I want to try it--so I'll be following this---I was surprised the shellac didn't work---
The shellac worked but I think I expected too much from it . . .
Ok so I put my thinking cap on last night and I thought about the processes Ted spoke of in his dvd. Since he was "Turning" the excess hardened metal away I needed to produce the same method. The orbital sanders aren't the same, they basically "swirled" the particles in an area only picking up a small % for dust collection, the rest was being mashed back into the wood fibers . .
I did a test run this morning on already polished metal. Since the area was already tarnished with bronze dust, I sanded the surface back to 120 grit. This I noticed cleaned up the wood totally, it did rough the surface of the metal again, but the surrounding wood was clean.
I figured if I could use this as a starting point I would go to step 2.
So I applied a clean layer of 3 lbs Shellac to the area.
my thinking is since the metal is level and somewhat polished I could protect the wood again and sand to higher grits without sanding away the shellac . . . guess what . . it worked . . I did get some smudging of dust in the wood but no where near the amount I was getting before.
I made 2 passes with the sander in one direction trying to simulate the action of "Turning" and after the passes I wiped the surface clean and went to a higher grit. . .this sounds like it could work . .
the only problem now is staining the wood to cherry, I am using Birch and was planing on sealing the wood with a 1 lbs cut of shellac as a pre sealer against blotching, but now I have a 3 lb cut on the surface . . .
I will try the test again and use a 1 lb cut to sand to higher grits this way even if I have to apply shellac after every pass of a higher grit, at the end of sanding I will be left with a 1 lb cut to add my gel stain over . . .