohol, CA - let cure, sand 400, steel wool 00, micro mesh, Huts ultra, Renasaince, Buffing wheel briefly.
 

EricRN

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Joined
May 16, 2019
Messages
621
Hi,
After I'm finished turning the blanks, I sand, then clean the blank with little bit of alcohol, apply 8 layers of CA finish, micro mesh it, and apply little bit of Renaissance wax.

I understood from some people that one may also polish the blank after the CA is applied.
I've never done that before. Can someone introduce me to this topic?

I understood that there are different types of oils and friction polishes you can use, as well as buffing wheels and many more stuff... It's like Chinese for me at this point.

Anyone can recommend some type of finish or the other? I work solely with wood. Thanks!
The oils and friction polishes are actually a finish to be applied to bare wood. I wouldn’t apply them over CA. For CA, I’d use a plastic polish like Huts or Novus after finishing the micro mesh. You could also buff it
 

Amihai

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Oct 8, 2021
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Israel
The oils and friction polishes are actually a finish to be applied to bare wood. I wouldn’t apply them over CA. For CA, I’d use a plastic polish like Huts or Novus after finishing the micro mesh. You could also buff it
By "buff it" you mean using those cotton wheels? With what compound? Thanks.
 

EricRN

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May 16, 2019
Messages
621
By "buff it" you mean using those cotton wheels? With what compound? Thanks.
Yup. I like the Beall triple buff which mounts on the lathe. But other folks have a dedicated buffer. If I micromesh, I wouldn’t use anything more than blue buffing compound. It comes in a big brick. Check out the resources on the Caswell website. Lots of good info
 

montmill

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Jan 26, 2008
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13528 Old Hwy. G Montfort, Wisconsin
With bowls and spindle work many use the Bealle Buffing system: Tripoli, white diamond and carnauba wax in that order. White diamond can show up on walnut so it may be skipped. It seems to me that with the finish you describe a polish with Renaissance wax is all that would be needed to avoid finger prints but I'm just learning. I'll be following this thread. Good question.
 

turnit2020

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Jun 5, 2020
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135
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Marietta, GA
If the blanks are acrylic, you might try sanding to 400 or 600 and then us EEE. This eliminates the use of miromesh and gives a great glossy finish.
 
Joined
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Fayetteville, North Carolina
After micro meshing the CA? With what compound? Thanks.

There are 2 systems of repute that I am aware of. You can get the 3 wheel Beall buffing system or variations of it off amazon and other turning sites and there is a 2 wheel system out there as well. Whatever system you go with will come with compounds for each wheel. One bar per wheel basically and you can order more bars or wheels separately.

Get a wheel buffing system. Makes some test blanks and find the process that works for you and add it to your routine.
 

NJturner

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Dec 4, 2006
Messages
134
Location
New Jersey, USA.
Here is my take - and you will get lots of opinions on this -

When finishing wood pens that have been coated with CA or GluBoost, you have to consider the blank material as one sanding element and the CA or GluBoost finish as a separate element. With wood blanks, sanding through the grades up to a 600 abranet is a good process. Be sure to vary the sanding direction to eliminate scratch lines. This gives you a smooth surface to apply the finish to. Then apply the CA or Gluboost either using a foam sheet or clean towel.

Be sure to let either finish dry hard - Gluboost is suggested to dry roughly 8 hours, CA varies by brand. Once the finish is dry and hard, then work to level and polish the finish. I wet sand at this point using 600 abranet to do the leveling (light sanding - do not remove the finish!). Then I start the polishing by wet sanding up to 1500 or sometimes 2000 (black blanks). You can cut a few of the steps here sometimes by using a liquid polish like Hut UltraShine (some car paint polishes also work if you can't get Hut), but if you can't get it, stick with wet sanding up the grades.

At this point, you can polish it with a two wheel system with blue polish first, then a clean wheel. You should end up with an amazingly shiny pen without any scratches or haze.

Good luck!
 

Amihai

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Oct 8, 2021
Messages
54
Location
Israel
Here is my take - and you will get lots of opinions on this -

When finishing wood pens that have been coated with CA or GluBoost, you have to consider the blank material as one sanding element and the CA or GluBoost finish as a separate element. With wood blanks, sanding through the grades up to a 600 abranet is a good process. Be sure to vary the sanding direction to eliminate scratch lines. This gives you a smooth surface to apply the finish to. Then apply the CA or Gluboost either using a foam sheet or clean towel.

