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Polishing wood with diamond pastes and sprays

Fri Jan 11, 2013 11:53 am

I have made smooth wooden scales for knife handles and tried to polish them using DMT diamond paste, Hand American diamond spray and CBN spray on a small piece of leather. It worked really well. The softer the leather the better it seems. Once you have the shape of the wood I was wondering how to make it shine. I thought since the really fine grit pastes/sprays could polish a knife edge why not wood? It does very well. I got up to 1000 or 1500 grit wet/dry sandpaper then used a piece of leather about the size of my finger to "finger polish" the scales. Then they look shiny, showing the different grain. I have 15µ CBN, 6µ DMT paste .5µ CBN. Even the 15µ made a big difference after the sandpaper. The finer grits made it a little shinnier. :)

Just thought I'd pass this on to anyone who hasn't thought of it or learned it. I'm sure I'm not the first one to think of it but if you need to finish wood and haven't tried this you may want to give it a try to see how you like it.

Re: Polishing wood with diamond pastes and sprays

Sun Jan 13, 2013 3:31 am

I generally sand to 600 with my belt sander, then use an 80 ply sewn Muslin Buff with Matchless White rouge on it. Gives a great shine really quickly! I've taken handles up to a 12000 Micro Mesh finish and didn't see much difference between that and when it's buffed. With the leather pad and compounds, you have to be careful and watch out for the pins or tang/bolster standing proud if they are western handles since the compounds can remove material and the metal and wood sand at different rates. You can get adapters to use buffing wheels in a drill press or lathe; I use my lathe at a slow speed.

You can also use a strip of leather and the polishing rouges to get the same effect as the slurries for a bit less cost. I used to put white rouge on a leather belt and polish the handles that way when I first started. The rouges usually have some sort of wax in them, which helps protect the handles as well.

600 grit belt and then buffed as above:

12K Micro Mesh finish:
The Micro Mesh finish will often leave the pins standing proud and is much harder and more time consuming for not much extra benefit.

Re: Polishing wood with diamond pastes and sprays

Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:19 am

As stated above - muslin buffsheel works well - but you need to be sure you don't get metal streaks from pins etc.

On turned timber you can also get a fantastic polish using the woodchips taken from the piece to polish the piece while it is still on the lathe.

Re: Polishing wood with diamond pastes and sprays

Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:59 am


Sorry, didn't realize the code wasn't complete for the first pic!

Re: Polishing wood with diamond pastes and sprays

Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:40 am

those are great lookers tim!
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