Be sure to let either finish dry hard - Gluboost is suggested to dry roughly 8 hours, CA varies by brand. Once the finish is dry and hard, then work to level and polish the finish. I wet sand at this point using 600 abranet to do the leveling (light sanding - do not remove the finish!). Then I start the polishing by wet sanding up to 1500 or sometimes 2000 (black blanks). You can cut a few of the steps here sometimes by using a liquid polish like Hut UltraShine (some car paint polishes also work if you can't get Hut), but if you can't get it, stick with wet sanding up the grades.

At this point, you can polish it with a two wheel system with blue polish first, then a clean wheel. You should end up with an amazingly shiny pen without any scratches or haze.

Good luck!
You wet sand only to 2,000?
I dry sand (had problems with the wet sanding messing up my wood) but sand from 1,500 to 12,000.
Maybe I should apply more coats of CA and then wet sand?..
 

Amanap

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Jul 16, 2020
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Plant City, Florida
You can ask 10 pen turners this same question and get 10 different answers. My response is, the correct method is the one that gives YOU the results you are happy with. I probably couldn't tell you how many different methods I have tried when it comes to applying CA or any other finish because it has changed so many times over the years. Are you not happy with the finial finish or just thinking there is a possibility it could be better?
 

its_virgil

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Wichita Falls, TX, USA.
An Oldie but a Goodie. Thanks George

 

KenB259

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Dec 24, 2017
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Michigan
You can ask 10 pen turners this same question and get 10 different answers. My response is, the correct method is the one that gives YOU the results you are happy with. I probably couldn't tell you how many different methods I have tried when it comes to applying CA or any other finish because it has changed so many times over the years.
I like this response, says it very well.
 

Amihai

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Oct 8, 2021
Messages
54
Location
Israel
You can ask 10 pen turners this same question and get 10 different answers. My response is, the correct method is the one that gives YOU the results you are happy with. I probably couldn't tell you how many different methods I have tried when it comes to applying CA or any other finish because it has changed so many times over the years. Are you not happy with the finial finish or just thinking there is a possibility it could be better?
I'm quite satisfied. But I do look to improve the results
 

vtgaryw

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Jul 24, 2012
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Location
Milton, VT
The oils and friction polishes are actually a finish to be applied to bare wood. I wouldn’t apply them over CA. For CA, I’d use a plastic polish like Huts or Novus after finishing the micro mesh. You could also buff it
Pens Plus goes nicely over CA, adds a little shine to it. I've talked to the Doctor about it.
 

magpens

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Feb 2, 2011
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Canada
@Amihai

I have written a fairly lengthy "conversation" in my attempt to answer your question, as I understand it.

Please read that, and feel free to ask me further questions if I have not properly addressed your concerns.
 

NJturner

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Dec 4, 2006
Messages
134
Location
New Jersey, USA.
You wet sand only to 2,000?
I dry sand (had problems with the wet sanding messing up my wood) but sand from 1,500 to 12,000.
Maybe I should apply more coats of CA and then wet sand?..
Amihai - wet sanding wood surfaces can lead to a bunch of different issues, so I limit wet sanding to plastics. However, I do use a little water to raise the grain on wood at different points when I sand (normally around the 240 grit timeframe), then let dry and finish sanding. I find this helps with roughness developed by grain swells. As far as sanding plastic - yes, I typically sand only to 2000 grit and then proceed to liquid polishes and then blue rouge on a buffer. I've found that the finish is smooth and swirl free by then. I reserve sanding to higher numbers to clear or semi-opaque blanks where clarity of the plastic becomes an issue (like in pen reservoir windows). But, as many have said, technique and your own likes or dislikes will be your best guidance. As far as coats of CA, again, its somewhat technique and preference controlled. If you sand heavily, extra CA will help keep you from sanding through the finish. But many people don't like the 'plastic' look of a thick finish. No matter what, extra CA will not fix a less than complete sanding of the base wood blank.

Hope you are enjoying! Just keep turning - especially that wonderful olivewood you have so much access to!
 

crokett

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Dec 4, 2012
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607
Location
Mebane, North Carolina
I made the mistake, years ago of wet sanding bare wood, once. Never again. For my wood pens I use CA, 8-10 coats It varies depending on the grain of the wood. Open grain woods I use more coats. After the last coat I use a wet sanding pad, then I use the same polish that I use on my poly/acrylic pens.
 
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